in Authority Websites

Authority Site: August 2016 Report

August was a big month in more ways than one! My portfolio of authority sites hit an all-time high in revenue and I planted a lot of seeds for future growth as well.

Let's get into what went well, what didn't, and my plans for the next month.

Note: This report is only for income from the authority website(s) that I run currently and none of my other business ventures. I'm doing these reports to showcase the raw nuts and bolts of running websites as a business.

Work  Done in August

Smarter Content Creation

After my work systemizing my content creation process, I added another layer of intelligence on top by only creating content that would drive revenue. I did an analysis of my earnings from my main source (Amazon) and found a few different products that were driving most of my revenue.

Like most things in life, doing a Pareto analysis revealed that of the ~500 products I sold last month, ~40 of them drove 50% of the revenue I generated from Amazon. Best of all, these ~40 products were being sold from posts that were quite easy to rank for and not too hard to create, provided you know what you're doing.

Well, in this niche, I do know what I'm doing. So I devoted most of August to creating similar content, knowing that it'll probably pay off in the next 2-3 months rather than immediately.​

Better Editorial Calendar

I also realized that while I may have my content creation system down pat, I didn't have a good editorial calendar. So I went ahead and created one in a Google spreadsheet. It's pretty awesome — it goes from research > ideas > outlining > writing > formatting > scheduled > promoting, and keeps everything up to date. It also ensures I have a good mix of content coming out on my sites, tapping into a mixed blend of traffic sources.

*If you're interested in seeing the editorial calendar system​, drop a comment below. That'll let me know there's enough interest to write a post about it.

Partnerships with Other Websites​

If you've ever run a website before that got even a little bit of traffic, getting spammed with infographics and linkbuilding requests is probably a familiar feeling. This happens to me at least 20 times a month, so I decided to turn this annoying problem into an opportunity:

Anyone that emailed me with an infographic or article that they wanted me to link to was rejected. BUT, I wrote back and told them I'd be happy to feature a custom-written post on my site if they were willing to work off of a post brief that I provided.

Almost all agreed. I was able to build relationships with a number of companies and brands who all provided content that was 3-4x better than their initial pitch. This is simply because they worked off of my in-depth post briefs that were complete with research, keywords, and a detailed outline.

Hired Some Writers

I finally bit the bullet and paid for more content this month. I have a bad taste in my mouth for doing this, simply because in the past I would get terrible content from people. I would blame them, instead of realizing the the problem is ultimately my own.

To solve this, I created my entire content system AND hired better writers. By paying 30% more for a piece I was able to remove 95% of the content headaches I'd run into with lower-level writers.

Content is an investment with an ROI that is VERY high if you know what you're doing — so pay top dollar for it.​

August 2016 Website Numbers


  • AdSense - $23.45
  • Clickbank - $18.25
  • YouTube - $78.66
  • Amazon - $1179.33
  • Ezoic - $192.00
  • Content Writing - $250

Total Revenue: $1761.82


Total Expenses: $615.29

Net Profit: $1146.53

Net profit this month was higher than previous months, even though expenses are higher than average. Most of this is due to the increased sales from Amazon, something that I hope continues into the foreseeable future.

In September, I'm drastically increasing my content creation and partnerships, especially around content that can be monetized via Amazon.​ Until I tap that channel for all it's worth, it doesn't make sense to spend too much time on other income streams.

  • Barry Lumsden

    Kevin, awesome content you’re sharing here! I’d love to hear more about your “editorial calendar system” – and how you go about finding and hiring great writers. Thanks!

    • Thanks Barry! I’m switching hosting so this comment MAY be deleted, so please feel free to re-comment or email me. I’ll go ahead and put some stuff up about the editorial calendar and hiring writers in the near future though 🙂

  • Hey Kevin. Following along your progress on the gardening authority site. Keep up the great work. Noticed you’re a member of AHP as well. I just started my site. Hope to have the same success!

    • Good luck with it, Vince! Thanks for reading and feel free to drop comments and ask questions either here or in the group 🙂

      • Thanks Kevin. Have you ever written a post about your time as growth / marketer at Book In A Box? The growth that you did during your time there is incredibly inspiring. Would be interesting to hear about that 🙂

        • I haven’t, not yet. I plan to, but there is a lot for me to process there that isn’t just raw growth / marketing work. I suppose I could split it up and just write a piece on helping to scale the company. Short answer: It’s coming, but probably not for a little bit!

          Anything else you’d like to see me cover here?