How to Predict Your Blog Success
Pick The Niche of Your Interest
These steps are very important to take into consideration before you start a blog:
- Pick the topic you are passionate about. Some time it is hard to commit that you are passionate about specific topic but you have to make sure that the least you have interest in that topic.
- Don’t try to chase money. Rather than looking just at the “profitability” of the niche, make sure you have different motivation (become an expert, be an authority, help people, help your business, etc.) to back up your desire to blog.
- Step back and think about how you can differentiate yourself and your blog from the rest of the people in your niche. Can you cover topic with the different approach, do you have something new to share with people, do you give people some value and teach something that has not been covered by others.
These simple approach will separate you from the thousands of people who start blog just for pure profit and have no other motivation behind it.
Brainstorm Your Ideas
A process you can use to help determine which niche is best for you:
- Make a list of your interests or hobbies. Which topics fascinate you? List them all (for instance: golf, fishing, yoga, playing games, cooking, etc.).
- Make a list of the accomplishments you are proud of (for instance: musical talent, artistic talent, sports achievements, etc.).
- Make a list of difficulties you have overcome or defeated (for instance: lost a significant amount of weight, recovered from a financial setback, etc.).
During the course of this exercise, you will get a better feeling for the topics that resonate with you.
Step by Step Success Validation Process
Whether you want to blog for prestige, fortune, fun, or connections, you need to research the niche you choose and make sure the topic is viable.
The following Blog Success Prediction exercise will help you determine whether your blog has real potential for success. These process will reveal the answers to these important questions:
- Is the size of an audience of your niche big enough?
- Is that niche competitive and how competitive it is?
- Are you able to make money in your niche?
Potential Niche Size
IMPORTANT! Even if you believe you have a brilliant blog idea but you are not able to find a niche market with enough people or it has too much competition, you will likely struggle to succeed. You don’t want it to be too small or too big. For example: the size of “golf” niche is on average 2.8+ millions monthly searches. This niche would be too big and broad. However if you go after niche that is narrow, for example focus only on “plane golf swing drills” (average 4k searches monthly), the volume of searches would be too small. One way to niche down from “golf” would be “golf tips” (average 350k total monthly searches) or even deeper down “golf tips for beginners” (average 250k total monthly searches).
Here is how you can easily check the niche size:
Check the top 5 keywords for your niche market. Look for at least 10k monthly searches combined for the 5 keywords. You can use Google’s keyword planner (free), Market Samurai (paid) or WordTracker (partially free) tools to check for the volume of searches and get keywords ideas. You want to ensure there is a large enough audience looking for the kind of information you will provide. We will show you how to use the Free Keyword Planner tool to get top keyword ideas and search volume:
- You will have to select the “Search for new keyword and group ideas” tab, enter your main keyword (in our example “golf tips”) and click get ideas.
- You can get ideas by looking at the list of suggested keywords. Pick the top 5 keywords that fit the niche market you are going after.
- Once you pick the 5 keywords you will have to check the search volume and add it together. By using the same tool for our example we found the following search results: “golf tips” - 9.9k, “golf swing tips” - 8.1k, “golf putting tips” - 1.0k, “golf tips for beginners” - 880, “golf tips driving” - 480.
With these 5 keywords we have a little over 20k average monthly searches. This niche market (“golf tips”) has enough volume and would be a good choice.
It’s a good sign if you have competition. That means others are talking about your niche and are actively involved in pursuing it.
Here is a simple competition check:
- Can you find blogs currently targeting your niche? Look for at least 5 popular blogs focused on your topic. Do a Google search for “[niche] blog” or “best [niche] blogs”. Don’t pull back when you see others are succeeding at your niche. If they can do it, so can you! For our example let’s search for the “best golf tips blogs”, here is the Top 50 golf blogs list that you can easily find.
- Are there active Facebook pages? Not all topics lend themselves to Facebook, but most do. Look for Facebook pages and how many followers they have (Great niches will exhibit at least 1,000 fans). Go to facebook and do a search for your [niche]. In our example, “golf tips” search, gives us number of pages with well over 1,000+ likes.
- Are there active Twitter accounts? You should find many references to your niche on Twitter. Check Twitter accounts of people involved within your niche and see how many followers they have (should be at least 1,000). Go to twitter and do a search for your [niche]. For our examples, Twitter search also shows number of accounts with 1,000+ followers.
- Are there offline magazines? This is the gold standard for a niche. If someone is going to the trouble and expense of creating a hard copy magazine centered on your niche, you can be sure there are online fans looking for information about the topic. You can check Amazon Magazines or just do google search for “[niche] magazine or journal”. This one is no brainer, for our example we can see many golf related magazines at the local grocery stores.
- If you found other blogs, active social profiles and/or offline magazines or journals, this means the niche is active and someone is already monetizing it.
- Are there people selling information or products related to your niche? For our example, it could be golf DVDs, online golf training, etc.
- Are there well-known advertisers in your niche? This could be a one of the big brands, online store, or local golf club.
- Are there affiliate offers in your niche? Here is how to find affiliate offers:
Example of affiliate deals at ClickBank:
- Do a Google search “[your keyword] affiliate” or “[your keyword] affiliate program”.
Example of the affiliate offers in Google search:
This process will help you determine whether you can build a successful blog in the niche market of your choice.