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Finding a niche to start your own online business is a tricky proposition. The sad fact is that most people quit affiliate marketing or content blogging because they can’t find a niche to work in or they pick one that is just too competetive.
The affiliate marketing space is littered with websites that failed before they ever really got started. It is sad to see because the freedom offered by your own business can be life changing.
Trying to start a general pet site, for example, is going to be a daunting task for an individual. It would be a tough task for a group of people because there are so many authority sites with thousands of articles on them.
Building a micro-niche site in the pet industry is going to be a little bit easier. Maybe a Box Turtle micro-niche site? Still in the pet niche but something much more workable for a single entrepreneur.
That is the beauty of a niche site is that you can get as specific as you want with your content as long as you can still get some decent traffic with it. And don’t worry about the niche, sub-niche, micro-niche monikers. They are vestiges of a bygone era for the most part.
To be honest, at this point niche and micro-niche are pretty interchangeable. Micro-niche usually refers to the keywords and topics you use to develop your content. Long-tail keywords are essentially considered micro-niches for the most part.
I will use both niche and micro-niche throughout the article but just keep in mind that they are basically the same thing.
The important thing to remember is that the content and keywords will determine the level of traffic and competition that your site will face. Not what niche classification it falls into.
So where do you find the types of keywords and topics that can help you be successful with an online affiliate marketing business? Read on to find some great places to look and get started building your niche site.
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Start Big, Niche Down
The way I like to find micro-niche ideas is to start big. Pick a large niche and then start to break it down into smaller niches until I find some micro-niches that are going to be profitable and generate traffic.
I rarely build a micro-niche site around one single topic, however. Building multiple micro-niches into one website is much more productive and efficient these days.
In the past a micro-niche like best 7-day diet, would be all you need for a successful website. These days I would put all the content around a 7-day diet onto a more general website and build out from there. A category for best 5-day diet or best 3-day diet would expand the niche site.
Keep building and you will eventually get to an place where you have a large website of multiple micro-niches that you can grow as you need to without having to start new websites for each little micro niche.
Finding Specific Topics And Keywords For A Niche Site
Another example of this would be Birdhouses. This would be a great place to start for a micro-niche. It is still going to be a bit big for one person to tackle every aspect of it but it is a good place to start.
The key here is to remember that your content dictates what your website is all about. If you have 10 articles on Birdhouses in general then you are trying to capture a broad niche. That is going to be difficult for a new niche site.
So you make each piece of your content around a micro-niche. For example, a broad niche article would be “10 Best Birdhouses”. It’s broad and competitive and going to be almost impossible for a new site to rank for because it is so buyer intent focused.
So we niche down to Best Birdhouses For Humid Climates. Now we are getting somewhere. By creating modifiers for our primary niche we are breaking it down into micro-niches.
The problem with Best Birdhouses For Humid Climates is that it is not an auto-suggest. Meaning there will most likely be no traffic for this keyword.
The search only adds in the last 2 words. For it to be a valid topic the search needs to complete the entire phrase. You can see a solid auto-suggest in the nest 2 images
Technically you are still in the birdhouse niche. But your content is micro-niche focused. In this example, the micro-niche would be birdhouses for various climates and environments.
Best Wood For Desert Birdhouses, Best Material for Cold-Weather Birdhouses, Best Food For Birdhouses In a Specific Region.
These are all part of the micro-niche “birdhouses for various climates and environments”. But again they are not auto-suggest keywords making this micro-niche look a little iffy.
Let’s look at an actual example using Google Auto-Suggest. The base keyword we are going to be working with is “Best Birdhouse For”. We want to build this out to find those less competitive keywords that will make a micro-niche site successful.
As you can see we have tons of options for our birdhouse niche site. You can go bird specific with suggestions like “Best Birdhouses for Cardinals” or “Best Birdhouses for Texas”.
Next, you can add modifiers onto the end of our base topic to draw out even more keywords. In this example, I add a “W” to the auto-suggest. We get a bunch more options and some interesting new directions to go in.
Now you can apply this “alphabet soup” method to just about any phrase to find topics that would be suitable for a micro-niche site.
The great thing about starting in a specific micro-niche is that you can expand later on. After you get enough content about climate-related birdhouse topics you can move to other birdhouse topics and start a new micro-niche on the same site.
I think this is probably one of the best ways to build a niche site moving forward. In the past a small micro-niche site with a handful of articles could do just fine, but with the way Google works these days I wouldn’t build a niche site with less that 100 articles. That’s a minimum.
So discovering micro-niches from a larger base niche is going to give you plenty of room to grow and get the articles and topics you need to succeed.
There are quite a few ways to find topics that would be considered micro-niches for your website. Whether you are focusing on a single micro-niche or are using multiple concepts to build a larger website, these will help you find the topics and keywords you need to be successful.
Pick A Product As A Micro-Niche
This is a more traditional way of building a micro-niche site. Find A product and build all your content around that product. Typically this is used for digital products.
You can find numerous products across a variety of large niches to build a smaller niche site around. One of the most popular in recent years was a product called Vert Shock, hosted on Clickbank.
Vert Shock is a basketball product, basketball would be the niche. It focused on increasing you vertical leap, that would be the micro-niche if you want to break it down that way.
In reality, it is simply a niche site that focuses on a single product in a smaller part of the basketball niche. So whether you call a niche, a sub-niche or a micro-niche the overall outcome is the same. The content for the product is really all that matter.
So for a niche site build around a single product like Vert Shock you would create content that deals with competing ways to increase your vertical jump and reviews of Vert Shock and similar products. You can also add in any information content you think is relevant.
But that is really the extent of the content that you will be writing. You could ver off into general basketball topics but I am not sure how well they would work woith such a specific product.
This is the limitation of a product specific micro-niche site. The content can dry up pretty quickly and there is not much room for expansion.
But as long as you can maintain traffic and income with a single product niche site you can do very well for yourself and it becomes passive income very quickly.
Some Alternative Places To The Best Micro-Niche Ideas
Google auto-suggest is probably the best way to find the topics and keywords you need for your niche website. But there are plenty of other places around that can give you ideas and probably more information about the topic and the competition.
Answer The Public
Answer The Public is another great option for finding keywords. Essentially it is google autosuggest but it is much more efficient. It lays out most of the variations around specific keywords and allows you to check them out in a visual fashion.
When you search for a topic or niche you get dozens of ideas for topics and questions that need to be answered. In the above example, I search for “Chocolate” and got hundreds of topics and questions in return.
Keyword Research Tools For Finding Niches
There are dozens of keyword research tools out there. I only use 2 of them often so you will have to research others if you choose to go this route. Keep in mind that any traffic volume they give you is wrong, its just an estimate nothing more.
At any rate the two that I use are Keywords Everywhere, a browser plugin for chrome. It gives you a general idea of the traffic, remember its just an estimate but it is useful to see any traffic for some micro-niche topics.
The other is a paid tool called Jaaxy(affiliate link). It also gives you a traffic estimate but it can also track your rankings so you can see how your content is fairing over the long-term.
The free keyword tools should be fine for most affiliate marketers. My advice is to wait until you start making money to check out the paid ones and start investing back into your business.
Using Quora For Niche topics
Quora is a community driven question and answer site that is great for finding questions people are actually asking in a variety of niches.
Quora is often overlooked as a source of ideas for topics. Typically it is used to build backlinks by answering questions and linking out to your niche site.
I don’t think it is effective as it used to be for that but it is still great as a research tool for keywords, questions, and topics.
Finding A (Micro)Niche Of Your Own
Most of the advice people give for starting a niche site is find something you love and write about. It is solid advice and a great place to start.
But if your passion is an industry that is over-saturated and overly competetive then you are going to have a tough time building a successful website in that industry.
Say your passion is for dogs. A general dog site will get swallowed up pretty quickly unless you niche down and find the small micro-niche topics that dog lovers are looking for.
Think of each article on your niche site as a brick. Each one is small but after a while, you start to see the foundations of a solid business. Brick by brick. Article by article. Each micro-niche idea a single brick in the wall.
There is no magic bullet for building a successful niche site. It takes time and energy and knowhow. You can find affiliate training that can help you along the way but ultimately it is up to you to do the work and build the passive income you deserve.
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