The key to success with online blogging for income, is to find a niche in the market. This is one of the most important steps and something that can either propel you forward towards success or have you do months of hard work in vain.
But, where do you find a niche that has not been covered already? There are two things to consider when choosing a niche for your blog:
- The competition.
- The content possibilities.
Competitor analysis is where many people fall short. You could come up with what you think is the best niche and rush off to register your domain, only to find out that there are already millions of people blogging about it.
And, more worse, some major players who have been in the game for decades.
So, you need to find a niche that has either not been taken over by big players or find an angle to target that they have not already. This is essentially what a niche site is.
For example, you wouldn't go and create an Apple niche site, there are already many people blogging and reviewing Apple products, and you would be up against some major competition.
But, think outside of the box and find a niche such as refurbished iPhones or find an angle such as how to go about selling your old iPhone before buying a new one, and you could be on the road to success!
Another way of getting your foot into a competitive niche such as tech (or any other niche for that matter) is to find longtail keywords and questions people are asking and writing content around those instead.
Using Apple as the example again;
You could find an angle to target the “Apple” niche by finding a keyword and creating something like:
– Ways to use your iPad more efficiently.
Of course, I would just recommend you don't target such a huge brand or pigeonhole yourself in this way. It just makes much more sense to dig deeper and find something other people in the affiliate marketing space probably haven't even considered.
This way, your competition is either nobody or a hobby blogger who knows very little about SEO and monetizing a blog!
This is where competitive analysis comes into things. Once you have found your niche, you want to scope out the competition.
The first step is to find out who your direct competition will be, but remember that you are not trying to compete with them, instead find an angle within the niche that they have not yet taken up!
You can do this easily while you are doing your keyword research. As you will be targeting longtail, low competition keywords, to begin with, you will notice that even if you have quite a few competitors in your niche, they probably have not touched on these lower competition keywords – and this is your key to get in!
You can also use sites like MOZ, which has a free Google Chrome extension, to check the Domain Authority (DA) of a website. If you notice that there are websites with a very high DA directly targetting the keywords you find, it is probably best not to write an article on that keyword.
The Content Possibilities
Before you even begin writing content you want to make sure that the niche you choose will allow you to write a good amount of content. By that, I mean, can you find at least 100 good quality keywords to write blog posts on? Does this niche have a selection of products that you can upsell to your readers?
If you find that the niche does not offer this, then it is probably best to move on to something else because you will need to be able to produce a lot of content to fill out your niche and make your site look attractive to Google!
A good rule of thumb is if you find a niche in the market that has hundreds of good quality longtail keywords and also has a bunch of products on Amazon that you can review and promote, you are good to go!
Using Keyword Tools To Find A Niche In The Market
Some people will tell you that you do not need keyword tools and that there are other methods of finding keywords, and while I tend to agree somewhat, I wouldn't have had the successes I have had so far without using any tools whatsoever.
I will say this, though. You do not need to spend $100 per month on a keyword tool, and using a combination of cheap and free methods will get you some good results to kickstart you.
- Google Keyword Planner & Google Trends (for finding a niche in the market and finding keywords)
- Google Autosuggest (by far the best free method of finding keywords)
- Keywords Everywhere (cheap, cheerful, and something I cannot live without)
- Keyword Shitter (free and amazing, I just hope it stays free forever)
- The KGR method by Doug Cunnington
- Answer The Public (2 free searches a day (more if you have a VPN…shhh))
- People Also Ask by Outranking.io (Same as above)
I use a combination of these tools on a daily basis to find and check keywords and also to determine if a keyword or niche is worth writing about or pursuing. This is pretty much all I use and have not yet paid a huge subscription fee some of these other keyword tools come with.
Keyword research is something that takes getting the hang of, but once you do find a niche in the market, you will start to find some keywords that lead you to more keywords, and then, before you know it you have a Google Sheets document full of thousands of keywords! Overwhelming but truly a great problem to have!
How To Find A Profitable Niche
With all that being said, where do you start looking, and how do you find a profitable niche?
Well, get your pen and notebook or, or open up your notes app and start brainstorming! Think about your hobbies first and foremost. What sports do you like, what do you do for fun? Do you find yourself buying products related to your hobby on Amazon? If so, I would start there.
For example – if you love Yoga and find that you always buy new mats for home practice or visit the studio more than once a week, perhaps finding a niche within Yoga would be a good idea.
Keep in mind though, fitness and weight loss and those sorts of things are incredibly oversaturated, so when I say dig deep, I mean dig deep!
Browse Instagram; what are people doing? What are they using? What problems do people have that might go to Google to ask about. What have you asked Google about recently?
You really need to think about how you use the internet and find inspiration from that.
Another tip is to use Reddit. Chances are, if there is a subreddit on a particular thing, then it is a niche that has potential! And this does not need to be a site that has Amazon products. Although I do prefer to be able to create a mixture of informational content and affiliate content, if the niche has enough informational keywords, then that can work, too!