Niche Surfer is now Digital Surfer!

Keith Mint from Minted Empire

Keith Mint (Minted Empire)


Dublin, Ireland



“The uncertainty of the future is a big issue for this business. Most niche site builders, including me, are just one mega Google algorithm update away from annihilation.

published: March 5, 2022

The Interview

1. Where do you live?

Just outside of Dublin, Ireland. I’m originally from Ireland and have lived here all of my life.

2. When did you start creating content?

I’m relatively new to the niche content website business model. I started in mid 2020 but I’ve been building other types of websites for over 20 years.

3. Are you a full-time Creator?

Yes. I have other business interests besides niche websites and while this particular business model is relatively new to me, I’ve essentially been self-employed on a full-time basis since 2006.

4. What was the “Click” that made you decide you can make full-time money online.

The onset of the global pandemic affected cashflow for my primary business, so I looked at other potential earning opportunities.

I stumbled upon Income School’s YouTube channel while researching SEO boosting techniques for my main business. I was aware of various make money online scams, but, after watching the Income School channel for a short while, I realized that they were the real deal and earning a full-time income from content sites was possible.

5. How many niche sites have you created?

5 sites, not including Minted Empire.

6. How many are you still running now?

The same 5 sites.

7. Have you sold any sites or online businesses? And what was the ROI like?

In 2016, I sold a local lead-gen site I built for 5 figures. I sold it to a competitor in a private deal.

The ROI was OK, not amazing. The marketplace was very different back then compared to what it is like now.

8. How many sites or online businesses have failed or not gotten going?

1 out of my 5 sites hasn’t taken off. But that’s not surprising because I only put 40 test articles on it. I’m focussing intently on 1 site right now while the other 3 are aging nicely while still earning some passive income.

9. How much are you earning each month?


10. What are your current streams of revenue?

Currently, the only income streams are affiliate earnings and display ads. I do have eventual plans for digital products such as eBooks that compliment some of the niche websites.

11. What are your Top 3 on-page SEO strategies?

  1. Ensure the target topic is adequately represented within the Meta Page Title, H1 Heading, page URL and initial paragraph text.
  2. Organize the content into silo structures and build internal links to other related content on site.
  3. Ensure that the content matches the user search intent, and has relevant schema included if applicable (examples: FAQ and How To schema).

12. What’s the biggest issue(s) that you’re facing today?

The uncertainty of the future is a big issue for this business. Most niche site builders, including me, are just one mega Google algorithm update away from annihilation.

So the big issue, and it’s more of a challenge, is to try and build traffic diversification. This is proving more difficult than it sounds. Until relatively recently, Pinterest was a solid option. Now it’s not. Before that, it was Facebook.

I think the sensible option is to build an email list, although, to do that right does involve a lot of work. As niche site owners, we’ll always own our list, as long as we remember to take regular backups of that list!

13. What tool(s) do you rely on the most?

I try to minimize the number of tools I use, but I think I invariably end up using more than most. I’m currently using:

  • Google Sheets
  • Trello
  • Slack
  • SerpRobot
  • Ahrefs
  • MarketMuse
  • ManageWP
  • ConvertKit
  • Canva
  • CopyLeaks
  • Affiliatable
  • AMZ Watcher

14. What has been the biggest mistake you made?

I think I should have started with 1 site instead of 5. I was splitting my time, money and mental energy over numerous projects instead of just a single project.

If I was starting all over again, I’d definitely just build 1 site until it was at a point where it could financially sustain a second site.

15. What has been the best decision you’ve made?

I’ve taken a few courses and this has helped to focus my efforts. When I was starting out, I thought I didn’t need to take courses because everything is on YouTube for free. That’s only partially true. If you’re like me and constantly attracted to shiny objects, then you need some structure and focus. In my opinion, a solid course is the only way to achieve this. 

16. What’s one thing that you felt accelerated your journey the most?

I think joining various communities and listening to successful people who are many steps ahead of me has been instrumental in accelerating my journey.

17. What’s your 12 month goal?

To continue growing my portfolio. I might sell a site or two within that timeframe, but I’m honestly not sure yet. I’m also open to purchasing an under-monetized site with the intention to grow and flip it for a profit.

18. How do you stay up to date on the SEO, affiliate marketing, display ad, and other news?

I’m a member of various communities and I also keep my eye on Twitter and Discord groups. The good stuff that moves the needle usually floats to the top!

19. What do you eat or drink for fuel to keep going?

Coffee whenever I need to knuckle down. I keep hearing of the merits of smoothies, so I’m willing to give them a try.

20. Where can people follow you?

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