When starting down the road to building your own niche web site business, you need to be set up correctly from the beginning.
When generating ideas for new web sites, you want to consider whether you will be writing the content or if you will outsource it to a freelance writer. There are many subjects that can be the basis of a niche web site, but not so many that you personally will enjoy writing about several days a week, every week, month in, month out. If you are going to be writing your own content until you are generating enough online income to afford to outsource, then you might want to first consider subjects that you will enjoy writing about.
You can also think about what topics you have considerable knowledge in already. If you have worked in the legal or medical field, then perhaps you can leverage that knowledge into a web site with a unique perspective borne out of your own personal experience.
With that said, you also need to consider what will be commercial and can generate income for you. Some subjects like finance, dating, make money online, etc., will deliver a greater return than other less searched for subjects.
The search terms entered into search engines are called keywords. The longer ones are known as long tail keywords.
It is possible to use either a free keyword search tool from Google or one of several inexpensive search tools that have greater search capacities and are designed specifically for internet marketers.
The Google keyword search tool is found here:
The best premium search tools are LongTailPro and Market Samurai. Recent tests showed that LongTailPro performed searches faster, grouped multiple keyword results together and was able to check for domain name availability all at the same time; Market Samurai required several steps to perform the same thing and took longer to complete the searches.
Using Google Keyword Search
It is a good idea to login to the AdWords tool using a Gmail account. This gives access to the Cost Per Click (CPC) advertising cost information for each keyword search – this is the amount an advertiser would be charged to advertise for that keyword in Google.
At the top of the tool, you enter the keywords you wish to search for. On the left, you will want to focus on the the “Match Types” section, and check the “Exact” match box & un-check the “Broad” match. This will then only bring up searches where people have specifically entered only the exact keywords that you want, i.e. “dating tips” will not bring up searches for “best dating tips”.
Once you have performed your search, the results will tell you how many searches are performed per month for each search term globally as well as locally, and what the CPC is.
Searching for Domain Name Availability
When searching for domain names, the main choices of top level domain name are .com, .net or .org. The best one to register is always .com as it is the most recognized. Often people assume the site will be dot com even if it isn’t, so it is best to choose that type. Also, when entering information on modern smart phones and tablets, there is a .com key on the on-screen keyboard, making it faster to access a .com domain on a mobile device now.
You can easily perform a look up to check if a domain name is already registered. This can be done at any WHOIS database tool online.
Godaddy have a bulk domain name look up tool where you can type in multiple domain names in a list and check their availability all at once. That can really save time.
The GoDaddy bulk domain search tool can be found by visiting the home page and click the “Build Domain Search” link below the large domain search box:
How Easily Can You Rank?
To determine this, you need to perform some searches in Google for your target keywords and take a look at the results. If you are able to do this while not logged in, you can avoid seeing personalized results which would change the outcome. Or you can change the settings in your Google Account.
With the search results, you want to look at what types of links are ranking well. To help you with this, it is useful to install a browser plug in or extension to provide some extra data. SEOQuake is one of the best plug ins for SEO and is found here:
Once installed, when performing a Google search, you can now see the Google PageRank, the number of links to the page and the number of links to the domain name that each ranking site possesses.
The Google PageRank runs from 0-9 (with 9 being the best). Any site above a PR 3 may be difficult to outrank.
Links are also a factor. Amazon.com may rank for a product that you wish to review, but whilst their domain will have millions of links, the number of links to an individual product page at Amazon.com could be very low indeed. As such, sites like Amazon, Wal*Mart and other retailers are relatively easy to outrank.
Once you have assessed the results, you can get an idea how difficult it will be to achieve a similar pagerank and create the same number of links as your competitors in order to beat their ranking position & grab that traffic.
With content creation, you either need to learn to just sit down and put the hours in to produce the content yourself or you need to find some good native speaking English writers to produce your site and link building content for you.
Sites such as Digital Point Forums, Guru.com, Elance.com and others are good places to find freelance writers. If possible, you want to try to find one or two good writers that you can stick with, rather than wasting too much time always trying to find new writers.
If you are planning to write the content yourself, then the best idea is either to spend an hour or more per day at a set time to sit down and write the content you need, or to take some time out of each weekend to produce a lot of content in a steady stream. Whichever methods works for you, there is no substitute for putting the hours in and there are no shortcuts!
Search Engine Optimization
Search engine optimization (or SEO for short) means to set up your site and the content within it, to best illustrate what keywords you would like to rank for and to make it easy for search engines to figure out what your site is about. When this is done well, you usually will rank higher.
Search engines are no longer indexed into categories manually. Indexing is all done by computer programs that crawl the web and index the content as best they can be examining what words are used on the page.
SEO for web sites can be helped by adding a plug in for blogging platforms like WordPress or by ensuring a site you make by hand contains the right information.
For sites for good SEO, the targeted keyword should be included in the title, the H1 heading, and sprinkled carefully within the content in a nice, non-obstructive manner.
It is also important to interlink pages of content with other pages within your own site that relate to one another. So when adding new content, you will need to go back into your archives and find what other content is related and link them together. This can also sometimes help with Google where you can get a dual listing, for both pages, when someone performs an appropriate search.
Link building means the creation of links from an external site back to your site. The more links that are coming into your site, the better you will rank.
More recently, this has changed so that it is best now to look for quality sites with a higher Google PageRank to link back to you. If you can find sites that are in the same niche as you, then that looks even better to the search engines as the link is likely to be seen as more relevant.
With the anchor text – the text used with the link itself – you want to ensure that this is varied. Not only do you want to include your main targeted keywords, but also other miscellaneous terms that would naturally occur in real links that were not created as part of a link building campaign by the owner of the site. Such as: click here, yourdomainname.com, Your Domain Name, and so on.
If you include the same keywords too many times in your anchor text, then your ranking will suffer. Generally under 50% is best and many believe the percentage of main keyword inclusion should be as low as 20%. This is because Google is actively trying to stop internet marketers from link building and ranking higher by artificial means.
Here are some ideas for link building:
- Adding content to article sites like GoArticles.com
- Adding your link to posts on forums
- Adding comments on popular blogs
- Creating social media accounts & posting updates frequently
- Adding links from YouTube videos
- Guest Posting on other blogs
Link building should be performed slowly and steadily, rather than done all in one weekend. It needs to look natural, rather than artificial. Social media also matters these days. Bringing in traffic from social media is a great way to diversify away from complete reliance on Google organic traffic to bring in visitors and generate income.