I Turned Something That Nobody Talks About Into A $60K/Year Blog

Martin Moore
Founder, TechySex
$5K
revenue/mo
1
Founders
0
Employees
TechySex
from New York, NY, USA
started February 2020
$5,000
revenue/mo
1
Founders
0
Employees
1.75M
alexa rank
5
followers
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I Turned Something That Nobody Talks About Into A $60K/Year Blog

Hello! Who are you and what business did you start?

Hey everyone, my name is Martin Moore and I’m the founder of TechySex. This website is all about sexual wellness and sex toy reviews. My goal is to help people find answers to questions about their sexuality they may have been too shy to ask.

I never planned to be an expert in this field, however, life works in funny ways and now I curate the list of the best automatic male masturbators which became one of the most visited pages on my website.

I’m very curious to learn what’s next in this super techy market. Did you know that sex toys can work in sync with virtual reality video content? Innovations like these are what inspired the name of the website as well.

Currently, we’re making around $5K per month on average. It’s a young business with a lot of growth potential, so the fun is just getting started.

techysex

What's your backstory and how did you come up with the idea?

TechySex started many years ago when I got my hands on my first sex toy. It was a Fleshlight sleeve and it truly fascinated me. You could say that I became an enthusiast that can today recommend a sleeve to any type of user.

With time, my collection of sex toys and knowledge about them grew. However, I never shared my expertise with anyone.

Then I checked Google Trends whether people were curious about these topics and, turns out, that more people than I could have possibly were asking questions about it!

While I was working on my degree, I noticed that there is a shortage of freelance writers who would specialize in the sex toy and sexual wellness industry, so I signed up on several freelance platforms. Within several weeks I got my first gigs and worked as a ghostwriter for around 4 to 5 years. During this time I worked with big and small brands, blogs, and even erotic fiction writers.

Working in this industry was easy for me because due to my interest in sex toys I already had a lot of experience and first-hand knowledge. However, I never imagined working on a project for myself rather than for someone else.

Yet, one day my girlfriend asked me why I don’t do that and I pretty much had zero answers to why not. Since that conversation happened, I started thinking about having my blog and what it would look like in my mind.

I was doing a lot of research and noticed that there’s a huge lack of information on sex toys as well as sexual wellness in general. I tried searching online for various answers to sex-related questions and ended up finding low-quality or outdated information.

Then I checked Google Trends whether people were curious about these topics and, turns out, that more people than I could have possibly were asking questions about it!

Around three months later the pandemic started and I was spending a lot more time home, so I started creating the blog.

My girlfriend is a web developer, so she created a website within one day and I had a platform to get my voice heard.

Take us through the process of designing and building the site.

It all started from a very simple WordPress blog that was launched within a day with several plugins for SEO optimization.

techysex

This is one of the first posts that I have written.

I knew that my focus will be on sexual education and sex toy reviews. Since I had a lot of experience in the field, it all came very naturally.

Working on something without a financial return for around half a year can get pretty frustrating. Yet, you have to believe in your idea and that it’s going to be worth something.

The initial costs of building the website were around 10 dollars for the domain and a similar amount for web hosting. The biggest investment in running a blog is time because writing and editing take quite a lot of it.

However, you can always choose to find a writer who would write it for you. If you choose this path, it will be a lot less time-consuming, yet a lot more expensive. Good content is never cheap.

Describe the process of launching the business.

There was no specific launch per-se. It was just me and my empty blog with 0-2 visitors per day.

I started focusing on writing and writing a lot to fill the space to make the blog look presentable. I knew that you can’t ignore SEO if you want people to find your writings without paying for ads. So, each of my posts was at least 2000 words.

As I mentioned above, my initial (and only) investment in the website was the domain and hosting costs. Everything else was paid with my time, so for the first year was making very little to no money from it.

Yet, if I could turn the time back, I think I would invest some money to get my content in front of people through ads.

Using ads gives you immediate exposure, however, you can’t point people to an empty blog, very few people will trust your recommendations, no matter how compelling they are. You need to have content to show.

I believe that choosing a super narrow niche would have been the way to go. If you don’t do that, you can end up with a blog full of mostly empty categories (i.e. with just a few posts in each) and that pretty much screams that you’re just starting off or that it’s an ’abandoned’ project.

Another important thing to note with regards to ads (especially if you’re on a budget), be very strict with your ad settings and don’t leave room for Google or Bing to improvise. From my experience, you can waste a significant amount of money on keywords that the search engines think are related, but they have a completely different search intent.

Working on something without a financial return for around half a year can get pretty frustrating. Yet, you have to believe in your idea and that it’s going to be worth something.

techysex

Here you can see the organic traffic for the first 8 months. As you can see, until June there we practically zero visits to the site.

Since launch, what has worked to attract and retain customers?

The best way to attract people to the blog is and continues to be quality content. Most of our readers come from organic search results.

Quality content for me is something written with in-depth insights without making it sound over complicated. If your blog is targeting a mass audience, you need to assume that the reader is just starting to explore the topic and therefore has very little to no knowledge about it. The person likely arrived at your blog to learn. So, never skip the basics, even if that means you need to repeat something more than a couple of times.

Quality content needs to look the part as well. Make sure your pages look right (both on desktop and mobile), and spend some time searching for photos, diagrams, or other visuals that look professional and match the design of your website.

If you’re struggling with this, look for inspiration on other sites. You don’t need to copy them, but pay attention to what they’re doing and how they differ from sites that look “a little off”.

Our second biggest traffic source is visitors who come directly to the website. I enjoy this because it means that people are finding value in what they see on the website.

Just recently I started investing some time into advertising and social media, so it’s still too soon to discuss the results, however, the outlook is promising.

How are you doing today and what does the future look like?

Currently, there are a few more writers occasionally contributing a post or a few for the blog. However, it’s still mostly me. The website is profitable and since the traffic is organic and I’m still the main writer, the main costs are maintenance.

Most traffic comes from the USA, however, the website is expanding to European regions as well.

Most of the income comes from affiliate commissions and sponsored content. We work closely with some of the biggest names in the industry.

Affiliate programs are a great way to make money by recommending products that you like. If there is a product or service that you enjoy using - you can usually make some money from it. Check the manufacturer’s or service provider’s website for a link to their partner or affiliate program.

There are no guarantees that every brand you want to work with will have one, however most already do and it is a great way for them to make extra money, as well as expand their reach.

Once you sign up for the program, you will get your dedicated affiliate link, maybe even a special discount code. When someone buys something after clicking on your link - you’ll get a percentage of that sale. Some programs pay 5%, some pay over 50%, and others offer a fixed price. Make sure to do your research, try new products, and find something you enjoy using and would love to recommend to your readers.

When your website becomes more visible, new brands will notice you and may offer to work together. They may invite you to join their affiliate program and try their products, ask for advertising space, or sponsor a post on your blog. The possibilities are endless. Just make sure your contact info is available in case anyone wants to reach you!

My rule of thumb is to always stay true to myself, don’t lie, and never recommend anything I’m not familiar with or don’t like. In other words, never take the bait, and don’t post something just for some quick money. Staying true and genuine will pay off better in the long term.

My main focus now is finding new ways to increase the income and then focus on expanding the team. I try not to rush the processes and find an optimal way to grow the business with integrity and value to people.

Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?

The main lesson I learned is that working in adult-related niches is hard. Even though the competition is lower than in popular niches, it seems like everyone and everything is working against you.

If you want organic traffic you need two things: SEO-optimized content and backlinks. The first one you can take care of yourself, however, the second one is tricky.

Many websites don’t want to work with you because they’re afraid that something bad will happen if they link to adult websites, no matter if they’re educational or not.

Some website owners hold a lot of prejudice towards adult-oriented content, even if it comes in form of educational content or genuine product recommendations.

Also, Google is super focused on making its environment safe for children, which is understandable. We also mark our content as ‘adult’ voluntarily to make sure our content is not displayed to an underage audience.

The safe search filter causes some collateral damage: not all adults check their search preferences. This means someone who has a safe search enabled by accident will never see you in their search results. This goes even for medical websites that may need to put a picture of a vagina or penis for medical or educational purposes.

What is a bit frustrating is that some big news & entertainment outlets produce similar content and they can get away with much more explicit content (sometimes even bypassing safe search filter). All because they’re large websites with immense traffic and extremely diverse content.

So, if you want to succeed in this niche through organic traffic - you will need a lot of patience and persistence.

What platform/tools do you use for your business?

I use WordPress as my CMS and Yoast for SEO optimizations. Most of my website is custom-made since there are very few quality plugins (a new business opportunity?) that would be versatile enough for my case.

To research new topics and ideas for my blog I use Semrush, Google Trends, and Ahrefs.

What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?

The 4-Hour Work Week by Timothy Ferris is the only book that did inspire me. This book helps you quit your 9 to 5 and tells you where and how to start a business.

There are so many books available that are designed to inspire you. However, this one comes with instructions on how to do it. I recommend it to people who wish to start a dropshipping business, you’ll find everything there, from a list of suppliers to packaging and shipping companies.

Advice for other entrepreneurs who want to get started or are just starting out?

Search for inspirations in other industries than yours. Don’t copy others and stay true to yourself. Don’t search for validation from others. There is never an ideal time to start something. Small steps turn into something big and great if you work on them long enough. It will get tough - don’t give up.

Are you looking to hire for certain positions right now?

We are always looking for talented writers that have experience and passion for the industry and would like to contribute an article or two every week to the website. We offer a competitive salary. If you are interested, simply send an email with examples of your work to [email protected].

Where can we go to learn more?

If you have any questions or comments, drop a comment below!

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Martin Moore, Founder of TechySex
Pat Walls,  Founder of Starter Story
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