“Starting From Scratch” Case Study – Income Report July 2016


Welcome to the fifth of the monthly income reports for the “Starting From Scratch” niche site case study. In these monthly reports, I’ll go through the income, traffic and rankings of the case study site. Monthly reports are important, not only to let you see how the site is doing, but it helps me to improve the site by analyzing the results. If you’re looking for more posts on what I’ve built and how, you can find them here.

Traffic & Visitors – July 2016

Unique Visitors: 55
Bounce Rate: 31%
Unique Visitors Sent To Amazon: 21
Conversion Rate to Amazon: 38%


We can see from the traffic graph that the site is slowly improving and towards the end of the month, we have had a period of several days where the site has had visitors daily. Although the site is not yet ranking on the first page for any of the target keywords, it would still be ranking on the first page for very obscure queries that are covered in the site’s content.

I expect traffic in August to pick up a bit more from the extra links that I added in June.

Amazon Earnings – July 2016

Items Sold: 2
Items Shipped: 2
Total Amount Sold: $247.49
Commission Earned: $9.90
Average Visitor Value: $0.18
Average Item Commission: $4.95

As I predicted from last month, sales for this month are still low, because the site is not yet ranking for its target keywords. That being said, I’m happy to report that the site has earned $9.90 this month.

I expect the sales for August to pick up a bit more – hopefully between $20-$50 worth of commissions.

Rankings – July 2016

Top 3: 0
Top 10: 0
Top 100: 16
Not in Top 100: 0



Rankings took a bit of a dive during June because of the test with enabling SSL on the site, but they have steadily recovered and improved during the month of July. The additional 5 links that I added in July will begin to push rankings higher in August.

Overall Spend & Earnings

Build Cost: $952

Earnings March: $5.71
Earnings April: $4.84
Earnings May: $1.59
Earnings June: $0.00
Earnings July: $9.90

Expenses March: $0 ($36.90 for first month’s hosting on Bulk Buy Hosting and Vultr were included in initial case study expenses)
Expenses April: $36.90 – Bulk Buy Hosting 15 Accounts Plan & Vultr VPS server.
Expenses May: $36.90 – Bulk Buy Hosting 15 Accounts Plan & Vultr VPS server.
Expenses June: $44.90 – Bulk Buy Hosting 20 Accounts Plan & Vultr VPS server, $55 to PBN HQ for domains, $45 for Domain Registrations, $92.50 to HireWriters.
Expenses July: $44.90 – Bulk Buy Hosting 20 Accounts Plan & Vultr VPS server.

What’s Next?

At the end of August, once I have the Amazon reports for the full month, I’ll share my next post showing the traffic and earnings for this site.

If you have any questions about what I’ve covered so far, or feel that I haven’t covered any specific component in enough detail, please leave a comment on this post – I’ll been answering reader questions in the comments.

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  1. Nice case study. We sure learning a whole lot from this.

    Speaking of pbn, I’ll like to know, let’s assume I have a 20 domains pbn. How often do I post on each domain? How many articles should be on each domain (just a rough guide from your experience so far).

    I am building 5 money sites so need to know what to do and how to go it.


  2. Hi

    I’ve been following this case study from the start. Great info. I’m new to this stuff although have now done a ton of research.

    One thing that strikes me is that you are now 6 months in and still a lot your target words are not ranking. Is this a typical time frame? When do you realistically expect that to change?

    Also if someone wanted to speed up that time frame how what would you recommend doing?



    • Hi Jason,
      The site was launched mid March 2016 with the links being dripped out over the month of April, so it’s only five months old at this point. In general, an Amazon affiliate site on a brand new domain can take 6 months to start ranking for some keywords, and 9-12 months to achieve rankings in most of the keywords.
      The thing that you can do to speed it up is to add more links, and sooner. I started with a 15 site PBN and a few extra links from blog commenting and broken link building and only recently expanded that to 20 PBN links during July, so they can take a month or so to take effect. This is a lot fewer links than I would normally use on my sites, but I also send links from my PBNs to other sites, whereas for this case study I wanted to use a PBN exclusively for one site, to see if a lower number of domains would be required.

      • Thanks for the response Kevin. Sounds good…..certainly everything I’ve been reading seems to suggest links as being key. I’ll continue to follow the sites progress. All the best 🙂

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