niche surfer - Wave Issue 134

Powerful Update Tremors; Bing Chat Opens Up; ChatGPT Fails; People Losing Jobs Due to AI; SEO Office Hours; UGC Benefits; and Much More!


SOSP (Shiny Object Syndrome Project) is moving right along!

Here’s a timeline of highlights:

  • I published the first 99 posts on Sunday, April 30

  • 1st search impressions on Mon., May 1st

  • 50 out of 99 indexed on Thurs., May 4th

  • Published another 101 posts on May 4th for 200 total published

  • 1st organic click on Thurs., May 4th!

  • 162 out of 200 posts are indexed on Fri., May 5th

  • 199 out of 200 posts are indexed on Sat. May 6th

Here’s the Google Search Console up to May 4th , which has been consistently delayed at 8+ hours ever since the April Update finished (another Update coming?):

I initially was just going to post 100 posts, but I miscounted and ended up only publishing 99 posts 😅

But when I saw search impressions on Day 1, it gave me a drive to just get another batch up, so I set up another 101 posts for an even 200 posts on Day 4.

Each post has:

  • ~1000 words

  • 4-6 internal links (per TMU lessons of course)

  • 5 images - 1 featured and 4 inside article (Canva + Midjourney)

  • 1 automatic product carousel using Affi.Ai’s keyword search feature (perfect for pSEO)

The Affi.Ai shortcode for a product box looks like this:

[affiai keyword="smart watch" template="carousel" count="5"]

and you get a carousel like this:

Affi.Ai Carousel

Now that I have the process down, I’ll have to record the videos for the VA to continue getting more up there.

I’m excited to see where this one can go with everything being automated and using AI for content creation.

Topical Maps Unlocked Review

Chris Myles shares his thoughts on the Topical Maps Unlocked course in this YouTube review. If you prefer reading, he also has a written review to check out.


May 2023 Google Office Hours

Many interesting questions covered in this one, including:

  • If a domain gets penalized does it affect the links that are outbound from it?

  • Is doing off page SEO submissions to directory and social bookmarking sites worth it?

  • Should it take over six months to index my 16,000 pages?

  • A lot of spam backlinks point to my website, how to stop them?

  • For permalinks, is it better with contractions to have "-will-not-" vs. "-wont-" in the URL?

  • How important are descriptive file names for images?

  • Is there any certain method to change domain names without losing seo rankings?

  • Does extensive boilerplate content harm the website?

Glenn Gabe explores Google’s evolution from Product Reviews Update to Reviews Update, a powerful tremor on 4/19, and how its 'Review Radar' found review articles on larger publisher sites.

On April 19, 2023, there was a significant tremor during the rollout of the Reviews Update, causing massive volatility in search results - negative and positive.

Mordy Oberstein reviews the March 2023 Core Update and the impact it had across a number of categories. He concluded that the March 2023 Core Update was a return to a somewhat more powerful core update (at least relative to the September 202 Core Update).

The most volatile verticals on desktop, from most to least: Pets & Animals, Law & Government, Health, Autos & Vehicles, and Internet & Telecom.

On mobile, the order of volatility was different and had one new vertical: Law & Government, Health, Autos & Vehicles, Pets & Animals, and Beauty & Fitness.


Wait…what? Yes, this might seem out of place, but it’s not. This post is by John Mueller, the most public face of Google Search. It’s on his personal blog. It’s a great article if you actually want to know how to automate Midjourney images to Lightroom.

So why share this? Because it’s a great tutorial and article. It’s a technical how-to article, but I know many of you are writing those informational how-to articles out there.

Many people wonder how to create great content…here you go - Use his article as a standard for quality.

Dan Politz discusses how user-generated content (UGC) is a cost-effective and humanizing tool for businesses to connect with their audience.

UGC refers to any content created by users, customers, or fans of a brand. It has several benefits, including increasing brand awareness, enhancing engagement, building trust and credibility, generating cost-effective content, providing valuable insights, and creating authentic connections.


Microsoft announced new upgrades for Bing Chat at an event in NYC. The waitlist for the co-pilot feature has been removed, and users can now download Edge, sign into their Microsoft account, and access Bing Chat.

The updates include:

  • More visual answers with images, charts, and graphs, updated formatting of answers including math formulas

  • Bing Image Creator in over 100 languages

  • Ability to upload images and search the web for related content

  • Chat history, persistent chats, export chats, and more

  • Third-party developer support for plugins, including ChatGPT

My Take: Bing Chat and ChatGPT are going head-to-head with so much crossover between the two, even though they’re both so intertwined with each other in the backend. It’s going to be interesting to see how this plays out!

Learn ChatGPT's limitations so you can establish guardrails for using the tool and leverage its benefits while avoiding the negatives.

Tom Demers shares common ChatGPT errors including API issues, character limits, connection time outs, unfinished responses, limited messages, login issues, incorrect factual information, not understanding word and character counts, mistakes in reasoning, and more.

According to a leaked internal Google document, they claim that open-source AI is outpacing both Google and OpenAI in terms of progress and capabilities.

It argues that open-source models are faster, more customizable, more private, and overall more capable. The document also states that Google and OpenAI have no "secret sauce" and should prioritize learning from and collaborating with external developments.

Lots of interesting thoughts in here if you’re interested in learning more behind-the-scenes of what’s going on in the AI LLM space.

Quick AI Bites


James Dooley covers the advanced version of link building - Rank Jacking. RankJacking is essentially buying a web page on a different website and 301ing it over to your site.

Traditional white hat link building (nothing is truly white hat) is outreaching out to blog owners to pitch them an idea in return for a do-follow backlink. The do follow backlink passes link juice in the hope it will help your web page rank higher in Google Search Results.

The RankJacking SEO hack is changing the pitch on the outreach process to appeal to the writer by saying “You love their writing style” and want to physically buy their article for a nice fee.

Jo O’Reilly goes on the Rank Ranger Podcast to discuss SEO Newsjacking - inserting yourself, your brand, or your website into a breaking news story by offering analysis or interpretation of events or just commenting on the news story - in three steps:

  1. Get ahead of the news, no crystal ball required

  2. Know your beat, make context, build medial lists, and keep them updated

  3. Streamline the process and ensure you can move fast when the news break

Brad Smith discusses why most brands fail at link building and how the successful ones build high-quality links month after month:

  • Mistake 1: Thinking you don’t need to proactively build links

  • Mistake 2: Leaving links to chance (vs. systemizing success)

  • Mistake 3: Using the wrong link building tactics for the wrong kinds of links

  • Mistake 4: Scattergun link building vs. doubling down on 2-3 scalable ones

  • Mistake 5: Prioritizing the wrong pages at the wrong times

Kevin Rowe shows various methods you can use to scale your link building efforts and achieve SEO success in any industry or niche.

  • Resource page links to homepage or internal pages

  • Image link building through reverse image lookup

  • Universal unlinked mention

  • Earn links by ranking for statistical keywords

  • Link building with podcast websites


Erika Varagouli covers content syndication, a marketing strategy that involves republishing your content on other sites or platforms, and helps you reach a bigger audience.

In some cases, third-party sites might syndicate your content in its entirety. Or they might publish an excerpt or edited-down version.

Georgiana Laudi and Claire Suellentrop from Forget the Funnel discuss how important it is to get inside your customer’s head if you want to convert and keep them. They use SparkToro as an example.

When it comes to building a site or tool that’s useful to people, you need to understand your customer.

You need to learn that there’s a big gap between what you know and what your customers understand. If you can get inside your customers’ heads, and figure out what they know, you’ll have everything you need to build a marketing, sales & product growth strategy for your team that actually moves the needle.


If you couldn’t make it to the BrightonSEO conference (like me) and think you missed out on a lot, don’t worry! Or maybe you did go, but couldn’t make every session, don’t worry!

The Oncrawl team recaps many of the talks and shares links to the presentation decks to them:

  • Rachel Pearson – TikTok for search marketing

  • Rebecca Berbel – Why you need technical SEO to build a great online strategy

  • Emma Russell – Exploring the psychological theory, Cognitive Load

  • Areej AbuAli – What the past decade can teach us about the next

  • Aymen Loukil – What your Google Lighthouse score hides from you

  • Julien Deneuville – Avoid SEO horror stories with monitoring

Mateusz Makosiewicz covers an A to Z overview of getting started with a niche site. Much of the emphasis is talking about the starting stages that’s always a good reminder when you’re starting up a site:

  • Find a profitable niche

  • Find a unique angle

  • Choose a monetization method

  • Come up with a name

  • Choose a blogging platform and set up the domain

  • Design your blog

  • Find topics with search potential

After you’ve read the article above on starting a blog, take a look at this one about affiliate marketing. Bill Widmer covers how to get started with affiliate marketing and blogging to generate more revenue.

When thinking about starting a niche site and want to monetize sooner than later, affiliate marketing is how you can do that. If you don’t want to have to publish thousands of posts to make X dollars, affiliate marketing is a way to get there.


Empire Flippers is now allowing non-English languages sites to be bought and sold on their marketplace. Big news since non-English sites make up 42% of the market.

For those who speak a different language and can create sites in different languages, that opens a whole new market of buyers for you.

For those who have foreign language businesses, you also have another source for deal flow.


If you’re enjoying niche surfer, I’d love it if you would share it with your friends! I’ve put together some rewards as well:

  • Refer 3: Get a Twitter Shout-out

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  • Refer 10: Get One Ask Me Anything Question

  • Refer 50: Get 50% Off the Topical Maps Unlocked Course

  • Refer 100: Get a Free copy of Topical Maps Unlocked

  • Refer 150: Get a 1 hour SEO 1-1 Coaching session with Yoyao


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