Today I want to talk about finding the perfect niche for your blog, and how to switch up your niche if your current one isn’t working for you. This post was inspired by the ladies who classify themselves as “beauty bloggers” (my former-self included).
Zeroing in on the perfect niche will take some work, but once you nail it, your blog and business will grow like crazy! Although there’s no clear-cut “perfect niche” for everyone, that doesn’t mean some niches aren’t better than others. In this post, you’ll learn the top 4 qualities that make for a perfect, profitable niche.
The perfect niche is:
+ Super specific
+ Something you have experience with or expertise in
+ Something you’re super passionate about
+ Solving a problem for your readers
Let’s dive deeper into each of these four points. As we go through each section, reflect on your current niche to see if it meets these criteria. And if it doesn’t, think of what changes you can make to improve your niche and thus, your blog!
Four Traits That Make For the Perfect Blog Niche
1. The perfect niche is specific
Here’s an example. As a beauty blogger, you might feel like it’s in your best interest to blog about anything and everything beauty-related. Makeup, skin care, nails, the works. Because the more different things you blog about, the more different people will find and like your posts, right?
Allow me to explain.
Say Sally comes across your blog after searching for “best skin care products for dry skin” on Google. Your post shows up near the top of her search results (yay!), so she clicks over and has a read. She finds your “Top 10 Products for Dry Skin” post super helpful and she really likes your writing style, so naturally she wants to read more.
But when Sally looks around on your site for other skin care posts, all she finds are posts about makeup, hair and what you did this weekend. Oops. And guess what? Sally doesn’t like makeup or hair. She just likes skin care. And she also doesn’t really care what you got up to on the weekend (sorry).
So, is Sally gonna stick around?
Sad, I know, but true. Sally’s looking for skin care advice, and you only offer a teeensy weensy bit of that on your blog. She’s better off finding a blog that’s completely devoted to tips and products for dry skin, because that’s what she’s struggling with and wants to learn more about.
The moral of the story is that having a well-defined niche makes your blog way more appealing to potential readers. You want Sally to come across your blog and think, “Wow, affordable skin care for dry skin, this is exactly what I’ve been looking for!”
You’re 100x more likely to gain new followers if you make people feel like you’re writing specifically for THEM.
Having a niche that’s way too broad was one of the biggest blogging mistakes I made when I was starting. I thought I would attract more readers by talking about tons of different things, but really it was just confusing people and turning them away.
Don’t make my mistake! The perfect niche is narrow and specific, so if yours is too broad, try focusing in on the one topic you’re most passionate and knowledgeable about.
Try narrowing your niche down TWICE before settling. For example, the first time, you’d narrow it down from “beauty” to “skin care”. Then, you’d focus on who your ideal audience is, and narrow it down a second time from “skin care” to “skin care for teenagers” or “skin care for mature skin”. Et voila! Your perfect niche.
BONUS: How to switch from “general”, unfocused blogging to niche blogging
Now comes the tricky part. What do you do if you’ve been blogging for a while now, but your blog lacks a specific focus? How can you make the transition to a more, well-defined narrow niche?
With that kind of change, you’re going to lose some followers. Some of your readers are only interested in one or two of the topics you blog about. So when you cut those out, there’s not much reason for them to stick around, right? It just makes sense.
But don’t worry, there is good news. Really good news, actually! Because those readers who do stick around? They’ll be the most loyal, devoted readers imaginable.
They’re the people who will read every single one of your posts, sign up for your mailing list, follow you on social media, and buy all of your products without thinking twice. They know that your blog has everything they’re looking for, so they’re in it for the long haul.
Go ahead and make the transition to a more narrow niche. Write a blog post letting people know why you’re changing your niche, and mention it on social media and to your email list, too. Be bold about it – there’s nothing to be afraid of!
2. The perfect niche matches your expertise
Nobody wants to take advice from someone who’s never been in their shoes before. Readers want to know you’ve been through what they’re going through, or at the very least that you’ve helped lots of people get through the same thing.
This is why your niche should be something you have a lot of experience with or training in. If you’re a hair stylist, don’t blog about cooking (unless you happen to be a personal chef or amazing cook, too). Stick to what you know!
This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be a professional. Experience is just as important as education! If you’ve been taking care of your acne-prone skin for years, or you’ve successfully turned your damaged hair back into silky soft tresses, or lost 50 lbs with a custom diet and fitness regime, you’re totally qualified to share your advice with other people who need it.
3. The perfect niche ignites your passion
Here’s a quick rule of thumb. Your niche should be:
+ Something you love talking about
+ Something you could talk about for days without running out of things to say
You might love hair, makeup, skin care, and nails (I do!) but chances are, one of those things strikes a deeper chord with you.
Whatever the case may be, your niche needs to be something you’re super passionate about. Don’t blog about something just because it’s “cool” or trendy. Stick to talking about the things you know and love.
Don’t worry that not enough people will be interested in what you have to say. There are literally hundreds of millions of people online every day. Do you think there isn’t a single soul out there who’s just like you? Someone who shares the same interests and wants to hear what you have to say? Trust me, there are plenty!
4. The perfect niche solves problems
People are coming to your blog because they want something from you, and 9 times out of 10, it’s because they think you can solve a problem for them. Your readers are looking for information that will better their lives in one way or another.
This is exactly why those blogs that are strictly “personal” or “lifestyle” blogs don’t usually get too far off the ground. Unless you live a luxurious, exciting, glamorous life, people probably aren;t going to be super interested in reading about what you got up to this weekend. Sorry, but it’s true.
So, if “lifestyle” is out, what kind of niche is right for you? Start by asking yourself…
+ What do my readers struggle with?
+ How can I help my readers overcome those struggles?
And if you’re really not sure, just ask!
Connect with your audience on social media. Make use of Twitter chats or Facebook groups and see what your ideal readers needs help with. Chances are, they’ll be more than willing to share their struggles with you, especially if you tell them your goal is to create content that will help them!
What do you think? Does your niche meet these 4 criteria? And if not, how can you transition to a better, more focused niche?