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Building an affiliate websites takes a lot of efforts, planning and execution.

I have seen many bloggers who start their affiliate journey, add 15-20 articles on their blog, create some good backlinks and ultimately quit because they fail to rank their blog.

They fail because all they want is quick results.

Where Affiliate Marketing is a game of persistence. You'll have to show up every day, you'll have to hustle every day, and you'll have to take some actions which most of the people are always afraid to take.

Today, we are going to share such story here where Ted French decided to pick a different path. Rather than building his blog on a brand new domain, he decided to pick expired domains from SERP.domains and leveraged the links of the previous owner. He bought this domain in $1300 and made more than $200,000.

Let's read his interview and see how did he crack the code?

#1. Hey Ted, we are happy to have you here. Please introduce yourself.

Hi, thanks for having me! I’ve been building affiliate + display ad sites since 2016 whilst studying, and then working full time in a PPC agency. 

After not making much money for the first year or two, I started having more success using expired domains instead of fresh new ones. I quit my job last year in 2020 to go full-time working on my own websites. I have a small portfolio of 5 or 6 main websites now. The largest one I grew to making $7,000 per month and sold the website for $180,000 in May 2021.

#2. When it comes to expired domains, selecting them is very difficult. What are the primary metrics anyone should check before buying expired domains?

In my experience it’s important to look deeper, beyond the metrics of DA and PA (Moz), Trust flow & citation flow (Majestic) or DR and UR (Ahrefs). I look at the actual links themselves to see how good they are. 

Here are some of the links that domain had.

Whenever I buy an expired domain, I look to see if there are any big links going to the site from newspapers/magazines (e.g. nytimes, gizmodo.com, wired.com). As well as this, I look for highly relevant links to the niche too (e.g. cosmopolitan.com for Women’s fashion, or links from NASA for an astronomy website). This can be a major advantage over the competition, as you can get links that they can’t.

The domain used for this website was purchased from serp.domains. I’ve bought a couple of domain names from them and they’ve all worked out pretty well.

#3. Building the entire website on expired domains vs doing 301 redirects to new domains. How do they work, what are the deciding factors and how can someone get most out of this practice?

When building a site on an expired domain, I usually download the old website from archive.org first using Archivarix, and then upload it directly via File Manager. Then, leave it for a few months to regain some traffic back to the site. After a few months are up, I’ll switch the website over to WordPress, making sure to redirect any relevant pages that have links going to them.

For 301 redirects, I’ve had the most success by redirecting to inner pages, like a category page. Or if an old article on the website got a lot of links, I’d rebuild that page with the same or similar content. Even with a 301 redirect, I would still put the old website up first for a few months. I want Google to think the site is as it was before it expired., and it hasn’t even changed ownership during this time.

#4. Your story to sell the website in $180,000 is quite fascinating. What was the niche, why did you pick that niche, and what was the KEY thing which made that website successful?

It’s in the tech niche (I can’t go any deeper than that), and actually I picked the niche based on the domain name I found. It can be difficult to decide on a niche to go with, but I think you can make most different niches work with some effort and research.

So, I find a good domain first and then build a site on it around a similar topic as the old website. Ideally it needs to be the same or close relevancy if you want the site to grow quickly and last for a long time.

#5. Deciding a perfect theme for an affiliate blog is very challenging, which theme did you pick, and why that theme?

I use Generatepress for every website I have now. I’ve used a ton of different themes in the past but I find this one easiest. Plus, they have the site library there which let’s you upload a good template website with very little effort.

You can try FREE version of AffiliateBooster theme and create a professional blog.

#6. Selecting the right plugins for an affiliate blog is another challenge. Please list the plugins you were using on that blog to make it successful.

I was using Elementor, but now I use Generateblocks – it works very well with Generatepress, and it’s really easy to build a nice-looking site. I also use WP Rocket for caching, Shortpixel for image compression, AAWP for Amazon Affiliate links, Ninja Tables to build comparison tables, and Rank Math for sitemap and other tech stuff. Pretty simple!

#7. From where did you hire the content writers, how much did you pay per word, and what were other things involved to create the kick-ass content. And most importantly, how much money were you spending each month to create content?

I wrote most of the content for the website myself. This is the hardest part for me because it can be really difficult to find good writers online without having to pay a lot of money for them. I’ve tried a lot of content services but haven’t found a great one yet. 

In the past, I used Upwork to hire writers – some good, some bad. I definitely struggle to find good writers recently. So yes for this site, very low content costs, but a lot of time spent writing!

#8. When did you start seeing the traffic coming, how you planned the next strategy and how much money you generated total before selling it?

I write content in chunks – so I upload every day for a few months, then take a month or two off and analyze how things are going. I started to add content in July 2020 through to October 2020. The site was only breaking even by October, but it started to go up a lot in November. I added Mediavine Ads to the site just in time for Black Friday. 

December the website made $6,000 combined Ads and Amazon Affiliate. January through to April the site averaged at $7,000 per month. This was mainly from Display Ads, as the traffic in this time was above 200k visitors monthly. I focus mainly on informational content as opposed to review content, which I think is very important as Google has penalised a lot of review websites the past year or so.

Before selling the website it made around $20,000-25,000 in profit. I decided to sell this website because I have a couple of over websites in my portfolio that pay for rent, bills etc. I wanted this money to invest in offline business (buy a house).

#9. On which platform did you sell the blog and why that platform only?

There are many platforms to sell affiliate websites, but I sold the website at Empire Flippers because they’re the biggest that I know of. I listed the site end of April and it was sold by mid-May. Everything went fine; they do take a big percentage (15%) but it was acceptable for a quick deal.

#10. What our readers can learn from your journey and what are your suggestions to replicate your success?

I think the main things that made this website successful were strong backlinks already there from BBC.com, insider.com etc. It is tough to get links from these websites, which is why I like to use expired domains.

As well as this, I like to have a pretty good structure of the website with internal links between articles. Typically, pick one page that I really want to rank and then create 3-4 supporting posts for this page. For example, it may be “best coffee machine” as the main page. Then create 3 posts around “how to clean a coffee machine”, “espresso vs cappuccino” and “nescafe gusto review”. Then, link from these pages up to the best coffee machine article!

Also, try to stick with one specific niche. Write about coffee (or another topic) and nothing else on the same website. In the past, I could rank articles around different topics on the same website. But it is more difficult to do that now unless you have a massive website, so sticking to one niche is a good idea. 

Final words by Kulwant Nagi..

His journey is full of inspiration. He proved that you can build a big website without hiring the content writers, he proved that expired domains work, and he proved that you can take anything to the next level when you are passionate enough to put your time and energy.

You can follow his path and build a professional affiliate marketing website by using our free plugin. You can create professional looking designs which can increase your CTR and ultimately you can drive more sales.

Download FREE version

  • Pros and Cons block.
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  • and, 4 more blocks to improve your CTR.

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  1. Thanks Kulwant ji for sharing a great inspiring story. Really it helps for new bloggers.learnt new things from the above story like expired domains.

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