How to build a Niche Site - Short and Sweet!
This is the quick no fluff version of the Niche Site Guide. It will contain all the steps necessary to get a niche site running without all of the fluff. For more detail in each area or topic you can go through the rest of the guide but make sure you read through this cliff notes version to help understand the general idea. Some people will be able to build a niche site with this article alone while others will need more detail, and that's just fine. So as always my guides have the short version at the beginning with a breakdown or chapters with details in a hierarchy in the right columns. So lets get started.
Find a niche topic to create your site about
First things first, you can't have a niche site if you haven't picked out a niche. Building niche sites aren't hard but the topic you pick matters a lot. So get to thinking in general about several topics that preferably you might know something on. It can be fairly general and might want to enjoy it. --this isn't required like it would be for an authority site but for your first niche it might be a good idea--
Keyword Research for your general idea
Now that you have a few general ideas on what you want to create a niche site on, its time to narrow down your general idea into something a little more targeted. You will want to do some research with the google adwords tool which is free or a paid tool. You are basically trying to find a topic within your original general idea that is more focused. It will allow you to rank easier and it is also easier to become an expert on the more narrowed topic. --Some people will be able to choose a broader niche and succeed but for your first niche site choose a more specific topic and keyword phrase---
Choose your main keyword phrase
You now have a narrowed topic. Pick the keyword phrase that you have found that has the most searches within that topic relative to its toughness to rank. Check your competition. If not using a tool just type that phrase into google and look at the first page results. If you find sites that are perfectly optimized and every single one of the first page sites is solely about that target choose the next most searched keyword on your list. Do this until you find a keyword phrase that has less tough competition. Maybe there are some large sites on the first page for your keyword that the site is specific to the topic. Just the page is. That isn't a bad thing. Or you see a single youtube video or an article on ezinearticles that is in the top ten. This is a good sign. Go for that phrase.
Choose a web host
Now you need a website. Go to your favorite web hosting company, if you don't have one choose one. I use godaddy but I have my own dedicated servers. You don't need this to get started there are other companies that will sell single sites for cheap. Id suggest choosing one like godaddy even though some people hate them. Try bluehost as well as many marketers seem to like them. Anyways make sure the host lets you register your domain name with them and one more thing. You will want a content management system. So make sure they provide one. I use drupal, its a little tougher for newbies so you might want to use wordpress. ---I use drupal as it is extremely flexible, Ive written about it in othe articles check them out but for now go with whats easy, either way you want a content management system even for your first site, just get used to it as it is where websites have gone to.----
Choose your website domain name
Yep pick a domain name. Some will say make it the same as the keyword phrase you picked. It isn't that important but it should be close to the keyword phrase. Make sure it is relevant to the topic, if your keyword phrase was "best dog collars" you probably its probably taken anyways so be creative. Something like "mybestdogcollars" or "mytopdogcollars" The title tags of your front page should still have "best dog collars" in it but if your domain name is a tiny bit off it will be ok. You could do "bestdogcollarstoday" or whatever, I think you get the general idea.
Create the site
This is fairly simple with the content management system. There are a ton of free themes for wordpress and drupal so pick one you like. Get a feel for how they work. The theme is the look and feel of the site and you want to be pretty good. But don't get caught up on looks. You can always change it later quickly but just changing the theme. That is the beauty of a cms like drupal or wordpress. Any content you created stays and the look and feel changes with a couple button clicks.
Add your first post
Now you will add your first page post or create your first page. It should be a good picture with good article on the main phrase you are trying to rank for. Don't overdo it with keywords but make it read very well and flow. Make sure its title matches your keywords and you have a meta description that entices readers to click on your search result plus it should have the keyword in it as well. --That is something many people leave out, in your meta description it is what is shown in the search results, make it catchy and make people want to click it---
Add more content
Now you have your first post on the main subject do some more keyword research. Every post should have a little keyword research involved. I suggest doing a couple of posts first that are a little tougher to rank for like your first post. Then the rest should be really easy to rank for. Maybe keyword phrases that are only search for 30 to 100 times per month --make sure the competition is still weak though-- find about 20 to 30 easier keywords and 4 or 5 tougher keywords (like your main keyword) start writing or having articles written for you if you can't write on each keyword phrase. Don't post them all yet, make one or two posts starting with a tougher keyword.
Start promoting your site now
Before you post all the articles you will now start promoting. Go to rss submission sites and post your rss feed to quite a few of these. Most are free and it basically is for syndication. Gets your site listed with the search engines and helps google know about new posts. Now search for semi related blogs and forums. Make a list of them all. Keep this list.
Commenting and forum posting
This will be onging a little every couple of days but don't overdue it. You will post comments that are good to relevant blogs. Don't spam them it will be a waste of your time. Make the comments meaningful, include your link to your main site in your name, if they allow a keyword you can use it but use your name mostly or an alias anyways. At the same time register and become a part of the forums you found. Use a signature link in the forum posts. Make your comments valid. Ok, just do a couple of both of these every few days.
Now get back to adding content. Slowly add another article or post that you created every day or every few days. Start with a couple of the tougher to rank for ones, but save a couple for later. Now do the extremely easy ones. You should now be able to post an article that is targeted for very easy keyword phrase and get it to rank without doing anything else. Post it in a few days it will be in the top 50 then it will probably jump up. (Make sure your content is good now). You will get a little traffic for these. They will naturally get their own links. Although for struggling easy terms you could do a "couple" links directly to those pages. Do not overdue this, if you make good content it will get linked to naturally, it doesn't take much for these easy keywords. You will then have some small traffic from people clicking your comments, forum posts and the top rankings for the easy posts. These people will search your site and some will look at those tougher ranked pages and might link to them or bookmark them. This is why I say add a couple tough ones first then do the easy ones. Now you should have to do little link building, it will be done naturally and this is the importance of doing things this way and having several very easy to rank for keyword articles. ----These easy keyword articles should still be closely related to your main target phrase or phrases but easy to rank for. You might only get one visit per day from them but they are the key ingredient to natural growing websites That is important so reread it, its what most niche sites fail to do -- Having twenty of these leads to twenty or more natural visitors a day. When they don't bounce from your site google notices, when they link to your other articles google notices. Which helps your tougher keyword web pages. Now you can add the other tough keyword phrase articles.
Thats the basics
I know that sounds easy and it is but don't rush it, do all of the above over a couple months and it will take care of itself. You might have to do a little extra work for tougher niches but it will work. In the rest of the guide which is coming Ill go into more detail for those that might want it or need it. So get started if niche sites are what you want to do.