When you start learning about writing for the Internet and ways to make money online, many people recommend niche websites.
You may be wondering, do niche websites make money? It almost seems too good to be true that you can make money just by writing about specific interests.
Some people claim that the heyday of niche websites is long gone. Do niche websites still work?
The good news is that niche websites, or websites that focus on a specific topic with the purpose of driving up traffic and making money, are still a great way to earn passive income through the Internet.
If you’ve ever wondered, is a niche website legit, or are niche websites profitable, the answer to both is a resounding YES.
I mean honestly, 3 years ago I was a government employee living in DC, stuck in traffic and miserable.
Today just a few years later, I make a full-time living off niche sites and travel the country in a RV.
If I can do it, ANYONE can do it, trust me.
So, with that said, here is everything you need to know about this method of earning money through the Internet.
What Are Niche Websites?
Niche websites are sites dedicated exclusively to a specific niche, or a specialized segment of the market.
Usually, these sites focus on extremely specialized topics.
For example, a website about food is not a niche website because you can write about millions of things related to food and still not exhaust the topic.
However, a website dedicated to the food you can make using a Vitamix blender is a niche site.
The difference between niche websites and blogs is that the purpose of a niche website is making money, while regular bloggers write just to satisfy their passion.
There are a few ways that niche websites make money, for example through affiliate marketing (more on that later).
That means writers of niche websites put in a bit more effort into the money side of things than bloggers do (although bloggers also put in enormous amounts of work to rank highly for SEO and drive traffic).
This includes everything from choosing their niche based on profitability, not passion, to formatting articles around SEO keywords.
Do Niche Websites Make Money?
Before you put in the effort to build an entire website, you probably want to know are niche websites profitable.
The answer is yes as long as you are willing to put in the necessary work to make a profitable website.
The first step in making your niche website profitable is choosing the right niche.
You want a niche that has a lot of traffic but not one where you are competing with thousands of other websites for the same clicks.
Usually, the more specific you can get within a profitable niche, the better.
Another factor to consider when choosing your niche is how much money you can make through affiliate marketing or sponsorships, so do research on that as well before you commit to a niche.
There are a few main ways that niche websites make money:
- AdSense and other display ads
- Affiliate links to Amazon and other websites
- Sponsored posts
- Selling other products (courses, eBooks, etc.)
- Advertising other services
Which one of these money-making methods you wind up using will depend on a few factors, including your own skills and your niche.
The good news is that there are a few ways of making money through niche websites so you’re never dependent on just one method.
The one thing all of these money-making methods have in common is time. You need time to build a website and grow your audience.
You need time to build good SEO practices and credibility with Google so that your site can rank higher in search results (and command more money through display ads).
So, the short answer is, niche websites can make money, but don’t expect to get rich right away.
You have to put in the work to grow your site, and then you can reap the benefits of a passive income.
Do Niche Websites Still Work?
If you’ve spent any time on the Internet over the past few years, you’ve probably heard lots of panicked tirades about the death of the blog.
You might be wondering, are niche websites over? Is a niche website legit, or is this guide just trying to trick me?
The days of blogging and website-building are very different than they were in the early days of the Internet, in the 2010s, but that doesn’t mean that writing for the Internet is now impossible and unprofitable!
It just means that you have to put in a little more effort and adjust your tactics.
According to the legends about the early days of blogging, all you had to do was put your thoughts out there and then your blog would be read by thousands, earn you lucrative money, and maybe even a book deal.
Of course,in reality, this only happened to a select few bloggers while most were screaming anonymously into the void.
Today, it’s a lot harder for that to happen as there are so many more people writing for the Internet.
Even established companies have a blog section on their site now.
The secret? Many other people writing on the Internet don’t know as much about how to monetize their sites as they should.
As long as you put in your research and build a great website, you’ll have an easier time making money as well.
How to Monetize a Niche Website
We’ve talked about the potential of making money through a niche website, but how do you turn that idea into a reality?
Here are some tips to get you started.
Choose the Right Niche
As mentioned above, choosing the right niche is crucial if you want your website to be profitable or not.
Besides profitability, you should choose something that you’re interested in and know a lot about.
You want to present yourself as an authority on the subject to gain traffic, and that won’t happen if you’re frantically Googling the answers to frequently asked questions 20 minutes before publishing the site!
There are a few tools that can help you with research.
Keyword research tools can show you how frequently certain terms are searched, which gives you an idea if there is demand for your website or not.
Affiliate sites like ClickBank break down ads and products by categories so you can see if there is the potential to make money through your niche.
Ever consider SEMRUSH? Check out my thoughts on SEMrush and why it’s so expensive.
Part of researching the right niche also includes checking out the competition.
Look up the best websites or blogs in your niche. If there are too many, try to get more specific.
If nobody else is writing about your topic, that’s also a bad sign—it means the audience, or at least the moneymaking opportunities, are not there.
Build Your Website
Once you have your niche, it’s time to actually build your website.
The good thing about the progression of the Internet since the early 2010s is that it is easier than ever to build a functioning site even with little coding experience.
Platforms such as WordPress help you build Google-friendly content sites and even include options to buy a domain name (you can also set up a domain first using a hosting platform such as Bluehost).
You don’t have to put in a lot of effort into building your website initially.
Just choose a theme that looks clean and make sure the website is functional (luckily, WordPress does most of that work for you).
You can always play around with themes and fancy appearances once your website gets off the ground and you have more experience and money.
Finally, it’s time to fill out your niche website with amazing content that will attract traffic (and advertising dollars) to your site.
However, writing for a niche website isn’t as simple as pouring out your heart’s passion on the page.
You need to think about what your audience wants to read about and what will attract more clicks.
Before you start writing, do your research on keywords related to your topic that people search.
Online tools such as AnswerThePublic can help you conduct keyword research and figure out which long-tail keywords are common in your community.
You can also read up other blogs and online communities relating to your topic for ideas.
Once you have a list of topics and keywords that you want to target, you can start writing your content.
Be sure to follow good SEO principles when writing your content, such as formatting your blog post with plenty of subheadings and including keywords (but not spamming).
When thinking about SEO, don’t neglect the quality of your writing!
Providing quality information is what will keep visitors to your site coming back.
If You Write It, They Will Come
Reports about the end of blogging are greatly overblown.
Even if you just get started today, you can make plenty of money writing on the Internet if you set up a niche website.
Niche websites, focusing on very specific topics, can earn you hundreds of dollars in passive income through affiliate marketing and display ads.
As long as you pick a monetizable niche and write quality content, with patience, your website will be successful.