It’s a lazy Sunday, so here’s an update on some mini sites I built (or had built) in 2009-2011. I have not really been building them anymore because the revenue is low and I would rather focus on my current projects if I am going to work on development.
I sold a few of the domain names on which I built mini sites in the last year, so I won’t include those below (AthensVacations.com, ParabolicSkis.com, JerusalemVacations.com…etc). The websites were not included in the deals, although the buyers likely gave some consideration to the fact that they were listed in Google. I don’t know how much value that is, but that is my assumption.
As of now, I really only track six of these sites: CabCompanies.com, HousekeepingService.com, BullRidingHelmet.com, HockeyGoalieHelmet.com, TobagoVacations.com, and SlipperyElm.com. The first two sites aren’t exactly mini sites because they have hundreds of pages of data-driven content, but I don’t consider them full development projects either.
Here are the earnings for each of these sites in 2011 and 2012 YTD:
- CabCompanies.com – 2011: $692
- CabCompanies.com – 2012 YTD: $93
- HousekeepingService.com – 2011: $38 (built at end of year)
- HousekeepingService.com – 2012 YTD: $69
- TobagoVacations.com – 2011: $74
- TobagoVacations.com – 2012 YTD: $19
- 2 Helmet names (use the same Adsense code) – 2011: $162
- 2 Helmet names (use the same Adsense code) – 2012 YTD: $31
- SlipperyElm.com – 2011 earnings: $234
- SlipperyElm.com – 2012 YTD: $134
How did you construct the cabcompanies with data
I have a few domains like that and also work on other projects
It would help to have them data fed like that
I hired someone to do it, so I can’t really answer your question – sorry.
What’s your avg ballpark price to get a mini site made with whoever you use?
I think I paid $250 for CabCompanies.com and the price went up to $350 or something for HousekeepingService.com.
The downside to these sites is that it makes a sale of the domain name less likely.
CabCompanies site is very nice and clean looking.
Is there a template for that or is it a customized WordPress site?
3rd paragraph under About Us – typo “You can finf …”
Anything happen with BullRidingHelmet?
I own BullRidingSupply.com
I never changed the Adsense code with the two helmet names, so I don’t know how much each individual site makes. Together, they earn far more than the $8 renewal fee.
You can now practically buy directory website templates with aggregators
Wanted to know about the data feeds you used on cabcompanies,I have some domains like that I would need feeds for
Thanks for the post, interesting how you put the mini sites to use.
Is CabCampanies.com on auto pilot?
Do you ever do anything to them?
Would you mind sharing who built it?
@Elliot: Interesting data. Thanks for sharing.
If we only look at cabcompanies.com, people can learn a lot.
From the Google Adwords Keyword Tool, it has an exact match type volume of 880 global (worldwide) and 720 local (US) monthly searches. That means that it’s a phrase that is used more widely in the US, then outside the US. Having it be mostly US traffic we can understand it better…who knows how cabs work in Europe or India, for example, unless we grew up or spent time there. It’s close to 1,000 monthly searches, which is sort of the threshold that a lot of domain investors tell the DomainSherpa audience they look for when buying domains for investment. Also, it’s over $1 cost per click — again, the other threshold they state (it’s $1.36 currently).
It’s organized nicely by geographic region, uses one database of cab companies for the back-end for the content of the site, nicely incorporates Google ads, and is quick to display information.
You’ve built it into a Google PR 3 site, which is a nice accomplishment. May I ask how much traffic (unique visitors) per month you receive, on average?
Do you keep all of your minisites hosted on separate servers so that they have different IP addresses, or do you not worry about that from an SEO perspective?
For those interested in learning a cost-effective way to get business listings (e.g., all cab companies in the US, all businesses in a certain zip code, etc.), you can sign up for a monthly recurring account on a service like infousa.com, download all the business listing information you desire within the first month, and then cancel the service (unless you want to keep the information updated over time and continue to pay for the service).
only 720 local monthly searches for cabcompanies and all that income? not too shabby 😛
I was avoiding sub 1000 keywords.
Just a thought, but if you change the design of CabCompanies.com where you do not have reverse type (light copy against black background) you will probably see a lift in revenue. The yellowish type you currently have is difficult to read against a black background.
Probably true but I don’t really want to mess with the site 🙂
BTW, I just found out the price of these sites is no longer what I paid. A friend who does small projects on the side built them for me and he gave me a good price.
And this is all adsense?
how much of cabcompanies.com traffic is mobile ? that site would be ideal candidate for a mobile-friendly version combined with an app.
Probably a good amount is mobile traffic.
CabCompanies.com scales down perfectly on cell phones.
Do you mind sharing the source of the revenue for the tobago vacation site. It seems to be devoid of advertisements so where is the revenue coming from?
I see now you claim the revenues from the sites are from adsense yet there is no advisement or disclaimer on the sites that the links are “advertisements”
Is it not a TOS requirement to advise visitors that the links they are clicking on are sponsored advertisements?
I don’t know, you tell me and point out the requirement. I know I can’t encourage people to click the links and there are certain things i can’t post above them like “Click the banner” or whatever.
You can’t see the banner? See screenshot:
Thank you. No I did not see the banner, thanks for the .png.
As far as labeling: “Publishers may not implement Google ads in a manner that disguises the ads in any way. In order to maintain a good user experience, it is important for publishers to clearly distinguish Google ads from site content.”
@ Curi Us
I don’t think it’s disguised in any way.
In my opinion, disguised would be something like having 5 internal banners on the home page that lead to other pages within the site and having an Adsense banner amongst those. With respect to other Adsense links, there’s a “Ad Choices” notice below each, which explains what the links are.
One thing I’ve noticed is that some publishers don’t have a privacy page on their sites, which is required by Google. That is one thing I do on all sites: http://www.tobagovacations.com/privacy.html