Pick His Brain!
I’d like to introduce one of our members, Matt Diggity, for our next ‘Pick His Brain’ session and I want to thank him for the participation.
Matt is a former electrical engineer who became a successful SEO affiliate marketer. He has a huge following and is well-known in affiliate marketing circles.
Matt currently owns multiple SEO-related brands including Chiang Mai SEO Conference and speaks regularly at marketing conferences.
If you have any questions related to SEO testing, website flipping, or affiliate marketing, please feel free to pick his brain.
He has a wealth of SEO wisdom and knowledge.
Here are the rules.
1) I’ll let the thread go on until he asks me to stop. Theoretically, this thread can continue until the FaceBook stock value goes to zero.
2) Please, no snarky remarks. I will not tolerate any intentional negativity. We are here to learn from each other’s successes and strategies.
3) Please do not PM him and bother him. If you have a private question, ask for his permission on this thread when appropriate.
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What are the best networks/groups/blogs to read about affiliate marketing and participate in the affiliate community? Your top 3 perhaps.
Well there’s two types of affiliates really.
1) Media buyers (paid ads)
I’m assuming you want to know about #2.
The best blogs I would say are Authority Hackers, and (not trying to push anything here), but I live and breathe affiliate so my blog, conference, and group (Affiliate SEO Mastermind) are also good.
AH has a podcast as well that I pretty much have never missed an episode of.
How has the Chiang Mai Seo conference benefited you or your business since you’ve started? Was it more of a brand play, drive traffic to your products (authority builders), monetising the event, or just giving back.
Haha…. such a good question.
I was talking to someone recently about it, complaining about how low the ROI is for a conference, and they replied with…
“Yeah, well, but there’s some un-measurable benefit you get from the branding and all that.”
I replied with…
“Exactly! Why would I want that? Everything else we do is measurable in this industry.”
At this point, its simply about giving back. If you come, you’ll see that someone needs to do it. So that’s where I’m at.
It profits a bit, but I give most of that away to charity anyways.
Not going to lie. I will eventually sell it though.
Looking forward to the actionable tips about: 1. How to generate leads for our SaaS product – a Help Desk Software 2. How to find niche for my next affiliate website? Thanks.
1) Dunno. Never done it. But I’d run ads… everywhere. Margins are great with SAAS, so know your numbers and pump money into the machine.
2) Reverse engineer what’s already working and selling in the marketplaces. I never stray from this.
1) On page : When you do any kind of on-page change, how long you take before doing another round of change? ( If the target page is not improving ) 2) Off- page : How do you measure a healthy site to get a link? Apart from having let’s say 1K traffic per month, what other factors you take into consideraton? 3) What’s your favorite CRO hack that you apply on all your sites? 4) How do you see the affiliate business model in the next 3- 5 years? 5) What are the most required skills you think each person needs to adopt/ learn to thrive in the current movement & in the coming 3- 5 years? Thanks again for your time. Your lab is an amazing course and have learned a lot.
1) Switch your approach. Single variable testing in a controlled environment is where you want to test out onpage changes.
That’s where you figure out the complete list of actions that you KNOW will work on live websites.
You don’t want to be serially testing on live money sites anyways. It takes too long. Why try 40 different things serially, and get your site improved 9 months later?
3) Leverage color discipline to make your CTA colors pop off the page.
4) I think affiliate will be fine. What may change is how people start consuming content.
5) Integrity (doing what you say you will do). Hiring. Management. Testing.
What would you say were some of the biggest mistakes one could make in developing a brand focused on Affiliate Marketing in a B2C space? For example an authoritative review site for electronics as an example. Maybe Amazon affiliate. But is that the best place to start, just focusing on amz and Google ads as an example?
I mean…. there’s 200 things that need to go right for SEO to work, so that means 200 things can go wrong.
I’d say the biggest, wide-encompassing mistake would be to only specialize in one thing. Like “I’ll write content so good that the links will just magically show up.”
These days you need to check all the boxes.
Another mistake might be banking on Amazon 100%. Unless your niche is VERY wide. Don’t expect to become a millionaire from this project.
As a beginner, where should one start in order to do affiliate marketing and which affiliate marketing websites(amazon, clickbank etc.) to start with?
Any tips on finding the products or services for affiliate marketing?
Start with the products and not the network.
Figure out what niche you want to be in. Maybe that’s the home niche, maybe its technology. Go broad so you can pivot later.
Then once you have a broad niche, you’ll find tons of products to review and promote. Vaccuum cleaners, smart home devices, wifi routers, protein powders.
Then you find the BEST offer for each of these by looking at the competition.
Avoid AZN as much as possible.
How to rank an emd domain
Same as anything else. Just ease up on optimization factors (e.g. anchor text).
How does your hiring process look like?
Mostly from the bottom. When people show signs of greatness, we promote them. ANYONE at any of my companies (~180 total employees) has a chance to elevate all the way to partner.
= Case in point.
In the event you need to hire in from the outside, read the book “Who – A-method for Hiring”. Game changer.
Hat tip to Mark Webster for that one.
Do you have any insight yet on what happened on November 8th or know of anyone who has successfully recovered a site from it? For some reason, it seemed to hit mid-sized bloggers indiscriminately and I haven’t heard of a single person in my industry (travel) who’s managed to regain their rankings from it.
Ok, the way I like to look at the 2019 updates is like this.
We had one backlink focused update (September). Thanks to Eric Lancheres for pointing it out, and I’ve confirmed with everything I’ve analyzed as well.
Then the rest of them were Trust, Content, Relevance, and Quality focused. But what the fuck does that mean? To be honest. I have no idea. Probably like 400 things.
Which is why we take the approach of “Doing all the things”. We assume that everything is wrong with a site and run a complete friggin audit on everything.
We redo interlinking, we setup bs EAT stuff, we check for TFIDF/entities/etc, we do disavows. All of it.
If we get hit, we always pop out eventually…
1. What are the top 5 things changed in SEO in 2020 Comparing to 18 & 19? 2. Does EAT really matter? (I saw a lot of sites ranking without that DAMN EAT). 3. Best on-page tool.
Hearty thanks in advance
1) a) More authority sites dominating
b) Yet, more money in the game because of ad networks, more searches online, more buying online
c) Google is homogenized AF on page 1, and we can use that to our advantage
d) Website assets are flipping at ridic values
e) Epstein didn’t kill himself
2) I agree. You can always find sites killin it with zero EAT. But set it up anyways. It’s not hard. Just someone’s afternoon.
3) I like Surfer. POP and Cora are also great.
Are you seeing a significant drop off in customers buying lower quality (however you score them DA/DR/TF) links?….
I’d say it’s about the same. One one hand the general public knows that higher authority/trust links are safer and create that trust factor.
But at the same time, webmasters are charging more for links, which is pushing the market to dip into the lower metric links just because of costs.
It all depends on what you need in your link profile. Need trust? Go for the big stuff. Need power? Hunt for page rank on URLs with lots of links.
Are you noticing more sites that accept guest posts getting penalties?
Saw Israel Gaudette mention something about this recently.
Honestly, You’d think I’d see more of that if it were rampant since I run Authority Builders, but haven’t heard a peep.
What are some key factors you look for before purchasing a website?
1) A niche I want to be in
2) Keywords on page 1
3) Brandable domain
4) No recent penalties
5) Solid price
What do you use for leverage when negotiating the price before purchasing a website?
Anything you can find. This is very dependent on the site itself.
Ex… Site was penalized last December? So your monthly average profit only has 2 months of reduction.
Hmmm. Essentially, I’m not buying a site making $4k a month, its actually $2k per month. What can we do about making this fair?
Do you still think there is value building out niche specific content on expired domains and dropcatched domains (exactly the niche that was previously on the domain).
Sure. It short cuts you post the sandbox and can save you time. I just don’t like them because there’s a random factor that may cause the site to never take hold.
The biggest catastrophe at Leadspring would be to waste time. Our peeps are A-players and that’s bad business to waste their time.
Internal link anchors. Everyone says definitively that they must be diversified like external link anchors. I don’t understand why? We want to look natural to google, so when building external links we must vary the anchor text to mimic a natural environment where we wouldn’t necessarily have control over the anchors the linking sites are using. However that’s not the case with internal links. We obviously control those on our own sites and google knows that. So why would it work against us in any way to use the same internal anchors sitewide? If I was selling some random supplement like creatine, it would be completely natural, even helpful to my visitors, to always use “creatine” as an anchor for all internal links pointing to my creatine page. Everyone I know says these should be varied like external link anchors but many big authority sites don’t do this, and it doesn’t make sense to me on a common sense level Why this would be the case anyway?
We recently tested this.
100% diverse, but target anchor text variations wins out over…
a) 80% target, 20% misc
b) 60% target, 40% misc
c) 50% target, 25% misc, 25% branded
That said, I’ve penalized myself by overoptimizing before. Got excited before black friday 2016, wrote 20 individual product reviews and linked them all back to the category page with the EMA.
Tanked the site right before black friday. Varied the links, everything popped back. Because of this, I recommend: 80% target, 20% misc
Just for that buffer zone.
Why does you backlink service only open at certain times of the year? Followup: How much longer do you think we will still be able to buy backlinks and not get slammed to the ground by Google for doing so?
1) I think you’re talking about Rank Club. It’s not mine. I sold Diggity Links to them. You can ask Rob Rok about the protocol.
2) You’ll be able to get away with it forever as long as you’re buying links in such a manner that its not obvious that you bought them.
What’s a great resource on affiliate sites for beginners? 2. When is the optimal time to sell a site, revenue-wise?
Still beginning stages of SEO so excuse my easy question. On-page SEO, for example purposes, the site has every issue imaginable, you can only make 5 “fixes”… Which ones do YOU choose to “fix”?
Why would you only fix 5 things, when 500 could be wrong. “Do all the things” = formula for SEO success that my businesses live by.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Probably running a household name authority site that everyone would know.
Let’s say you own a website with your own research where the conclusion would be good information to add to a Wikipedia page for a big electronics brand. The idea is then to add a line or two of text in the article and a link in the references list. Is this a good idea? Do you do this edit on your own and pray that it sticks (anonymous or with a fresh account)? Or do you consult a Wikipedia expert? Or just don’t bother with it at all?
We all know Google loves links and content but .. from your testing, do you see any direct influence of user metrics in ranking? If so, what? Or have you largely ignored this area in favour of others? Thanks!
Have you had some experience with a CBD affiliate network? If so could you please recommend one? Thanks!
Nah… because I’m an idiot. Sold my CBD/weed niche site before CBD blew up.
Two questions if you can: 1. I know you focus mostly on SEO, but I’ve seen some conversations around YouTube and Facebook ads, so… Have you been able to make PPC profitable with the affiliate model? If so… Just with privately negotiated programs or also public ones? 2. I think you said you contact niche influencers to be the public face of some of your sites. If that’s the case… What do you offer them and how’s the deal constructed? Thanks a ton for doing this!!!
And then we got banned because FB don’t play that way.
Besides the social fortress, what are some of the first links you build for a site? What are some best practices for building a site off a 301’d domain? And what’s the best way to find those sites? Thanks!
How did you become such a good public speaker?
How do you get a site to be indexed that has been parked for more than 9 months?
How do you measure whether your employees are working effectively?
For example, Bob the content editor is RESPONSIBLE for making sure that every piece of content that makes it on his project site is quality and fits the SOP.
He’ll deliver proof via reporting to his manager, and his manager confirms/denies it.
Why is Chang Mai the mecca for SEOs?
What was the thought process behind this testing and what are the key takeaways you wanted to share with us?
Case study coming out soon.
What is the best way to start in affiliate marketing: seo(blogs) or ppc(landing pages)
When you made the switch from client SEO to affiliate, did you wait until you entirely replaced the client side income before making the jump, or did you run both for a while? How did you manage the transition, and what did you do with the clients – sell or just drop?
I started with affiliate from the beginning and started offering agency work later.
Why the addition of agency work? Affiliates are easier (no client bs), they’re more profitable, etc. Was is just to diversify or you have a passion for client work?
What are some helpfull/efffective things you can do (SEO wise) to rank higher in ‘local’ that isn’t talked/written about much? And how/why does it work? Sometimes I hear stuff like “manipulating search strings and sending traffic through it to increase GMB rankings”, but I have a hard time believing such things.
That said, we have a multi-location local leadgen authority site that’s killin it right now in likely one of the hardest niches possible.
We just stick to the basic, but do everything well.
How much often should I change the content on my website so that google keeps crawling? I have 15 security services that I provide in Sydney, Australia and each service has its own separate page.
Most likely what happened is the page 1 intent and/or optimization landscape changed.
What is a good way to check the quality of a link that is overlooked by many?
Here’s what we do: https://authority.builders/…/vetting-sites-for-guest…/
What is a good way to pitch to speak at CMSEO?
How do you get a keyword stuck on page 2 to rank?
How many of your site’s have been negatively effected by Google algo updates within the last year?…(How bulletproof is your system?)
We had one get hit out of 9. It’s recovered. Ignore the tail off at the end. Clicky doesn’t truncate the unfinished week.
What blackhat seo techniques you still love?
Got it from Source Infinitum.Stephen Floyd Probably remembers that place.
What is the current success rate of CTR Manipulation and will it stick for long in future? If its Done in Ai/Machine Learning Smart way, will such tool help big time if it was really human looking CTR Manipulation and not Typical CTR Bot Tool?
Haven’t played with it since.
When taking over a site, do you have a list / process you follow to evaluate and formulate a plan?
Absolutely. I spoke on this at Affiliate World Asia 2019.
They’re releasing it, I think.
When you add new article to your site, do you immediately edit older, relevant posts to insert internal link to the new article? Do you go a heavy main keyword internal anchor or diversify it to target long tails?
What’s your general process for finding a niche or product set to build a site around? – any insights on how to take the first steps to come up with niche ideas. How do you validate niche to step in or not? e.g. Most of the buying intent keywords difficulty KD20 or less, DR 40 or less, Leading sites link velocity, etc.
Do you use any tools that enable you to track affiliate income coming from different sources? (So you don’t have to log-in every vendor’s site again and again) To track your multiple site performances?
What is your thought about Expired Domains? What do you do with them? Make money sites or redirect to existing one?
Sometimes you can short cut the sandbox, but there’s often fallout damage.
You recently posted a pic of a giant 3 headed water beast. 1. What in the world was that thing? 2. do you use it in your link building?
Which one is better Ahrefs or Semrush and why do both tools report such huge differences for the same domain?
Ahrefs. I dont care about their differences.
I’m looking for guidance, not supreme accuracy.
Is there a process to follow for building a profitable affiliate? Eg: 1. Buy expired relevant domain with links 2. Create content for site 3. Use PBN(?) 4. Use other links 5. Switch out other other links for white hat links 6. Monetise Or similar? Also where would you recommend someone who isn’t new to SEO but is new to Affiliate marketing should start learning affiliate marketing?
Hate to pitch here, but I made a friggin 25 hour course on this process.
It’s not a short story.
With the domains / sites you flip- how long do you typically run them, or rank for keywords, before you flip them?
I’ve been doing affiliate SaaS and have had trouble collecting payments – especially from startups. 1. Any advice? Got burnt recently when one started going under and I didn’t realize til it was too late. 2. What kind of microphone would you recommend for someone just starting to make video content? 3. Do you play any mobile games?
For a brand new site, how much content do you shoot for to be posted a month (eg 20k/mo)? And do you go for lower hanging fruit or the $$ keywords out of the gate?
Brand new site were publishing like 1-2x per week.
How to grow affiliate site…do you have any principals or case studies on it? We HostingPill striving hard for ranking and right now we are getting 13,000 visitors month that traffic I would like to be doubled…so can you share your knowledge since you are part of affiliate niche?
How do you find entities?
Google api made easy by Surfer.
What is the best way of building the three components of E-A-T individually and together?
What they can check for is “the opposite of EAT’… when there’s literally no author they can tie a website to.
Any resources for using Sameas with social fortress?
How can you guarantee such future-proofness? I feel like SEO is getting much more volatile. Care to elaborate?
What are some cross-sells/value adds we could offer current clients or prospects, given this skill set? I know you don’t know us, but just curious of your off the cuff impression, based on the service offering and target client.
Who let this breakdancing freak in here?! 1. As you complete searches online (i.e. best baby xyz), do you ever feel like affiliates have ruined the search experience or that you can’t trust anything ranking? 2. Fluff question, but would love to know where you think voice search is headed and how you think it’ll impact affiliate SEO? 3. What is one thing that you wish you had started doing 3 years ago? (Can be in relation to anything you touch: SEO, management, self-branding, affiliate, etc.)
You just gonna by that shit? You’ll likely need more research. But how about “best can opener”… yeah, just buy it straight away.
I’d love your thoughts on the YMYL updates… got hit in June and January. Best advice for recovery? I’m getting a full audit done.
When people say its “medic” or “YMYL” that pigeonholes you into thinking that you should only look at authorship. Or citing credible sources.
You forget to look at EVERYTHING.
1) Any advice on using IFTTT Network with Google Stack for new and old sites? -considering the network is being assembled by high DA/TF and aged properties. 2) Any advice on link building path for newer CBD site? -Social Fortress – Citation – Guest posting – Niche Edits? 3) If so, do you know a good place to get links for such niche?
Do you do any content pruning and what are your thoughts on this?
1- Boy or Girl? 2 – What are your thoughts on social network links like Quora, Reddit etc Basically nofollows with huge traffic potentials vs time spent
But they didn’t convert for shit. Even with FB retargetting.
Do you have any advice on the best ways of testing out new link providers or other SEO service providers without risking your money site? Like what are the minimum content requirements for a test (length, can it be rewritten content), how many pages are needed, etc…etc…? Is it better to just test sites already ranking?
What you want to do is get them ranked around page 4-6 for some low competition keywords.
Then when you change something (add links, optimize something, etc), you’re likely to see decent movement.
If you could purchase, or do one high impact action to move the needle on a stubborn site, medium competition (other than guest posts), what would it be?
“Do all the things”. Shits complicated now. In a core algorithm update they tweak 100 things at time.
What’s your take on Google’s heavy disinformation in recent months about making all sites caught doing guest posts go nofollow or worse? The new link types they are implementing, and the impact on GP networks… How to stop a site list being busted by Googles buyers? Implement an EAT (and referral from other trusted industry people) application process for all applicants? Do you think GP prices are going to increase in order to get dofollows?
Do you prefer building links to 1. at least 1 link to all posts, several links to money post+homepage 2. links only to money posts 3. links only to money posts+ a few to homepage
I have plenty of supporting pages with a lot of traffic… Which platform do you recommend? And what do you use to activate ads per page instead of per site? What to expect for a page with 1k views daily? Is it like 1$/1k users or less? More?
One I’ve been confused about for a long time: You mentioned in a recent vid that the guy who’s site you were reviewing should noindex his category pages because page 2/3 etc were showing in the index. I’ve also heard this is a bad move because Google eventually stops crawling the links on long term noindexed pages. Seeing the same with a site I’m working on (categories in the index) but I’m wary of adding a blanket noindex to them for this reason, any thoughts on this? https://www.seroundtable.com/google-long-term-noindex…
When you have a site that’s stuck at the 2nd page what type of links have you noticed give It that push over to the first page? Also congratulations on your daughter wish nothing but the best for you guys!
I have a social media services website which is newbie. I’m trying to rank it on 1st page. Do you recommend using Google ads along with doing SEO? Google doesn’t let me to advertise on some keywords. What is the best way to jack up the traffic? I’ve seen some competitors having a website like me without having content but they ranked on the 1st page. Sorry if the question is wierd. I’m Kinda beginner
What are your top 3 affiliate programs to use on websites? e.g. Ezoic, Amazon etc….For best £$ return Vs ease of entry, since Amazon seem to make up issues, including Code Tags etc, even when you copy paste their own automated code.
Do you add the worst links of your link profile to disavow tool periodically? Or you pull it out from scabbard only when your site is already penalyzed by Google/under negative SEO attack/etc.?
Every 6 months or so we just toss our sites over to Rick Lomas and have him clean things up.
I’ve seen on Authority Builder you have the option of Trust Flow rating. What would you call a good trust flow metric to aim for when using ABC?
What happens to a paladin if they become neutral good or chaotic good during a campaign?
Better RP your ass off or have a flexible DM.