Three weeks ago the blogosphere was buzzing about NetBusinessBlog.com, the site that Matt Coddington sold to Adrian Cooke for $13,000. I followed the site religiously until Adrian took over, but to be honest it just isn’t the same site anymore. I was really curious about how this site would do after the owner/writer change, so I have been watching a few stats including Alexa ranking. I picked up this graph at Alexa.com:
Alexa is the best source we have to estimate a site’s traffic. Although Alexa isn’t perfect, it’s a decent way to judge a site’s momentum. As you can see, the graph isn’t pretty. I’m not a technical analyst, but I don’t think you have to be to know that NetBusinessBlog is in a downward spiral.
What’s Going Wrong For Adrian?
Based on Adrian’s first post, he didn’t have any experience blogging. He did have a lot of experience in the e-commerce world, but his area of expertise is a lot different than Matt’s. Adrian built a successful internet store called MyMemory.co.uk, where he sold digital memory products.
If I had to describe what NetBusinessBlog was about before Adrian took over, I would say that the overwhelming theme was how to create small, niche sites. Matt also covered industry buzz, but I think it’s safe to say that people really liked Matt’s simple approach to building sites that were realistic.
Since taking over, Adrian has written about a fast-checkout shopping cart, how forums don’t make money, and about how he just learned what PayPerPost, ReviewMe, and SponsoredReviews are. I’m thinking that he doesn’t realize that most of his readers don’t sell any products at all – they use alternate monetization methods like Adsense, PayPerPost, ReviewMe, and SponsoredReviews. By the way, you can make a killing with an awesome forum.
What’s sad for Adrian is that there are tons of people out there that want to learn the concepts he’s covering – they just aren’t the same people that read his blog. He is obviously very experienced in e-commerce but he would have been a lot better off starting from scratch and building a base of readers with the same interests. I personally think it was a mistake to pay 13k for a reader base in a niche that he was unfamiliar with.
Where do you guys think this deal went wrong? Should Adrian have passed on NetBusinessBlog? Should he just change the topics he writes about? Should he stick to his guns and find the readers that are interested in selling products online?