One of the first questions that people ask themselves after deciding they want to start a blog is:
What should I blog about?
The topic that you blog about is known in the blogging world as your “niche” and these days the majority of blogs out there have a specific niche that they cover.
Personally, I don’t really think that you need to choose a specific niche anymore although when you’re first getting started it’s a good idea to have a clear direction of what you want to write about and the type of content that you want to create.
To give you an even better idea of what a niche is, here are some examples of the most popular niches online today:
- Personal finance
- Healthy lifestyle
Basically these are just broad topics that a lot of blogs and websites are created around.
Another popular term that I see all over the place is that you should “niche down” when it comes to your own blog.
This means that instead of writing about “travel” you would focus on a more specific aspect of it and write about “luxury travel in Western Europe” or something else super specific.
Deciding what you want to blog about can seem pretty overwhelming at first so I want to share some tips with you on how to choose your blogging niche.
One thing to keep in mind is that most people using the internet are looking for one of two things: entertainment or information.
As long as you start a blog that entertains people or provides them with the information that they’re looking for then you’re already starting off on the right foot – now all you need to do is find out what exactly you want to blog about!
How to Choose a Blogging Niche
What Are Your Passions, Interests, and Hobbies?
The first place you’re going to want to look when you’re trying to come up with a blogging niche is towards your own interests, hobbies, and passions.
You need to ask yourself:
- What am I passionate about?
- What interests me on a regular basis?
- What do I spend my spare time doing?
Hopefully you’ve quickly come up with something that answers all of these questions – if not then you’re going to want to keep reading!
The reason why you want to blog about something that you’re passionate about and spend time doing is because this is going to keep you motivated from the start and you already have a wealth of knowledge that you can draw from for creating content.
After the first few weeks of blogging your motivation might start to wane and you might not feel like writing anymore, especially if you choose a topic that doesn’t interest you.
On the other hand, it’s going to be a lot easier for you to create blog posts on topics that you already know a lot about and that you’re excited to share with people online.
Your audience is also going to be able to tell when you’re not passionate or interested in the content you’re creating – totally unfair to them!
Another great thing when you’re starting a blog about one of your biggest personal interests is that you’re probably already full of ideas, interesting facts, and helpful information that you want to share.
This alone is going to put you ahead of any of your competition that isn’t taking the topic that you’re passionate about seriously and it’s going to make it easier for you to build a loyal audience in the long run.
Here’s a few quick steps that you can take for coming up with a niche about one of your passions, hobbies, or interests:
- Write down a list of everything that you’re very passionate about
- Add your hobbies and specific interests to the list
- Circle any duplicates or anything that appears more than once
- These topics are probably what you’re most interested in
- Follow through with the rest of this post and keep these specific topics in mind to find your ultimate blogging niche
Is Your Potential Niche Profitable?
Although you might have already found a topic that you can blog about you need to check to see if it’s actually profitable and something that you can make money with.
For example, it’s not going to be easy monetizing your blog if you’re writing about poetry or light switches.
It’s going to be a lot easier if there is a large group of people interested in your topic and who also spend time online.
Most niches can be made profitable, some more than others, and if you’re first getting started it’s probably a good idea to go with something a little bit easier.
The first thing you’re going to want to do to check profitability is head over to Google and run a quick search for something like:
- Affiliate programs for [niche]
- Making money with [niche]
If you can see that there are some affiliate programs available or blog posts going over how people are making money with that specific niche then you’re off to a good start.
Results like these can definitely mean that your niche is a profitable one so when you find these results for the keywords you’re looking up make sure to take note of it.
Another great way to see if your niche can be monetized is to browse other blogs covering the same topics and see if they’re monetizing at all.
Look for things like display advertisements, links to relevant products, and promotion of their own products or services.
These are all telltale signs that the niche you’re researching has some opportunity for monetization.
Is There Enough Interest in Your Niche?
The next question you want to find the answer for is whether or not there is enough interest in your chosen niche.
After checking your options for monetization you hopefully narrowed it down to just one or two different niches that you’re interested in going after.
Now you just want to check to see if other people are interested in the niche so that you can actually build an audience with people that are interested in your content.
There are a few different ways to do this.
First, head over to Google Trends and search for some main keywords and phrases related to your niche.
If the historic trends remain the same or are on the rise then this is a good sign.
If the trend is declining then you might want to skip this niche and try some other keywords.
Next you’re going to want to check out KWFinder to see if there is any demand for the niche online.
Using the search function do some searches for a few relevant keywords and search phrases.
Take a look at the results and check the “Search” and “Trend” scores.
These are going to let you know if people are actually searching for these specific terms and phrases in your niche and whether or not it’s seasonal or popular year-round.
One more thing you can do is check out the top 10 websites and blogs that come up in Google when you do a quick search for the main keywords in your niche.
Are these blogs and websites updated regularly? Are people leaving comments? Are they active on social media?
Once you have found a niche with keywords and search phrases that need all of the above criteria then you’ve found a gem that has the opportunity to be profitable and that has a lot of interest online.
Next Steps After Finding a Niche
When you have settled on the specific niche that you want to start a blog about then you can finally get started with blogging and begin creating content.
Head over to my tutorial on starting a blog and then come back to this post once you’re up and running on WordPress.
Once your blog is ready to go the first thing you’re going to want to focus on is creating informative and engaging content.
You might be wondering what to write about or where to get inspiration for blog posts.
For this you’re going to want to use a tool like KWFinder and start off with some general searches for broads keywords in your niche.
Take a look at all the results and make sure to write everything down so that you can continue to refer to your keywords when you’re writing and doing more research.
You’re also going to want to check out the top blogs in your niche to see the kind of content that they’re creating and what’s most popular with their visitors.
You can even visit social media platforms like Pinterest to see the different types of content that’s performing the best and you can use this for inspiration for creating your own content.
It ultimately depends on your niche when it comes to the specific blog posts that you’re going to be putting up online.
For example, if you’re a travel blogger then it’s a good idea to start out with some travel-related posts like:
- Destination guides
- Packing lists
- Travel tips
- Gear reviews
Finding out what information people are looking for online and creating content that answers their questions is your best bet for the long run.
The more research and writing you do the more you’re going to learn about your niche and this is going to help you find more options for monetization while also allowing you develop relationships with other bloggers in your niche.
Should You Blog About Something Really Specific?
Ultimately, it can go both ways in regards to the success of your blog whether you decide to blog about something specific or you focus on a more general area of information.
There are benefits and drawbacks to each style and neither one is better than the other – it just depends on your blogging goals.
There are essentially two different types of blogs:
- Niche blogs that focus on a specific topic
- General blogs that cover a variety of different topics
These days you see a lot of “lifestyle” blogs that focus on things like healthy living, travel, fashion, and makeup rather than just sticking to one specific idea.
Some of the most popular blogs online cover more than just one topic, like Buzzfeed for example, which covers just about everything you could think of.
One of the main benefits of starting a blog like this is that you’ll be able to reach a wider audience and you’ll have a lot more ideas for blog posts and types of content that you can create.
The problem with creating a generalized blog is that it’s harder to build a dedicated and loyal audience and you might also run into issues with monetization especially if you’re hoping to promote your own product or service in the future.
For beginner it can be pretty tricky to get a blog without a specific focus off the ground and that’s one of the main reasons why it’s a good idea to pick a niche when you’re starting out and expand into other topics as you grow.
There are a ton of benefits to having a niche blog and these include:
It’s Easier to Build an Audience
People are always looking for helpful information online regarding their specific needs, questions, and problems.
With a niche blog that covers a specific topic you’re able to focus on providing information in just one area of expertise instead of trying to wear too many hats at once.
Your readers are going to visit your blog, see that all of your content is relevant to their own issues and concerns, and they’re a lot more likely to stick around and interact with you if your entire blog is mostly relevant to them.
If they come and see that you have content on travel, furniture, and working out then they might just read one or two posts and then leave forever.
Focusing on just one specific topic or niche gives you a much better chance at keeping your readers on your site, having them sign up for your email list, and connecting with you on social media.
You Become an Expert
Another benefit to sticking with just one niche is that eventually you’ll become the expert on the topic and people will start coming to you for niche-related information.
The more blog posts and content that you create the more research you’re going to have to do so you’ll become better informed and more knowledgeable about your niche the longer you’re working at it.
This translates into better, more informative and in-depth content for your audience and they’re going to start looking to you as an expert on the topic.
As an expert not only are people going to visit your site looking for the helpful information that you provide but other bloggers and websites are going to start linking to you and networking with you as an expert.
One example of becoming an expert in your niche is Mark over at Mark’s Daily Apple.
Anybody looking into losing weight through the paleo or keto diets is bound to stumble onto his site sooner or later where they’ll discover that he’s a fitness expert and simply dominating his niche.
All of his content is fitness and weight loss related so that you know exactly what to expect when you visit his blog.
Thanks to how helpful, informative, and in-depth his content is Mark has really been able to grow his blog and people from all over the world visit looking for more information on their health.
This is a prime example of how choosing a niche and becoming an expert can really help you with your own blogging journey to success.
More Options for Monetization
One more benefit with choosing a specific niche for blogging is that you have a lot more options for monetizing and making money with your blog.
For most blogs it’s possible to use display advertising, like Adsense, and affiliate marketing, like the Amazon Associates program.
However, these types of monetizing your blog become quite limited after a while.
When you’re blogging about something specific you have the opportunity to create your own product or offer your own service.
The reason why this works with a niche blog is because you’ll have an audience that is already interested in your content and engaging with you and your blog.
This validates your topic and you can create products or offer services that help your audience to better solve their problems.
Products and services that you can offer can be things like e-books, courses, personalized coaching – anything that you can provide that your audience would benefit from.
Of course for this to work you need to focus on building your email list, which is also easier when you’re blogging about something specific.
When it comes to starting a blog it can go both ways – you might be better suited to blogging about something specific or maybe a more general approach is a better idea for you.
For monetization and making money blogging it ends up being how hard you work that determines whether or not you’re going to be successful.
As long as you’re passionate about the content that you’re creating and striving to be as helpful and informative as possible it’s lot easier to achieve your blogging goals.
It’s really not that hard to find a blogging niche and what’s most important is that you actually get started and focus on building your blog for the long-term.
All of the research and time spent looking for a niche does it mean anything at all unless you actually get started.
So take the chance, make some mistakes, and I hope to see you out there in the blogging world!