How to start a successful site in 2013 - blog, etc.


Well-known member
I may have mentioned this before, but I started a new hobby site a couple of months ago (the Droneflyers site in sig) and also started blogging about the various decisions and results. The site was a WP site, but I added a XF forum and hope that is eventually where the bulk of the community will reside.

So far there are three entries to the blog about this effort: (links to #1 and #2 also)....

I think this series of posts (I will do at least one more) may help some newbies to get their new sites off the ground quicker. Another subject which will be in the next post is the potential income stream from such a starter site. Can it pay for itself? Could it possibly do more?

As a prelude, let me share some of the effort to date.

I have spent a decent amount of money buying the domain and original articles as well as XF and some add-ons. I also am going to spend money on a Grand Opening as well as future hosting, etc.

Of course, I spent a lot of TIME on it - something that any budding web person should expect to do!

Although I promised myself I would not try hard to monetize the site until 2014, curiosity got the better of me and I started a few experiments to see if the site would be able to help pay for itself (or more!). This involved a small amount of adsense banners as well as some Amazon links - the Amazon links pointing to products which 100% have to do with the content.

Although it started out very slowly, I'm being surprised by the action in the month of May. It appears that the Amazon earnings will easily pass $120 for the month while the adsense will likely be about $25-$30.

Summary so seems that is is still possible for the average joe or jane to create a niche internet site and create content as well as get paid for some of their efforts.

More later....and I hope these experiences help others! I'm not sure that I want to continually develop the site in the far future, but the effort is keeping me on my toes and I am learning something in the process.


Well-known member
Always love posts like this. I have never had any success with sites that are SEO based. I am a social guy and gave up hope in Google traffic. I found it to be too much work for too little result for anyone running basic blogs and stuff. I would love to be proved wrong as I am considering starting a tech blog for admins. Let me know how things go and if you find any tips on the way for “average Joe” publishers.


Well-known member
Faith, I think part of the secret is the idea of hopping onboard a moving train!

In my example case here, I didn't choose the subject because it was "hot", but because I developed an interest myself...BUT, when I studied it I did notice that we are on the cusp of any great revolution in robotics which includes these hobby drones...

I never do or have done SEO (for SEO's sake). In fact, I have always warned people against it....other than the common sense part of Content is King.

So, yeah, you have to carefully consider the subject and where your particular niche may fit in. In this case, I looked around and there are some very large and popular sites where this hobby has flourished, but none of them are really made for complete beginners. That (hopefully) will be my niche.

PS. don't give up on goog! Look at the referrals for one day enclosed. The "social" ones are rcgroups and the parrot forums. So goog is sending me 10-20X as much traffic as social
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OSS 117

Well-known member
Laugh at me if you want, but I've had great success mixing up keyword usage, albeit appropriate amounts, by studying search figures and using heatmap generators.