Blog Niche Ideas | Tips for Picking a Niche & How to Validate Your Idea
You’re starting a blog – sweet!! You’ve probably heard that you need to come up with some blog niche ideas. But, what exactly does that mean? And why do you need one?
We’re going to dig into each of those questions, plus help you brainstorm blog niche ideas, explain how you validate your idea, and more.
Blog Niche Ideas | Tips for Picking a Niche & How to Validate Your Idea
What is a blog niche?
A blog niche is the specific topic you’re going to be blogging about. Your entire site is built around your blog’s niche, from the content you create to how you monetize your site.
The specific part is key. It’s the difference in blogging about food and blogging about vegetarian cooking.
When you blog about super broad topics like food, your blog can end up feeling scattered and all over the place. People coming to your site might struggle to connect with your content. A broad topic also makes it difficult to establish yourself as any kind of authority – and authority is something Google looks for when ranking sites.
The topic of vegetarian cooking gives your blog a direction and tells your readers what they can expect from you.
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Your blog should be niche, but not too niche
Using the topic above as an example, it’s possible to niche down even more – vegetarian cooking for families, vegetarian cooking on a budget, gluten-free vegetarian cooking. Those all work.
But once you start thinking about things like gluten-free vegetarian cooking on a budget, vegetarian cooking for pet owners, gluten-free knitters with cats, you’ve gotten too specific.
Being too specific means you have less to write about and a small audience of people interested in your content. All of that limits the growth and success of your blog.
It’s tempting to niche down really, really far – you want to stand out and all – but standing alone is different than standing out.
Now that you understand why you want to pick a niche blog idea that isn’t too specific, let’s talk about how you do that.
3 tips for brainstorming blog niche ideas
There are a few different ways you can approach picking a blog topic. Some will start with a list of things they’re interested in, and that’s good, but it’s never a bad idea to explore your options.
1. Start by making a list of things you’re really good at
These can be learned skills, natural talents, things you’re well known for, etc. It can be something you went to school for, a skill you learned at a past job, a hobby you’ve become really good at.
Think about the things you’re known for doing well. Are you an amazing knitter, talented baker, great at building things? Do friends seek you out to get advice or help with something in particular?
You can leverage your knowledge and use your blog as a place to teach people what you know. And there’s lots of content ideas here – DIYs, hacks, tips, listicles, etc.
2. Think about things you’ve accomplished
Maybe you’ve quickly paid off debt, ran three marathons this year, had a major physical transformation. These are major accomplishments, and lots of people are looking to have the same kind of success in their life. The problem is that most people can’t fathom how to achieve it.
You can build your site on the story of how you accomplished something really hard.
How did you accomplish something hard? Did you do anything that people wouldn’t expect? Did you take extreme measures? What obstacles stood in your way? This kind of information makes your story more unique and inspiring. You can use your blog to motivate others, explain what did and didn’t work, etc.
3. Look through lists of topics and see what sticks out
Below is a list of broad topics with niche blog ideas that fall under them. So if you’re feeling stuck, look through this list of blog niche ideas and write down some that resonate with you.
- Personal finance/money: Credit cards, budgeting, saving money, debt payoff, student loans, investing, side hustles, preparing for retirement, cryptocurrency, couponing, financial independence, frugal living, long-term financial planning, family budgeting, money and relationships, insurance – personal finance blogs are some of the most profitable ones out there.
- Family/home: Craft ideas, childcare, infertility, family holidays, homeschooling, pregnancy, education, renovations, parenting, bullying, applying for college, working parents, stay-at-home parents, fun activities for kids, babies, parenting at different ages, activities for different ages.
- Health and wellness: Running, biking, rock climbing, healthy meals, weightlifting, homeopathy, meditation, dance, mental health, pilates, yoga, skincare, aromatherapy, CBD oil, self-care, life coaching, supplements, anti-dieting, gluten-free.
- Lifestyle: Fashion, slow fashion, beauty, weddings, relationship advice, dating, crafts, travel, being single, planners, home decor, outdoor living, pets, low waste living, DIY, environmentalism, homesteading, marriage, divorce, RVing, photography, golf, horoscopes, gardening
- Food and cooking: Healthy meals, homebrewing, craft beers, wine, family meals, gourmet cooking, ethnic cuisine, budget meals, home-cooking, Southern cooking, superfoods, kitchen equipment, baking, meal prepping, coffee, seasonal cooking, vegan recipes
- Entertainment: Board games, video games, TV shows, movies, music, musicals, classical music, celebrities, old movies, cultural criticism
- Business: Entrepreneurship, management skills, career coaching, negotiating, freelancing, eCommerce, digital marketing, social media, B2B or B2C strategies, SEO, public speaking, starting a blog, business technology, time management, self-publishing – these topics are good money makers, but you really need to be an expert to do well here.
Some of these ideas on their own are a little too broad, so the next part of this brainstorming step is to think about how the topics you’re writing down can fit together.
Here are some examples: frugal travel, cooking with kids, travel hacking with credit cards, DIY weddings, solo travel, vegan parenting, achieving financial freedom through entrepreneurship, etc.
Let’s look at two real-world examples:
No Waste Nutrition is a combination of lifestyle, wellness, and personal finance. Erin is part of the Laptop Empires team, and her site focuses on helping people save money by eating healthier and wasting less.
And if you know anything about the zero- or low-waste movement, you understand how connected these topics are. Her site includes recipes, DIY home products, and food waste hacks.
Erin’s site is just starting to grow, and we can’t wait to see more from her.
Here’s another example from the Laptop Empires family: the personal finance blog Millennial Money Man. Laptop Empire’s co-founded Bobby Hoyt shares personal finance advice that’s geared towards millennials.
Bobby quickly paid off nearly $40,000 in student loan debt, and that story is the basis for his content, which he’s divided into three related silos: make more money, save more money, pay off debt.
Validating your blog niche ideas
Now that you’ve got some ideas, let’s test a few of your strongest contenders. The best niche blog ideas are going to find their way into the middle of these three things: passion, interest, and profitability.
Passion is how interested you are in the topic. Remember that you will be responsible for writing at least one blog post per week about this idea. Make sure you love the idea enough to spend that much time researching and writing about it.
Most bloggers spend the first month or so really fired up about their site. But it can take a few months before you start making money, and that’s when it starts to die down a little. You’ve gotta love your topic enough to stick with it through the highs and the lows… it’s kind of like being in a relationship.
Interacting with other bloggers in your niche is a big part of how you build your site, so you need to enjoy the topic enough to read content from similar sites.
Pro tip: When you’re feeling extra motivated with your blog, see if you can’t crank out a few extra blog posts. Don’t publish them right away, instead save them for when your passion is waning and you’re lacking the motivation to write anything new.
Interest is about your audience. Are there enough people interested in this idea? You can use the Google Trends tool to get a sense of whether or not people are searching for sites like yours, and you can use it to compare ideas.
Here’s a comparison of three niche blog ideas – frugal cooking, vegetarian cooking, and vegetarian keto:
This is over the past five years, and you can see that frugal cooking (in blue) has always had the fewest searches. Keto (yellow) has increased in popularity over the past couple of years, while vegetarian cooking (red) has been fairly consistent.
If you’re trying to decide between those three topics, vegetarian cooking is a safe bet. Your blog would stay evergreen while giving your room to build content around trending ideas.
Profitability is your capacity to make money from your blog, and the most profitable blogs are ones that improve readers’ lives. Self-improvement can come from different directions:
- People want to make more money
- Live healthier
- Have more free time in their day
- Be a better parent
- Improve their love life
- Be a happier person
There are massive industries built around each of those ideas, which means there are lots of monetization opportunities.
You can do a little research and see how other blogs in your niche are monetizing. Look for affiliate links – when a reader makes a purchase through one of these links, the blogger makes a small commission. You can also look at affiliate networks to get a sense of your options. ShareASale, CJ Affiliate (formerly Commission Junction), and Amazon Associates are some of the most popular ones.
Also, pay attention to the kind of digital content bloggers are creating and selling. Are there pdf printables, ebooks, or courses that bloggers in your niche are selling?
Creating and selling your own content is a really powerful way to make money because you can tailor it to your exact niche. And you’re also in complete control of it – you’re not at the mercy of networks changing their policies or companies changing their products.
The final word on blog niche ideas
Blogging can be a really fun way to earn some extra money, and it can even become a full-time job. While all of that might sound incredibly far off, the first step is picking a topic for your blog.
That’s a tall order for something as simple as a blog topic, but don’t get too hung up and let it prevent you from starting your site. If you’ve got a gut feeling, go with it.
You can always tweak your topic a little as you go. And it’s better to start something and not get something right the first time, then never try it at all.