Recently, I have decided to start a niche site from scratch and document my progress along with updates on the entire journey. It will definitely be a slow process as I am not working on this on a full-time basis, but more of a side project. I have started and decided on the niche I would want to work on which I will reveal at the end of this post.
If you have been browsing the net, you would have realized that there have been A LOT of niche sites out there. But regardless of the competition, this has always been something I would want to try on. In a way, I would feel accomplished at the end of the day.
With the huge level of competition already out there, my strategy might be a little different. As ranking a certain keyword will be a lot harder now, I will not be putting so much emphasis on trying to rank on Google. Not only the SEO competition but because there is a huge learning curve for me.
Hence, my strategy is to do keyword research on a topic which I am passionate about and most importantly a keyword with a pretty decent search volume.
My Niche Idea Phase
My first struggle is finding a niche. There are many ways to do it yet I still find it the toughest process. Pat Flynn list down his 7 passions, 7 problems and 7 fears to help in the idea search. But for me, my approach is literally just to list down everything on my mind. It took me more than 3 days to figure out a niche I would want to work on.
Literally listing everything that that comes to my mind on an excel sheet. This is a pretty messy process.
- Areas I am facing problems and havings difficulties at. You can see ideas such as weak knees, back pain, fear of spiders and etc.
- Things I love to do. Those are things like my milk tea, avocado, oatmeal, burpees, jump rope and etc.
- Things I want to work on and improve. You will see things like photoshop, pull-ups, learn Chinese and etc.
- Other random thoughts I had. From the bed bugs experience I had when I travel, mindfulness and etc.
Whenever I had an idea, I will just throw it in. From the idea, I will further screen out those keywords which I think is too broad, overly saturated, something nobody will search, and keyword I am not passionate about. This screening is pretty general as I do not use any tools to verify it.
From that total idea listing, I screen out the remaining with 8 left.
Keyword Research Tools
I have not done keyword research before but I have a heard of tools such as Google Adwords Keyword Planner (Free) and Market Samurai (Paid). Google Adwords was the first tool I use in performing my keyword research because it’s free. But Market Samurai do offer a 7-day free trial so I downloaded it and utilize the free 7-day trial.
Using Google Adwords Keyword Planner allow you to see an estimated monthly search for each keyword, bidding competition and other suggested keyword ideas. Which helps in searching for long tail keyword ideas and also to understand the search volume of the word.
I do not know if this tool is effective as the competition specify how much people are bidding to advertise the keyword. It doesn’t show you the SEO competition of the keyword you are trying to work on which brings me to Market Samurai which. Market Samurai has lots of features that help you understand the keyword better.
If you can see from the screenshot below, you will see the top 10 google page for that particular keyword you are trying to work on. It will show you the level of SEO competition based on the domain age, index count, backlinks and etc. Basically more red and yellow means there is a huge competition.
The second image is the screenshot of the search for milk tea which shows you the list of other keyword related to milk tea. In this case, you can see that bubble tea has better search volume compare to milk tea. So if I were to choose this niche, I would work on bubble tea.
What Niche Am I going into?
I was initially planning to work in the milk tea niche. But from my research, I realize that most searches are the specific shop like KOI Bubble Tea, Chatime Bubble Tea, Gongcha bubble tea and etc. If I were to work on this niche, it would make my site irrelevant as the searches are the specific shop.
My niche search continues and I realize that most of the niche I want to venture into has a high level of SEO competition. This would make it a challenge to rank based on how I interpret things. Things like fitness related niche are dominated by sites such as bodybuilding.com, men fitness and etc. Medicinal related niche is dominated by sites such as WebMD.
I have come down to ‘Burpees’ which is more targeted compare to a general fitness niche such as home workout. The reason why I chose burpees is that I love burpees workout. Most of my daily workout revolves around Burpees. I just love how quick and how it works on your entire body at the same instance.
Burpees itself is a pretty broad term. Hence, after further research, I have decided on the keyword ‘burpees exercise’.
Here are the problems with this selected niche:
- The monthly search volume is not exactly a lot but pretty decent.
- It is in the fitness industry. The SEO competition is pretty high competing with sites like Menshealth, Bodybuilding.com, and etc.
- I have no clue about how I plan to monetize it yet.
Despite that problems, I am tired of proceeding with more keyword research as most of the niches are pretty competitive. Hence, I decided to choose something I am interested in and see how it goes from there.
Back in 2014, I actually started a site on burpees too but ended up closing it down because I have no idea what I am doing. Fast forward 4 years later, I still have no idea what I am doing. My point is I will never figure out what I am doing and the goal is to just start and persist. The one thing I regretted back then was giving up. And here I am again, back to the same place 4 years ago. Still lost and clueless but with a different goal.
This niche idea search was supposed to be completed a few weeks ago but I recently started a new job in Singapore. I have been spending lots of time settling down and adapting to this new environment. But nevertheless, the niche has been selected.
In the next coming weeks, I will be focussing on:
- Picking a domain name and setting up the site.
- Work on listing out potential content.
- Brainstorm on potential monetization strategy.
If this is your first time reading this, do check out this post on starting a niche site. I will try to update my progress as much as I can. If you want to follow my progress and journey, follow me on Facebook, Instagram or subscribe to my list to get exclusive updates.