A niche website focuses on a narrow group of people with common interests. From an SEO standpoint, a niche website can become a powerhouse when it offers visitors helpful content — answering questions or solving pain points. For the most part, these sites focus on user intent for search engine optimization (SEO). This creates a natural fit between audience and content. That’s great for SEO! Each of my SEO tips below uses the most current ideas for niche websites.
1. Run a Site Audit
Before you start making tweaks to your SEO, start by running a site audit report. This allows you to set benchmarks and compare the impact of your work. For example, Neil Patel offers a free SEO Analyzer tool. In his tool, he ranks important factors like page load speed, keywords and backlinks. It’s a lead-in to sell you on additional software and services. But, it still gives a decent, free overview. Other paid tools go deeper and give complete reports.
- SEMRush https://www.semrush.com
- Raven Tools https://raventools.com
- Moz https://moz.com/free-seo-tools
Whether you choose a paid or free service, run the report before you start making adjustments. This helps you find both opportunities and areas for improvement.
2. Note Your Ranking Factors
Now that you have your report, compare your performance for the top ranking factors. Brian Dean at Backlinko (another useful SEO service) lists 200 ranking factors for Google. For a more streamlined approach, try focusing on these the top top recommendations
Brian Dean’s Top 10
- Keyword in the beginning of title tag
- Content length over 1500 words
- Page load speed
- Keyword prominence and positioning
- Page authority and page rank
- Domain authority
- Link relevancy
- Dwell time
- Responsive design
- Thin or duplicate content
In his post, Dean writes action items. As you review these ranking factors, you can improve your SEO.
3. Add Niche Keywords
While it may seem obvious that a niche website should focus on niche keywords, many forget this tip. Try to look for specific topics that can drive your content. James Chartrand from Men with Pens notes that cursory keyword research can reveal niche keywords with very low competition. While the audience is smaller for these keywords, your likelihood of ranking well is very high.
4. Only Talk to Your Audience
If you run a niche website, you have a specific audience in mind. Don’t try to attract everyone. Instead speak to your audience only. Write about topics that will only interest them, not the general public.
Hannah Smith at Moz lists several “boring” niche organizations that speak to their customers only. In each example, the content focuses on specific information for their core audience.
Think deep, not wide.
5. Use Local SEO
Often, niche websites can have a geographic pull. If your content focused on a specific region, improve your local SEO. Jason Parks, CEO of The Media Captain, points out the role of local SEO. It draws the people who are searching for information related to a certain location.
Jason Park’s Top Tips
- Keep your information consistent across platforms
- Continually update your photos
- Proactively respond to reviews
- Check your categories on business listing websites
This helps you show up correctly in geographically-based searches.
6. Develop Un-gated Super Guides
Most organizations rely on gated offers to generate leads. However, most of your content should live outside of a gate, where a user must enter their contact information. Save the gates for a few select pieces of content that match the later stages of your audience’s decision-making process.
I would encourage niche websites to create un-gated super guides. These are massive-value posts that drive high engagement and shares.
This improves SEO for niche websites in several ways. First, it raises on-page time. This helps improve the trust ranking of your website because it signals to google that your page contains useful information. Second, it encourages backlinking. This increases your site’s authority as legitimate websites promote your content.
By putting valuable superguides for free on your website, you increase the likelihood that visitors engage with and share your content.
7. Partner for Backlinks
Similar to the point above, you need to earn legitimate backlinks. This can take a lot of time and energy because your content must be worthy of sharing. However, you’ll see the results of your labor over time.
Neil Patel, entrepreneur and writer, emphasizes the need to create content that earns backlinks. He points out several instances where he created useful guides that took many hours. Those guides drove most of his traffic, especially in the early days of his brand.
Similarly, niche websites have the opportunity to generate content that earns backlinks. Your passion for the subject will shine through in the quality.
8. Connect with Your Competitors
This counter-intuitive tip actually expands your reach in a niche market. Link to your competitors when they post great content. Don’t do it for the backlinks. Do it for your domain authority. By linking to another credible website, you boost your profile in two ways. First, Google favors sites with trustworthy links. Second, readers see you as a useful resource on that topic.
Above, Brian Clark at Copyblogger explains that that this actually builds trust for your website. Some may worry about helping their competition. However, it serves your website to link to credible sources. The value of a healthy link outweighs the benefit to a competing website.
9. Create Natural (Unpaid) Influencers
Although paid marketing influencers have been overused, you can still use influencers to generate traffic to your website. Look for natural ways to turn customers into advocates. The team at Over The Top SEO explains the role of influencers in creating natural backlinks to your niche website.
Influencer Top Tips
- Request a product review
- Post guest blogs with dofollow link back to your site
- Send press releases to journalists
- Create a customer giveaway
- Generate a roundup post
Each of these tactics can improve your SEO because they bring your content to your niche audience.
10. Piggyback Audiences
If you have just started a niche website, you may be struggling to build and audience. Draw in more visitors by piggybacking on someone else’s space. Eric Enge at Stone Temple suggests leveraging other people’s audiences as a way to increase your niche audience.
Eric Enge’s Top SEO Tips
- Build relationships with influencers
- Participate in nich conversations on social media
- Publish guest posts from other websites
Each of these tactics can bring your content into a new space. If that space matches your niche, your website will benefit from the new backlinks and readership.