In today’s episode we talk to Gael Breton, co founder of AuthorityHacker.com about his tactics for building Google-proof authority websites.
Gael and his business partner Mark have a number of authority sites and have publicly case studied one of their sites, HealthAmbition.com. The site is now generating over 300,000 pageviews per month in just over 18 months since being launched.
Gael was extremely forthcoming with his tactics for building “white hat” sites and profiting from proven white hat traffic tactics by putting his own spin on them
You’ve got to listen to this episode if you are looking for some white hat techniques that work!
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Referenced in the episode
AuthorityHacker.com > Gael’s blog with partner Mark
Authority Hacker’s content upgrades article
Authority Hacker’s social media podcast episode with Marcus Ho
HealthAmbition.com > Authority Hacker’s public case study authority site
OptinMonster lead generation plugin
JustUnfollow.com > Software to un follow Twitter users that do not follow you
Yesware.com > Gmail plugin to track what happens to the emails you send
Ahrefs > For site backlink checking
Buzzstream.com > Research popular articles and research link building prospects
Hootsuite > Social media dashboard
19 thoughts on “How Gael Breton Built a 300k Page Views /mo Authority Website”
Gary Kirwan says:
Gael, awesome stuff, not just the white hat link building, but how to funnel traffic so that you can eventually monetise it thinking like a true internet marketer
Gael Breton says:
Thanks Gary :) Glad you liked it!
Great Podcast! You’re right, the best one yet…. :) Thanks for adding incredible value, there’s so much actionable content here my head is spinning, and I was wondering what direction to take given the latest updates, now I have some great ideas and a path to follow.
Thank you again.
That feeling when you know you are listening to the right people…
Thank you guys, you deserve all your success and more :)
Awesome podcast. I’ve been following authorityhacker since Gael commented on the pbn de-indexing post and my sites tanked. I’ve been using some of his advice to hopefully remove the “thin content” penalties and drive some other traffic to the sites.
That was an awesome podcast!!! Thanks a lot Gael for going through a lot of stuff in detail. Could you throw some light on how to get great content for the Authority sites and also how do you get your images for the site because I believe each blogpost needs to have a great image in order to attract the audience (specially on sites like Pinterest). I would be doing the next PTC with NoHat Digital and looking forward to starting a couple of authority sites during the course so your insights will help me a lot.
Mark Webster says:
We’re going to be releasing a detailed guide to recruiting awesome content writers soon as part of a course we’re building. I’ll give you the cliff notes though:
1) Find bloggers using: “” + “blogger” + “hire me” as a search query. Out reach to them.
2) Focus on making every piece of content good. Better to have 1 epic article than 50 mediocre ones.
3) Hire a graphics designer to make custom branded images for each article (great for pinterest). Or do it yourself. We’ve made some in MSPaint that got thousands of repins. Information > image quality. You can also get stock images from bigstockimages.com or similar sites. But always try to customize them.
4) Nerd out. Really get into your topic and understand the niche very well. This is key to producing good content since you cannot rely on writers alone to drive content direction.
Great tips Mark. What are spending on average per article?
I have tried the cheaper writers but now getting quotes of 50-100$ for 1k words. A epic article can get pricey and posting multiple times a week.
Looking forward to listening to this one – notice the ad placement on that site is very aggressive, 3 ads above the fold. Wonder if they will ever get a page layout penalty…
Gael Breton says:
That’s something we have in mind, we’re actually considering removing most advertising in the next 12 months because we’re getting better at monetising on our own and soon won’t need it anymore.
But yes it’s a risk right now, it’s also an easy thing to fix if you get in trouble for that.
hey, great episode and I love your ridiculous French accent! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8yjNbcKkNY
Can you explain more about how you re-target people that visit your site. for example someone visits you blog post X, how can you then find out who they are and re-target them using facebook or find out their email ect.
Gael Breton says:
Thanks for my (ridiculous) accent :D. I describe some of the retargeting tactics here http://www.authorityhacker.com/content-upgrades/ (there’s even a video tutorial). I’ll cover it more extensively in double your leads, my list building product coming up next week.
Guys nice work, but what makes you think that Authority sites are immune against google penalties ?
There are countless examples of huge multi million sites that have been penalized by Google. Having authority site will not save anyones ass against penalty of negative SEO.
The only way is to get immune is not to rely on Google traffic by leveraging email marketing and PPC of all kinds.
Nate Tsang says:
“Guys nice work, but what makes you think that Authority sites are immune against google penalties ?”
No one ever said anything about being immune to Google penalties. But some forms of SEO are inherently more volatile.
“Having authority site will not save anyones ass against penalty of negative SEO.”
I think Wikipedia would disagree.
The threat of negative SEO does exist, but it doesn’t make sense to use it as a reason to avoid planning for long term sustainability if your overall ROI is going to be higher in the long term. Yes, the possibility of negative SEO increases risk for webmasters, but I’m not sure why that would stop you from working to build a more sustainable site if that’s your goal.
“The only way is to get immune is not to rely on Google traffic by leveraging email marketing and PPC of all kinds.”
That’s the whole point of the authority model, to rely on channels other than Google…
How is the content produced, is it outsourced? The author details, are they legit or just made up. Sorry for so many questions but it is an interesting example.
Gael Breton says:
As for the notice moving down, we’ve checked with the rules and nothing is specified against it.
Author details are legit, these are the people that actually write for us. They came from a long refined writer hiring process that we’re slowly transposing over at copycog.com.
Gael Breton says:
What Nate said. No, you’re not immune but you will most likely agree that the risk is much lower than relying on tactics that are notoriously frowned upon by Google.
Small suggestion, put a time marker on the links from the podcast when they are mentioned for easy reference.
That’s a great idea James, we’ll try to do that in the future