This the year-end December update for this website. The revenue is at $9,810; up from $7,417 in November. This is primarily due to the December Core Update.
I cover the following in this month’s case study update:
- Website metrics for 2020
- Recap of improvements in 2020
- Impact of Google December Core Update
- Plans for January 2021
📊 Website Metrics for 2020
Profit and Loss Breakdown
Here is the P&L chart for this site.
The 2020 revenues, costs, and profit are as follows:
- Revenue: $100,196
- Cost: 13,163
- Profit: $87,033
Google Search Console Metrics
The average ranking position has increased for the site post-December update leading to more clicks from Google.
📅 Recap of Improvements in 2020
This website was hit hard during the May Google Core update (read about the details here). The site went from 80,595 pageviews in April to 44,182 pageviews in December 2020. A 45% decrease in traffic.
After the drop, we did a complete revamp of the website. This included the following:
Low-Quality Content Removed
In June 2020, a content audit was performed to remove 107 articles. The criteria were at that time to delete any article that had less than 1 backlink and less than 100 visitors annually.
Websites Redesign to Improve User Experience
Also in June 2020, a full website redesign was performed. This included building out the site using GeneratePress. The load times were decreased to 1.23 seconds from 2 seconds.
In addition, CTAs and comparison tables were also improved to look more appealing, and more affiliate links were added with call-out boxes.
Removed Low-Quality Backlinks
In July 2020, I did an audit to manually disavow low-quality backlinks. I disavowed 169 domains.
Expertise, Authority, Trustworthiness improvements
Each author on the site received custom bios and their profile photo was added to each article. A detailed About Us page was created showcasing where the website was featured, the story behind its past, and the future direction of the business. Lastly, a phone number and mailing address were added to the site.
Read more on the structure here.
Regardless of the traffic drop from May to November, I continued adding content in batches. From April to 62,767 words of content was added equating to about 7,845 words per month.
It’s impossible to attribute one individual factor to the semi-recovery the website has seen in December. It’s a combination of everything.
👉 “Final” Impact of December Google Update
I discussed the overall impact of the December Google update on my portfolio of sites in this write-up. Let’s recap with month over month comparison to visualize the traffic changes.
Here is December vs November page views comparison:
Overall, there has been a roughly 13,000 increase in page views (a 42.8% increase). This in relation to the revenues has bumped the site from $7,417 to $9,810, or a $2,393 increase.
Let’s hope this increase sticks through 2021.
👉 Plans for January 2021
I laid out my plans for the site audit to be done in January in this case study update.
Of those, I will be focusing on the following:
- A new content audit: The site has 568 articles and many of them need to be deleted or 301 redirects
- Research and update outdated content: Some articles have been dropping in positions in the SERPs. A revamp to these articles with a publish date change can push these up in the SERPs again.
- Push for increased commissions: since the traffic is climbing back up, we can push our main network to increase commissions from $57 to back up to $60 which was the original CPA
As you can tell, most of the changes will be content-based in January. This is to reinvograte the site in the SERPs which will lead to increase traffic.
Also, I am doing all of the content changes at once so it’s easier to track the overall improvements in Google Analytics.
Recommendation: Implement a Content Audit
That’s it for this update. With the new year beginning, I recommend every site owner to do a content audit and improve any necessary pieces. This will lead to an overall improved site but also new signals to Google that you are keeping up to date.
Here are some tips to consider:
- Update at least 10-15% of the content on the page by adding new sections or revamping existing ones
- Update the date in the SEO title from 2020 to 2021
- Update the published data to a newer date (do this only if you significantly update the content)
Try those tactics out!