Doubting Your Niche? How To Keep Going (And When To Give Up)
Have you changed the niche of your content site? I think everyone here at wealthy affiliate can relate to the first time we tried to search our passion, traffic potential, and affiliate monetization to find some golden triad of a perfect niche so that we could write post after post, and let the traffic flow in.
But then after about month 2, the doubts surface. No traffic seems to be finding its way to you, amazon affiliates has sent you a warning that you've had 90 days without a sale so all your links will be cancelled, and to top it off, you have run out of ideas for posts.
This is normal from my experience and it represents what I call the Grit Screen that every blogger has to pass through before they actually start seeing money coming from their site.
As many people at Wealthy Affiliate know, content sites are not get-rich-quick schemes, it takes a willingness to do the gritty work month after month to see a successful site through to that first sale.
So let's talk about why you should keep going.
1. Google uses domain age in it's algorithm.
The age of your site is in the top 10 parts of google's algorithm. This means that if you started this year, you are already at a disadvantage, but next year, all your competitors that start that year will have the same disadvantage, while yours has decreased simply because you lasted a year. Last another year and guess what? You just increased your site's domain age.
2. You will improve as a writer.
Study copywriting. There are lots of books out there, in fact the "bible" of copywriting The Copywriter's Handbook has just been updated for 2020. There are many resources for improving as a writer, but if you want to monetize your site, you need to start thinking and writing like a copywriter. Which means you are trying to influence an action from someone reading your words.
3. A site just like yours is making money somewhere, so you can to.
This one is easier to understand as a concept and harder to put into practice. If you look at your competition it might seem a little intimidating. For example in the travel niche, some of the travel sites out there are full on magazines, with multiple writers, traffic in the millions per month, ads, affiliate links, and even proprietary products. Comparing your new travel blog to something like that can be very discouraging.
Or it could be the opposite. Because belive it or not, that site started out just like yours: an idea, a post, and some links. Sure they might have started bigger: a corporate budget and a team of writers, but they don't have a monopoloy on enthusiasm. Which brings me to...
4. Your enthusiasm is contagious.
Believe it or not, when you write about something you are passionate about, your enthusiasm is contagious. This single transfer of emotion is what people enjoy reading. It will keep them reading for 1,000, 5,000, 10,000 words. Don't discount your enthusiasm, especially in the early stages of your blog.
5. This business is only getting better.
More and more brands are opening up to affiliate sites, which means you can deliver solutions for readers in more ways, and make more money. Readers are becoming more and more understandable about good content being supported by affiliate links. As long as the writing is satisfying a need, emotional or otherwise, you deserve to be compensated, and most readers these days accept that.
SO WHEN SHOUD YOU THROW IN THE TOWEL AND SWITCH NICHES??
In a word? Never. Remember that google cares about how old your domain is?
But if you do hit writers block and can't stand to even think about your site, I recommend these remedies.
1. Establish a routine for a time and place to write for 10 minutes everyday.
It doesn't matter what it is just sit down with the goal of writing for 10 minutes everyday. Over time you will see writing get easier and ideas will flow more rapidly. Like magic, this will translate into more posts.
2. Take a break from posts.
Seriously, don't even worry about putting up a post. As long as you are writing each day, you are doing your job. Let ideas come and go, write good posts, write bad posts, publish them or don't. You will come back to the mindset you were when you started, and if you've been practicing, your blog will really take off then!
3. Start another website.
This one is counterintuitive. But if you have lost complete faith in your niche or if for example another niche won't leave your thoughts alone, then by all means, put a pin in the first blog and start the next. Have two going and let your daily writing direct you to which one will get your attention that day.
Don't fight the muse :) if you need to write about diabetes, or video games, or trading bitcoin instead of traveling with dogs...then give it a go! BUT don't give up on your other blog. At the very least keep servicing it once a week, either with a new post or by going back and replying to comments.
Add "Not Yet" Whenever You Think Of Your Blog
There is a book that can change your world if you have not read it yet. It's called Mindset by Carol Dweck. She studied successful and happy people, those that had grit, and those that seemed to always let life get the best of them.
In the end she concluded that it came down to those who have a Growth Mindset vs Fixed Mindset. Those who have a growth mindset will always see the potential, the opportunity in their situation. They learn how to learn, how to adapt, etc. In short, when they come across something they can't do for the first time, be it a puzzle, a sport, or writing a blog, they acknowledge that they will have to go through a learning curve and embrace it. They say "I can't do this...yet." Or "I'm not successful at this...yet"
This mentality will open up your world to possibilities you can't even imagine...yet.
To your success!