I am constantly searching for intriguing websites, and this particular one has a fascinating story. It reached its peak in 2020, but unfortunately suffered a devastating blow during the December Google core update.
The story does not conclude there. Over the past six months, the site has experienced explosive growth and is now on track to reach its former heights.
The site owners have done an exceptional job of rebuilding it, incorporating numerous easy wins and it obviously worked.
In this analysis, I will examine both the strategies already implemented by the owners, as well as additional measures to further fortify the site from future updates.
This is what I cover in this report:
- Website overview
- Major highlights
- Competitor overview
- Easy wins to increase revenue and/or traffic
- Actionable takeaways you can apply
Let’s get into it!
✅ Website Overview & Highlights
As evident from the Ahrefs screenshot, the site has had a turbulent history, including the aforementioned setback caused by the December 2020’s update.
However, since then, the site has made significant improvements in terms of traffic and the number of referring domains, increasing from 1k to 8k domains.
The website’s domain has been operational since 2016, initially launched as an affiliate blog focused on the gardening and tools niche. Over time, it has accumulated over 1,000 articles consisting of reviews and educational content.
In 2022, the site underwent a redesign and was updated to its current version. It is apparent that the owners did an exceptional job with improvements to the call-to-action design and placement, enhancing the E-A-T elements, and optimizing the on-page SEO.
- An exceptional job was done on rebuilding the site from scratch
- Great E-A-T elements
- Optimal CTA placement on buying intent content
- Around 1,000 articles have been published
- Great links from sites like Realtor, Lifehacker, and TheSpruce
Why is this site winning?
- Site was rebuilt with proper on-page and off-page SEO following Google’s guidelines perfectly
- Quality Google E-A-T elements backed by social media and an active Youtube channel
- Content optimization done in the last 6 months
- Targetting low-competition keywords with over 1,000+ articles published (content velocity on point)
Top 3 Competitors
Here are similar competitors targeting the majority of the same keywords.
- Pyracantha.co.uk – 40k traffic according to Ahrefs. A similar site to DIYGarden.co.uk with a similar turbulent history.
- Gardentoolbox.co.uk – 55k traffic according to Ahrefs. This one was hit by a few of the latest Google updates. Low-quality content.
- Diygardening.co.uk – 30k traffic according to Ahrefs. Similar domain name. Similar content. This one is on the rise.
Let’s get into the easy wins to grow this specific website.
🔥 4 Easy Wins To Grow This Website
There are opportunities to significantly grow this brand. I break down the following easy wins:
- Improve category pages
- Use video display ads
- Add table of contents
- Find alternative monetization methods
Let’s get into it!
➡️ Win #1: Improve category pages
One of the underrated wins that is easy to implement is enhancing the content on category pages.
Although the owners have done a decent job designing the category pages, the word count is insufficient, and the language is often repetitive.
To improve this, it makes sense to create a mini guide to the category that includes links to all or most of the posts within it.
This approach has multiple benefits, including improved chances of ranking higher, passing authority from category pages down to other articles, establishing authority in the category to increase natural backlinks, and creating opportunities for affiliate links or native ads.
By enriching category pages with valuable content, you can establish your website as a credible authority in your industry, and effectively communicate with users about the products or services in each category.
➡️ Win #2: Use Video display ads
This site utilizes Mediavine display ads, however, we didn’t find any video display ads. In my experience, active video ad placeholders placed prominently near the top of articles are beneficial to overall RPM.
Depending on the time of year, video CPMs can vary, but including video ads can easily add 15% to 30% to the site’s overall RPM.
Additionally, the site features an active YouTube channel, making it a smart move to upload all content to the Mediavine dashboard.
While this strategy has the potential to increase overall revenue, it’s important to test it for a few months to see its impact on affiliate revenue.
➡️ Win #3: Add table of contents
Another commonly overlooked easy win is the addition of a table of contents, particularly for educational content. This site has undergone several changes, yet a table of contents has yet to be implemented.
A table of contents can be added to the left sidebar without displacing the main content. The benefits of this addition are numerous, with one significant benefit being the #heading URLs displayed on the Google Search Console dashboard.
This feature allows you to determine which parts of your article are performing the best.
Using this information, you can extract all #pages from the GSC dashboard, filter them by #, and cross-reference all parent pages.
Additionally, manually identifying headings that are overachievers (i.e., a heading performing better than the heading above it) and rearranging the heading order if applicable can help to further optimize the content.
Lastly, the headers also show up in Google SERPs as jump links enabling users to click on specific parts of articles. The goal is to take up more “real estate” in Google and this simple fix allows that to happen.
➡️ Win #4: Find alternative affiliate programs/lead gen deals
The site has been well-rebuilt by the owners, but it is currently only monetized through Amazon.co.uk. If I were to purchase a similar UK site, I would do the following:
- Conduct thorough research into existing affiliate programs on UK networks,
- Analyze the competition and their revenue sources.
- Additionally, I would research top landscaping companies in the UK and develop a specialized outreach strategy to negotiate deals with them.
- Finally, I would explore out-of-the-box ideas such as collaborating with other niche websites, influencers, and local brick-and-mortar businesses that lack a significant online presence.
👉 Actionable Takeaways
Here are actionable takeaways that you can apply to your niche website today:
- Almost every website or business can benefit from implementing obvious and easy optimization strategies, such as adding a table of contents.
- Maximizing revenue from all available sources is crucial when flipping a website (every $1 increase in monthly net profit equates to $35-$45 in valuation increase)
- Once you establish a monetization method, it is important to optimize it to its potential. Small tweaks = big results.