It’s a common attitude that ‘old folks’, meaning people in the baby boomer generation, or just people over about 40 in general even though they aren’t necessarily baby boomers, don’t understand the Internet. For example, read some of the comments on this ProBlogger post, How Old Are ProBlogger Readers? Poll Results. However, it seems that many older people are quietly laughing to the bank as described in this USA Today article: ‘Gray Googlers’ strike gold.
According to the article, Jerry Alonzy who runs Natural Handyman makes $120K a year from Google Adsense ads on his site. While his site is certainly in Web 1.0 territory it just goes to show that you don’t need to be cutting edge to earn a good income online. All you need is to get out there and execute your idea.
The article also mentions Jerrold Foutz, a former Boeing engineer, who runs a niche site on switches called smpstech.com. It is also a very plain, ordinary site, but it makes him $25K a year. Hope Pryor’s Cookie Recipes site earns her around $90K a year. Her site is also not cutting edge either and is heavily monetized, more than what you would see some people recommend, but it seems to work very well for her.
What is their secret? It’s pretty easy actually. Content! Content! Content! All of these successful sites have a huge amount of quality, keyword rich, content that insures them a high placement in Google search results. This brings in visitors and thus clicks on advertising. When it comes down to it it’s just that simple and just that hard. Quality content makes money and the more you have the better.
UPDATE: Since I wrote this I’ve learned a bit more about why these sites are successful. All 3 have very good anchored backlinks within their niche. All three are on domains that are 10 or more years old. Content probably has less to do with their success than I originally gave it credit for. Of course, good content will get you better quality inbound links but that’s not the only way to do it.
Of course, the article mentions some people who make the more average $100 or so a year. Results do vary. Some niches just don’t bring in as many visitors and some may find it difficult to place well in searches due to dominate competition. But still, who can’t use a little extra cash coming in from time to time.
What do you think? Does it give you a new perspective on how to earn money using Adsense? Leave me a comment and let me know what your thoughts are.