Stats July – Case 2008 – What a Month

For any new reader out there I think it is time for a little re-explanation of what “Case 2008″ is all about. This case study has been an evolving process since the end of 2007 with an official launch by January 1st 2008.

The purpose of this case study was to see whether it was possible to get 1,000 daily visitors to my blog on the topic of pet insurance and pet health. I believed to have found some keywords that could bring in significant amounts of traffic while still being fairly easy to rank for.

A secondary purpose was to show that by keeping focus on just one project (instead of spending time on doing 10 different projects all at once) I would be able to get that much more results from my work. Now the focus part has been a bit difficult but I think I’m getting there now… It only took me about 7 months *lol*

Well… the 1,000 daily visitors are also far from being met but I see a growing amount of traffic every single month so I believe that I will get there eventually. I have a set of pretty interesting things lined up but you’ll read about that in the end of this post.

What happened in the month of July?

If you read my post from June you might remember that I changed the way I used Adsense on the site. I ran the site with a sidebar Adsense block that received a click through rate of about 2% and with a very poor earning per click. In the last days of June I decided to change that to be a large Adsense block in the top left of every post.

This change alone increased the click through rate to about 9% and a much better payout per click. Now those stats were only for the last 8 days of June so I was very interested to see whether it would keep performence this good. If so, that alone would bring in about $60 which would be sufficient to pay for my ghost writer’s work.


To give you some stats the site performed better than expected. The click through rate fell to about 7-8% but the payout ended at $76 which was $16 more than I had hoped for. This means that I will be able to have my ghost writer do 15 articles per month without it costing me anything. Adding a new post every second day is a fairly nice rate to have the blog grow and I if wish too I can just put in some additional investment money to grow it even faster. On a daily basis the site earns an average of $2.45 from Adsense.

Opt-in Form

Some months ago I added an opt-in form in order to start capturing emails from my visitors. When the month of June ended I had only 11 people that had subscribed (only 3 from the month of June) but it was still better than nothing. I still haven’t spent any time writing follow up emails so besides the first email they get where they can download the free report I’m not sending them anything. But I’ll get back to that part later on in this post.

In July I decided to change the look for the opt-in form as well as adding a hover ad to help increase the signup rate. And I must say that it did have a significant impact. In July there were 15 new subscribers (2 opted out again) and 10 additional people that didn’t click the confirmation email. All in all there have been 25 people entering their email address which is a great start. The conversion rate is still poor (which you will see when you read the traffic stats below) but now I have something to improve upon. At least it was a significant increase compared to June.

Keyword Internal Linking Optimization

Currently I am trying to target three keywords as I am aiming for top 3 positions in Google for all of them. Those are VIP Pet Insurance, Banfield Pet Insurance and ASPCA Pet Insurance. In an attempt to improve their ranking I decided to create sitewide links for all three of them. I’m not sure I’ve seen the full effect from it yet but it seems like it has helped some. This is how it looks according to Shoemoney’s Serp tool:

Besides that I’ve just recently started to play around with the keyword density as well as adding bolded, italics and underlined features to the keyword (just one time each). It’s basic stuff but every little thing helps (I hope).

From the ranking shown above you can see that I still have a little way to go but at least I am in the first page of Google for all three terms. I can’t see how I could ever get a #1 rank because I’m up against some MAJOR insurance companies (VPI, Banfield and ASPCA). But hey… #2 isn’t bad either.

Building Links Through Article Submissions

Last month I talked about not having spent any time on building links (except very little). In the month of July I’ve uploaded 14 articles to EzineArticles + iSnare. If you don’t know what iSnare is, then it is a paid service that distributes articles to a huge amount of content sites, article directories and other relevant article submission sites. I costs about $1 per article but it saves me a TON of time and effort.

Each articles has a deep link to one of the individual blog posts targeting one of the three keywords above and an overall link to the domain using various keywords (like “pet insurance” etc.).

Ghost Writers Writing Articles

In the month of June I’ve posted 12 articles. Besides a small post I did myself, the rest of the articles were from my ghost writer. I believe I’ve spent about 4-5 minutes per article I needed to upload. I’m planning to reduce the amount of time I use on this even further but I’ll get back to that at the end of this article.

In July I decided to try out an additional ghost writer on order to not be too dependent on just one guy and so far it looks like the second writer is of an equal quality. Having two writers will also allow me to have two different stories and writing styles on articles targeting the same keyword.

Kontera in July

The site still features Kontera Ads and even though they don’t pay very well (nothing compared to Adsense) it is still additional income which is nice. The total in July was $17.96 which was actually a bit less than last month where it brought in $23.86. It’s not much but at this point in the blogs life everything counts.

Stats Like Traffic, Alexa Rank and Indexed Pages

I’m not going to say that much about the stats this time but instead just show you the numbers. The only thing I would like to point out is that the traffic has increased 45% (when you count in that June had only 30 days). That is really great and is proof that what I’ve been doing works like it is supposed to.

What is Up for August?

I know this post has been pretty long so I shall try to make this part as short as possible. However I do have some interesting projects that I would like to share with you. I see some great potential in them but because the effect of them is expected to take some time I don’t expect to see the results kick in before September or October.

Onpage Optimization: I’m planning to start targeting a few additional keywords and will start by making sure that the onpage optimization is in place.

Article Distribution: I’ll keep adding articles to EzineArticles and iSnare. I expect to be posting even more articles in the month of August.

Ghost Writer Articles: I’ve already had all articles for August written and they’ll be posted automatically every second day which means that there will be added an additional 15 pages of unique keyword rich content. My plan is to start asking my ghost writers to upload the articles to the blog themselves. I might have to pay them an additional $1-$2 per article but that money will be well spent and the result will be that the business can be totally hands off for me (that is the major goal). I’ll let you know in a month how it goes.

Follow-up on Opt-ins: I’m planning to write a series of articles that is to be distributed to the people that opt-in. Besides that I’ll probably be changing the opt-in offer to see whether I’ll be able to get a better conversion rate. To only get 25 subscribers on 1,226 visitors isn’t good enough. I would expect to be able to get at least 75-100 subscribers if I can make the offer good enough.

I’m also thinking of changing the hover opt-in to an on exit pop-up because I think it is affecting the Adsense income but I can say for sure just yet.

Finally the Big Surprise: Today I have purchased a plugin that’ll translate the posts into 32 languages. Everything will be done the right SEO way (more on this next month) but it’ll (hopefully) mean that I’ll get an additional 31x pages and I expect to see a pretty significant increase in traffic over the next couple of months from foreign visitors. I’ve talked to people that has some great experiences with this plugin but I’ll tell you about my results in a month.

I hope you’ve stayed with me through the last +1,600 words. I had lots of great stuff to share and I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about it.


  1. Denni Pultz Gottfredssen skriver

    You perform very well on that pet site, Mikael. My current project is getting around 100 visits per day but I get a clickrate around 0,7-1%. So I have to play around with the placement some time.

    But yesterday I got really upset on Adsense, I got 3 clicks paying 0.01$. But back on the horse again.

    I also made a opt-in on my site, where I got 5 confirmed opt-ins during the last 7 days. So that’s like 0,7% which isn’t really good. I’m nothing offering any kind of reports, free stuff – so maybe I could get more to opt-in if I did a offer like that. I did a script that makes a javascript popup under on the page, that displays the opt-in form and when they click close it isn’t shown again to again.

  2. Mikael skriver

    Thanks Denni. Yes I do think that the site is performing nicely but it can always do better. When it comes to CTR it is all about how much “in their face” you want to be with your ads. I completely agree with anyone that thinks those Adsense ads are too much and that it looks like crap. It does… but the only thing I can say is that it obviously works. So until I come up with a better and more profitable idea I’ll leave it the way it is.

  3. skriver

    Nice update!

    But why purchase a plugin for translation? Can’t you just use Google Translate (which can even be automated), or is the quality of the translations better with the plugin?

  4. skriver

    Mikael, nice improvements!

    Your xml sitemap looks a bit strange. You are only giving a 20% priority to those pages like VIP pet insurance that you want to rank for.

    No idea how important that is, but it might be for a smaller site like yours without a significant inbound link profile?

  5. Mikael skriver

    @ Søren, this plugin has a lot of cool features like i.e. using 5 different translator engines with a failover solution (Google Translator has a bad habit of only working sometimes). When I have some stats on how it is going to work for me I’ll do a review of it and explain all the benefits.

    @ Anders, oh… there you have it. Always little improvements to be made. Thanks for letting me know.

  6. Boricua skriver

    Hey Mikael,

    Just found your site from search engines. So I don’t know if you’re marketing this site hard but is surely on top for “july case study 2008”

    Either way, keep it consistent with your pet site, it’s surely better to get more traffic than internet marketing related sites. Less clutter, more money. Good work mate, keep us updated…I am a fan of case studies. Lol…

  7. Mikael skriver

    Hi Boricua, to be honest I’m not marketing it at all. At least not intentially 🙂

    I’m glad you like case studies because I’m a fan of them too. Be sure to subscribe to my feed as I’ll be posting an update shortly.

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