What Is A Good Quality Website

There have been some great threads in the Pond about people finally starting to make money online and discussions about how quickly you can make money with blogs.

The joys of making your first few dollars online are definitely the most exciting. You finally realize that this stuff does actually work. It makes the hours, days, weeks and months of slogging away at keyword research, content writing and dreaming about IM all worth it.

But the reality is that it is not easy.

And you also need to make sure that what you are doing will stand the test of time.

It is getting harder and harder every day. Tactics need to be improved, what worked last year simply does not work this year. It is great to see just how much people work before they begin to earn and it is a credit to their perseverance. And once the money begins to be earned it does seem to kind of snowball as you hone in on those elusive winning keywords.

But Man, it is getting harder. If you do want to make money with blogs, Websites or Web 2.0 properties then my advice to you is simple.

Do it damn quick. Get going, now, this second, before you even read the rest of this post.

The competition is hotting up in a big way Dudes and it is getting harder and harder to succeed. Sites that used to rank no longer do and the whole arena is changing pretty fast.

How To Succeed

So how do we make it in this uber competitive arena where every man and his Dog wants to cash in on earning some affiliate sales or selling products or even money for peeps clicking on a link?

We need to create, and we need to create a lot.

It simply will not happen unless you are able to produce masses of content on a very regular basis. And the days of it being any old content are quickly becoming thing of the past as well.

The game has changed and quality is more important than ever before. More on that in a moment. First I want to tell you about what is no longer cutting the mustard and then we will go on to look at what we can do.

What Not To Do

Straight up affiliate sites are not working like they once did. Boy do I have my share of these. You know, the usual stuff. Sites with affiliate links on every page that really are not offering up much in the way of uniqueness, even if they do pass copyscape.

Sites that are just in the way of the real stores in other words. Sites with no extra information, it is just worded differently. Sites with nothing to say really.

They are on their way out and they are soon to be a thing of the past. If this is all that you have in terms of online properties then act fast and totally change them to offer something more. The ground rules are changing and in a few years the serps are going to be a very different beast indeed.

What do we do Dave? Heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeelp meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!

Sites That Work

So, what is the best way to build a website?

I spoke about this in depth in private but basically there is one thing I can tell you looking back over 3 years of stats from the sites I have.

The sites that have remained the most stable are the ones that were personal.

Written with personality and uniqueness on topics that I had an interest in. Sound familiar? Yeah, I bet it does.

And for a reason.

They are unique and are not just affiliate or adsense sites, no matter what disguise they go under. These are blogs in the true sense that offer up great information and done in a style that is different. A bit like this SEO Tips blog (at times anyway).

If products are talked about they are talked about with personality and if they get a manual review there is no way they can be seen as anything but reviews or information of the highest order.

They won’t get slapped.

Ironic really that for a few years many of my blogs like this have had nothing done to them but they still rank just fine. So, what are we going to do to secure our futures when trying to earn from search and get some commissions?

Members Contributor Based Blogs

This is something we are beginning to do in private. Buying aged domains and collectively writing content of stellar quality from unique points of views from different personalities. Real informative content written with passion, knowledge and with flair. Content that everyone would enjoy reading if they stumbled upon the page.

And we throw in the odd affiliate link. So far so good, but it is very early days.

But sites that can be inspected and pass as they really are a truly valuable resource should be what we all strive for.


Yep, it is here and it is here to stay.

Invest in logos and headers, get FB pages up and make your site sing out that it is not thrown up to get affiliate sales or adsense clicks. They are easy to spot a mile off.

Branding is becoming more and more important so don’t go relying on those EMD’s for your retirement. They still rank now but Google is getting better and better at recognising what is a legitimate brand site with an EMD and what is not. And the algo’s will only get better over time.


It is being bandied about the web at the moment that re-hashes of product descriptions simply are not going to cut it long term, and I agree.

Inject personality and your own views onto the things you are talking about. Make it stand out and make it funny, sad, awe inspiring or just rant.

Make content that goes above and beyond the others in your niche and you will reap the rewards.

And to be honest it is like a breath of fresh air when you write content like this too. If you have been simply writing pretty much junk articles until now then you will feel like a load has been taken off if you simply let go and be who you really are.

And if that is also the best way to make some money then all for the good.

This is not any kind of Uber article that is going to pretend to have all the answers. It is just a quick reminder that the playing field is far from level and the search Gods are really upping their game. I hope you are upping yours too.

And if you haven’t really got started yet then work like a demon, you have a lot of catching up to do.

But do it the right way, be honest with yourself. Is your site KICK ASS, or just filler for clicks? You know the answer. And I can guarantee one thing, pretty soon the bots will know too and your work could be history in seconds.

29 Responses to “Quality”

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  1. Seth says:

    Your “private” site looks good but has anyone made a sale yet? I’m thinking your affiliate links might be to far and few between to do very well even with traffic.

    • Dave says:


      It’s only been up a few days. Time will tell, but I make sales with pages set-up like that, as long as the content is good.

  2. aaron says:

    How to make amazon site personal? That is my challenge. Any good examples to share?

  3. Bruno says:


    http://www.only-cookware.com/ ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Cool site of yours. I’m specially interested in the buying/selling sites part. Will certainly contact you for some advice on the future ๐Ÿ˜‰


    • Bruno says:

      Forgot to say that you may shoot him now Dave … Shoot him like a sitting duck! ๐Ÿ˜€

    • teatree says:

      Well I put that url into SEMRush, and it’s showing a drop in traffic – they estimate 23,363 in Aug 2011, 20,994 in Sept 2011 and 18,876 in Oct 2011. I make that a 19% loss in two months. The figure for November 2010 (last year) was a stonking 40,552.

      I think personality helps but it’s not the whole story. I had an epiphany last week, and am trying something out – will report back in a month’s time if it works.

      • Aaron says:

        Hey Bruno,

        Thanks for the compliment. ๐Ÿ™‚
        I am starting a monthly income report soon on the sites that I have bought. Sort of bringing a financial portfolio perspective on the whole site buying thingy. Looking back, I can’t believe I have already spent more than 30k buying sites. Opps me!

        What is this talk of shooting me down?? I am only an average guy trying to make a living on the web, for goodness sake!

        The cookware site is paula and wanda’s right? I have seen that before and I was wondering if there are other examples that sort of look like this site here where Dave is making money affiliate money off us knowing without us really feeling it. (Not in the IM niche please)

      • Dave says:


        You have me intrigued. Don’t forget to let us know. Interesting stats too, seems like nothing escapes the Panda these days ๐Ÿ˜‰

  4. Rahul says:

    One of my best earner is beaten by website which has 2k link in 2 months and i have few dozens..

    I think EMD will loose it charm in near future. Still i wanted to grow higher and higher.

  5. Jim says:

    Hey Dave,

    I’m a long time lurker, but have never commented on any of your posts until now. For some reason, I just felt the need to chime in here on this topic, possibly because this is one of the very few times I have to disagree with you.

    I don’t believe “crap” content is ever going away. I wish it did because then it would mean 99% of my competitors would dissappear from the SERPS. But, alas, I don’t see that happening any time soon.

    The fact is, if you go to Google right now and do a search for any product or do any kind of product related search and go through the first 10 pages of the SERPS, the majority of the sites you will find are basically “crap”, have rehashed information, or have content that is, for all intents and purposes, redundant. But Google has to show something in their SERPS – it can’t just be Amazon.com at #1, About.com #2, Howstuffworks.com #3. So unless they want to have empty SERPS, they’re going to have to populate it with those crap sites.

    It’s also difficult to define what exactly good content is. I’ll tell you what it isn’t. Anybody who has a site with reviews about a product that hasn’t actually used it is, in my opinon, a crap site. I don’t care how well written it is, what kind of personality/style/wit is used in the writing, or anything else. If the person writing about the product has never used the product being written about (which is 99.9% of all “affiliate” sites) then it is crap, PERIOD. Even if it isn’t a review type site (e.g. a merchant site), even most of those sites have tons of blatantly biased/incorrect/misleading info if they have any kind of adcopy on their site at all.

    Writing something well, with passion, grammatically correct, or whatever, isn’t providing more value. It’s good writing, that’s all. Only by providing real value will you provide real value. As I mentioned above, if we’re talking about “product reviews”, then only genuinely unbiased reviews by people who have actually used the product being written about is “quality” content. So unless your site provides the aforementioned, you’re not really providing value. A person who is searching for “widget reviews” isn’t looking for a fake review that won’t really help me and certainly won’t offer me any more value than simply going directly to Amazon, but is well written with “style and personality” injected into it. What they are looking for are genuine reviews (regardless of writing style or grammar) that will truly help them make a good buying decision, i.e. Amazon, i.e NOT your site.

    I can do a search for any kind of “widget (insert buying keyword here)”, and all I see is crap everywhere I turn. Personally, whenever I want to buy or read about a certain physical product, I NEVER search for it on Google – I go straight to Amazon or some other big merchant site.

    So what is my point to all this? My point is it’s not about quality. It’s about winning the game. It’s all just one big game, like Monopoly or Scrabble. And unless Amazon literally decides to not show any “crap” sites on their SERPS at all – which is 99% of the sites out there – and just have one page with Amazon and maybe a few other sites on it, then the game of who can get to the top of the SERPS will continue into the foreseeable future.

    And if you want to know what the winning strategy is, all you have to do is study your competition – specifically, the ones that are beating you. That’s really all there is to it really. The best strategy isn’t this or that. The best strategy will be self-evident when you study the sites that rank above you. You do what they do, and you do it better.

    But enough of this diatribe. Or maybe I’m just ranting? I don’t know, but honestly I feel I’m preaching to the choir here because I doubt Dave truly believes that there’s been some kind of sudden and massive paradigm shift in this game of internet marketing. From what I can see, the rules of the game don’t seem to have changed much at all. In fact, I still see plenty of the same Amazon affiliate sites that were built in the style inculcated by Dave himself ranking just fine. And I still see the same crap sites ranking above me in the SERPS (only because they were able to build more crap “support sites” than me, but I’m working on that ;).

    Anyway, best of luck to you Dave, and I’ll continue to read your posts – not even really for the IM info, but more for motivational reasons. Your posts always have a way of inspiring me to work harder and to go after my dreams, and for that I thank you.


    • Dave says:


      Killer comment Dude and it is nice to have someone disagree with me. But the fact is that I agree with you so I am not sure where that leaves us!

      What I am trying to get across is that crap sites ARE getting harder to rank and there are more good quality sites now showing up. Large ecommerce sites with consumer reviews ala Amazon being the perfect example. Maybe it is just more apparent in my niches? Who knows. But for me it seems that larger sites are winning through.

      But for the rest, I couldn’t agree more.

      This is a game and it is all just about trying to make sites that are in vogue at the current time to earn max money. Or you can take the long road and build a passion site and hope it wins through at some point. Will it? Who knows? I have only been at this a few years so it is hard to tell.

      As for the reviews and them being crap if they are not from a person that has the item. Couldn’t agree more. We are doing projects exactly like that in the Pond, and I am loving it so far. Writing about items you own is a joyous thing and so refreshing. The page comes alive.

      Jim, I think I could talk all day about this but will stop now. You made some great points and I like your style Sir. I hope to hear from you again.

      Let’s see where this game leads us, as long as we make money I think we will be fine. We just need to follow the serps results, as you say.

      Long live the Game.

  6. Carrie says:


    I agree with most of what you said except:

    “As I mentioned above, if weโ€™re talking about โ€œproduct reviewsโ€, then only genuinely unbiased reviews by people who have actually used the product being written about is โ€œqualityโ€ content.”

    When I do my own product reviews I read through the user comments on Amazon and incorporate the important points into my review. Sure, someone could read all those “real” reviews themselves, but that can take a lot of time and some of it may be over their head. But I can take all the user reviews and condense it down to the most important points and even explain why a certain pro or con is important.

    Also, because I do reviews on multiple models/brands of a particular product, I can make comparisons – again, this saves a person time. And some stuff (think electronics) can be complicated for many people to understand and compare, so again, I explain the important stuff in easy terms.

    Now, I never do fake reviews. My reviews are the point of view of a researcher who has spent time studying the various products in a niche and can provide a good overview of what is good, bad, better, important, etc. As long as you are honest and not just pushing crap to make a sale, I think there is value in a review site.

    • James Hussey says:

      Too true: a “fake review” takes many colors – looking around the web you can do well as a shopper with a well-researched piece, not necessarily from the 1st person perspective…

      But on the other hand, lots of mommy bloggers and regular folks, and people like Darren Rowse etc. will get a review copy of a product from the manufacturer and review it that way.

      There are services out there that allow this, but it can be negotiated in certain instances (can’t hurt to ask). If you do review a product you own, of course you have a better perspective: but not owning a thing doesn’t mean what you have to say is “fake” or an illegitimate review.

      I know this guy who’s living on a ton of 3rd-person reviews…this one guy…seems to do pretty well. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. Pedro says:

    why dont you make a podcast or a video for all your content? I always read your posts, without rss of course, and it will be so much better and funny hear all these talks.

    it almost like “SEO Philosophy”.

    btw, for me both methods stills works. Passion sites and “craprodutcs” sites.

    Jim make the point: its all about your competition.

    Wanna win the game? Study competition, make satellites sites with unique C’s to support, study copywriting, study how to sell oldschool, write more and better than all sites in #10 and at least DO THE HARD WORK for 6 months.

    So simple, and ’cause is so simple, only 1% can do this.

    * please pardon me for my poor english mistakes (im still learning)

  8. Pedro says:

    Brazil. And you?

  9. Gayan says:

    Hey Dave,

    May I ask a question please :).

    Just out of curiosity … when talking about “aged domains” you said that you had a site that ranked extremely quicker for a post that one of your own sites took like 2 years to get into G, in a decent SERP ranking.

    My question is, the old domain that ranks well, does its history (past content) has any relation/relevancy with the stuff that it currently ranks for??. Thanks.

    • Dave says:


      No problem.

      The aged domain had nothing at all to do with the niche direction I took it in. It was for totally different content to what was on it originally. I have now done it for a number of sites and it really doesn’t seem to matter what was on the site before. The higher the PR the better they seem to do no matter what I put on them. Combine high PR with age and it is a goldmine.

      • Gayan says:

        Thanks Dave, appreciate it! :).

      • Jay says:

        Hey Dave,
        I have a personal site that has been online for the last 9 years and am not really using it. I just had my past portfolio of work on it. If I change it into lets say product affiliate site, will it rank well?

        • Dave says:


          It depends on what kind of authority it has really. Does it have backlinks and PR? If it has then you should fare pretty well with an aged domain like that. Only one way to find out Dude, write up some content and see what happens. But basically you have a massive head-start just because the site has been live for so long.

  10. Rob Thomas says:

    Hey Dave

    Sorry for spamming the comment section but I have a question I need to ask.

    If you were looking to make the most money over a 30 day period would you try and build say 100 pages that are monetized and send say 10 links to each.

    Or build 10-20 pages on popular products and send say 50+ links to each.

    I am struggling to find a balance Between main pages and backlinks?

    Also what do you think about webs.com and orbs.com – do they rank well with links?

    Rob Thomas

  11. darrell says:

    I was on this site a few weeks ago and read something about getting ideas for posts? There was a link to a website where you could put in your word in and the top search results came back with your keyword in listed from A to B (I think it was pulling data from google zeigheist I think) Do you have the link or location of the post with the info. thanks – can’t find it anywhere