If you’ve decided you want to start your own blog, congratulations! Blogging is a great side hustle, as it allows you to be your own boss and make money from home.
Now the next question, how to pick a niche for your new blog?
The first question most people ask themselves when they’re deciding whether to start a blog is: what is my blog going to be about? Choosing the topic of blog is the most important step in the blogging process. You should not take this step lightly.
When you choose a topic (or a niche) for your blog, you are essentially deciding what type of business you want to run. This isn’t something you can just change your mind later about. That would be the equivalent of converting a restaurant into a clothing store.
Picking a niche isn’t easy.
You need to pick a niche you are passionate about, something you’re knowledgeable about and something that is profitable.
If this is a bit overwhelming for you, don’t worry. I’m going to share with you some tips on how to pick a niche for your blog.
Find Your Passion
Regardless of what anyone says, blogging is hard. It’s not the act of creating a blog that’s difficult. It’s finding something new to write about while not losing the motivation to keep going.
Let me tell you a personal story.
I’ve been blogging for over 10 years and run a network of finance blogs. Unfortunately it really isn’t my passion. It’s just a topic I am knowledgable about. I know all about budgeting, credit card rewards, strategies to pay off debt and retirement.
It has always been easy for me to come up with new things to write about. The personal finance niche is huge, so there’s never a shortage of good topics I can cover.
Here’s the thing, it is so mind-numbingly boring. I have suffered blog burnout countless times throughout the years. Finally in the middle of 2018 it just hit me one day: I need to find my passion.
I took a few days off and found something that fulfills me. Here’s what I found:
Helping people make money online is my real passion.
So I started this blog and haven’t looked back since!
What Is Your Expertise?
I know you probably don’t consider yourself an expert on any particular subject. Frankly, nobody is really an expert at anything. Charles Barkley famously says on Inside The NBA that “God is the only expert” when asked for his expert opinion on something basketball related.
Nevertheless, there are topics that you know a lot about. Each of us has those topics that when they come up at a party, you go on and on about it.
Personally I love astronomy, dinosaurs and evolution. I don’t consider myself an expert, but I read all the latest news on those topics because they interest me.
What about you? What do you know a lot about? What do you want to learn more about?
Don’t worry if you don’t consider yourself an expert on something. You can fake it ’til you make it. There’s nothing wrong with learning more as you go along.
In fact, picking a niche that you want to learn more about is a great way of finding the perfect niche for your blog.
Even though I’ve been making money online since 1999 and have been blogging since 2006, I still learn new things every single day.
I’m no expert, but I know enough to help get your blog up and running and generating revenue.
What do others consider you an expert on?
Think Of Your Potential Audience
When deciding how to pick a niche, consider who you are going to be writing for. Blogs are personal and meant to be written in an active voice. It’s as if you are speaking directly to the reader.
Who do you want to talk to? Who do you want to help?
Something that has helped me become a better blogger is I have chosen an imaginary person that I write to in all of my blog posts. This imaginary person is someone who wants to make money blogging. They want to start and grow their blog. I totally can relate to this person because this was once me.
I can never tire of talking to this person because I know their dreams and I know their challenges and I genuinely care about them.
Who is your potential audience? Are they male or female? Are they rich or poor? Are they healthy or not? What is their occupation?
Answer these questions and you’ve now created the person who you will write to on your blog. You need to feel love, compassion and a strong desire to help this person.
Let’s say I have a passion for cross training, but I don’t have a strong desire to help others get fit. This would not be a niche worth exploring for you.
Find Your Voice
You will not get anywhere writing a general blog about food, finance, travel, business, career or relationships. There are major corporations who already own that space.
What you need is to find an angle to get readers to follow your blog. You do this not by creating content full of facts and data. You do this by creating a blog with a personal feel to it.
I suggest developing a persona when you write your articles. We call this “finding our voice”.
Now you don’t want to have a voice that’s so far removed from who you truly are. That would be too difficult to maintain over the years. Instead, accentuate your own personality in your content.
In my writing here on EdwinDollars.com, I don’t mince words. I may even throw out a fuck every now and then. If something sucks, I’ll tell you why it’s bullshit. If something is cool, I’ll tell you why it rocks my socks.
Keep your potential persona in mind when determining how to pick a niche.
Pick A Niche That’s Not Too Big, Not Too Small
Think about the blogs that you currently follow. Notice a similarity between them? No, not the niche necessarily. What they have in common is that they concentrate on one specific topic.
Don’t be all over the place. You need to pick a niche, then find an angle to make this topic more focused. The more focused you go, the more loyal your readers will be.
Dive deeper into each subject to find your perfect niche. For example:
- Health blog > Nope, try Weight Loss > Go deeper, do Nutrition instead.
- Cooking blog > Nope, try Recipes > Go deeper, do Vegetarian Recipes instead.
- Finance blog > Nope, try Saving Money > Go deeper, do Frugality/Couponing instead.
- Fitness blog > Nope, try High Intensity Interval Training > Go deeper, do HIIT For Women instead.
- Relationship blog > Nope, try Dating Advice > Go deeper, do Millennial Dating Guide instead.
What I’ve essentially done here is I’ve narrowed the potential audience down a bit, but I’ve set myself apart from the other bloggers in this space.
Now don’t go overboard and choose something too specific. If you do, you will be shrinking your potential audience size too small.
One good way to know if you picked a good niche is to see how many categories your blog can have. If you can branch off into 5 sub-topics that’s great. If you can find 10+ sub-topics, it’s too broad. If you can’t find a sub-topic it’s just too narrow of a niche.
Some good examples of bloggers who found great sub-niches are:
- DINKs Finance (dual income no kids finance)
- Redefining Mom (helping moms build a business)
- Avocadu (helping women lose weight)
- Edwin Dollars (make money online through blogging for beginners) <– hey that’s me!
Can You Monetize Your Niche?
Let’s be honest. The reason you want to start a blog isn’t to share your thoughts. It’s to make money. Before you register a domain name and start blogging, stop and think about whether you can make money with the niche you’ve chosen.
Now you can go do all the research you want about how to monetize a blog in [your niche]. But there’s a way easier way of figuring out if a niche is profitable and how to monetize your niche.
Here’s how to pick a niche you can monetize.
Do a Google search for blogs in your niche. The first page of results will be the authority bloggers in your niche. See how the top bloggers in your chosen niche monetize their blogs. You will want to look at the following:
- Do they sell courses, printables or offer consultations? (sell your own products)
- Do they rely on affiliate sales? (get paid per sale)
- Do they write reviews and feature products? (work with brands)
- Or do they just rely on banner ads? (get paid per view)
If you notice they do more than one of the methods listed above, you’ve chosen a profitable niche.
Bonus: 20 Profitable Niche Ideas
Still having trouble finding a niche? Below are 20 niches that are profitable. Can you blog about any of these topics?
- Career Advice
- Financial Independence Retire Early (FIRE)
- Poker Tips
- Student Loan Debt
- Side Hustles
- Personal Finance
- Living Abroad
- Real Estate
- Self Improvement
In conclusion, if you’re stuck on how to pick a niche for your blog, keep these 3 main points in mind.
- Find your passion
- Identify your expertise
- Has potential for making money
Finally, look at other successful bloggers for ideas on choosing a niche.
If you see they are successful with their blog, it’s a great sign that that niche can also work for you.
If you’ve found this post helpful in finding a profitable niche for your new blog, please save this post on Pinterest!