Stereotype: a Case Study in Scalable SEO
Back in March I told you about a couple of projects I’d written in two days over Christmas, and have done nothing with since.
I just happened to be checking our AdSense account for the first time in a while, and noticed that one of the projects – stereotype – was now generating £2.50 a week and gradually increasing each week. It’s not enough to retire (£120 a year… that’s about $200 USD), but it’s better than a kick in the teeth.
The interesting thing about the project is that it’s a wonderful example of self-scaling SEO. I’ve done absolutely zilch in terms of marketing the site or hunting for backlinks, yet the site now attracts 600 pageviews a day, from almost entirely organic search traffic.
When I created the site, I invested some time in structuring the page titles to appeal to users browsing Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), and ensured that the structure of the site always closely linked multiple sections together, so as to create an easily crawlable “mesh” that distributes PageRank evenly across pages.
Most importantly, the site has slowly grown of its own accord. The database was originally populated with a list of 130 countries and 15 topics (women, men, beer, weather). An automated system then searches Twitter for combinations of these phrases (Swedish women, Swedish men, Swedish beer) every day, measures the sentiment, and stores the results.
Pages are only created for combinations that have enough relevant (high sentiment) data. As the data has grown over the last five months, so new quality, non-duplicate pages have slowly been automatically added and cross-linked into the site structure.
I don’t know how many pages have currently been “made live”, but eventually there will be 130 (countries) * 15 (topics) + 130 (country top-level pages) + 15 (topic top-level pages) + 1 (home page) = 2,096 pages. Yes, it could be construed as content-farm like, and yes it faces risk from an ongoing Panda-like update from Google that wiped out my other 2-day project, Fan Ranked. But for the time being I believe it provides some content value that isn’t provided by other websites and is a good example of how to get decent marketing results with little effort.