in Geekery

How I Generated 31,733 Visits, 78,159 Pageviews and Dozens of Front Page Google Rankings… On Just a ‘Rumor’

This is a brief outline on how I built a small blog on a new game idea from Markus Persson and generated a bucket load of traffic and Google rankings over a 6 month period, in my spare time.

In 2012, Markus (aka Notch) announced he had started working on a new game – 0x10c.

0x10c was an idea for a space sim set in the future, where players build ships, mine resources and generally go about exploring the universe.

Sounded cool.

I was intrigued with the idea, so set about creating a simple news & gossip site to follow the games development.

0x10c-website

But the word idea is the key point here – nothing was officially released or confirmed, so no major sites had been established covering the topic. Was anyone even interested?

I started the blog with a huge 2,000 word article “WTF is 0x10c Anyway?”…Covering everything current and reported as ‘confirmed’ with 0x10c. I added pictures, quotes, video and lots of external links to sources such as Reddit, the new 0x10cForum and tweets from Notch himself to back up the article.

From here – I read the subreddit and forums for more ideas on what people are looking for and interested in. This was the basis for my future articles – shorter, more concise, but with a lot more bulk and geared toward what users where already looking for and interested in.

No fancy SEO tools, 0x10c was so new even Google Suggest was lacking with any real suggestions, so I was on my own to find ideas to build content.

When will 0x10c be released?

What are similar games to 0x10c?

Will it run on a mac?

What will multiplayer be like in 0x10c?

Unless you dug deep into the forums it was difficult to get these answers – so I put my findings into blog posts and churned them out, everyday, and sure enough the organic traffic followed.

0x10c-traffic

Every post I published Google seemed to rank very quickly and highly in the search results.

I put this down to having solid content and a lack of competition, but also being one of the first ‘early’ authoritative website in the niche. I believe Google takes note of when sites are established for new niches and gives them a bias.

Thats just a hunch, but try breaking into, and ranking for, an existing niche and you’ll understand it’s a much greater challenge.

After a handful of articles had been created, I found these became submitted (without my prompting) onto Reddit and various other 0x10c forums. This turned out to be a great source of traffic.

This spurred me onto getting more traffic sources, so I connected with website owners, wikis, forums and blogs to exchange links, host articles and generally try and help each other in getting more traffic and exposure to our sites.

By this time I was getting over 100 visits a day, on autopilot, before the game had even been launched. I was convinced if I kept up the momentum, I’d be well placed for when the game was launched.

Unfortunately for me, the game was cancelled.

With a strategy like this the big risk is always that the game/idea could eventually get canned, as it did with 0x10c.

Traffic plummeted to a few visits a day, and I eventually binned it. But thats the rules of the game – you have to take the gamble.

Looking over the listings at Flippa, there is certainly demand for similar style websites, so I see no reason why you couldn’t adapt this idea to another topic – Another game, the iPhone 7/8/9, the next series of a TV show you follow.

Spend time creating in-depth, interesting articles and content, connect with the other ‘early’ sites in the niche and eventually bolt on some ads to make some revenue, or follow a full exit strategy and sell the site on Flippa.

Why not give it a shot?

To recap – here’s the process I went through:

  • Find a subject where a new release or product has been rumoured. You might have to take a gamble.
  • Setup a blog and start writing about it
  • Create at least 1 monster 2000 word piece that covers the subject fully, and becomes THE article people go to on the subject.
  • Research the popular questions and find the answers to build your website content – include links to sources, imagery, video etc
  • Commit to churning out the content (400-1000 words) every day.
  • Connect with any other early websites which pop up – build partnerships with them, and don’t view them as someone to beat in the search rankings.
  • Look at ways to monetize the site once you have a following, without comprising the content quality and user experience for the sake of a few quid.

That’s all there is to it – If you’ve had any success with this drop it in the comments below.

Thanks for reading

Andrew

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