AskPat 145 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: Hey, what's up everybody? Pat Flynn here and welcome to Episode 145 of AskPat.
Thank you so much for joining me, and thank you of course to all of you out there who have subscribed, who have left a review or rating on iTunes. The show for some reason has just been climbing really high on iTunes lately and I want to thank you all for that. The support is just incredibly appreciated.
Now before we get to today's question from Chris, I want to get to and thank today's sponsor which is Flippa. Flippa.com is the largest website for—it's the number one marketplace for buying and selling websites. Over $125 million has been traded on the marketplace. I've actually bought a couple sites there myself. Unfortunately, didn't have time to do anything with them, but it's really cool because instead of starting from scratch, you could potentially start from where somebody else left off because sometimes people sell it. They just aren't feeling the site anymore or they need to sell it because they need to make some money for something else, and you could take over and take that business and do well with it. I know a number of people who have done that. Now head on over to Flippa.com to check out the marketplace and see what's up for sale. Make sure you do your due diligence before you make any purchases though. Again, Flippa.com.
All right, let's get to today's question from Chris.
Chris: Hey Pat, it's Chris here. First and foremost, thanks for all you do. It's such a pleasure to be able to find all this great information right there at SmartPassiveIncome.com. Pat, I have found this area of which I am quite knowledgeable, it's an area that I'm very passionate about, and I've actually been able to help quite a few people out in this particular area. So I have decided that I want to build an authority site on this very topic. But I have this worry that in order to create this I know I have all this information, I'm afraid to create message overload right from the start . . . My fear is that this may actually scare people off. So my question to you is, in order to create an authority site, how much information is needed right from the launch for it to be enough but still not so much that it'll scare people off? Thanks.
Pat Flynn: Chris, hey thank you so much for the question and all the kind words and support over the however many months or years you may have been listening or following SmartPassiveIncome.com, I really appreciate that. Now before I get to answer your question specifically about what you should do when you launch your authority site, let's first talk about what an authority site really is because a lot of people get that mixed up with niche sites. They think a niche site is a lesser version of an authority site. Where's the line?
I don't plan on actually giving you the overall definition because there isn't really one. People mix them up and they use them interchangeably or they use them differently, but what I am going to say is an authority site is a site that is knowledgeable. It proves a knowledge and it just gives useful information, of course, like all sites should.
Secondly, it also has a tone of leadership in a space. Leadership is really important. You want this site that you create, if it's going to be an authority site—you would imagine an authority site to be the site that everybody talks about whenever that topic that you're talking about comes up. Whenever that topic comes up in conversation— “Oh did you check out Chris' site. He has a site that talks all about that” —it's the actual number one resource on that topic. That's what you want it to be.
And then the third thing is you want to be there as a guide. You want to guide people, not just spray them with information the moment they come on your site, but guide them through the information that you've posted, and the steps that it takes for them to achieve whatever it is that you want them to achieve. That's what I feel is an authoritative site: A site that has authority. Again, knowledge, leadership, and guidance.
This is opposed to what some might consider just a niche site. I put that in air quotes. Just a niche site, which is a site that's up there that's ranking for some keywords and there's just content on the site. There's not really necessarily any leadership, although that site could be considered a leading website on that particular topic. There could be some guidance as well, but there's just a lack of a . . . It's just there. Whereas an authority site, that site is there and it's going places.
Because, I mean, I actually have I guess what you consider one niche site that's doing really well, and an authority site that's being built right now. In my Niche Site Duel series, which you could read all about at NicheSiteDuel.com, in 2010 I did an experiment publicly on Smart Passive Income where I built a site from scratch, and this was in the security guard training industry and I consider that a leading site in the space of security guard training. That's at SecurityGuardTrainingHQ.com. You could also look up security guard training on Google and find it number one, which is still pretty cool. It's been at that almost 99 percent of the time for four years now which is pretty cool, and it's making a few thousand dollars a month, which is awesome. But there is no social media presence. There is no interaction with a community there. It's just simply a library or compendium of information that people go to to find information and then go do whatever it is they need to do with that information, typically become a security guard.
Now in 2013, I started a new experiment because a lot of things changed in terms of Google and how search engine optimization worked and stuff, so I wanted to test it out again, and also a lot of people were asking me to do that. So I created a new site, and I based the topic of that site on keyword research like I did before, however, the approach was completely different. This time it wasn't just about posting content and working on the backlinks and trying to game Google and stuff like that, which was the first time I did it in SecurityGuardTrainingHQ.com. This time, I am focusing completely on writing incredible content that will be shared on developing a community of food truck people, people who have food trucks or are interested in the food truck industry. So I have a big following on Twitter and Facebook as well and also interacting with the audience too, actually providing guidance and leadership on the site. That's what I think is the main difference and that's why I feel that although SecurityGuardTrainingHQ.com is making maybe $2,000 to $3,000 a month right now, that FoodTruckr.com is one that could down the road make much, much more.
Now this one's taking a bit longer to see any results from the work we've put in. With the Security Guard Training site, it literally took seventy-three days to get to number one in Google and start to see hundreds of dollars a month at that point. Here we are almost a year in, I would say nine to ten months at this point, and we're just seeing a couple hundred dollars a month through AdSense, but we have a big opportunity now that we have written a lot of content, and when I say we, I mean my team. I have a writer that's helping me as well because I just wouldn't be able to put the time into it that I would want to, to experiment with it properly, because I'm focusing on a lot of the other stuff like this podcast, my other podcast, blogs, so on and so forth. But I am providing content for the site and have a writer and there's actually a podcast as well. Again, another way it's becoming more authoritative. I want it to be the site that people talk about when anyone ever talks about starting a food truck site, “Oh, FoodTruckr.com.”
And so far it's doing really well. It's getting about 28 to 30,000 unique visitors a month, which is huge. It's awesome. And we are about to launch our first product, a book called How to Start a Food Truck: The Definitive Guide. I and the team have been putting a lot of work into this and we're hoping it's going to do very well, and I think down the road there's even more opportunities. Since doing deep research into this niche, we've discovered a lot of business opportunities, from software to more books like this and other different ways to help food truck owners out. This is a site that—and I've talked to many people who have had successful businesses in the past—this is a site that when they saw it, they're like, “Wow. You're not close to there yet, but you're on your way to a million-dollar business.” At first I was like what, really? I was initially going to see how little work I could do with it to make money, but now after hearing that and after seeing the response from everybody who's been on the site, we're going full-force with it right now and this book is just the start of it.
But, sorry, I've been talking about it there a lot. I think hopefully that at least was a little inspirational to you and gives you some insight on what I'm up to, Chris. But to answer your question, in terms of what to have during a launch, I think it's important to realize that you become an authority site over time. You become an authority site over time. Now that doesn't mean you shouldn't act like an authority site right from the beginning, but you become one over time. And I think if you were to, for example, have all of the knowledge that you have about this particular topic up there on day one, that could work. And I don't think that would necessarily not help out or be distracting or overwhelming. I don't think it would be that, as long as you provide those other parts of authoritative sites, which is the leadership and the guidance.
So one big thing that I see a lot of sites missing that would immediately shoot their authority levels off the roof for me—this is something I implemented a couple years ago after just getting direct feedback from my audience and getting information like, “Your site is too overwhelming, I didn't know what to do when I got there,”—is a Getting Started page. A page that brand new visitors on your site, they can click to on your homepage that then describes to them and walks them through everything you have going on, all the most important stuff so they can dig deeper into your site and you can guide them along the way, as opposed to what I had before and what most people have now, which is a site that is just a huge archive of stuff that isn't really in the right order. Here you go, here's all the stuff. Figure it out. No, that's not how you become an authoritative site. You become an authoritative site by saying, “I have all the information you need. It's here on the site, but here's where you should start, and here's where you should go next.”
So how many of you out there listening right now actually have a Getting Started page? There's no reason not to. You need a place for people to start. So you'll notice on SmartPassiveIncome.com, my big call to action at the top, the number one thing I want people to do is click on that big green button that says “Get Started Here.” I don't even have an opt-in form on that page because I would rather collect emails after people go through the Getting Started page and discover more of my content and then say, “Wow, this is the authority site in this space. I need to subscribe to this list.” That's why I don't have pop-ups, because that's not the first thing I want to say. I don't want to have people come to the site and be like, “Hey what's up, subscribe and get my book on this and this and that.” I want them to be like “Wow, where do I start? Oh right there. Okay, what's next? Wow, this person knows exactly what's in my head and now I'm inspired and now I'm going to keep going.”
So in terms of what information to have, that's up to you and I would really put yourself in the shoes or at the computer of a brand new visitor, and then at that point understand how to guide a brand new visitor, no matter how much information you have on the site. That's not a big deal to me, Chris. You could start with just a couple or three posts, and then again, down the road over time your site will become authoritative. So hopefully that helps you and everybody else out there listening.
Thank you so much for the question Chris. An AskPat teeshirt is going to be headed your way. And for those of you listening, if you have a question you'd like potentially featured here on the show, just head on over to AskPat.com. You can ask right there on that page using your mic at your computer or your internal mic or a gaming headset. Whatever you have. I'd love to hear your question.
And of course I want to thank today's sponsor, Flippa.com, the number one marketplace to buy and sell websites. Like I said before, I've purchased a couple myself. Actually, it was really fun and exciting and great learning experience. I still have those sites and I should probably still do something with them and talk about them, but it's really cool. You can see what sites people are letting go. Make sure you do your due diligence; you talk to the people who are selling the sites. A lot of people are selling them just because they don't have time to work on them anymore, and then you can pick up where they left off and make it better and make more money as well. So check it out. If you want to get started, go to Flippa.com. You'll find the best websites for you that you can purchase that other people are selling, and rock on.
Cool, thank you so much and here's a great quote by somebody I don't know, but I just thought it was really cool, and I'm in a very creative mood right now so I think this is perfect. And that quote is, “The earth without art is just EH.” Maybe that sounded funny in the tone that I said it, but the idea being earth is spelled earth, but if you take art out of it, it's just “eh.” So when you think about a world without art or creativity or anything fun and exciting and inspiring, it is just “eh.” So put some art and creativity into what you do so that your websites aren't “eh.” All right, I'll talk to you guys later, and I'll see you in the next episode of AskPat.
Buy and sell websites with Flippa.