Elements of a Successful Niche Site
Elements of a Successful Niche Site
Have you ever wondered why some people start a site and end up becoming six or seven figure marketers, while others launch one and actually lose money on their investment?
It might only be a small sum for a domain and hosting, but it’s really the promise of success that’s lacking from the equation. What makes one person a niche success story and another a failure?
Every scenario is different, but there are some core elements that are necessary if you want your site to turn into a fully-fledged business that thrives in your chosen niche market.
Developing an Interactive Blog
While many marketers launch static sites, having a blog sets you apart – because it makes you accessible and more cutting edge than those whose work becomes outdated.
WordPress is the blog of choice, and it’s installed directly on your domain. You don’t want to host your blog on a free blog site, because then you’re at the mercy of the company who owns it, and many marketers have woken up to find all of their hard work vanished because they didn’t make the wise investment of a domain and hosting for full ownership.
What do we mean when we talk about an interactive blog? Well, any blogger can paste content in as a blog post and take a hands off approach. But those bloggers who include a level of engagement with their audience do far better.
Turn the comments on and allow your readers to express their thoughts about what you share and ask questions, which you then respond to pro-actively. Be sure to filter spam from the blog so that true conversations don’t get lost amid the nonsense.
Another aspect of an interactive blog is providing multi media for your followers. Not everyone is a text reader. Especially in today’s world, video and even audio are becoming more popular avenues for information consumption, so vary it up from time to time.
Even if you’re initially too intimidated to be on camera, you can still use tools like Camtasia and PowerPoint (both very easy for beginners) and make screen capture videos where your audience at least gets to hear your voice and watch the presentation unfold on video rather than having to read it.
Presenting a Compelling Opt in Offer
If you have a site that you want to make profitable, you don’t want to rely on the visitor to come back on their own. You want to be able to invite them back and point them to posts and offers that you can monetize.
That means you’ll need to build a list of subscribers. If your content on the blog is compelling, then people will be interested in what you have to say, so they’ll eagerly sign up for future notifications.
And that’s as far as many bloggers take it. They provide a simple sign up form and offer to notify readers of future posts. That’s certainly better than nothing, but is it the best you can do when you want your blog to be a success?
A better – and more compelling – opt in offer is one that gifts the visitors something in return for trusting you enough with their name and email address. Here’s a many failing marketers make…
They put together a simple compilation of ordinary material and paste it up there, hoping to get subscribers. That’s not good enough. You want to make the sign up process irresistible.
You want them to want that free gift so bad, that their desire to read it (or watch it) overpowers any hesitation they may have for signing up for a list. After all, most consumers are fiercely protective of their email due to the number of spammers on the Internet.
You want to start by thinking of something that’s not readily available everywhere. Your opt in offer should be something so valuable, people would pay good money for it. Don’t worry about losing money sharing this type of information – you’ll make it back easily by having their contact information where you can send all future offers.
Remember that people often respond favorably to pain points and negativity. “7 Critical Ways You’re Sabotaging Your Diet” will probably get more sign ups than “Weight Loss Tips.”
People want to know what they’re doing wrong. If it was an easy process, they wouldn’t need you. Also, numbers work well. An offer like, “37 Unique Low Carb Diet Recipes” will work better than “Low Carb Diet Recipes.”
Make sure you invest in a professional e-cover for your opt in offer if it’s a guide or book. People like to see what they’ll be gifted. Don’t try to take the do it yourself route – an e-cover doesn’t cost much from a professional, and it will make a big difference to the reader.
Injecting Rapport-Building Personality Into Your Content
Personality usage can be intimidating or confusing to many people. They feel like, “Who wants to hear about my life?” Or, they say, “How do I share anything personal when I’m reviewing a protein shaker cup?”
There’s a very simple formula for this, and it takes the burden off of you as the blogger. First, always start with an introduction that lets the reader know why you felt sharing the information was important.
For example, “I see many people asking which protein shaker cup to buy. My personal preferences aren’t about what it looks like, but other things – like does it mix well, is it leak proof, and is it going to keep the milk cold – because I’ve had clumpy shakes, gotten to the gym and had my gym bag ruined with protein shake, and downed a lukewarm shake because I was desperate. It’s not fun.”
That kind of personality, sharing your experiences and preferences, is the type of thing that builds a rapport with your audience. It’s okay to weed out the ones who do care about the design or looks.
You want to have people nodding in agreement with you because when you describe your experience of drinking a clumpy, warm shake – they’ve been there, too. So they know that you know what they hope to avoid with your review.
Somewhere in the middle, interrupt the review with a story. In the case of the protein shaker cup, maybe you want to discuss the time you forgot about your shaker cup in the car over a long, hot 4-day weekend – and you never want to get a cup that won’t shake that sour milk smell again.
At the end of your review, do something like you did in the intro. Only ask them if they’ve ever had the same thing happen. You might say, “As a single dad who only has 1 hour to devote to fitness each day, I can’t afford to struggle with a shaker cup – especially when I’m knee deep in sippy cups for my toddler – so I need the ones that are durable and effective. What’s your biggest struggle with previous shaker cups?”
It’s perfectly okay to have an opinion and to share it. If you’re in a niche where there are strong opinions, go ahead and form a strong bond with those who agree and be willing to reject the opinions of those who don’t.
You don’t just want to have a personality with your blog, either. This should be an element that you use on your social networking accounts and email autoresponders. Become a friend to your subscribers and treat them as such – not like a money cow you can milk on a whim.
Showing Up to Serve on a Schedule
People always ask about how often they need to do things like post a blog or email or even create a product. Schedule is important, but it’s not something you should struggle with a ton.
Basically, your goal is to build a bond with your people. You’re an online personality. Can you truly bond with someone if you capture their name and email address and don’t show up until 3 months later to email them?
They will have completely forgotten who you are, where you’re from, and why you’re intruding on their email account. They’ll likely unsubscribe and might even mark you as spam.
Your goal in an online business is to serve others – to lessen their pain points. You want to see what they need help with and help them find a solution (whether it’s one you create or one you simply recommend).
There is no magical numerical formula for online success. It’s basically as often as needed. If you have something to share daily, go for it! You might not want to email your list more than once a day, because that can be intrusive.
Give people an option of signing up to a digest such as a weekly digest. This allows them to stay on your list, but limit the amount of emails they get. Some people feel overwhelmed hearing from you daily.
Blogging should be done daily, but probably no less than weekly. If you can blog 3 times a week, that’s plenty. Search bots like Googlebots are routinely analyzing your site to see if there’s any new content.
They like to provide reliable, fresh content to those who search on their search engine. So if your blog posts good information daily, you’ll likely end up higher in the search results than someone who simply shows up once a month to post.
It’s important that you not push the limits and try to create content when there’s really nothing valuable to say. You don’t want to dilute the importance of your site by posting mediocre content.
Learn to be strategic with your research methods and slants and that way, you’ll have an easier time showing up regularly to serve your audience with content they’ll find helpful.
Having Paid Offers Available for Sale
When you’re just starting out, you might be intimidated by the idea of creating a paid offer. Having products to sell is a process that you’ll need to learn if you want to grow your profits into something formidable.
Why would you want to have your own products, when you can simply promote other peoples’ products? It’s simple: money. You’re going to make more retaining 100% of your sale than you would recommending other peoples’ products for 50%.
You can start with something small and build up to a higher ticket item if you want. For example, you might sell a $7 course on how to stick to your diet. Later, you might develop a $37 Monthly Low Carb Diet Plan.
Eventually, you might create a $97 coaching plan where you interact one on one with your subscriber and help them learn how to fix any issues that are holding them back from their success.
When you have your own products for sale, using a platform like JVZoo, for example, you can then have affiliates signing up to promote you. This casts a much wider net for you in terms of customers and profits.
It also helps build your list. When an affiliate sends someone to your offer, and they buy, that customer is then a subscriber (if they opt in) on your list, so you’re able to sell to them in the future.
Competitors have no reason to send people to your blog if you’re not offering something for them to earn a commission on. Therefore, you can’t leverage their list. But creating your own product and allowing affiliates to promote it gives you this profit perk – and it’s a big one!
There are many marketers who worry that things have already been done before. That’s true – they have. And yet, consumers like buying from multiple producers. They don’t just learn from one person, but from a dozen.
You’ll have your own slants and style when it comes to teaching people, and you’ll have people who resonate with you more than they your competitors. So you don’t want to deprive them from your voice and expertise just because you’re nervous about what’s already on the market.
Make sure you always create original work and never plagiarize anyone else’s content. Start from scratch and create something that overdelivers to your customer. Professional graphics will help with conversions, so never skimp on those.
The elements of a successful niche site are common across various topics. Whether your niche is survival, diet, anti aging, parenting or something else, the tips above should give you an advantage over most of the people trying to achieve the same goals.