Do you want to start a blog, but you’re not sure what to blog about? There’s so much to consider in the beginning, and there are a few things I wish I’d known before getting started. One thing I really wish I’d known is how helpful it is to pick a specific niche before you begin your blog.
In 2016, I jumped on the blogging train. I knew I wanted to be a part of that world and write about things I was interested in, but I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to write.
And that’s where the trouble started.
If I had wanted to blog just for fun, what happened next wouldn’t have been a problem. But I wanted to be a serious blogger, to write about things I loved, build a community, and eventually earn an income.
Describing what my blog was about was a challenge, and that should have been the first sign of danger (I mean, not real danger…but blog danger). Within a few months, I had run out of ideas for content. I wrote posts on occasion, but my lack of focus led to a slow but steady fizzling of a blog I had worked hard on and spent money to create.
How a Broad Niche Hurt My Blog
I’m not a blogging genius yet, but I learned some valuable lessons from my experiences with my first blog.
Here are a few ways my blog got hurt by having a niche that was too broad:
• I couldn’t come up with enough content to create. Most of my posts were entertaining rather than helpful, which is okay sometimes, but didn’t help to build an audience. I didn’t have a specific goal I hoped to achieve with my blog, so it was challenging to think of post ideas.
• I wasn’t helping anyone. I shared thoughts and experiences I knew other women could relate with, but I wasn’t teaching or inspiring anyone. Writing in this way might have worked if my life were different, but let’s be real—I’m a stay-at-home mom who is sequestered in front of the dishes and listens to toddlers make up words to Disney songs most days. I love my life (a lot of days) but it’s not super glamorous. 😉
• I created content my readers weren’t interested in. Since my blog didn’t have a specific purpose or niche, I was all over the place. I wrote one post about things not to say to a pregnant lady, then another about meal planning. It didn’t work because my posts weren’t directed to a target audience who might have an interest in what I had to say.
How to Know if Your Niche is Too Broad
Looking back now, I know that if I had asked a few questions as I began my blog, I would have realized the topic was too broad, and I needed to narrow things down.
Ask yourself these questions to help determine if you need to make your blog topic more specific:
Can you describe your blog in one sentence?
Who is your target audience?
Is your target audience more than one or two groups?
Are you justifying your chosen topic to others?
I remember my mom hinting that my blog should be more specific and helpful to people, but I was a bit defensive justified what I was doing. I also struggled with describing my blog to others or who my target audience was. All of those things should have been a huge red flag for me.
Narrow Your Niche, Create More Content
You would think that by narrowing your niche, you’d have less to write about, but I’ve found the opposite to be true.
With this blog, my niche is narrow: it’s a blog to help non-writers learn to write, especially people who want to blog. Since my topic is specific, it’s not hard to create content.
When I plan my posts, I ask myself what my audience needs (since I know who they are). I can quickly come up with a large number of blog posts ideas because I have direction.
How do you think coming up with a definite niche could help your blog? Do you know who you want to serve and how you want to serve them?
Examples of Narrow Niches
I love to be inspired by others. Here are some bloggers I know of who have a very narrow niche:
• Instant Loss – Brittney Williams began a blog about how she lost 125 pounds by making healthy recipes in the Instant. I am one of her followers and have seen firsthand how faithful her followers are. She has created meal plans that people swear by for weight loss.
• Creative Revolt – Jorden is a writer, but her blog focuses mostly on freelance writing. She has a few other sections, but her specialty seems to be how to obtain freelance writing clients with cold calls.
• Minimalist Baker – Dana is a food blogger who focuses on vegan recipes that can be made in 30 minutes or less, in one bowl, or with ten ingredients or less.
• Your Cup of Cake – Lizzy shares a variety of recipes made with cake mix, such as cookies, cheesecake, decorated cupcakes, etc.
• Allie Casazza – Allie is all about minimalism for moms. She creates content that is specific to the life of a busy mom.
If you think your niche might be too broad, sit down and brainstorm! If you’re a fitness guru, could you specialize in something specific? If you want to start a mommy blog, how could you hone in that topic? A lot of niches are very saturated (including the two I just mentioned), but there’s room for you! Just make it about the thing you’re best at.
I’d love to hear what you blog about or what you’re thinking of blogging about. Comment below!