What Is Meaningful Data? Reader Question And Thoughts
Leo asked a question about niche sites on this article. You can read it there or below:
Once again, I had no topic in mind for the day, so I thought I’d answer it.
Warning: This article is pretty “random thoughts”-style in its structure. You might want to skip to the “Let’s Flip This” section.
How Many Page Views Does A Niche Site Need To Make A Sale?
Fortunately/unfortunately, Leo answered his own question.
There are a ton of different variables that go into how many page views you need to sell an item.
A ton. It’s almost impossible to say how many different variables there are. Variables can range from the straightforward, “Is the product any good?” to “Did Kanye wear that watch strap on the MTV awards last night?” and everything in between.
You might have a niche product that nobody cares about, and then Boom! Overnight it’s a sensation.
To give you a good example, I bet that now the Olympics are on there are countless niche sites for niche sports that are suddenly getting huge amounts of traffic and huge amounts of sales.
Imagine having something like a site that’s “Best Sport Archery Gear.” For most of the year, you’re probably looking for tens of readers a day at most. Yet suddenly Bob the Archer wins a gold medal for your country, and everyone wants to be an archer. They type in, “What’s the best bow for a new archer” and “How competitive is Olympic archery” and suddenly Best Archery Niche Site gets hundreds of views and hundreds of sales.
These one-off events will fundamentally change your analytics.
As will a ton of other things that you can’t prepare for. That’s why it’s all a longer game than you can plan for.
In general though, there are still too many variables for me to give an estimate. Just one variable can change everything… which brings me on to Leo’s next point.
Leo asks about targeted keywords. He gives these as targeted keywords:
“iPhone 6 Review” and “iPhone 6 for sale.”
It’s true… those are targeted keywords. But based on my experience, one of those keywords would convert completely differently to the other.
Targeted versus untargeted keywords aren’t an either/or thing – they exist on a spectrum.
The spectrum is something like:
“Buy iPhone 6”
“I really need to buy an iPhone 6 right now because my Mom has just said I can have one but she’s had a couple of glasses of wine and I’m afraid she’ll say “no” when she sobers up.”
In a wider sense, everything about your site is going to affect everything else. If you’re putting up reviews on your review site, then you’ll have more luck than if you write a review out of nowhere and stick it on a site with nothing to do with reviews or the product.
It really is impossible to tell how well a keyword is going to perform for the same reasons I’ve already said.
I’ve lost my train of thought here. Let’s move on.
A lot of guys (including me historically) make a critical error when it comes to their goals: They quit before they know what they’re doing.
I feel like in the past few weeks, I’ve talked a lot about data. I’m not a mathematical person, but I’ve come to understand that you need a data driven approach if you want to make measurable improvements in an area.
When it comes to “how many page views do you need?” you definitely need to take a data-based approach.
The problem that a lot of people have is that they’ll make a niche site, write three articles and get maybe ten views, and then say, “This isn’t going to work! I quit.”
In my copywriting, I talk in terms of conversion percentages.
If a sales letter converts at 1%, then that’s an ok sales letter.
If someone paid me $1000 to write a sales letter selling a $100 product and it consistently converted at 1% for them, then with a hundred visitors a day, they’d pay for me in just over a week.
If they had an email list of ten thousand readers, they’d get ten times the cost of that sales letter back in a single swoop.
The point of that aside is that you need the traffic before you know whether or not you’re going to make sales.
(There are also other variables at play within the traffic itself. You can probably buy thousands of views from Fiverr that’ll be junk Indian views and never convert. Or, you could target a specific set of people that would convert highly.)
The wider point is that you need enough data to tell if your data is meaningful.
That’s a horrid sentence.
If your website gets ten views a day, then there is no way you can draw any conclusions from it. If you have a sales letter that’s getting five views a day, then you can’t draw any conclusions.
What’s a good benchmark? If I were forced to give you figures:
I’d say you need at least a hundred visitors to a sales letter. Then you can at least give yourself a percentage figure for how well the sales page converts and whether or not anyone is going to buy it.
For instance, if you create a niche site, focus on one product and funnel all your pages to that one product, and you get a hundred views and three sales, then you’re converting at 3%. You should definitely put effort into that site.
However, like I said above, that’s not meaningful data. There’s simply not enough of it.
I wouldn’t start drawing conclusions until you have at least a thousand views per sales page from a variety of sources. If I had a thousand views and no sales, I’d wonder whether the product was going to sell.
This is if I were forced to give figures though. In practice I don’t think about this sort of thing for niche sites. You aren’t paying for traffic, so it doesn’t really matter how many page views you get per sale.
Let’s Flip This On Its Head
This has been a tricky topic to write because there aren’t really any hard answers. Usually, I’ll start one of these topics and it’ll become clearer in my mind. This isn’t doing… which means it’s time to rethink the problem.
If you’re worried about how many visitors you need before you get a sale, then don’t. Create a site and then worry about it later.
If you’re talking in terms of keyword research, go for the numbers that are big but don’t have much competition.
If you really need a ballpark figure, use 1%.
(This is a figure you’ll improve on once you’re going (or if you are already a copywriter.))
When you’re building a niche site, it doesn’t matter. If your niche website gets a thousand visitors a day, then great! If it gets a ten or a hundred visitors a day, then that’s good too.
What really matters though is whether it’s worth your time.
If you spend an hour a week on a site and it makes you $50 per week, then it’s worth it because you’re making $50 an hour for that hour.
It doesn’t matter whether there are a thousand visitors or ten visitors.
Also, with any niche website it’s going to be harder in the beginning. When you start, you’ll be happy to get your first hundred visitors. That’s a success. You might only have five or ten articles, so every reader will be an exciting thing.
If you keep writing articles and posting them regularly, then you’ll gain traffic. You’ll also gain sales.
Making $10 a month from a site isn’t going to make anyone jump for joy, but once you make that $10, the site pays for itself. Then you add another sales letter and it becomes $20 a month. Also, you’re gaining higher conversions because you’re adding more articles.
People might read your iPhone 6 review and think, “That’s not for me.” At the start, that’ll be a lost sale. But after six months, you’ll have a ton of other products. That visitor might be back in six months’ time, reading your Samsung Galaxy X and thinking, “That’s a better option.” Or, alternatively, maybe someone in two weeks’ time might read your Samsung article and think, “Gee. I’ll click on the iPhone 6 review because the picture makes it look nicer” and then buy.
Ultimately, that’s what you’re going for with a niche site. Don’t quit after your first hundred visitors, thousand visitors or whatever. You’ve paid your $10 for a domain and whatever for hosting; keep writing until you pay that cost off, and then go from there.
P.S. Sorry for this mess of an article. I simply couldn’t find a hook point that allowed me to properly answer the question. Hopefully there’s enough info to make you build a niche site. Remember – any data that you find yourself will be more valuable to you than any answer I could give you anyway!