Louie Lovoy had spent more than 2 decades of his professional career in the non-profit sector, but he was itching to try something else.
With no previous experience or understanding of SEO, he and a business partner dove headfirst into the world of online businesses and bought a website on Empire Flippers. And so, their adventure began.
Between hiring and firing SEO specialists, monthly revenue peaking at $10k and then nosediving to $2k, and a Google algorithm update, it’s been a real rollercoaster.
Keep reading to hear about the many lessons Louie has learned and how his site, NetbookNews, is on track to make $7k this month.
- How he decided to venture into affiliate marketing
- How his site was performing when he bought it
- What happened after he added new content
- How the algorithm update affected his site
- What happened with the SEO specialists he hired
- How his income streams break down
- His approach to keyword research and link building
- His favorite tools and resources
- The biggest challenge he has faced
- His most important accomplishment
- His main mistake
- His advice for other entrepreneurs
Meet Louie Lovoy
My name is Louie and I have been married for 21 years to my beautiful wife Lindsay. We have 2 boys, Levi (13) and Luke (7). My background has been in non-profit organizations for the last 24 years but in 2020, my business partner and I decided to take a risk and purchase an online business.
Why He Bought NetBookNews
In the summer of 2020, I was looking for an additional income stream and exploring several different opportunities. During that search, I listened to a podcast where someone mentioned buying an online business on Empire Flippers.
This was intriguing to me and I presented the idea to a friend and asked him if he would be open to investing in my idea to purchase an online company as a loan to me. He said that he was not just interested in doing it as a loan to me but wanted to be 50/50 partners together in the enterprise.
With that, we began searching for the best possible online business we could find. We wanted something that was based in SEO and didn’t require any physical inventory. That led us down the road of affiliate marketing.
We looked at dozens of websites that were for sale and interviewed dozens of business owners. Finally, we found NetbookNews and decided this was the best fit for us mainly because of the strong domain authority that the site had built over time.
We purchased NetbookNews in November of 2020. The site has 100% organic traffic from SEO and provides helpful articles about laptops and tablets that are all based on keyword research. Some of the articles are product buying guides and some of the articles are relevant tips and how-tos.
When we purchased the site, it had averaged $4,300 per month in net profit over the prior 6 months. We contracted an SEO specialist who advised us to create another category of site articles focused on cameras. He did keyword research and gave us a list of keywords to go after.
We began creating content briefs around each keyword and hired a writer to write articles based on the content briefs over the next 6 months we added about 15 new articles to the site. After no revenue growth took place we decided to stop adding new content.
Finally, in early 2022 the site began growing like crazy and even hit an all-time high of over $10,000 of growth revenue in April of 2022.
Then Google made a big change to their algorithm in May of 2022 that really revealed some deficiencies in our site. By June of 2022, our revenue dropped all the way down to around $2k per month and stayed that way through October of 2022.
During that time we searched and searched for a new SEO specialist. We finally found and hired a new one in October of 2022 and he did a massive audit and overhaul of our site.
Our site experienced the natural holiday revenue spike in November and December and in January we hired a writer and with the help of our SEO specialist began going after lots of new keywords and shifted our focus from product reviews to tips and how-to articles.
He even advised us to remove that camera category that we added so that Google would see our site as an authority site that is focused on laptops and tablets. We have added around 20 new articles in 2023 so far.
How Much Money He’s Making
This strategy has proven to be the right one and our revenue has grown from $2k in October of 2022 all the way to over $6k in February of 2023 and we are currently on pace to do over $7k in March of 2023.
We have 2 separate income streams that are split fairly evenly. The first is display advertising through Mediavine. The other is affiliate marketing commissions through Amazon Associates.
It has been an up-and-down roller coaster ride since purchasing the site in November of 2020 but it has taken us about 2 and a half years to achieve our current revenue level and we are continuing to trend in the right direction.
I personally work on the business for about 3 to 5 hours per week.
His Thoughts on SEO
Our #1 marketing strategy is 100% SEO. We have not done any paid advertising. SEO and organic search traffic are the entire key to success for our business.
Currently, we are contracting an amazing SEO specialist that does all of our keyword research. He looks for keywords that we can rank for and then passes those along to our writer who creates excellent content that Google seems to be favoring.
Link building is very important in order to continue to increase our domain authority and subsequently boost the ranking of each individual article.
In January of 2023, we invested in a press release that resulted in 300 new quality backlinks. In the past, the previous owner built thousands of links through HARO.
Louie’s Content Creation Process
We are currently contracting a writer that is creating around 13 new articles per month. He is writing these articles based on the keyword research done by our SEO specialist.
We have also begun going back into older posts and replacing some of the outdated products with newer ones that are more helpful and relevant to our readers.
His Favorite Resources and Tools
I would say Empire Flippers is one of my favorite resources, and when it comes to indispensable tools for my business, those would be Upwork, Fat Joe, and Ahrefs.
His Biggest Challenge
My biggest struggle has been the temptation to withdraw owner’s distributions out of the company instead of reinvesting more into the future growth of the company.
Louie’s Most Important Accomplishment
I’m most proud of investing in an asset that can grow in value over time vs. continuing to merely trade time for money.
What He Wishes He Knew When He Started
I wish I had known about the importance of constantly investing in the growth of the company instead of expecting to get something for nothing.
His Main Mistake
I went for 1.5 years without investing in the growth of the company because all I wanted to do was take money out of it.
His Advice for Other Entrepreneurs
Be patient. Reinvest revenue for growth. Find experts that know your industry and pay them and trust them.