How to Select Right Niche Topic for your Blog

If you Blog, Who will Listen?

It has been estimated in statistics released by Internet World that, as of February 2012, the number of Internet users stood at 2,459,646,518 people; that is a staggering 30.2% of the global population. Every one of those individuals has their own motivation for surfing the web; to buy or sell a product or service, to be informed on any topic from adult entertainment to zoology or to voice an opinion concerning a subject about which they feel passionately and which must be heard.

Blogger

Although certainly not a new concept, the first use of the terminology 'web log' was made by Ohio born, Jon Barger in December 1997, who made daily entries sharing his interests and opinions with other web users. This was superseded in the spring of 1999 by Peter Merholz who, writing on his Peterme website entered the pun 'we blog' into the sidebar; and so a medium was born. Evan Williams, project management software entrepreneur and co-founder of Pyra Laboratories shortly afterwards created the noun and verb 'to blog', meaning 'to edit or post on one's web log'.

Since Jon, Peter and Evan first gave us the term, they have been joined in the blogosphere by an estimated 450 million English language blogs - a figure which changes constantly as more bloggers join the community and others fall by the wayside. There are many different types of blogs; personal, business sponsored corporate sites, or those classified by genre, travel, health, politics or niche topics.

Niche blogging is generally used to stimulate the reader to visit a featured site in order that they can be introduced to a product or service which they may choose to purchase. Income is generated through pay per click or from sales revenue from the sponsored site. The key to being a successful niche blogger is to write interesting, relevant content which will attract a lot of site traffic and encourage visitors to return. By gaining the respect of followers who view the blog as trustworthy, accurate and informative the blogger can establish a dedicated following and earn a potentially lucrative income from sponsored sites.

What Makes a Suitable Niche Topic?

When considering what will be a good niche topic for your blog, try to ignore any commercial implications or what your friends or family may be 'into'. The prime consideration must be what interests you and what do you feel passionate about?
To have a successful blog you will need to establish credibility among your followers and gain their respect. This will take time and you may find you will be writing about your chosen topic for many weeks. Advice from Problogger, Darren Rowse, is that if you would not be happy writing about your niche topic for 12 months, then choose something else. Your readership are well educated and intelligent people who will be able to easily spot a fake'. Write about something you enjoy with passion and authority and make your followers as enthusiastic about the topic as you are.

However, your chosen topic must also be of interest to others and not too 'niche'. You might well have a passion for Eurovision Song Contest Hits from the 1960s and 1970s but you could just find yourself in a minority of one! That said, the blogosphere has a potential audience of millions globally so even attracting relatively few visitors to the site could be advantageous. Perhaps most important is to find a topic which is relevant and current to what is happening now - or even better - what will be happening in six or twelve months time. Try to stay 'on trend' with current events, latest celebrity fads and new innovations. Use the Internet, the media, even listening in to passing conversations in the pub or at the coffee shop. It may just deliver that Holy Grail of 'the next big thing'.

Check Out the Competition

Cyberspace is a very busy place. There is a lot of competition and you may think you have found exactly the right niche topic for your blog only to then discover that someone else has got there before you. Don't forget, yesterday's news is used to wrap up today's fish and chips! Spend some time researching your competitors and seeing what they are writing about. Is there a gap in the market for a slightly less obvious topic which nobody seems to be covering? It can be very advantageous to be a big fish in a small pond. If you can spot that niche topic which everybody else has missed and can fill that gap quickly, you have the opportunity to create your own sub-niche within a larger topic area.

Finally, your niche topic must have the potential to generate an income if that is your motivation. Not all topics will be suitable for every outlet; contextual content will work well for AdSense and YPN but may not be so successful on others. Affiliate sites are productive for closely matched topics and high traffic sites work best with opinion based content."

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