Domain DevelopmentProduct portals

11% growth per DAY?

By November 17, 2010 11 Comments

It has been a good week for the Epik Product Portal platform.  Design changes made during late-October are taking effect.  On Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday we have seen average DAILY growth of 19%, 8% and 6% in network revenues (a 3-day average of ~11%), breaking all previous daily records for the network. Probably even more impressive, the number of sites that are making money on a daily basis increased by 50% in the last 4 days.  Here is a brief overview of what is working.

Scale what works
I sometimes say “scale what works”.   This is possible so long as you have designed for scale. Epik has done exactly that. So, when we find something that works, we scale it. This is why it is possible to have sustained periods of exponential growth as we saw over the summer.  The platform is performing well, and I believe we are heading into another leg of exponential growth — just in time for the holiday shopping spike.  Here is what I think is working with the Product Portals:

  • Product Pages:  One of the major changes made in late October was the addition of product pages.  As expected, now these product pages are successfully getting indexed and ranking, which massively extends the number of keywords on which these sites can rank. More importantly, these sites are the substrate on which the new user-generated content can take shape.  We’ll also be extending it further with price comparison information. Eventually, we’ll integrate a directory of stores where individual products are for sale — a concept developed by Milo.com but which we think can be executed even better through integration of Directory Portal technology.
  • Owner-driven editingOwen Frager did a great blog post today about Vishal Ithlani.   This is a must-read post for anyone serious about sustainable recurring income. Vishal is cracking the code for how to build on the product portals.  Morgan Schwartz,  Ian Lopuch and others have reported similar success. They have learned the back-end tools and are enhancing their sites and seeing near-instant lift with their site performance.  This is not rocket science.  The platform rocks. However, unlike domain parking, development is a process, not an event. Contact us if you would like to learn to use the back-end tools.  Alternatively, if you prefer to have it done for you, we can  help there too.

Here is a quote from Ian Lopuch, reporting in after learning the back-end-tools:

Check out PetiteJacket.net! I now have custom blurbs per page and 2 custom articles. I’m working through the rest of my sites and should be able to upload a few more tonight. Very excited and encouraged by the ease of use of your platform. It basically takes me half the time it would to upload a “custom” website that doesn’t look half as good.

Bottom line – Product Portals work — Guaranteed!
Product Portals remain the single best value for money for anyone looking to get started in domain development. And we are still the only domain development company that offers a one-year ROI performance guarantee on sites that are built on our product portal platform.

Best of luck to Domain Developers. Whether you are building on Epik or not, the holiday shopping season is about to kick in and the environment for domain development has never been better. Domains can be acquired inexpensively, and there are now an abundance of tools available on which to develop income-producing websites.

Let’s keep building!

Join the discussion 11 Comments

  • todaro says:

    the weather is getting colder now. i hope people start wearing earmuffs

    ** RWM ** I love that name. Product mix seems to be focused on industrial ear protection. Wondering if maybe there is more money in fashion-oriented earmuffs, notably for women and kids. Also, I think eCommerce is a good path for earmuffs.com judging from the production cost of these items ex China. Those things cost as little as $0.15 each ex-factory from China!! Example:

    https://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/209371444/2010_Fashion_Plush_Earmuff.html

    Minimum order in this example is 600 but usually the manufacturers let you mix and match styles in a single shipment.

    Anyway go eCommerce!

  • Jeff Edelman says:

    Very good and inspiring news, Rob. I’m hoping that the handful of sites that I already have on the Epik platform will start generating at least enough income for me to be confident that it makes sense to purchase additional portal sites. I’m not looking for miracles or anything close to that. Just hoping to see some kind of income stream to confirm that this is the way to go. I will soon contact you about using the backend tools so that I can improve on the sites. I just hope that those tools are real easy to use because otherwise I’ll screw it up for sure. 🙂

    ** RWM ** Very easy to learn these tools. And the ROI on the effort is high. For those who don’t want to do the work, we have content solutions. We also routinely buy articles for the network. But even the recent addition of 500 original articles spread over 10,000 sites only goes so far! If owners focused more on sites that they are knowledgeable and passionate about, that would certainly go a long way!

  • Vishal says:

    Absolutely spot on Rob. Admire the way you guys are turning things around at EPIK. Of course I am glad to making some solid money and will keep working on these sites.

    The backend platform makes life much easier to add content and articles and along with the changes you guys are doing – I think we can add real value and get a significant increase in visitors. 🙂

    ** RWM ** Vishal – Super kind of you to share your experience with Owen. Keep up the great work!

  • PPC Ian says:

    Rob,
    Thanks so much for the quote and link! I truly appreciate it! It has been a true delight working with the Epik platform and team. I couldn’t be more impressed with the power and ease of use of the platform. As someone with extensive product shopping experience (I managed NexTag’s SEM operations from June 2004 thru Dec 2006), I view Epik as the next evolution of online product shopping. It’s only a matter of time before Epik becomes a few hundred million – billion+ dollar operation and dominates every product vertical. The best part of it all: The partnership between Epik and Epik developers – your virtual developer workforce of people like myself (who have substantial equity and cash flow at stake) will propel Epik sites to market dominance. I’m excited about the future!
    All the best,
    Ian

    ** RWM ** Thanks for the comment. Congrats on your early and rapid success. As we scale the core network, looking forward to applying SEM best practices. Particularly for sites that make the jump from Product Portal to full eCommerce, SEM becomes absolutely CRITICAL. There is also anecdotal evidence that once a site generates 300 organic clicks per day, that Google EXPECTS you to buy traffic. Without opining on fairness, as an economic model for Google, that does make sense to me. So, keep those SEM tools handy. They may come in handy soon enough!

  • RH says:

    Great job Rob in keeping Epik moving forward. What do you mean Google expects you to buy traffic ? That’s interesting.

    I love how designerhandbags.tv has come along and the products are all on topic. At first there were not as many bags and designers but now its getting better daily.

    ** RWM ** I can’t prove the Google comment. It is anecdotal evidence from someone who has built a large number of sites. It makes sense to me, and while I think it is cheeky, I could see their logic: if the publisher is making money on the traffic, then Google is entitled to a piece of that. They are, after all, a for-profit corporation.

  • RH says:

    Thanks Rob and you are #1 at providing transparency in this industry.

    ** RWM ** Thanks Raymond. Partnership without transparency is not sustainable. One unique aspect of Epik is that we think of our staff and our “customers” as Partners. The lines get blurry but if you ask me, it just makes sense.

  • morgan says:

    In addition to earmuffs, it’s not too late to pick up a turkey roaster 🙂

    Kudos to the Epik team for moving fast to implement changes across the platform. I have a much smaller sample size, but I’m seeing even more acute growth of 36% and 27% over the past 2 days across my portfolio of Epik sites. I think there is tremendous growth potential when developers step up and add value to their properties in concert with the efforts of the Epik team.

    ** RWM ** Congratulations Morgan. You were one of the first Enterprise users with access to the back-end from early on, and you have been crushing it ever since.

  • Louise says:

    Hi, One of my winning product portals so far is Jacket-Dresses.com – Wishpot offers a nice selection! It doesn’t hurt that it is page 1 of Bing. Do you think if Google wants a cut of one’s traffic it makes sense, maybe the Bing crawler doesn’t appreciate a page full of Adsense?

    ** RWM ** Louise — I won’t even opine on whether Bing under-indexes sites with Adsense. Knowing the stakeholders, I would not rule it out!

  • TJ says:

    Rob – I’ll go a step farther and say the following are required on-site elements a) unique videos; b) pictures; c) unique articles; d) engaging & informative articles which invite comments.

    Anybody who is reading this far on your blog post has the intellect & skill set to either outsource or do the above in about 5-minutes time. 🙂

    In my view, product portal owners have to take 100% ownership of their domains to make money. If you don’t have time, outsource it. The ROI on a high-ranking domain with unique content will make up for in no time.

    If you want Epik/Rob to do the above, it’s just not practical on such a massive platform. My advise: help yourself out & get it done today.

    ** RWM ** Thanks Todd. You have been one of the most active hands-on guys on the Epik platform, always testing out new ways to add value to sites. I fully agree with you — do it, or have it done for you. The ROI is definitely there.

  • Joe Slabaugh says:

    Where do I log into the product portal? I never saw 4th-of-July.com in my backend but not sure if I was in right area?

    ** RWM ** If you have not done so already, you will want to create an account at admin.epik.com using your PayPal email address. I also sent you an email introduction to Clark Martin who will help you get setup, including for learning the back-end for updating your site with content.

  • roddy says:

    Vishal has his thinking on the right track, it is well worth writing your own articles or paying for some original content to be written, i am pleased to say i have two sites and both have article by me which is only going to increase their positions on search engines ! make the effort and get the results could never be more true

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