Passive Income Series: The Importance of Niches

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It’s been more than a month since I last wrote about my passive-income project.

In this post, I want to talk about the importance of having a niche for your blog or website.

A niche is a tightly-focused topic that forms the basis of your posts.

The Theme of Your Site

I’m sure we’ve all seen blogs that don’t have any cohesive theme. They are more like diary entries, talking about everything from fashion, scrambled eggs, and the author’s cat to the latest in politics.

I think this is fine if you just want a place to express yourself – but it’s not so good for a business-oriented blog. It can also be kind of annoying to readers if you claim that your website is about handmade jewelry (for example) but only occasionally post about that topic. You may even be repelling potential customers who are eager to buy your product – but can’t figure out how to do so because the information they need is buried or unavailable on your blog.

Of course, there is always room to personalize your posts, and you can do that effectively by making sure that the posts still fit in with the theme of your site. A little personalization in the right places can go a long way when it comes to building trust with your readership.

Narrow It Down

A niche is not just any topic. It’s more like a topic within a topic – and sometimes it is a topic within a topic within a topic.

Example:

Cooking (broad niche) > Baking (nichey) > Cupcakes (nichier)

Having a niche helps you focus on a specific audience and is generally better for monetization. A good cupcake site will attract people who are seriously devoted to their hobby (or career) of baking and decorating cupcakes, giving you the chance to sell books, equipment, and products that appeal to this audience.

Aren’t these cute?

Become an Expert

Writing consistently on a specific topic also places you as an authority in your niche. When people need an expert on cupcakes, they will go to the successful cupcake blogger. You may be hired for speaking engagements, video-demonstrations, articles, books, and other paying opportunities. If you have a YouTube channel, your videos might go viral and result in more income.

A good niche site that stays on topic also has the potential to be sold for big bucks. One fairly average freelance writing site I know of sold for more than $40,000.

It’s up to you how far you niche down.

The Muslim Writers Club site you are currently viewing is a niche site, but it is still broad enough to cover topics of interest to different kinds of writers. My original vision for the site was to focus on non-fiction, but a large percentage of my visitors turned out to be writers of fiction, so I have allowed the site to take its own path and serve both audiences.

Other sites of interest to Muslim writers have focused on niche topics like science fiction, manga, and American-born authors.

Monetize It

When it comes to monetization, some niches are better than others, but a lot also has to do with how you present and market your site. Two or more people could be in the same niche and have wildly different outcomes. Some people just want to write or share ideas and don’t care about material gain.

Although my original intent was not to profit through the Muslim Writers Club, I have, alhumdulellah, acquired new clients by advertising my writing and translation services. I have also made e-book sales and a small amount of affiliate income by displaying links to Amazon.com products.

Unlike client-projects, however, passive income means the potential to earn while you are asleep or busy with other things. That’s what I am striving for with my passive-income project.

Next time, insha’Allah, I will discuss the niche I have chosen for my new project as well as the niche I did not choose. This has been a BIG struggle for me.

If you have a niche site of your own, tell us about it below! Did you choose your niche…or did it choose you?

 

ISLAMIC FAIRY TALES:

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Amel is an experienced freelance writer, editor, and Arabic to English translator. She started the Muslim Writers Club as a means of sharing useful information about the art (and business) of writing.
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