Kory here! When I first started blogging in 2012, things looked a lot different. Most of us were lifestyle bloggers sharing everything under the sun. Heck, my own blog has DIY, recipes, and even fashion posts in its archives. However, as time went on one thing that people learned was that it became easier to grow your readership by blogging about just a few topics instead of continuing to throw spaghetti at the wall and hoping it all stuck.
Fast forward to this year, and there are thousands of more bloggers now. I’m sure there are hundreds (if not thousands) of more people who set a goal for this year to start their own blog. That’s really exciting, but it also puts pressure on everyone online to be more intentional about what they’re doing when trying to grow their blog.
Because there are so many bloggers, one of the key ways you can grow your blog this year is by establishing a niche. Have you heard this before? I’m sure you have, and that’s because it’s just that important. I can tell you from my own experience that my blog grew a lot faster (and easier) when I stopped publishing one post of absolutely every topic on my blog and instead got more specific about what I was sharing.
There are two reasons this happens:
1. You’re no longer wasting time with content that your audience doesn’t care about.
Surprise, my readers didn’t care about the recipe I made last weekend, my favorite fashion picks that were all the same color, or how to put glitter all of their house key (yes, for some reason that’s an actual post in my archives.. facepalm). But when I started writing about my design inspiration, the work I was doing, and why people should care about design, I immediately saw an increase in my pageviews. That’s because instead of spending days and weeks promoting content my audience didn’t care about, I was giving them only what they were truly interested in.
2. You become a big fish (an expert) in a tiny pond (your niche).
One thing that all business owners tend to do with their blog is use it as a place to establish their expertise so they can generate more sales and book more clients. That’s an amazing reason to be blogging. However, when you’re just starting out and you’re blogging about a lot of different topics in addition to content that relates to your business, you’re watering down the message you should be focusing on. This makes it harder for people to realize you’re an expert in your field and then take the leap to hire you.
But the big question is how can you niche your blog so you can hit your goals of seeing some serious growth and maybe even generating a few sales or leads?
Start by focusing your content on your expertise
This is obvious, especially if you have a business, but the niche for your blog should be focused around what you do in your business (unless your blog is not tied to your business whatsoever). This means if you’re publishing 4 blog posts a month, at least 3 of them should talk about what you do and why people should care about it.
Example: If you’re a photographer, share your client’s photoshoots (as long as you can) on your blog, and maybe write a post about how having professional headshots can help people book more clients.
Bring in your other interests through complementary content
This isn’t always possible depending on your other interests, but if you’re feeling too boxed in by only sharing content on your expertise (I get this way a lot), then brainstorm how you can share your other interests in content that’s still in the niche of your expertise. I’ve seen a ton of bloggers do this, and one of my favorites is Lara Casey. Her niche is goal setting, but she’s also interested in gardening. She brings that interest in by using gardening as metaphors to setting goals and relating (most) of her posts specifically about her garden back to accomplishing your goals or living your life.
Going back to our photographer example: Say you’re also into fashion. Instead of sharing a blog post about the latest Nordstrom sale, write a post about how to decide on what to wear for your photoshoot. It’s still related to your expertise, but it’s also fun and pulling in your other interests.
What if your blog isn’t business related?
I know a lot of our customers are just blogging for fun, and while that’s pretty awesome it’s still important to niche your blog. Here’s how you can start doing that:
Decide why you’re blogging
Maybe you started your blog just for the heck of it. That’s awesome, and if that’s the case and you don’t care about growth, then you’re probably fine doing more of what you have been. However, if you started your blog to share your experience losing weight as a mom of five then your content should probably be primarily focused on losing weight and parenthood. Yes, people would probably read other content on your site, but it likely wouldn’t be as big of a hit.
Run a reader survey
If you truly enjoy writing about everything under the sun and you have no clue what your audience enjoys the most, then we highly recommend starting with a survey. This will give you the chance to see what your audience likes the most so that you can write more content under that same niche. If you ask the right questions, your readers may even give you blog post ideas that you hadn’t even considered.
At the end of the day, the most important thing is that you’re writing content that you know and love. I would much rather read a blog from someone who was obviously passionate about their content and knew their stuff!
So, do you have a niche for your blog? Share what it is in the comments!