Creating a niche site isn’t anything new. Thousands of people have done it and you’ve probably been to more than a dozen that were created purely for earning affiliate commissions on products without even knowing it.
Here’s the kicker, you don’t need to be an expert in a specific field to write about it.
Heck, you could spend a few hours learning something you know nothing about and probably write something good enough for others to read. However, let’s start with something you know about. Let’s say college for example.
You’re going to create a blog about college lifestyle. In the long run you’ll update it once or twice weekly and keep active social profiles around the website. You’ll write about everything from choosing the right college, to managing your time, to having a social life, and everything in between.
At first, we’re not even going to focus on making money, so completely forget about that for now. In fact, to have a successful website in the long run, your site should be focused on providing your readers with GREAT CONTENT.
Let me repeat that… your site should be focused on providing your readers with GREAT CONTENT.
Allow that to sink in for a moment.
If you start putting profits ahead of people, your site will fail. You must focus on the people that make your site possible if you want to create lasting relationships that will pay their dividends later on.
You set your site up through WordPress, you create a basic logo or hire someone to do it and you start writing content.
How do you create GREAT CONTENT?
I can’t emphasize this enough. You content has to be so incredibly great that it’s impossible for people to not want to come back to your site. It has to be so great that other people will want to refer to it because they don’t think they can write anything better. But how do you do that?
First, it’s a learning process. Your first 10-15 posts are probably going to be mediocre at best and THAT’S OKAY! In the beginning you want to be writing as much as possible and publishing it so you can find your style and get a feel for how to create content. As you begin to find your style, then you can start to fine tune and tweak your writing so it gets better.
I’m going to write a whole separate piece, which I will link here, on how to create great content and some guidelines you should follow.Just remember to always focus on the user experience. How can you make it easier for them to read and navigate? How can you make your writing more transparent and avoid confusion? What tips and tricks might prove helpful?
Something readers of a college lifestyle blog probably will be interested in is “Tips for Avoiding the Dreaded Hangover.” The title speaks for itself, but how can you make it better for the reader, rather than just listing 6 sentences with a lame stock image?
Here’s a couple ideas right off the top of my head.
Include a timeline for consuming certain foods or drinks that will slow down the absorption of alcohol. Let’s say your reader plans on being out until 12:00AM, but still wants to get their buzz going. Something along the lines of the timeline below might help them to reduce their hangover.
7:00PM – Dinner
9:00PM – First drink at the pregame
10:15PM – Hitting the bars
10:15PM to 11:20PM – Drinks at the bar
11:30PM – Last alcoholic drink
11:30PM to 12:00AM – Waters if still at the bar
12:10AM – EAT SOMETHING, preferably eggs (Late night Denny’s / IHOP trip!)
12:10AM to falling asleep – Water, Water, Water!
Whenever you decide to wake up – juice, fresh fruit, healthy food!
This seems pretty basic and obvious to you now but imagine the time you first started drinking. Wouldn’t it have been nice to know some of this extra information like scrambled eggs before going to bed helps breakdown the toxin that causes that massive headache in the morning?
Wait, you didn’t know that?
Yeah fun fact thrown in here that could be used as a point in the blog post! Eggs contains cysteine, an amino acid that helps to breakdown acetaldehyde (the chemical that causes some of the effects of your hangover) in the liver. This is one of the best prevention methods I know of, you just have to remember to eat eggs before falling sleep. Usually a trip to IHOP, Denny’s, Waffle House, etc. is enough to motivate me to remember.
Getting back on track now… You want to engage your reader with your content. This timeline is much more engaging than just a single sentence saying to eat breakfast foods before going to bed.
Another idea is you might include shopping list of frozen foods readers can make that will help to prevent a nasty hangover.
Or maybe you want to show people how they can schedule and pay for a pizza ahead of time. Give a list of businesses that deliver so when they come stumbling back at 12:30AM the pizza guy is outside waiting with a hot and ready pie that’s already been paid for.
The ideas are endless. You just need to have a little creativity. Again, I’ll get into some more ideas in a later article to help get your creative juices flowing. For now, just start writing and publish it, even if you think it sounds bad, it’s probably not as bad as you think. Remember you can always go back and edit them later.
This is where you start to make your money. You’re at the point now where you have established 12-20 posts on your site and you’ve gotten the hang of writing. It may be tempting to just start throwing affiliate links in the articles but wait…
You need to build an audience.
It doesn’t have to be massive, but it will help in the long run if you build a small audience before adding in affiliate links.
This starts with the distribution of your content, so people will begin reading what you’ve written. Today, there are literally dozens of ways to distribute your content and scale it quickly. Social media is your best friend.
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, Linkedin, Snapchat (sort of), Holonis, Vero, Reddit, Niche Forums, Quora, Yahoo Answers, etc. are sites you want to consider in your distribution strategy.
You probably have a few hundred friends on Facebook and Instagram, which is more than enough to get started. The more engaged followers you have the better and there are some methods I have for increasing your follower account that I will outline in another article soon.
As you build traffic to your site, start to sprinkle in affiliate links where it’s natural on older and new articles. You will probably start seeing clicks through these links in your Amazon dashboard. If you don’t, go through your Google Analytics to see which posts are receiving the most traffic and add links accordingly.
Over time, you’ll find you are constantly repeating steps 2 and 3. You want to create great content, then distribute, create great content, distribute, create great content, distribute. It’s a never-ending process, but you will see results, it just takes time.
You should always have this notion in your head that you are there to serve your readers what they are looking for. You want to answer their questions in return for nothing. If you keep this idea in mind and always prioritize your users you’ll see more success than those who place profits and clicks first.