Well, guess what – we made a mess of it, so I can put that planed windsurfing holiday to bed for now because I am no longer jumping up and down for joy
Me and Chris is “we” – my young protege (for want of a different word) who hails from Texas in North America and is aiming to achieve an income of over $4,000 within 12 months from a start of zero.
Previously, in a post towards the end of last month, I was shouting my big gob (mouth) off about him making $4,600 for last month, which would have been 8 months into the project – a full 4 months shy of our target date.
Well, we/ I got our/ my come-uppance and guess who is responsible… Do I hear you say “Google”?
You got that right!
In actual fact, not quite – its ME who is responsible and not Google. Its me who is responsible and not Chris. Me, Me, Me!
I’m supposed to be the “tour” guide. I’m supposed to be leading by example, but fact is, I took my eye off the ball, very much down to the reason that I was happy to shout my mouth off about how well it was all going, and also partly because I was and am so busy with many other aspects to my business. So the blame lays at my door step – not Google’s and not Chris’ either.
So, what went wrong?
Our top earning site got dumped from the rankings! And believe me when I say top earning, I mean TOP EARNING. I think that site was making around half and perhaps a little more of our total monthly haul. They say to never put all your eggs in the one basket. Well, we don’t, but its just panned out that way is all.
My communication with Chris got to the point of us both emailing each other about how we were going to invest our money in the months and years to come. Where it would have been wiser to be focusing on who was doing what with regards to working on the websites.
You see, I do take a large part of what goes on, under my wing – I did not just say to Chris – there you go mate, its your game so get on with it. It was the same with Kevin – my very first student, who turned out not to have enough desire for success. I played a large – very large – role in his activities each day. I knew for a fact that if I just laid it all on a plate with no other input from myself, he would quickly sink.
This game is not just about the actual doing – its very much about the support that is provided while the doing is going on. If I am saying to Chris (or to all of my other students and joint venture partners) that everything will work out, we are doing great, its going superb – even when the rankings are not panning out just how we want them to, its really great encouragement all round. And this is vital to success at the end of the day!
I fully believe in my own abilities (even though Google can mess things up really badly for little reason at all), and I want my students and joint venture partners to also believe in theirs. Thus I constantly infuse a sense of well-being no matter what happens. No matter what happens, I know that we will be successful over-all. There will be some failures along the way, but the end result is going to be utter success, come what may!
Why did Goog hit us badly on that one site?
Too much backlinking to too few pages, and not enough anchor text variation. Perhaps also, too much backlinking too early on when the site in question was not quite ready to handle it. Simple as that. No other reasons exist here, not to my knowledge. I took my eye off the game plan and we suffered and are suffering for it!
In fact, most of our income on that site was coming from a single keyword ranking, which we had in top spot in Google. We had another high end kwd phrase on the site that we’d only just managed to get top ten – 40k local search volume per month in the US, according to Google. Its a very competitive niche, so we were incredibly happy with that ranking. But suddenly, very suddenly, it was all gone!
The high ender kwd phrase dropped like a bomb! There were a few other kwds we had top ten on this website, and they all dropped down to between second and fifth pages. The main earner – fortunately – only dropped down to mid second page. Only? Only? Mid second page makes you jack squat income! And boy, we were both pissed, I can tell you!
But we knew what we had to do. We knew that Google could indeed penalize us again and again and again for the merest infraction according to their terms and conditions. This is what happens now when you have a website that is fairly heavily penalized – you tend to find that Google watch it with an eagle eye for a long while after the first penalty is incurred. So you have to be very careful and pay attention to details that previously you may not have worried overly much about.
So how are we now faring, some 3 weeks after we were punished harshly?
Well. Not very well, but well enough.
We kept the focus. We moaned and we groaned a bit. But we kept the focus and we kept on backlinking to the site. But we are much more careful with it now.
Chris has been writing up a lot more content for it, and the articles he is writing are very lengthy and top notch too! We both have been varying up our anchor text a whole lot more than previously. Adding in an extra word here, taking out a word there, juggling the previous anchor text (keyword phrases) we were hoping to rank for around, and more.
We are also linking to many more pages on the site. Not merely the handful that we were aiming to gain top flight rankings for, but also most, if not all of the other inner pages.
And is there any difference to rankings now?
Yes. Our biggest earning term has now come up from mid second page to mid first page in Google, and I sense that we are in line for a top placed ranking with that within the next couple of weeks – we’ll see… I’m touching wood!! (Update on that – I just checked in Scroogle and we are now ranking in 2nd, where in Google US, we are still mid first page, but likely to follow suit with Scroogle’s rankings shortly, I’m expecting/hoping).
The other terms are still bobbing around well outside the top ten, but all in good time for those!
Time is money, but in this case its a matter of slow and steady wins out in the end!
Make no mistake about this please as its vitally important to your own well-being in terms of Google rankings. If you get slap happy with your backlinking when a website is too green, chances are good that you will be penalized for it. If you get slap happy with your backlinking just after a ranking penalty in Google – perhaps out of sheer frustration on your part, then you will almost certainly be given a further ranking penalty by Google.
Take your time and don’t see this as a race. Okay, see it as a race of the snails or something.
And what beckons for the near future for Chris and I and our expedition to earn over $4,000 a month from our endeavours?
I’m not going to shout my mouth off again, and I will be touching wood too while I spell this out…
We are very much on target to reach our initial goal – in fact, last month we fell short by a mere couple of hundred dollars, and that would never have been the case if we were not penalized. An income of $4,600 was on the cards for last month.
This month, we’ve not faired so well up till now, but things are turning around once more, purely due to the fact that we’ve emailed each other 200 times in the past 3 weeks, LOL! Now you can see why I don’t get around to writing up many blog posts
But I’ve also got quite a few students to coach and joint ventures to focus on, and that is very time consuming as you can imagine. Its great to see my student’s rankings really pick up too though, so I will be continuing with the coaching side of things for some time to come and see just how that goes.
But fact is – if you do commit these sort of glaring errors, you learn from them and you get more familiar with what Google wants to see. And by doing so, you get better and better at playing the SEO game and the IM game on the whole.
Thus, I really have no regrets that this has happened, believe it or not.
Imagine that in my SEO and IM career I had committed no huge errors up till now. I doubt I’d be a good coach, would I? Quite honestly, if I’d not committed lots of errors up till now, I’d not be doing nearly enough each day to move my own business forward at a pace.
I learn from my mistakes and I move along very swiftly, just as Chris is now able to do. And just as you too should do. There is no doubt that you too will make some poor errors in judgement along the path to riches. Its good! Its to be expected! Its a must!
Moan and groan when it all seems to be going wrong. Get that out your system. But be sure to pick up on where you left off and get going again. And be sure that you are actually learning from your mistakes so you do not commit the same again – that is crucial to long term success! Well, okay, I should have known better for sure, but I’ve provided the reasons as to why this did occur.
I wish you well with your own IM career!