The Internet is full of opportunities to make money, and blogging is one of the smartest and most ethical ways available.
One misconception about blogging is that you need to work day and night to make money. That’s certainly true if what you’re trying to do is create a name and/or build a brand, etc. But if your goal is simply to earn money within a short period of time but with long-term gains in mind, then there are many shortcuts available to you. Let’s take a look at one such shortcut, the micro-niche blog.
In this guide I will give you a detailed example of a micro-niche blog that I created which is currently making $174 /month from AdSense, and an average of $100 /month through affiliate marketing with just a few hours of work.
This is a blueprint for creating a micro-niche blog, and you can use it for any topic or niche that you like. In my case, I didn’t use a content agency, so I picked up a niche that I enjoy reading and writing about.
Read on to see the actual steps I followed to create a micro-niche blog that has made over $2000 for me in the past year, requiring only 40-50 hours of work!
- Also Read: How Much Money I Made in 2014 with My Blogs
Why start a micro-niche blog?
First of all, following many algorithmic changes from Google, a niche website now ranks higher in search engines than others. If you create a high-quality website on any particular topic, your chances of ranking higher is stronger than any existing authority website out there. Plus, you won’t have to worry day and night about an evergreen blog. Once you’ve done the hard work to create a niche site, the next step is to wait for the money to be deposited into your account.
Following is the blueprint of a micro-niche blog that I created. Remember, this is the exact method that I followed, and you too can follow this blueprint to create a successful micro-niche blog for yourself today.
The Complete Blueprint to Building a Niche Website that Makes Money:
Select Niche and Domain:
The most important thing you need to do is find a niche that you are comfortable with. Make sure to think about the potential commercial and popularity aspects of your niche. Since the target is to make money from the blog using AdSense, it is very important to choose a topic that is popular in countries like the U.S. and the U.K., and that has high commercial value (high CPC).
In my case, I chose a topic called “Cydia” which is a jailbreaking tool for iOS devices, and very popular among iPhone users. I chose this topic because I was very comfortable with the subject matter, and expiration time on this topic was quite high. Furthermore, it had a good search rate in Google.
For keyword research I used SEMRUSH. (You can try SEMRUSH for 14 days using this special promo link!)
For my domain, I settled on Cydiaguide.com
Keyword research and content planning:
For content planning, I was clear about a few things I need to do:
- Choose topics that would be in demand for a long time.
- Design this micro-niche site like a Wikipedia.
- Choose keywords that are driving traffic or CPC.
Instead of being particular about choosing only high AdSense CPC keywords, I created a mindmap of content, which was more like a FAQ. For example:
- What is [topic]
- How to use/install [topic]
- Advantages and disadvantages of using [topic]
- Important facts about [topic]
These were some of the basic ideas I started with before getting into detailed keyword research.
I then used SEMRUSH to find keywords.
Next, I chose a few related blogs on my topic that had a decent amount of traffic. I used SEMRUSH to find the keywords those websites were using. You can use this link to try SEMRUSH completely free for 14 days, a value of $150!
By the end of this process, I had at least 20+ topic ideas for a micro-niche website!
Next I spent a few hours writing 4-5 blog posts, and then one post daily for the next several days. This way the content piece was completed, and I had 15 high-quality evergreen topics and my content ready to go. (Evergreen topics are topics with 2-3 year expiration days, meaning that these topics should be relevant for at least the next 2-3 years.)
Setting up the micro-niche blog:
This part of the set-up was very easy. If you know how to create a blog on WordPress, then this step will be easy for you as well. Beyond this, your content will create the rest of the magic.
Following is a checklist of the exact tools I used to create and set up my blog. This checklist includes plugins, themes and other important details you’ll need to create your own micro-niche blog.
- Hosting: Bluehost – (only $3.95/month with one free domain) Check out this tutorial to learn how to install WordPress on Bluehost
- Theme: SwiftThemes (plug and play)
- WordPress plugins:
- WordPress SEO by Yoast for site SEO
- Akismet for preventing comment spam
- Auto Post Thumbnail for automatic generation of the featured image
- Monarch for social bookmarking icons
- Jetpack by WordPress for multiple purposes, including stats in dashboard
- No Self Pings to stop self-pinging!
- PushPress for faster indexing
- SEO friendly images for image level SEO
- WP Smush.it for image compression
- WP Super cache for caching
Additional steps that I followed:
- I made the blog on my site SEO perfect.
- Took extreme care of content quality and keyword score.
- Made a few videos on YouTube and linked them to my blog from the description, generating additional traffic.
- Submitted my sitemap to major search engines.
- Submitted my blog to top 100 sites using IMT submitter.
- Created a logo using free online logo maker.
The whole idea of the blog was to work less and create a blog capable of earning money. For this reason I didn’t invest much time on branding. The goal was to create great search engine traffic, provide solutions, and make money from the niche blog.
Here is the traffic report::
Remember, the blog had only 29 posts and had not been updated beyond the first month. At this stage, I had to start preparing more content in an effort to push the traffic again.
Following are a few things that I should have done, (and things that you should do if you are interested in creating a micro-niche blog):
Create a separate social media page:
Social media profiles are helpful in many ways, but I skipped this step because I didn’t want to create a new social media property. That said, it’s always good to add social media profiles and use social-media automation. (I use tools like the Buffer app and Hootsuite to share content from this blog on my Google+ and Facebook pages.)
No backlink building and no promotion:
I have not built a single backlink, and did not do any promotion apart from a bit of social-media promotion. All traffic is organic, and purely due to quality of content and the SEO settings of the site.
For the initial couple of months I used only AdSense, and later added one affiliate product related to the iPhone niche, which generated extra income of $100/month on average.
Consider the following:
With a $60 investment and 40 hours of work, I made over $2200, and the blog is still making money. Moreover, I don’t need to spend time on backlinks or other promotional work which would take time and effort. The idea is to create a few more niche blogs like this one, thus creating additional sources of online income.
An eBook offering a step by- step guide will be on sale next month. For now, this micro-niche blueprint is enough for any minimally experienced blogger to create a money-making site with a few hours of work.
- Also read: How to Build Quality Micro-Niche Sites to Earn More Money
If you have any questions or if you have tips to add, I would love to hear from you.
If you find this blueprint useful, consider sharing it on Google+ and Facebook.