How to start a Viral Website: This tutorial contains the full guidelines on how to create a viral website and blog like BuzzFeed; build, run and make it successful. But please note, get ready to work hard!!
The news filtered to town in 2014 about Scott DeLong and how he is making approximately USD100,000 every month using a simple Website template. Scott DeLong started and created Viralnova and since that time till date, hundreds of similar websites has since been set up. ( Read the story here: http://www.businessinsider.com/zealot-media-buys-scott-delongs-viralnova-for-100-million-2015-7).
Must Read: Recommended Studiopress Genesis themes to start an E-commerce Website
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However, aside the numerous websites that got motivated and started a similar model like Viranova, only upworthy, BuzzFeed, distratify are really making huge sums of money every month and there is a reason for that ( which I explained towards the tail end of this post).
On a personal note, I created a similar model early this year 2015 and I must confess to you that I’m making a reasonable sum of money every month ( but not up to their level at all).
In this tutorial, my aim is to show you how to create a viral website, set up a similar viral model, the strategies to make it work and how to go about it.
Note: If you are not serious about this project, just log out and close this page; but if you are ready, then continue reading and also make up your mind to invest some little funds to get started.
- The secrets of Viranova
- What you need
- The secret and importance of Facebook and Twitter
- How to build and set up your own viral website
- Case studies: similar websites e.t.c.
How to start a viral website – Secrets of Viranoval/Buzzfeed
The answer to their success lies in the creation of viral contents, setting up a site with high CTR for Google Adsense /a mobile responsive design and strategic promotional methods by using Facebook and Twitter.
In essence, create a super powerful viral contents or even share a compelling trending news on your blog/site, then send massive amounts of traffic to it from social media sites ( majorly Facebook, twitter, Reddit and of late Pinterest).
What is a viral content? A Viral content is any piece of media that suddenly becomes an online sensation; in the definition of this media content, it generally refers to attractive/addictive contents, videos, music, and images!!
Recommended to read:
- Full guidelines and tutorial on how to start and create a fashion blog
- Ten steps on how to start, create and build a successful Food blog
In other words, a viral content might just be a content that is short lived but with maximum influence and reaches within its timeframe of publication. It is also the type of stories that are trending during a particular period and season. A closer look at these sites shows vivid examples of what I mean.
- What do you need to launch yours?
A serious businessman knows the importance of planning his strategies and investments. To get started, you need the following:
- You must have a Google Adsense Account ( this is the best CPA model, if you don’t have you can start using Chitika or better still, apply for it.
- A domain name ( e.g. huffington.com, google.com, yourname.com, e.t.c.)
- A VPS web hosting account. ( I recommend Bluehost VPS package), and if you are tight on your budget, you can start with the options presented and later upgrade as you start making money to a VPS package
Bluehost is preferable because if you sign up for hosting, you will get a free domain name. Read these important guidelines.
NB: Please note that the VPS package is mostly required because you need a web server that can handle thousands and millions of traffic from different sources!!
- The use and importance of Facebook and Twitter
I stated earlier on the homepage of this blog on how a client I helped to set up his own site became dedicated to using twitter to drive traffic to his site ( madailygist.com); his argument at the beginning makes sense and I would love you to check it out.
Secondly, there are case studies on how successful people that embraced this model use Facebook and twitter to their advantages. Examples include:
- Neil Patel’s: How I made USD332,640 in three months by leveraging on the use of Facebook. ( Read it here: https://www.quicksprout.com/2015/09/21/how-i-generated-332640-in-3-months-from-instagram/)
- Stream-SEO.com: How I used FB to drive traffic ; this fellow makes a killing amount of money using this strategy
- This fellow from Blackhatworld explained how he got motivated, started a similar model, boosted his posts on FB and he detailed how he is making money every month. ( Read it here: http://www.blackhatworld.com/blackhat-seo/my-journey-discussions/706364-my-journey-making-profitable-site-like-viral-nova.html)
So, what do you need using these social media weapons:
- You need an active Facebook Fan page ( Read how Neil Patel grew his FB page, as stated above)
- For the FB Fan page, you need to commit approximately USD500 every month to grow your fan base; Use this approach to create Facebook Ad for likes for your page. And if you don’t want this approach, you can just commit funds to simply boost your posts (you can boost each post using USD1-3 dollars).
- For the twitter approach ( anyway, this is my favorite approach, because twitter traffic gives you a great SEO advantage from Google than the use of Facebook). What you need is to open a free twitter account for your site. Grow your followers ( this is tedious and difficult, but worth it, and if you don’t mind, you can hire me to grow your followers for you)
For example, I helped grow a client twitter account ( his niche is a viral news website with focus on South Africa) with targeted 250-400 followers every day with one premium tool and the tool is Manageflitter, check out reviews about this App
- Having done this two, just make sure you automatically publish your posts on these two; promote the posts on them and you will be amazed at the multiplier effect it will have on traffic, earnings and even from Google organic reach
And now to the most important part you are eager to know about!!
7 steps to create a create a viral website
- 1# How to start a viral blog – Use WordPress to create the site
How to create a viral website is not rocket science. I recommend the use of WordPress platform because of its flexibility and tons of great SEO advantages. To get started, you will require the following:
- A domain name and a VPS hosting account; Go and get it NOW
- You need a WordPress Theme ( website template, I recommend you check out the following high CTR templates
- Top 20 viral websites WordPress Themes like viranova
- Top 20 Google Adsense WordPress themes
- Top 10 high CTR blogger templates
Most Popular Viral Websites Templates Are shown below
I recommend you read ‘how to set up a Website using WordPress‘ (I wrote this must read guidelines and it purely explains the technicalities involved; broken down in simple language and how to do it yourself). If you encounter any issues, share it in the comment section or you want to hire me to help you, contact me!!
However, there are some important factors that are extremely crucial for you to have on your website. Lots of people who started a viral website without having these things in place eventually got their Google Adsense Account banned. Now, let us proceed:
- Secondly, make sure that these pages are all NONINDEXED AND NOFOLLOW
Again, I highly recommend you read my guidelines on how to set up a Website 2016 and beyond.
- 2# Open a Facebook Page And Twitter Account Immediately!!
I briefly explained the importance of having FB and twitter in order to make this strategy work. In the case of Facebook, approach it this way:
- Open a Free FB Fan page and grow your followers ( likes aggressively). Two ways to go about this is to invest some little funds in advertising your page. Before this, after opening the page, invite your friends and loved ones to like the page. One thing you should do is to make sure that your Facebook profile cover picture reflects your viral message ( e.g. use pictures of Dogs, cats, birds e.t.c.) and if it is a viral news, just use an image of a news centered design for your cover profile.
- Again, when placing your Ads, don’t use a general approach, but simply place your advert targeting followers of a particular viral website/blog and then concentrate it to your region. Eg. lovers of BuzzFeed living in the UK or Canada e.t.c; This approach gives you a targeted FB audience.
- Again, based on numerous case studies, you might simply want to boost any post you share on FB; this has also been proven to work excellently well
- However, it is equally important to know and understand some few concepts about FB Algorithm changes in relation to how it spreads your contents and on the advertisement. The following are useful tips:
- Embrace the use of Facebook Mobile Newsfeed Ads and its Newsfeed; You get value for money much more than the Ads by the sidebars!!
- Make use of bigger Right Hand Side ( RHS sidebars) Ads: while the only disadvantage is that your Ads are limited to PC and desktop users, but it also holds huge potential if you embrace this.
- Excellent Ad budget distribution: This is what lots of business owners have been craving for. Unlike the previous practice, you can place Ads and with your budget, it is now being spread throughout the day ( meaning a USD30 budget can run throughout the day unlike before).
In the case of twitter, just grow your followers ( I explained this earlier)
- 3# Get down to business and write compelling contents, interesting pieces!
The next step is for you to start writing and publishing viral contents. A peep at those viral sites, twitter, and Google trends gives you more clue as to what is required.
One important question that might be disturbing your mind is ‘ how can I get the right content that has the potential to go viral?
This is an important question because according to one popular proverbs ‘ He who ask questions on what is the right path will never be misled’. The below point is a revelation on the path I usually undertake:
- I tried to check out leading viral sites e.g. BuzzFeed, cracked, viralnova e.t.c. and try to figure out old articles that have the most shares ( whether on twitter, Facebook e.t.c.)
- To determine that, I simply go to buzz sumo, and typed in the name of the site e.g. viralnova or simply type in any title I obtain from their site. Buzzsumo will highlight different posts with their corresponding number of shares. Check out the posts and only pick out those ones that are old
- Sit down, rewrite those stories/content and publish them on your post
This strategy has proven to work exceptionally well and I recommend you give it a try!!
Now, after publishing the content(s) on your site, make a scheduled routine and share the links and images on both Facebook and twitter. For optimal results, follow this guideline:
- For example, for a single post; publish the links to your post on FB in about 4 hours interval. Post the images/videos one by one in the post to FB with a link back to the original source( Do this using a timeframe gap of 4-5 hours per day)
- This means you should be prepared to publish at least 2-4 articles per day
Case studies on News Aggregation/curation and how you can use this model!!
I created a viral website and blog ( news niche) for the following clients ( madailygist.com, firstslice.com, and skynews24.com) and based on their demands/strategy, I created the type that automatically pulls in stories/trends/articles from different sources and have them automatically published on their website without them having to sit on their laptops/PC and do it themselves manually.
In simple terms, to get started, there are two options:
- You write, create and publish your own hand written original contents/stories and then publish them on your site. ( this is the best option because of SEO advantages)
- You aggregate/curate contents/stories from different blogs/sources and then publish the contents on your site. The advantages to this second strategy is this:
- You are not bothering yourself in writing contents
- You are simply sitting, relaxing and pulling in contents from different sources
- This model and approach are cost effective, saves time ( especially if you are the busy type or corporate worker)
I will focus majorly on the second approach in this tutorial as the first method can be done if you can rewrite stories or write a pure content yourself/simply outsource it.
But to get the viral effects using the first method, make sure you get your inspiration from the sources ( Viranova, upworthy, Google trends e.t.c.) and then sit down, write your own version ( add images, videos and try to increase the length of the contents to a minimum of 500 word count). After this, publish the content, have it promoted on Facebook and twitter.
Now to the second method, you can approach it from two angles:
- Copy their stories/contents verbatim ( word for word) and publish them on your own sites, promote them on Facebook and twitter. And to be on a much safer side, just change the title of the posts before publishing. ( though it is wrong but safe)
- The second approach is this; getting stories from the RSS or atom Feeds of different sources and then publishing the contents on your site.
This method is technically called news aggregation or curation ( curation means you are not copying the entire articles, but just the excerpt and then you are linking back to the original sources.
Our goal in this approach is:
- To aggregate, meaning we are copying the entire contents ( full content)
- To place Adsense codes at strategic places ( it is easy if you are using Adsense optimized Themes)
To get this done, the only WordPress plugin that can give you what you need is the wpematico plugin.( https://wordpress.org/plugins/wpematico/)
I recommend you read this guideline on how to start a news website ( using the WPematico plugin)
This plugin pulls in contents from different sources for you and has the contents automatically published on your sites.
- Word of Caution:
Don’t publish the posts automatically, set it to draft, then from the draft, edit the title, add one or two details to the contents and then publish the contents. This is important to avoid Google banning your Adsense contents due to duplicate content/copyright infringement!!
Top 20 Viral News Website /Popular Viral Websites
To inspire and spice up your creativity in setting up and launching your own website on this niche, I have listed out the top 20 most popular Viral news website using the Alexa rankings:
Allow me to help you FREE OF CHARGE!!
I have helped close to 30 people in setting up their website and blog. If you are serious about owning a site or blog based on the power of WordPress, the good news is that I will help you set it up FREE. But to get this free service,
- Make sure you have registered the domain and obtain the hosting through my Link
- Make sure you have purchased a premium website or blog template from either Mythemeshop, Genesis ( Studiopress) and or Elegant Themes
After this, send me a mail through my contact page, mentioning the domain name and hosting you’ve registered. I will set up your site/blog with the best SEO practices including:
- Installing all necessary plugins
- Fine-tuning and setting up the entire permalinks and /Menu settings
- Setting up the Search Engine optimization settings ( very important)
Follow this steps and you are on your way to owning and starting your own viral website. Be committed to the goal and purpose and you will soon start smiling to the bank!!.
Confused, send me your questions through the comment section.