Now, if you’re anything like me you may be stuck in total paralysis mode right now and just wondering how to choose a niche for your blog that’s actually a good topic.
With everyone starting up a blog these days, you might want to consider doing a bit of research into your niche before you get started. I will walk you through the exact steps you should take!
My 6 step process on how to choose a niche for your blog
Step 1: Make a list of your hobbies and things that interest you
If you have a passion or hobby and you’re really knowledgable about something, that is going to help you out here. Like, say you are an expert at fixing up junk cars. Or maybe you love tent camping. Or you’re really into birding, or beekeeping, or vegan cooking. Maybe you’re an expert at raising backyard chickens! You could totally start a blog about any one of these topics.
It’s going to be much easier to create an entire blog around a topic YOU ACTUALLY LIKE, rather than trying to go for a niche just because you think it’s popular or profitable.
If you’re like me, you may be stuck in total paralysis mode right now. To be honest, it took me a solid 6 months to figure out my first niche. I was so unsure of what I wanted to do, I let it completely deter me from doing anything at all.
First I want to say that I totally get it. But I really don’t suggest you do that.
So just do me a favor. Even if you’re still stuck at this point because you can’t think of something right now, just pick a topic or two to repeat the steps I follow here in this guide, even if it’s not something that’ll necessarily be your final niche.
I really think going through these steps will open your mind up to more ideas you might not have considered.
Step 2: Think of who you’re trying to target
So once you have a general idea, think of who your audience will be. The biggest thing here is to remember you are writing your blog for other people.
Say you like tent camping, who do you want to target? Maybe beginner tent campers who are looking at getting into it and need help with what supplies to get, camping tips, places to camp, etc. That’s your audience!
What about beekeeping? You could target people who know nothing about beekeeping and are looking for help. Or people who are looking to profit from beekeeping.
Step 3: Use Google autocomplete
Now we’re going to see if our niche has enough volume to justify going after.
So let’s pick beekeeping as an example here. We’re going to go to Google.com and play with their autocomplete feature.
Everyone is probably familiar with this by now – you type in a search term and it will automatically fill in terms people are actually searching for to try and help you.
So, let’s take the beekeeping for beginners example. Go to Google and type “beekeeping for beginners” – you’ll notice this popped up before I was even finished typing it. That means that there are people really searching for this topic.
Judging from the fact it autocompleted so fast, plus the related auto-completes that are coming up around the same topic, it looks like a lot of people are searching for information on beekeeping for beginners. Let’s keep our original idea “beekeeping for beginners” and go with it.
You could also focus more specifically on “beekeeping for profit” if you wanted.
If you have a topic but can’t figure out anything more specific to drill down, just type in the general term. Let’s do this with just “beekeeping” so you can see what I mean.
Now you’ll see general terms people are searching for within the beekeeping niche. Notice “beekeeping for dummies” pops up, which would fit within the beginner’s category as well.
This can also help give some more ideas as to what your blog could focus on or give you ideas for sub-categories.
Using Google autocomplete is also a great way to find highly targeted, low competition keywords that you can write lots of articles around to bring in traffic to your blog through search engines. This specific method is a great way to do that.
Step 4: Check the trend
A tool I find quite useful is called “Google Trends” and it’s entirely free.
Here I typed “beekeeping for beginners” to see the long term search trend since 2004.
You see here that it lost a lot of popularity for a while, but the trend shows that it’s coming back.
I can tell you this is absolutely true because I know a lot of people that keep bees in their backyard, and more that are interested in doing it. (And I don’t even know that many people!)
If Google data doesn’t have enough data to show a trend, your niche topic might not have enough search volume to justify an entire blog about. In this case, you might just want to go a little bit broader or pick something else.
Here we see it has enough data to register a graph, and the graph is trending up, so both good signs.
Step 5: Get some more specific data
So now we have the niche “beekeeping for beginners” let’s look at some more specific data. I’m going to use a tool called Jaaxy, if you sign up free here you can get 30 free searches and use it for your own topics.
This shows monthly searches for “beekeeping for beginners” as just under 3,000, plus a yellow light QSR of 204. The traffic data is just an estimate, which is an important thing to note. It could be MUCH higher than this, or lower. But in this case, considering it’s trending up I’m going to say it’s probably currently higher than the estimate.
The yellow light QSR data just means that ranking the exact term, “beekeeping for beginners” on the first page of Google would probably be a bit difficult, especially for a new blog. Ideally, you want this light to be green. If it’s red, it tells you the competition is fierce.
However, you’re not necessarily trying to rank on the first page of Google for that exact term. I mean, obviously that would be ideal and you could do so with a lot of effort. However, there are hundreds and thousands of other keywords you can use to bring traffic to your website.
In this case, this data tells me that beekeeping for beginners is a popular hobby that gets searched, and is worth writing a blog about.
Another point to make is to notice all the green lights around related search terms within the niche. This is definitely a good sign that there are lots of lower competition, related keywords you can blog about to get traffic.
Note: I think Jaaxy is a great tool for finding low competition niches and getting ideas, but I tend to pay less attention to the traffic data on lower competition, long-tail keywords. In my experience, it severely underestimates the search data on these types of keywords. You could be missing out on tons of opportunities to bring traffic to your site if you let the search numbers make your decision.
Step 6: Think about how you’ll be able to monetize your blog
So now you have a niche and you know the numbers justify creating a blog, but there’s one more thing you’re going to want to consider before you get started and that’s monetization.
I’m not saying that your first priority should be money, it definitely should be getting traffic. However, you’re going to need to make sure you have a plan for how you’ll make money from your blog if that’s your goal.
The two monetization methods you might want to consider when you’re just started out are ads and affiliate products.
Of course, there are many other ways you can make money from your blog, these are the ones you might want to focus on initially.
I’ve heard stories about people who spent so much time and effort into creating a website, only to find out it wasn’t really that profitable. Maybe they make some money from ads, but overall it’s just not a niche in which money is really spent. This happens a lot if you try and enter a niche that is mostly purely informational and doesn’t have products or services.
For beekeeping, there are tons of physical products you can promote. Even Amazon has beekeeping books and supplies, but there are also smaller beekeeping companies you could check out affiliate programs for.
There are also digital courses you can take on the web, or ebooks about getting started.
For whatever niche you work with, just give some thought into if it’s a niche that people are spending money in or not.
If your niche isn’t right, don’t give up!
So many people who are successful online didn’t pick “the right” niche to start. I’ve had multiple failed niche attempts myself because I didn’t bother to follow any type of research process before I started.
I made a lot of mistakes, but I’m hoping this guide will help you choose your niche a little more carefully to give you a much better chance of success.
But even still, if you end up not liking your niche down the line, the good thing is a blog is a relatively inexpensive investment.
If you follow this process, it will help ensure you have picked a niche for your blog that actually gets traffic and can make money.
If you’re looking for some more training on getting started with your blog, check this free starter training here.
If you’ve followed along and still unsure what a good niche would be, drop a comment down below! Give me some ideas to work with and let me help you out. 🙂