The Riches are in the Niches – Unknown
Probably the first major step in beginning an affiliate website is choosing a niche, that is, a very particular section of a larger market.
For example, consider the three main niches, the grandaddy’s of them all; Health, Wealth, and Relationships. EVERY niche in the world falls into one of these three categories. Within each, there are hundreds, thousands, or even hundred-of-thousands of individual niches, and sub-niches.
We can drill that down to emotional health and physical health. We can drill physical health down further to skin health, heart health, feet health, etc. Within skin health, we can find niches around eczema or acne, two common skin problems.
Saving, Investing > Stock Market, Trading > Stock, Stock Options > Covered Calls, Iron Condors…
Family Relationships, Marriage, Friends, Business Relationships > Parent Relationships > Maternal Relationships…
There are seemingly endless amounts of niches and sub-niches. How do we choose? How did I, choose?
Brainstorming Niche Ideas
I began researching niches by following some advice I heard on Pat Flynn’s SPI podcast. Episode 003 with Glen Allsop of ViperChill.com. In what he called The Process that Makes Me Thousands of Dollars Per Month, Glenn describes how he writes down his Passions, Fears, and Problems and how the niche you choose should reflect one of these. (HINT: he says the most profitable are in the Fear and Problems categories).
So I went and wrote out my Fears, Passions, and Problems in a note on my computer. After exhausting my three lists, I started to narrow them down by removing all the ones I felt like I either had nothing to say about, or that I felt I couldn’t write about. I ended up with just a handful of ideas but only one did I feel like I could bring a level of expertise too. It’s a sub-niche of the Health grandaddy-niche.
I did NOT just take this idea and run with it though. It’s great that I found a topic I felt I could actually contribute value information to, but I needed to check the analytics to see if anyone is actually searching out information on my niche.
Using Google’s Keyword Planner
I took my broad niche idea and went to Google’s Keyword Planner to validate the idea. Based on pretty much every video about niche research out there on the internet, I did the following: I inputed the general niche I had in mind and used the Related Keywords view to find related terms that:
- Had a decent search volume
- Had a decent PPC (Pay Per Click)
- Had under 1 million results
The first point is obvious. If there wasn’t any traffic volume, then I was choosing a keyword or phrase that’s dead in the water before I even begin building the site, then I was going to waste my time trying to get traffic when no one is looking for it.
The second point is one that I kind of sussed out. I believe it has the potential for a couple things. The first is it shows how much people are paying for ads attached to that keyword or phrase, and the second is validates that the keyword can be a profitable one for you, the Internet Marketer. So if I decide down the road that this website is going to be monetized with Adsense, it makes more sense to be competing for keywords that have higher PPCs.
The last point is one I’ve seen several times from several people over the years. In particular, I got this from Jay at Lazy Ass Stoner. It makes sense in a way as it’s easier to standout in a niche that is less-crowded and easy to rank in one as well…though where this “under 1 million results” idea falls short is that A. most of those results have nothing really to do with what you are going after but just happen to have whatever combo of words on their website in random order, or scattered throughout in a way that isn’t actually relevant, and B. You’re really only competing with the guys on the first or second page (if there is a lot of good competition).
So I went through these three criteria and settled on my main key phrase. I also exported a list of related terms with their search volumes so that in the future I had a list of every key phrase I wanted to write an article about. From what I’ve read, this is a fantastic way to boost your SEO. Keep in mind your main keyword is only going to bring in so much traffic, but optimizing for lots of related terms can bring in tons more on top of it.
Niche Reveal (…sort of)
So I’m not actually going to list the EXACT keywords or phrases I ended up choosing, but I will say that my niche site is within the Health grandaddy niche, AND is within the Rowing sub-niche of that.
I was a rower in college, all four years even…and had great level of success. It’s something I know a lot about and felt like I could really write too. I wrote it down as a “Passion” in my list..which you will soon see was put to the test and failed…