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Thread: Building a Site: NetPaymentServices

  1. Building a Site: NetPaymentServices

    I am currently considering building a web site at

    A lot of people have been curious about the "process" of site building, so I figured I would start a topic to talk a bit about it.

    The start of any site is the identification of a customer need.

    In this case, I was the customer. My need was "find alternatives to PayPal." Hewlett-Packard used to have a mantra about building products for the person at the next desk over. This is just one desk closer.

    So I did some research to find PayPal alternatives and I found out a few things:

    • There are a lot of PayPal alternatives.
    • Most of the available services are poorly marketed and hard to find.
    • The services offered are wildly confusing and ridiculously difficult to understand.

    It occurred to me that a solution might be one central site which documented a large number of these systems for transferring money. A site like that could be very useful to a lot of people.

    Then I jumped the gun. I was evaluating (i.e. playing with) Domains Bot and I registered Mostly, I just needed a place to store notes while I did research. It's only $9, but I feel odd taking these steps out of order.

    I threw a copy of Joomla on the domain to give myself a scratch pad to work with. I could have used plain HTML, but I wanted something more collaborative. I could have used WordPress, but I wanted something with better tools for organizing data.

    I made up lists of companies related to "paypal alternatives" or better yet "ways to send money online" and I made a pathetic attempt at categorizing them. This effort was somewhat futile, as the categorization really can't be done well without deep research into each companies service offerings. But, I just needed a high-level overview, and that's what I got. Those lists went on the web site.

    My initial thought was to have one-page descriptions for each company listed. I took that data to WordTracker and... well... most of these companies are so poorly marketed that no one searches for their company names. Only PayPal and Western Union are getting a lot of searches related to their company names.

    But... here's where things get sticky. Those pages would make the site an authority. They would make the site stand out. They would make the site linkable. But is it really worth spending thousands of dollars?

    Well, that depends upon how much revenue the site could bring in. Revenue is a function of CPM and traffic. CPM-wise, this niche "feels" good. I haven't done hard research, but I'm not so worried. Traffic-wise, this is a hot topic in a small niche of the Internet -- but it's a growing niche. This is going to be a big thing in the future, IMHO. Globalization is going to make international money transfer a much bigger topic in the next few years. But... we still have to bring in that traffic -- and that's going to require keywords.

    I had all the data I got from pouring those company names into WordTracker stored in Open Office Spreadseet. I sorted the output by Count and deleted every keyword with a count below 10. This reduced the number of rows from 422 to 148. I then resorted the list by KEI and looked through the list manually.

    I did find just a few keywords that look to have promise:
    • help with paypal standard payment setup 169
    • how put put paypal donate on your site 144.5
    • current paypal online coupons 112.5
    • chase epay on my statement 100
    • can you tell me more about the paypal system 95.04
    • disadvantages of paypal 39.98
    • how do i cancel paypal account 24.14
    • paypal telephone number 15.34
    • nearest location for western union 14.72
    • explain paypal 9.22
    • how much does paypal cost 8.82
    • banks that accept payments from paypal 4.34
    • paypal collectible 3.91
    • paypal ammunition 2.79
    • paypal redemption codes 1.72
    • how does paypal work 1.54
    • what is paypal 1.17

    It looks more like the market is telling me to build a PayPal support site than a more generic site about spending money online. But, that's just a function of the keywords I entered into WordTracker.

    The next step is to identify better keywords.

    To be continued...
    Submit Your Webmaster Related Sites to the NB Directory
    I swear, by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.

  2. #2
    That's a great post Will. How much research you do man! (Not to mention your looooong posts! )

  3. The next step was to find out if there are some good vendor-neutral keywords to build the site's main content around.

    I knew some keywords that people would search for and I used Google Insights for Search to add more keywords to my initial list.

    • wire transfer
    • money transfer
    • send money
    • pay internet
    • money internet
    • gold internet
    • internet payment
    • web payment
    • web money
    • internet money
    • online payment
    • online money
    • transfer money
    • send money online
    • to send money
    • send money order
    • money order
    • send me money
    • bank transfer
    • transfer money online
    • money transfer international
    • online payment
    • pay online
    • online pay
    • money transfer services
    • payment systems
    • payment services

    I then dumped these keywords into Wordtracker to find out a bit about their volume and competition.

    I copied the results from Wordtracker into Open Office Spreadsheet again. I dropped keywords with a count of less than 10 and sorted by KEI. That left me with 161 potential keywords.

    I then culled the list for keywords that were too specific by removing ones that included specific company names (pay amoco online) or place names (wire transfer iowa).

    Next I deleted keywords that aren't advertiser friendly. This includes gambling, pharmacy, and adult related searches.

    I also deleted unrelated keywords, such as those dealing with paying bills online or making money online.

    This left very few keywords with KEI's above 1:

    • definition of electronic payment systems 413.44
    • types of electronic payment systems 28.27
    • payment methods on the internet 14.72
    • e commerce electronic payment systems 6.62
    • is there a way to track money orders 2.16
    • online send receive money 1.92
    • how do i track down a money order 1.82
    • tracking money orders 1.6
    • cashing postal money orders 1.4
    • online payment methods 1.1
    • sell online international payment 1.03

    Looking at these keywords, they all appear to be "long tail" keywords. The shortest are three words in length.

    That, plus the count numbers from the rejected keywords, tells us two things:

    1. This niche has a lot of traffic.
    2. This niche is very competitive.

    The traffic in this niche wasn't readily apparent from looking at the vendor-related keywords.

    If you look at the keywords from the angle of Count instead of KEI, you see some keywords with nice volume:
    • online payment methods 416
    • send money 131
    • online payment systems 113
    • how to make money online 112
    • payment methods on the internet 110
    • payment systems 100
    • money order 94
    • online payment services 93
    • what is a money order 86
    • making money on the internet 84
    • types of electronic payment systems 75
    • send money online 71
    • definition of electronic payment systems 61
    • money orders 59
    • how to fill out a money order 53
    • money transfer 52
    • tracking money orders 47
    • money transfers 44
    • postal money orders 38
    • wire transfer 37
    • western union money transfer 37
    • send money order online 34
    • online money transfer 34
    • sell online international payment 32
    • purchase a money order 30
    • e commerce electronic payment systems 30

    Alas, most of those are quite competitive. But there are three which show good numbers:

    "online payment methods" has a KEI of 1.1 and a count of 416.
    "payment methods on the internet" has a KEI of 14.72 and a count of 110.
    "types of electronic payment systems" has a KEI of 28.27 and a count of 75.
    "definition of electronic payment systems" has a KEI of 413.44 and a count of 61.
    "tracking money orders" has a KEI of 1.6 and a count of 47.

    But how do we know that data isn't bogus? Well, that's a topic for another day.

    To be continued...
    Submit Your Webmaster Related Sites to the NB Directory
    I swear, by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.

  4. #4
    Pretty nice post!
    Interesting, thanks Will

    |Nico Lawsons

  5. #5
    Keep this love coming, its showing me steps I need to be taking. It’s also showing me areas in which I need to complete more detailed research before jumping in and building the site.

  6. #6
    Now you got me playing with Domansbot ... never saw that one before...

    Excellent find

    I use mydomain and though they are great at finding alternative domains when your chosen one is taken, they can not filter out .net .org etc


  7. #7
    Interesting. Very interesting. Actually, when I was reading your post, I got an idea for my new (and first) content website. I'm definately going to use your steps when creating it.

    Thanks man!

  8. Insightful! Please keep us posted.

  9. #9
    Great info..keep them coming...

  10. I have been ridiculously busy lately, so I have not had much time to put into this project.

    But at the same time, I keep running into people who are looking for the types of information that I intend to put online at Net Payment Services.

    As a result of my own interest in this topic and the interest I see from others, I have decided to "jump the gun" a bit and push this project forward. This is not the technically correct approach, but it meets my current requirements.

    I've asked Lara Nadezda to champion this project. I think we should be able to do a quiet public launch within a couple of months.

    I also registered and, because those look like great exact match domains.

    In addition, I have contacted the current owners of some even better domains asking them if they are interested in selling. Unfortunately, I have received no responses to those emails yet.

    May should be a lot calmer for me than April, so I hope to get to spend a lot of time with this project in May.
    Submit Your Webmaster Related Sites to the NB Directory
    I swear, by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.

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