This post is part of our question& answer series, and discusses some of the most common questions asked by new bloggers:
- Should I blog on one topic or should I blog on multiple topics?
- Should I create one blog for multiple topics or different blogs for each topic?
In blogging, we often refer to a blog’s topic as its “niche”. In the way of examples, the SEOMOZ niche refers to blogs related to search engine optimization, Dailyblogtips falls within the niche of blogging, Labnol’s niche is technology, and ShoutMeLoud’s niche is small business and internet marketing.
Among the most important questions you should ask yourself before starting a blog is: What will be the topic of my blog? (What will I be writing about?)
Often when I talk to a new blogger about his blog’s niche, I hear an answer similar to this:
“I have an interest in lifestyle, fashion, photography, travel and health – and I want to write about all of these topics on my blog. I think that’s going to be the USP (unique selling point) for my blog, as I will be covering all these topics at one place, and this will attract more readers.”
Prior to answering this in detail, let me make this clear: This is the wrong approach to take when you are planning to monetize (make money from) your blog. If you are planning to create a personal blog in which you write about many different topics, then this is fine, as money is not the primary reason you are blogging. If you’re blogging because you love to write and want to write about multiple topics, and any consideration of earning money from the blog is secondary to that, then by all means write about anything and everything you wish.
However, if you are creating a blog from which you wish to earn an income, a multi-topic/multi-niche blog is a bad idea. Let me explain:
Why a multi-topic blog is bad for readership, SEO and making money:
We’ve established that if you’re blogging for fun and not for money, you can write about anything. This is because you do not need to be concerned about traffic with a personal blog. However, traffic = money. So if you are blogging as a means to an income, you have to take a proper business approach.
Making money from blogging is not as easy as it looks, but if you do it properly you can make good money, or at least enough to cover your cost of living. In fact, I earn my living from blogging.
Let’s see what the downsides are of multi-niche blogs, and how you can identify a topic for your blog.
If you write a multi-topic/multi-niche blog:
It will be difficult to define and create a readership for your blog.
Ask yourself a few questions:
- What inspires you to subscribe to a blog?
- If you have an interest in a topic like “relationships”, what kind of blog will you subscribe to and ready daily – a blog which is dedicated to relationships, or a blog in which the author posts about relationships, blogging, the forex exchange, etc.?
- If you subscribe to a blog which has “blogging” as its topic, and suddenly you start seeing posts about dog care on that blog, will you remain subscribed to that blog or will you unsubscribe?
Surely once you answer these questions, you will have a clearer understanding of the fact that multi-niche blogs have difficulty holding the general subscriber’s interest.
When searching for a blog on any given topic, we have thousands if not millions of options. As a blog reader myself, I like to subscribe to blogs dedicated to topics of specific interest to me. I don’t want to be bombarded with information overload on a wide variety of topics when I set out to read about a particular topic. I prefer to keep my focus on those topics which I enjoy reading and learning about. If I subscribe to a blog related to SEO, and later I start finding posts about the author’s dogs, his cats or new house – subjects with no connection to the main topic of the blog, I will click the unsubscribe option straight away, and some other blog related to the topic of my interest will get a new subscriber.
SEO of your multi-niche blog will be tough:
Search engine optimization, particularly for a blog that is created and maintained as a source of income, is very important. Here’s why:
Let’s say you operate a search engine like Google, and you have to rank a blog for a topic like “How to take the best photo in the daytime”. You can rank it related to either of the following blogs. Which would you choose?
- A blog which is dedicated to photography tips.
- A blog which contains posts about Facebook tips, photography and dog care.
I would certainly select the first blog, as it is likely to offer more quality content (because it is a blog dedicated specifically to the topic of photography), and it will offer a cleaner and better user experience.
The face of search engine optimization is changing, and search engines like Google are ranking blogs based on brand and authority. A single-topic blog has a better chance of creating a position of authority on a topic compared to a blog containing posts on multiple and varied topics.
As a matter of fact, I recently created a blog on a niche-specific topic, and with 12 blog posts and almost negligible SEO, that blog is getting 7000-page views per day.
Takeaway: A niche blog always performs better.
Making money from your blog will be tough:
Now let’s consider the final and most important question: Which will make more money for you — a single or multi-niche blog?
Remember this important point: Income from your blog is directly proportional to the quality and targeted traffic your blog is getting.
You may previously have assumed that with multiple topics a blogger can drive more traffic, but you now know that is not the case.
Let me explain further with an example:
Let’s assume you are a company that has developed a camera, and you have a limited advertising budget. You are creating an advertising plan and you have two blogs before you for your consideration in terms of advertising space:
- Blog #1: This blog gets 10,000 page views per month, and all of the traffic is coming to the blog for topics related to photography and cameras.
- Blog #2: This blog gets 50,000 page views per month, and traffic is coming for various topics including photography, dog care, baby care and more.
Which of these two blogs would be ideal for the advertisement of your product, a camera? My answer would be #1, as I will be getting better ROI (return on investment) for my advertising budget. Why? Because I will be getting targeted traffic from blog#1, whereas blog#2 will be sending me traffic which might not be relevant to my product.
Now that you understand what kind of blog you need in order to drive more traffic and thus create more income, let me address more specifically how to choose topics for your blogs:
How to find a topic for your blog and more:
If you wish to write posts on multiple topics, you can take one of two approaches:
Create different blogs on different domains:
- ShoutMeLoud – (topic = blogging and internet marketing)
- ShoutMeTech- (topic = technology)
- ShoutMyDomain- (topic = domains)
Or you can create different blogs with sub-domains:
Tip: If you are just starting, don’t start multiple blogs. First create one blog on a particular topic/niche, and once that blog is well established and is driving lots of traffic for you, only then should you start a second blog.
If you are confused about how to choose topics whcih you can write about regularly and consistently, here is a very simple approach:
Take a notepad and paper, and create columns for topics that you wish to write about. For example, dog care, baby care, Facebook tips, photography, etc.
Once you have created your columns, write down 20 post ideas for each topic. When you are writing down the post ideas, think about what you are going to write in those posts. This process is likely to help you to remove 2-3 topics from the list.
Now start blogging for two weeks on the topics that remain on your list, and in two weeks’ time you will be able to determine which is your strongest topic, and thus the one you should use.
If you are completely new to blogging and this is your first attempt, create a blog on BlogSpot.com which is free, allowing you to start blogging with zero investment while you learn.
- Read: Points to consider when selecting a niche for your blog
- How to choose the niche topic for your new blog
I hope this will answer these important questions as you begin your new blog project.
If you have any remaining questions, feel free to ask them via the comments section below.
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