Making money online is one of the most searched terms in Google. One of the best ways to earn a (passive) income online is by building a niche site.
Welcome to my guide on How to build a profitable niche site for beginners. Here I will share with you as detailed as possible how to get started with building a niche website. It is a huge subject, and my intention is to show you the process and steps involved.
I do hope this guide will encourage and help you to start your own niche site.
If you have any questions or feedback, please leave them in the comment section.
Let’s get started; we have a few things to cover.
What Is A Niche Site?
You probably have heard the word niche (web)site so many times before, but still, you wonder what it is all about. To be quite honest, it has taken me a while to get my head around it. Even though the definition of a niche is quite simple.
A niche describes a group of people that are interested in a specific subject, hobby, passion or product. That could be the passionate golf player, a person who wants to lose weight or hubby who is interested in the newest gadgets or the next amazing barbecue.
When you start as a complete newbie, I would generally recommend writing about something that you have an interest in or feel passionate about.
Why is that? For starters, it takes time to build a niche site. You will need to write a few posts and product reviews to create content. The goal is to provide value to your readers.
When you chose a topic you are interested in; it is more likely to keep going even when the results e.g. traffic and sales take some time to come in. More about it a bit later.
When I am talking about a niche site here in my post, I am solely focusing on building an Amazon Affiliate niche website.
Here are some related posts:
The reason for choosing Amazon is simple. It is the biggest online store worldwide with millions of products you can promote. Amazon is a selling machine, and once the readers of your niche site have clicked on your link to Amazon, the chances are high that they will purchase something which means you’ll get paid a commission.
The beauty with Amazon is, and sets it apart from other affiliate programs is that you get paid for anything your reader may purchase. As an example: your product promotes a blender, right. Your reader clicks on the link but doesn’t buy the blender but something else. You still get the commission for any of the product they have bought.
What You Can Achieve With A Niche Site
Creating a niche website is a fantastic way of earning passive income online. What it means is that you are writing articles and product reviews now and once your site attracts visitors, you will start earning revenue for years to come.
One product review can generate income for many years. You do the work once and get paid over and over again.
You can work from anywhere in the world, be location independent, chose your own hours and since your website is accessible 24/7earn money while you are asleep.
A second important factor is that you are also building an asset. Once your website reaches a certain point of authority in the Rank Engines and a real income maker, you could even sell it for a good price.
Here is a great success story.
What you can earn with a niche site depends on the niche popularity, the product and how well you are ranking on Google. It could be anywhere from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars a month. In general, the older your site gets, the more money you will earn.
Is every niche site a money maker? No, not every niche site will be a success, sometimes we learn from trials and errors. That’s why it is a good reason to build more than one site. And most niche marketers have built more than 5 and more.
I love the process of developing and building a website. It is fun, and when I earn money, it feels like magic to me. So, yes it can be quite addictive. 🙂
I do love the challenge of researching and learning new things as well and providing value to my readers.
How To Choose A Profitable Niche
The most crucial step of building a profitable niche site is to do a thorough research before you decide on your topic.
Here is how I do it. I would start my research on Amazon. I want to find popular products that sell well, have lot’s of reviews and earn a good commission.
By the way, Amazon U.S. recently changed their commission structure. Here is a screen shot.
Looking at the screenshot. Ideally, you want to find a product that gets at least 4.5% or a higher commission.
Now, go to Amazon and go through all the categories and concentrate on the bestsellers. I suggest you write down products you find interesting, have lots of sales, have a reasonable price point (around the $100 mark) and lots of product reviews.
The list will be your starting point to do further research. From here the next step is to do a keyword research to find out, how many monthly searches the products are receiving.
In general, the higher the monthly search volume, the better for a niche. For this step, I recommend using a keyword tool, and for my example, I am going to use KeySearch (read more here).
Step 1) Amazon Bestsellers – I found products in Lawn and Garden for a good price point.
Step 2) Go into KeySearch and check the monthly searches. I am concentrating on buying keywords like ‘best,’ ‘top or ‘reviews.’
Things to look out for (as in the screenshot): ‘best outdoor furniture’ – monthly searches with 2400 is excellent, and there are also lots of related keywords with good monthly searches. BUT: the difficulty score is too high with 52 meaning it will be too hard to rank for this keyword. Therefore, this one is not the right niche.
Next Step: Check all the words on your list according to
- Monthly Searches ( at least around 1000)
- Difficulty score – you want a score at around 30 or less
- Lot’s of related keywords
- Also, check the Search Trends (on the screenshot); is it a seasonal product or a product that is popular all year round.
- SERP results; are there a few other niche sites ranking on Page 1? What is there Domain authority? (refer to screenshot)
This is a screenshot from ‘best outdoor furniture’ on KeySearch. Only one website has a relatively low DA of 34 but all others are over 60 or higher. You want to have competitors with a DA of 40 or lower.
Again, narrow down your product choices until you find one that matches the criteria’s I mentioned before:
High monthly searches
Related keywords (concentrate on buying keywords like ‘best’ etc)
Reasonable competition on Page 1
Your keyword ticks all the boxes? Congratulations, you have found a niche! Moving on…
Deciding On A Domain Name
There are different opinions on whether you should have the keyword in the domain name or not. That is a decision you have to make for yourself.
If you plan on expanding your niche at a later stage, it might be wise to create a brand name so you can keep your options open. If you want to focus on one product or product range, then I would recommend using the keyword in the domain name like outdoorfurniture.com.
If possible use a dot com extension. It is the best in the long run, especially if you want to sell your site a few years later.
Hosting And Building A Website
Now you have found a domain name. The next step is to buy your domain, find a hosting platform and build a website.
To do all these three things under one roof, I highly recommend my favorite hosting and training platform Wealthy Affiliate.
Here, you can register and buy the domain name for $13.99, get hosting for up to 25 websites (and trust me you will build more than one website) including free SSL plus a free keyword tool plus access to 100’s of video classes and more for $30/month if paid annually.
You can also choose from over 2000 free WordPress themes to build your niche site.
So when looking at how much it costs to build a niche site, all you need to invest for a year is $30/month (a lump sum of $359) plus $13.99 for a domain name. I don’t think you can start up a business for such little money anywhere else.
A few words about choosing a theme
Make sure, that the theme you want to use is responsive. It means that the site automatically resizes to any screen which will benefit your Google rankings.
Once you have established your site, you could also look into buying a Premium theme. But to start up, a free theme is perfectly fine.
As mentioned, WA has a free keyword tool, but sometimes it is good to invest and pay a fee for a Keyword tool. A one-month subscription could be enough. You can do a bulk keyword research, and that will keep you going for months to come.
Read more about my favorite keyword research tools here.
Alternatively to Wealthy Affiliate, you can buy a domain with Namecheap or Godaddy. As hosting companies Hostgator and Siteground have a great reputation.
I personally love to have everything under one roof so to speak.
So we have got Hosting, a Domain name and finding a Theme covered, let’s talk about how to structure your site.
How To Structure Your Site
Your site needs the following pages (in the menu)
Also, you will want to add a few categories and social share buttons. Here is a great example of a niche site which ranks on Page 1 in Google. The menu is very simple and user-friendly.
The home page is a fantastic example of how to write a comprehensive guide, well-written and researched along with a few images and infographics.
Such a buying guide will be your make money page, and therefore it is imperative to write a well-researched article that not only helps your readers but also offers them a solution e.g. a link to a product you are going to recommend.
Google loves long posts of over 3000 words. I’ve seen a statistic (can’t find it at the moment 🙁 ) that most articles ranked on Page 1 are over 3000 words long. Long posts not only provide incredible value to your readers but also give you the chance to use lots of keywords.
How the heck can I write such a long article?
That is an excellent question. I am glad you asked. 🙂 The thought of writing such long articles can certainly be terrifying. It involves a lot of research, reading related articles, product reviews, and the likes.
Remember, you want to help your visitor to make an informed decision before they are going to make a purchase.
When someone is looking for best juicer, blender etc. they are ready to buy the product but just need a bit more reassurance. Your niche site’s purpose is to help them making a decision.
Your article could include a comparison chart, general information about how to use the product, benefits, Pros and Cons and some short product reviews.
Don’t worry if it is not 100% perfect because you can update the post later. But it is important to take your time and provide as much information as possible.
That brings me to our next topic.
When you get started with your niche site, you will need to add content on a regular basis. Your buying guide (making money page) is the most important post. Also, you will write more product reviews and informative aka supportive posts.
It is ideal to add at least two new posts each week. By the way, don’t worry to add affiliate links to early because in the first two months or so you won’t see much traffic.
Once you see an increase in visitors to your site, then it is time to add your links to Amazon. The key is to take your time and be patient.
It is also the hardest part to write and add content, and only see a trickle of visits to your site in the first few months. Remember – Be Patient!
Keep in mind; your competitors have been around much longer. A brand new site needs to gain trust with Google first, which makes sense.
When you add content, it is crucial to do proper SEO, for instance creating internal links, external links, optimizing Meta description, etc.
For more details read my post My How To SEO Guide For Beginners.
What Have We Covered So Far?
Let’s recap what we have learned so far. Please keep in mind that it is the way I am approaching building a niche site. There are also other methods and different approaches people are using.
But it has worked for me and other affiliate marketers.
When I started affiliate marketing, I was a complete newbie with no prior knowledge whatsoever. You wonder if it is ever going to work. But the moment you get your first sale feels like magic.
Okay, what have you learned by now?
- How to find a niche product.
- How to do your keyword research.
- Finding a domain name.
- Getting Hosting, Buying a Domain name and a WordPress theme.
- How to structure your site.
- Writing content.
That is a lot to take in. If you want to join me and learn everything step-by-step, I invite you to join Wealthy Affiliate. That is the place where I learned most of the things about niche marketing, email marketing, keyword research and Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Things To Avoid
Building a niche site involves a big learning curve. Looking back at my first posts compare to what and how I write now is amazing to me.
There is always room for improvement, and I go back to older posts now and again, update and make them better.
Once you know the process, it becomes second nature and far easier. That applies to everything in life. We had to learn to walk, talk, ride the bicycle, etc. You get my point.
Nobody is perfect, and we are of course not born amazing internet marketers. We only have to start and take the first step. Keep moving forward, and you will succeed.
Okay, so what should you avoid?
- Try not to be perfect. You can always rewrite posts and product reviews.
- Never stop learning.
- Always keep your visitor in mind. You are writing for them.
- Never give up.
- Don’t pick a broad niche. Narrow it down as much as possible.
- Never forget to add a call to action (CTA) at the end of your post. Always add a CTA to your content e.g. try this product; click here for more information; sign up for my newsletter and so on.
Starting A Niche Case Study
I am in the process of building a new niche site and would like to share the steps and process in the next few months with you.
For obvious reasons, I won’t be sharing the niche topic but will report on how many posts, reviews I am publishing. I will also report what plugins, what theme, etc. I am going to use.
I also want to get into more detail on how to write a product review, how to add images and more.
I am planning to start my next site at the beginning of June, so the site has time to mature until the Christmas season starts.
It is always exciting to start a new project. I love the challenge and am looking forward to learning about a new topic. Can’t wait to get started!
***update October 2018: Here are the links to my niche case study
Please let me know if you have any questions, feedback or need more information. Just leave a comment in the box below.
I do hope you found the information valuable. Please share this post with your friends on your favorite social media platform.
To your success!
Please note: this post contains affiliate links.