Niche Websites Are Still Going Strong
Daniel Scocco here, and this is the Daily Blog Tips newsletter.
Today I want to talk about niche websites, and why they are still
going strong around the web.
First things first, what is a niche website? It is basically a site
that targets a very small niche, like "pinot noir wines" or "sample
resumes." Such websites usually have a small number of pages, say
10 or 20, and their main goal is to rank in the first page of Google
for a specific keyword. Once they achieve that, they will receive
a lot of organic traffic (i.e., traffic from search engines), and
they will monetize such traffic with CPC ads like Google AdSense or
with affiliate marketing.
I prefer to call these sites "mini websites," but many people refer
to them as "niche websites," so we'll be using both terms
A couple of years ago some online marketers started to criticize
niche websites, saying that they were doomed to vanish, being
replaced in the search results by large content portals that
covered a wide range of topics.
Guess what? This didn't happen, and niche websites are still going
strong. In fact, recently Google implemented a change in its
algorithm that favored them even more. The change basically made it
harder for large websites to rank for narrow keywords with their
internal pages, especially if those pages are not content rich.
Want an example? Consider the keyword "starcraft 2 download." With
the change in the Google algorithm it is now easier for a mini
website called StartCraft2Download.com to appear in the first page
for that search query, and it is now harder for a large website like
Mahalo.com to do the same simply by publishing an internal page
talking about that topic.
Another criticism that mini websites receive is that they are more
unstable than large, authority websites. In other words, one day
they could be in the first page for a specific keyword, and the
other day they are gone.
This can happen if you use black hat techniques to get your mini
website ranked, but otherwise the above criticism is not true at
If your mini website has all the information about a specific niche
or keyword, and a decent amount of quality backlinks, Google will
consider it an authority inside that small niche, and hence it will
give high rankings for the mini website.
This is the point that most people miss. A mini website can also be
an authority site, although an authority on a very small niche.
Now don't get me wrong. Building a mini website that ranks
high for a competitive keyword is not easy nor fast. You'll need to
work on the content, promote it and get a good amount of backlinks.
But, if you know how to do these things, developing a mini website
when you have some time available could be a smart investment.
In the future I'll talk more about building and profiting from
mini websites, so stay tuned.