New here; not so new elsewhere

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Hey everyone.

I've been dabbling in several digital enterprises for a couple of years, successfully ran several marketing campaigns before subscribing to the r/JustStart subreddit and creating my first niche site in late 2019.

I've been running the site ever since, getting it up to almost $2k per month with 30% MoM growth, until the December core update hit and decimated my single product reviews, which amounted to 80% of my affiliate income. I'm now trying to re-assess my strategy and looking for ways to expand with the limited budget that I have.

I've heard of this forum for a while, so hope to learn and contribute here while I recover.
 
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Welcome to the forum!

What have you thought of so far?
Thanks!

It seems that the update has raised the value of links vs. topic relevancy and on-page SEO. So, provided that my analysis of the update is correct, I will have the most ROI if I start actively building links.

I've optimized my pages for backlinks, dialed down down publishing, hired an outreach VA and started doing more outreach myself.

I'm also considering stopping my work on single product reviews. All my single product reviews have been ejected into page 3.
 
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It seems that the update has raised the value of links vs. topic relevancy and on-page SEO. So, provided that my analysis of the update is correct, I will have the most ROI if I start actively building links.
This is something I've been learning as well. Mass-publishing content targeting low volume keywords does work, but links are still necessary to move up the rankings- even for keywords with 0 searches per. month.
I've optimized my pages for backlinks, dialed down down publishing, hired an outreach VA and started doing more outreach myself.
It's all a numbers game after all, so it's good you've taken steps to upgrade your outreach efforts.
I'm also considering stopping my work on single product reviews. All my single product reviews have been ejected into page 3.
Yeah, I mean, the only solutions to this seem to be to either increase content output, create multi-product buyer intent articles (best "x" for "y") or to try launch-jacking (writing articles about new products before anyone else does for easier wins).

EDIT: Or, as you said, get more backlinks.
 
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Ryuzaki

お前はもう死んでいる
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I've been running the site ever since, getting it up to almost $2k per month with 30% MoM growth, until the December core update hit and decimated my single product reviews, which amounted to 80% of my affiliate income.
It happens, unfortunately. Anyone not expecting to be effected by algorithm updates is in for a dose of reality at some point. I'm not saying that was you. The way to minimize the effect of the core updates is to have a higher quantity and a higher quality of links pointing in at your site. It's simply the easiest way for them to fight spam now, since they're already using so many delayed and randomized reactions and that just made spammers more patient.

Anyways, I imagine it like this... you did a bunch of single product reviews and they got whacked. So then you start doing stuff like "best whatevers" and "best whatevers for whatever" and "whatever vs. whatever".

Ultimately once you have enough of these "irons in the fire" you'll find that one group of them will go down during an update and another will go up. You start to minimize the depth of the troughs in the waves created by the algo updates.

Then in your attempt to rank these reviews you start pumping out informational content, which makes getting backlinks easier and even getting them natural and automatic. Now you're not only shielded by more links but you're building topical relevancy for your niche and you're working the top of the funnel and the bottom of the funnel.

Google doesn't like sites that are purely bottom of the funnel. Was yours 90%+ or even 100% reviews?

Now you've got all this informational content designed to support the affiliate-based articles, and they're bringing in a lot of traffic so you slap display ads on that portion of the site. Now you're starting to diversify to some degree.

So on and so forth. You start building an email list. You start building a Youtube channel. You find other sources of traffic that also send in brand signals that bolsters your organic traffic.

The pendulum swings for all of us. It's just a matter of continuing to grow so the pendulum ratchets its way upwards with each swing. It's the ups and downs that continue to trend upwards.

Glad to have you on the forum and I wish you the best with your site in 2021!