Income School are selling all their projects to "start fresh." Chance for Newbies to See Some Sites!

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I'm sharing this not to promote these guys or give any opinions on their work.

You've probably seen them on Youtube if you look at SEO and IM videos. They get recommended a lot. This is a chance to see all of their websites and take a look at the quality of stuff they produce, especially if you haven't wanted to pay for their course / group.

Link: https://incomeschool.com/garagesale/

They aren't accepting lower bids or running auctions. It's first come, first serve, have money ready.

Some stats:
  • $505,489 total value
  • Across 6 sites
  • 1 site carries 63.6% of the value alone
  • They're asking about 36x monthly revenue
  • Which brings them to $14,041 revenue per month
They're not doing bad at all. Their sites are your basic "choose a niche, slap up articles based on keywords" micro-niche-ish approach but on bigger sites. The 7YearOld.com one is a little weird. I'd be getting rid of that too, asking about "should 7 year olds have ____ hair?" (pooobs)

They all have the same theme, I'm guessing the one that they want to sell in the future (Acabado, I checked the source code). It's plain and fast with little visual appeal.

DrillWarrior is one they want almost $20,000 for and they aren't monetizing it. I guess they're valuing it on the traffic and content. CamperReport is the winner, which was started before they even had Income Report around by just one of the guys (based on info from their videos I've watched).

Anyways, this is a chance for insight if you're a newbie to see what kind of stuff can make money, and how you don't have to have a crazy design or amazing content. I'll list the sites in case they take down that page:
  • CamperReport.com
  • OutdoorTroop.com
  • EmboraPets.com
  • DirtBikePlanet.com
  • DrillWarrior.com
  • 7YearOlds.com
If you dig into their backlinks or content and find anything interesting, please comment about it here.
 

Ryuzaki

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I just saw their new video was up and watched it. This is it:


Here's some interesting tidbits from the video.

OutdoorTroop - Mass Content Posting

On OutdoorTroop... I'm guessing it's about a year old... they dropped 719 posts in quick succession. They make note that almost all of them have had less than a year to rank. That's an interesting experiment I've always wondered about. They managed to get that up to 80,000 pageviews per month and around $1500 in ad earnings

They spent about $36 per post for writing, editing, pics, and posting for those. So they want their money back times 2.5 basically for the work of building it out.

I suspect whoever buys that one is going to have a nice ROI later, even at about 60x the monthly revenue for the sale price. If they can drop some links at it and wait another year, that'll probably explode if the content isn't crap and is optimized (I didn't look).

They also say that they used to expect about 8 months for an article to bake and reach its maximum traffic potential (not counting backlinks I'm assuming). Now they think it still goes up to 12 to 14 months (aka "it's okay to buy OutdoorTroop, it'll explode!" which is probably true).

Niches & RPMS
  • OutdoorTroop gets about an $18 RPM
  • EmboraPets gets about $14 RPM
  • DirtBikePlanet gets about $10 RPM
  • CamperReport gets about $27 RPM
Of course those numbers fluctuate but that's the average over the year. They have some ebooks they sell on some of the sites but in general it's all display ad revenue, and they say to focus on the demographic more than the niche when it comes to maximizing revenue.

Random Stuff
  • EmboraPets was actually a snake site that they 301'd over to a new domain.
  • DrillWarrior has 100% outsourced content (meaning they still write for other sites).
  • 7YearOld - they say don't go into medical, E-A-T is a problem. It's growing a bit but still it's tough.
 
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I've put in an offer for most of the sites :D

If I end up buying at least one, it's going to be a very interesting case study
Are you concerned about buying a very "public" site? Or is it more for the case study element?
 

andreint

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Are you concerned about buying a very "public" site? Or is it more for the case study element?
Not concerned at all. But the case study upside makes me happier than the publicity makes me nervous - if that makes sense.
 

Jared

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The more I see these shittily-designed websites with oodles of mediocre content making good money, the more I realize I've really exaggerated the difficulty of online marketing.
 

Ryuzaki

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Is this all they have ever had or is it just the current ones?
They had one about photography at one point, their best earner, which they sold last year. And had one about sound proofing that they gave away last year. They had one they bought about knives and turned around and flipped it.

The more I see these shittily-designed websites with oodles of mediocre content making good money, the more I realize I've really exaggerated the difficulty of online marketing.
Yep. It seems that somehow the community at large has everyone convinced in the last 5 years that you need incredible designs, magic jQuery features, and quintuple optimized and copywriter approved 30¢ a word content, etc.

But back in the early days we were tossing up some real shitters and making money on micro-niche sites. You can even find blog posts out there where the consensus was "ugly converts." You can Google search that term and see what I mean.

The only people that seem to really remember and still employ that wisdom are the people making single-page landers, like Clickbank sellers and Warrior Special Offer sellers. But these Income School sites are pretty close.

When I design sites for other people I try to make them immaculate. My own site designs are pretty simple. Simple also ends up equalling speed.
 

CCarter

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The more I see these shittily-designed websites with oodles of mediocre content making good money, the more I realize I've really exaggerated the difficulty of online marketing.
All you have to do is look at craigslist.com and that simple ugly design makes millions ($694 million USD).

Craigslist breaks the hearts of designers day in and day out - cause it's shows design doesn't translate to money generation, revenue, nor profits.

If you create something that people cannot live without you got a winner. I don't know if ya'll remember but Plenty of Fish had a pretty shitty design for a long time - yet they made bank too.

In the end it's all about usability and marketing.
 

bernard

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They had one about photography at one point, their best earner, which they sold last year. And had one about sound proofing that they gave away last year. They had one they bought about knives and turned around and flipped it.
I don't mean to invoke hubris here, but isn't it a rather low income if you want to be a guru and teach people? If they're two people sharing 15K a month?
 
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I'm underwhelmed at the revenue their sites are generating. I'm even more underwhelmed at how poorly monetized these sites are.

They seem like decent guys and their method is simple, yet effective. I wish them the best.
 

bernard

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Affiliate marketing is so interesting to compare across country lines. Each market has their own quirks, that can't be directly translated.

Americans seem to prefer hyperbole and a certain aesthetic, which to my northern-euro sensibilities seems a little primitive and vulgar, yet clearly it works. I don't think it would work well here.
 

Ryuzaki

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I don't mean to invoke hubris here, but isn't it a rather low income if you want to be a guru and teach people? If they're two people sharing 15K a month?
They've done pretty well to keep their message down to earth and non-guru-ish. They don't make any unrealistic claims and are extremely transparent. I'd already seen all of these sites because they show them in their videos and had them listed on their website anyways, along with the three past projects I mentioned. (Don't forget they have way more income from their course than from their sites, I think)

I'm not sure they're in a great position to be having a course, but that's what newcomers crave and they provide it in a step-by-step fashion. I managed to see their whole course (I've seen them all, it helps to know people) and it's your typical stuff. They break it all the way down though, week by week. "Here's what you must do as a minimum" type stuff. It gives a sense of security to the anxious newbie who isn't sure what to do and what order to do it.

Americans seem to prefer hyperbole and a certain aesthetic, which to my northern-euro sensibilities seems a little primitive and vulgar, yet clearly it works. I don't think it would work well here.
I would challenge that assumption. Check out the book Cashvertising if you haven't. Everyone is susceptible to the primal urges, even if they're aware it's being used on them. Plus, a fatal flaw a lot of us marketers make, because we're above average in intelligence, is to assume everyone else is smart. There are also cultures that are arrogant in the sense that they think they're above X, Y, or Z, and then you watch them destroy themselves with U, V, and W. Everyone is a sucker (they're born every minute). This is what demographics are about.

I always say that I suspect anyone with a 115 IQ and lower is extremely gullible, and that's 84% of the population. 50% of the population has an IQ of less than 100. People are way more susceptible to marketing/propaganda than we think. Obviously that should be used to help people purchase the best products or whatever, not exploitation.

They seem like decent guys and their method is simple, yet effective. I wish them the best.
Yeah, it's basically "use this theme we're selling and that cuts out the entire development side, and then write boatloads of content and wait for Google to react, and pray you did your keyword research right, but even if you didn't you'll brute force your way through with more content. And don't bother with links. And slap up an e-book and some Adsense. Then keep chugging along."

At least they're focused on getting people to take action. Their students should outgrow the method fairly quickly, but it'll at least give them the opportunity to break through the mental barrier of having not made their first dollars. Too many people don't do enough and believe it's impossible. I think these guys are a net positive to the industry, for service providers anyways. They create more competition for SEO's but it's not heavy competition by any means.
 

bernard

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I would challenge that assumption. Check out the book Cashvertising if you haven't. Everyone is susceptible to the primal urges, even if they're aware it's being used on them. Plus, a fatal flaw a lot of us marketers make, because we're above average in intelligence, is to assume everyone else is smart. There are also cultures that are arrogant in the sense that they think they're above X, Y, or Z, and then you watch them destroy themselves with U, V, and W. Everyone is a sucker (they're born every minute). This is what demographics are about.

I always say that I suspect anyone with a 115 IQ and lower is extremely gullible, and that's 84% of the population. 50% of the population has an IQ of less than 100. People are way more susceptible to marketing/propaganda than we think. Obviously that should be used to help people purchase the best products or whatever, not exploitation.
I know what I wrote came off as being arrogant and euro-snobbish :smile:

It was more a reflection on aesthetic and rhetorical differences between cultures. Like europeans often consider american friendliness "fake" and americans consider europeans cold and standoffish. Clearly the motivations behind it are the same, you want to show respect for the other person, yet so different ways to express it. Europeans don't want to impose, americans don't want to come off as uncaring. It's the same with marketing. The cultural subtleties can be very difficult to pick out if you're not a native.
 
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This was really refreshing to me. I don't think it's fair to hate on these guys, they're extremely personable, transparent and supportive. They've done some very honest and open AMAs, similar to Doug Cunnington. Respect for anyone who shares value up front.

I have a few sites where I've beaten my head against the wall for quite a while, analyzing and re-analyzing minute on-page optimizations, or worrying about any backlink that isn't a holy-grail "earned" link. But after looking through their sites, the content, the backlink profiles, the one disparity between my non-performers and their performers is sheer content volume. This is definitely fixable and encouraging.
 

RBT

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I don't mean to invoke hubris here, but isn't it a rather low income if you want to be a guru and teach people? If they're two people sharing 15K a month?
IncomeSchool.com alone used to make 60K a month back in 2018 when I used to watch their vids as a noob. I am sure its well north of 150K by now, judging from the growth of their YT channel. They also have some sites not mentioned here as other have already pointed out. The photography one was their #2 earner. The knife one used to make 4-5K a month as well. Then they had a few that they sold.
 

CCarter

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IncomeSchool should be looked at from a brand perspective. They aren’t doing astronomical numbers but decent for each website. You guys are looking at it all wrong.

As a boring niche, they created a brand that almost every single person in this industry knows. Just like Backlinko.

The reason they did it was cause they did more than just “blog” (written content), but have videos.

You can criticize whether they are good or not, noobish or not, but they showed up and played the game. 90% of the time you can become a success by showing up cause only the 1% are willing to put in effort. 99% of your would be competitors are lazy.

Everyone else that commentates on what they did wrong or could have done better are sitting in the sidelines in the bleachers. You are not in the game.

It’s like fans of a sport like sports ball spending hours of their life talking about sports ball stats and Lebron James’ 3 pointers or whatever, Lebron is in the game, the commentators aren’t.

For Lebron he was playing basketball for 15 years before he entered the NBA.

At least wIth Youtube and the internet all you need is a camera, even simple smartphone camera works, and go. Since there is almost zero competition with Youtube in this industry they, IncomeSchool, became known through rather easily.

Alot of you guys are in industries that has very little visibility on YouTube. Grab a camera and start shoot videos! Throw it up on YouTube and go! Imagine 5-10 years from now where you will be.

I mean are we really going to be talking about text/written word optimization in 10 years? If so, you missed the boat. I guarantee you that someone in your industry, younger and more aggressive is going to go the YouTube route and skip “blogging” and kill it.

You have to transform with the times, or you’ll quickly become irrelevant. I can’t remember the last time I read a blog about SEO... if I’m reading SEO blogs in 5 or 10 years someone put me out of my misery and shoot me in the head.

Video is where the audience attention is at.
 

Ryuzaki

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IncomeSchool.com alone used to make 60K a month back in 2018 when I used to watch their vids as a noob. I am sure its well north of 150K by now, judging from the growth of their YT channel. They also have some sites not mentioned here as other have already pointed out. The photography one was their #2 earner. The knife one used to make 4-5K a month as well. Then they had a few that they sold.
Yeah, to be fair they have around $15 RPMs on their YouTube videos plus the earnings from their course at $450 a pop for the first year and then I think around $200 a year after that.

How die you estimate these number?
I didn't estimate anything. It's what they said in their video.

I will put money up that their start-from-scratch website is going to be [...]
I noticed their footprint, too, and did a search. At this point we can run a "dork" search on their theme and find all their fans' sites too. Fun times! Not that it's going to turn up anything particularly interesting.
 
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Boy

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IncomeSchool should be looked at from a brand perspective. They aren’t doing astronomical numbers but decent for each website. You guys are looking at it all wrong.

As a boring niche, they created a brand that almost every single person in this industry knows. Just like Backlinko.

The reason they did it was cause they did more than just “blog” (written content), but have videos.

You can criticize whether they are good or not, noobish or not, but they showed up and played the game. 90% of the time you can become a success by showing up cause only the 1% are willing to put in effort. 99% of your would be competitors are lazy.

Everyone else that commentates on what they did wrong or could have done better are sitting in the sidelines in the bleachers. You are not in the game.

It’s like fans of a sport like sports ball spending hours of their life talking about sports ball stats and Lebron James’ 3 pointers or whatever, Lebron is in the game, the commentators aren’t.

For Lebron he was playing basketball for 15 years before he entered the NBA.

At least wIth Youtube and the internet all you need is a camera, even simple smartphone camera works, and go. Since there is almost zero competition with Youtube in this industry they, IncomeSchool, became known through rather easily.

I mean are we really going to be talking about text/written word optimization in 10 years? If so, you missed the boat. I guarantee you that someone in your industry, younger and more aggressive is going to go the YouTube route and skip “blogging” and kill it.

You have to transform with the times, or you’ll quickly become irrelevant. I can’t remember the last time I read a blog about SEO... if I’m reading SEO blogs in 5 or 10 years someone put me out of my misery and shoot me in the head.

Video is where the audience attention is at.
I started a youtube channel initially based around 1 print on demand channel that wasnt Merch by Amazon and have had so many comments saying "you're the only person on YouTube talking about TeePublic."

Yeah, that's why I started it! 1, theres no one talking about it, and 2, because they have a solid referral program so the more information I put out about the platform and people make new accounts with my link the more I make, the viewer makes, and TeePublic makes! No course or anything (which I constantly bring up) just listen and apply. If you want to hook me up, sign up through my link.

I dont even edit my videos. 1 take, talking straight thru with mistakes and all. Gaining about 150 views and about 3 subs per day. Small fries, small community, but tight knit.

Video is the truth.

Starting a Discord chat soon to really start that community aspect.
 
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The more I see these shittily-designed websites with oodles of mediocre content making good money, the more I realize I've really exaggerated the difficulty of online marketing.
I constantly do that. I go on Flippa and browse completed auctions and still see microniche 1 page sites earning and selling. Blows me away how bad some sites can be / how generic content can be and they still earn (over time). I overcomplicate it. But it will also pay off in the long run going above and beyond.
 
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Looks like all of these sold. Does anyone know if they sold for the prices that were listed or if they came down on the prices or what? They're usually transparent. I wonder if they talked about any of this else where.

I bet these all sold to subscribers to their program. Having that base could make for an easy way to clean house every few years. You can offload all of your lesser sites and dump the money into the winners and keep those private.
 

bernard

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I've watched a lot of the Income School videos on Youtube now, the free ones.

They're definitely very likeable people and they seem very relateable and trustworthy, which I guess is really important, when you're running a "get rich blogging" course.

I'm also sure they have their fair share of students who end up making a living from it. Then again, I would also think that the vast majority do not make it past the hobby treshold.

The main reason for this, as far as I can tell, is the focus on only content production and none on promotion. I think their video/strategy would be much better with a focus on some kind of outreach. I also prefer the "authority site" mindset to "blogging", but I understand that they're a beginner course.

I would certainly have been happy to have someone to watch like this 10 years ago, if I was a beginner.