Multiple small sites or one big one?

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There's still room for a small niche website like laptops reviews (don't take the niche I choose seriously, i know is full of competitor's) Or do you recommend a huge authority website?

Regards
 

Ryuzaki

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@bAFFet, This question gets asked a lot. There's several other threads about it, though finding them is proving to be a challenge. But in hearing everyone else's opinions and re-thinking my own, here's where I stand on the question. And let me frame it that this is an SEO question most likely.

Choose your own adventure:

In the Beginning
You have one of two paths to follow, and really this depends on your skill level:

1) Beginner with no experience - You need to drill down hard, take the time on each step of the process, and build one site. It'll probably fail, and recognize when that happens with no attachment. You'll have learned a lot. Then start another site, rinse and repeat until you actually know what you're doing. Then start your final "one authority site" and give it a real hard go.

The reason for this is to iterate and fold in everything you learn so each new iteration is better than the previous. But at the start you likely have no funds to invest, so you need to be working on one site so your efforts aren't spread too thin. When it's you in the trenches by yourself, you can't afford to split your efforts across multiple sites or none of them will be a win.

2) Experienced and starting again - If you know what you're doing and maybe have a little bit of cash to speed things up, I recommend starting a handful of sites. Maybe 5 even. That could be in the same vertical or different ones. But the reason is two-fold. Google is going to favor one or two of these sites over the others and there won't be a clear reason. Those are the ones you want to focus on. The rest can age and still become earners that you can sell later for more capital. But by casting a wide net at the start you can find some nice winners that you wouldn't otherwise have even had a choice about.

After Your Initial Successes
This is a continuation of path #1 above. Once you get your first big win under your belt, you have one of two things going on. You have some serious cashflow happening or you sold the site for a big lump sum. This should lead you to path #2 above. Once you're slamming out path #2 above on a regular and consistent basis, you'll jump to this next path.

3) Experienced with Mad Cashflow - Again, you have two choices. You can keep your conveyer belt system going, finding winners in the eyes of Google and focusing on those, turning them into authority sites to flip or keep. The only reason this is sustainable is because you're hiring writers, hiring link builders, even having help posting and promoting content. You're managing the business now.

You can keep the conveyer belt going and reducing your risk and your potential reward by continuing to liquidate assets when they become worthwhile, or you can start keeping some to build your media empire. You can also start to speed up the conveyer belt by buying established sites and/or starting new sites on aged and linked domains (that expired but haven't dropped).

End Game
At this point you probably have kept a network of sites all either in various industries or all collected into one vertical.

4) Sitting on a Media Empire - At this point you can boost your profit big time by selling advertising packages, setting up header bidding and selling display packages, and you can move into video on YouTube and start podcasts both of which can bring in sponsorship money. You can move into creating and selling products. Once you have a vast number of eyeballs and constant cashflow the sky is the limit.

5) Liquidate and Realize your Wealth - At this point I'd be thinking about selling this entire Media Empire as one huge bundle to another existing empire or to some rich company or person trying to break into digital. The name of the game at this point should probably be liquidating and living like a king for the rest of your days, because quite frankly the risk of staying in the game is pretty high here versus the reward of a huge structured payout over the coming years. Big sites get screwed by algorithm changes the same as little ones, so be thinking about offloading that risk to someone who wants to tolerate it.
 

EyesExist

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Yup, that's the whole game right there.

I built my first project in 2002 and sold it in 2008. Had another big one after that plus a bunch of niche sites I would develop and flip off, based on commissions or adsense

Now-a-days, the webmaster world is a lot more intricate it appears.

I even see people selling services from India to get you approved on google news. This used to add $10k to your website value.

I feel like senior citizen
 

RomesFall

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Don't feel like a senior citizen, most of the newer folks lack basic skills that you will have in spades.

I do a mix of sites, you can probably guess what works best in a short amount of time...

I would also say that affiliate kinda sucks these days.
 
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Don't feel like a senior citizen, most of the newer folks lack basic skills that you will have in spades.
Newbies might get a lot of functionality others have done, but they'll do it with a million plugins, which means you have another edge on them, which is site speed.

I'd follow the path laid out above, because there's a big pitfall that nearly everyone falls in and loses a ton of time on, which is building a site and then getting another idea so you build another site and then none of them get worked on like they should. Or you get infatuated with spamming links and lose time to that too.

Focus on one site at first so you have a chance of earning some money so you don't get discouraged and become desparate and then hurt your sites and then quit because "it's impossible."
 
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Focus on one site at first so you have a chance of earning some money so you don't get discouraged and become desparate and then hurt your sites and then quit because "it's impossible."
This is the one and only reason I will focus on one site at first, so I actually complete it!

I would also say that affiliate kinda sucks these days.
Why is that?
 

RomesFall

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Why is that?
@StartingAgain Effort.

I don't mean it's too much effort either, it's actually too little effort...

There is a low barrier to entry in cost and effort when it comes to affiliate.

Couple this with gradually decreasing rewards (mainly amazon associates) and the turning of time, what we're left with is a small pool of intense competition and a larger pool of extensive competition.

Intensity - TheWirecutter etc.
Extensity - You, me and everyone else.

The intensity pool gets stronger all the time and the extensity pool gets larger.

I think affiliate used to be easier than it is now because there were less players and the stronger ones weren't as strong as they are now... Easier ROIs to be had in lead gen and ecomm imo. Plus it's way more fun.