Wouldn’t it be amazing if you could get to 2,000+ page views per day in under six months?

That’s exactly what Carl Broadbent, a good friend, and client of mine, did with one of his newest sites called gardeniaorganic.com.

Gardenia Organic Traffic Screenshot

The best part is that he’s already generating over $2,000 per month with this site from display ads and affiliate income.

Do you want to know how he did it?

Don’t answer that. Of course, you do!

In this article, we will go through all the steps he took to get to 60,000+ monthly page views and $1,000+ per month from display ads in under six months. The cool thing is that by the 8th month (July 22), he’s doing $2,000+ per month and reaching 100,000 visitors!

What we’ll be discussing:

  1. The ultimate website
  2. Golden keyword research strategy
  3. Content creation process
  4. Best performing content
  5. SEO for non-SEOs

Necessary Disclaimer

I must say that these results aren’t typical or guaranteed.

Carl has been doing this for a long time, has had a lot of successful sites, and he invested over $30,000 (mostly content)  into this site to get the results we are discussing in this article.

The good thing is that his strategy is very straightforward and can easily be replicated.

Without further ado, let’s dive right into it.

The Ultimate Website

Keep it simple – more on that in a minute.

Gardenia Organic Home Page

Gardeniaorganic is built on a premium-aged domain acquired from Odys. You can learn more about Carl’s domain acquisition from them over here. This domain is largely responsible for the speed of results Carl has experienced with this site.

For the site itself, Carl uses his own theme, Popcorn on WordPress.

I also recommend the Popcorn theme because it’s extremely fast-loading, easy to set up, and tailored to affiliate bloggers and publishers. 

Most people lose a lot of time building the ‘perfect’ site only to get outranked by what many would consider ‘ugly’ sites. 

Remember, user experience and content quality are what really matter to Google.

High-end logos, dynamic themes, countless elements, and ‘cool-looking’ websites are extremely counterproductive and not worth the investment – this has been proven time and time again.

Most of our clients use simple themes like GeneratePress, Popcorn, or Astra and invest the majority of their resources into content production, as that’s what really makes the tables turn.

Keeping your website simple can provide a smooth user experience and leave you with more time to focus on creating high-quality content.

Golden Keyword Research Strategy

There’s no perfect keyword research method or something that “works every single time,” as many marketers like to claim.

There are simply ‘good’ or ‘better’ methods.

As this is a case study, I’ll walk you through Carl’s exact keyword research strategy, which is similar to what we implement for our clients.

Here’s the step-by-step process:

  1. Use Keywordseverywhere to analyze search volumes for relevant keywords
  2. Use MozBar free extension to see the competition’s DA and backlink strength. 
  3. Manually look for keywords in the top three positions in the SERPs where there are 1-2 low DA sites ranking with a DA less than 25 and few backlinks.
  4. Use Semrush to identify ranking keywords that are doing well for similar websites in my niche and target their higher volume articles, provided they meet the step 3 requirements.

The goal here is to identify low to medium volume keywords where the highest ranking posts for those keywords are low DA sites (less than 25) and have minimal backlinks.

This works so well because the only thing keeping you from taking your competitor’s spot in the SERPs is content quality.

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That’s the best position to be in.

All you need to do now is produce an article that provides more value than the competition. 

Then get more high-quality backlinks, and boom, happy outranking!

Content Creation Process

Carl owes his success in this business to content – as should every affiliate and publisher be able to say.

He’s a very smart guy and has uncovered a lot of hacks and unique strategies along the way, which his viewers are forever grateful for.

But the real turning point in his business was when he realized that content is everything. 

In his own words, “You can optimize your website to look great, you can have an awesome logo. But at the end of the day, only content will bring in the traffic.”

The three most important things I took from my discussion with Carl about producing content that ranks, get traffic, and make money are:

  • Content Volume
  • Content Quality
  • Content Type

Let’s take a look at how these three factors took Carl’s website, Gardenia Organic, from 4,000 visitors to 67,000 visitors per month in six months.

Content Volume

What’s really outstanding about this case study is the amount of content he published in a short amount of time.

428 articles in month one.

And then 50-80 articles every month after.

Now he has 389 articles in the top 3 in the SERPs (mindblowing, right?)

Number of Gardenia Organic Page One Rankings

What could be so special about his content that more than 50% of what he’s published is ranking top 3 of the SERPs in the under six months?

Nothing that you can’t implement.

Content Quality

Here’s his 5-step process for producing high-quality content without fail:

Step #1 – Deep keyword research to identify high-opportunity topics

Step #2 – Content must accurately address the search intent

Step #3 – Leverage internal and external linking

Step #4 – Back statements with evidence and data from trusted sources

Step #5 – Create unique graphics (ideally take pictures yourself)

We do all of this for our clients. That’s where we got the “Hands Off” name from. 

The good thing is that this process is not too demanding even as a 1-3 person team.

Content Type

Affiliates and publishers mostly focus on two types of content:

  • Information
  • Product reviews

Informational content covers a wide range of formats like how-to posts, response posts, listicles, case studies, and some more.

Product reviews are just as it states but also come in the form of roundup posts, best of posts, and comparisons.

What has worked best for Carl is informational content in the form of response posts.

Here’s why it works so well:

  1. The user asks Google a question
  2. You answer

It’s the easiest form of content to produce as most questions can be answered within 1,000 words. These queries are typically low competition, and they don’t require deep research to put together.

Here’s a good example of a response post directly from Carl’s website:

Response post published on Gardenia Organic

SEO for Non-SEOs

The most overwhelming part of the business for most publishers and affiliates. 

Funnily enough, it’s as hard as you make it.

Here’s a good summary of successful SEO for publisher and affiliate bloggers:

  1. Focus on natural link building
  2. Implement on-page SEO (leverage tools like SurferSEO)
  3. Optimize user experience
  4. Implement internal and external links (2-3 internal, 1-2 external per post)
  5. What you don’t want to hear again: publish high-quality content

Natural Link Building

Want high-quality links for free? Carl suggests these easy-to-implement tactics:

  1. Create unique content that’s not available anywhere else
  2. Add original images (take them yourself to ensure 100% originality)
  3. Create charts and infographics that people can download, share or add to their own website
  4. Add a quiz or calculator – Carl has a fish tank calculator on a website that works out the volume of water in a fish tank. This is a HOT tactic.
  5. Video content – Create your own videos that people can embed into their own assets and benefit from an additional traffic stream.

On-Page SEO

The solution is extremely relevant content.

You want to go through your content and address all relevant queries your reader might have using all the keywords that frequently appear across competitor posts from the SERPs.

We use SurferSEO to identify those keywords and make our content as relevant as possible.

Furthermore, refer to the E.A.T guideline.

Does your article reflect expertise, authority, and trust? 

Expertise is conveyed through the value you provide.

Authority is achieved through relevance and accuracy.

Trust is gained through the reliability of your content.

User Experience

As mentioned earlier, keep your website simple.

The fewer elements it has, the faster it will load.

Alongside page load speed, the content should be easy to consume. So no, plastering call-to-action banners every second paragraph is NOT a good idea. 

Also, make sure you categorize and correctly label all of your content so that people can easily browse your site using the search bar. 

The best thing to do is build on a theme that’s tailored to your goals, so in this case, the Popcorn theme or GeneratePress are a perfect match!

Case Study Summary

Everything you need to know about how Carl took gardeniaorganic.com from zero to 67,000 unique visitors per month and zero to $1,000+ per month in six months has been explained above.

Here are some final comments.

Website: Build on a premium-aged domain and use a fast-loading, simple WordPress theme. Design is less important than user experience.

Content: Prioritize keyword research, be strict on quality and relevance, and publish a lot of content. Also, hone in on one content type to scale faster.

SEO: Don’t obsess over it, but on-page is extremely important. Focus on natural links only and leverage tools like SurferSEO to optimize your content for the SERPs.

Monetization: For new sites, use Ezoic for Display ads and Amazon Associates for affiliate income. Later, you can optimize your numbers by partnering with higher-requirement publisher networks like AdThrive and go direct with brands for higher percentage commissions.

I hope this case study serves you well and gives you many ah-ha moments. If you have any questions for Carl, feel free to email us, and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible with an answer.

Want to learn more from Carl? You can follow him here.

Want someone to implement everything discussed in this case study for you? Head over to our home page and learn more about how we can automate this entire process for you!

Abdullah Ashraf
Abdullah Ashraf

Hey, I'm the creator of Hands Off Publishing. I've been writing content and serving website owners for the last seven years. In 2020, I decided to start my own agency so I can serve more clients and have a larger impact. When I'm not working, I travel, drink cappuccinos, and spend time with my family.