In 2012, I created the website BetEuro2012.org. It was a time limited niche site focused on the 2012 European Championships. I’ve written about it before on here but it ended up being a massive success.
I followed that with a website dedicated to the 2014 World Cup – another time limited niche site. That website did okay but wasn’t as good as I had hoped.
A large reason for that is I was burnt out with time limited niche sites at that point. I was tired of them. I wanted to create a much bigger site. A brandable site. Covering a wide variety of sports.
In August 2014, I launched SportsBettingTips.org.
Often – we launch websites without any sort of plan. I always recommend against that. At the very least when launching a website, you should ask yourself “Where do I see this website 5 years from now?” and then build accordingly.
With SportsBettingTips.org I decided to come up with a two year plan. For the initial two years, I wouldn’t give a crap about making money. I’d have very basic affiliate links, and I’d focus more on building up content and getting visitors and natural links.
Then come Euro 2016 – I’d go on the monetization offensive.
So that’s what I did. I focused on the content. I tested different areas to see what got traffic, interest and links and what didn’t. I studied the analytics to see what brought people in and more importantly what kept them there.
That’s why for example the sports trivia section has over 140 posts, while the beginner sports betting section only has 20 posts currently. I built the site based on what the user wanted and what they were reacting to.
On top of that we delivered daily sports betting tips content. With no planned income for 2 years it made life a lot easier. It allowed me to test the waters. It allowed me to test different things for search engine optimization. For example that UFC 192 Betting Tips article – how much traffic do I get if I post it the day before? What about 2 days before? What about a week before?
It allowed me to test out different titles, see what people clicked.
Man – it allowed me to breathe.
When you’re not worried about making money on a website, it can make the process so much easier because you’re focused on it from a passionate point of view.
When monetization is your #1 goal, it can seriously hurt the content you are putting up on the website. Because every time you plan out an article your goal is “how can I make money with this article?”.
It was a relief not to do that. When covering UFC 192 I could just give my honest opinions without money coming into it. When having my writers write about the Wayne Gretzky Rule or the Donald Sterling Scandal – I could simply let them write, without asking them to try and spin the content into linking to a sportsbook.
In regards to traffic – quite honestly, things didn’t go as planned. Covering such a wide variety of topics I expected a lot better than what I was getting. Here are monthly unique visitor counts:
September 2014: 1011
December 2014: 1848
February 2015: 1064
June 2015: 1603
October 2015: 2104
December 2015: 3501
January 2016: 2310
So the traffic was slowly growing but it wasn’t great.
However again – as I wasn’t concerned about money, this wasn’t much of an issue. In reality I was expecting something like this. The keywords that I am targeting are extremely competitive keywords. I knew I wouldn’t be an overnight success. So it was nice not having to worry about it too much – knowing it was a very long term plan.
I wouldn’t have to worry until June 2016 – when Euro 2016 rolled around.
Which just happened last month.
June was the month for me. It was the month where 2 years of hard work building this website would ideally pay off. Where years of work and knowledge based on time limited niche sites – particularly where sports are concerned – would come to fruition.
Yeah I’d say that worked out pretty well!
It’s extremely important to have some sort of plan when it comes to building your websites. Too many people launch a website without any sort of plan whatsoever – and then it fails. One reason for that is because they don’t know what to do after it’s launched.
And you know – sometimes things don’t work out as planned. It’s very possible that after launching this website and having that plan the traffic may not have been there. You know what? That’s okay too. That just means I have to sit down and think “What went wrong?”. Examine everything, and go from there. One thing I was concerned about for example was whether or not being a keyword domain as opposed to a brandable domain would hurt it. If the site didn’t perform? Then that’s one of the first things I’d look at, and I’d make a NEW plan for the 2018 World Cup – this time with a brandable domain.
Planning is a very important stage of building a website – don’t skip that part because you’re going to find yourself lost down the road.