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Beating the Search Engine: Creating a Niche Site with Blogger or Blogspot
What is a Niche site?
Well, a Niche site or blog is one that is intended for a very specific market or demographic. For example, you can make a site or blog that caters to females who want to buy winter jackets. Now the totality of the blog you will be creating will be focusing on these keywords and others that might be related to them. For instance, you can give your blog a very girly and "fashionable" design. Then maybe put photos of stylish winter jackets for women.
Then once you are already writing your articles you will need to focus on optimizing them. Since you know that your keywords will be "Female winter jackets" then you can just add other relevant keywords such as "discount coupons" or "super sale" and many others. Maybe add a bit of your catchy copywriting skills and come up with article taglines "Who says you can't be fashionable when there's a blizzard?" or "Top 10 Most Affordable Women's Winter Jackets".
So anyway, you get the idea. The plan is to use keyword trackers and blog about the most trending keywords for your niche site. The longer and more specific keywords you have then the better. And because online search engines are beatable, as suggested by my article title, you can use search engine optimization techniques to have an edge and make sure that your Niche site will be ranking on the first page of Google. All of this will be discussed in this article.
I will be talking about this SEO experiment I decided to conduct a while ago. Basically, I decided to create a new niche blog on Blogger that focus on Lechon or roasted pig. I was actually able to create it, design it, add links, and make 5 articles in less than two hours (you'll see later why I timed myself). Go here to check out the niche site I created: Lechon Lover's Blog.
Why not buy your own domain?
First off, I'd just like to mention that maybe you have noticed how I've placed the ads in my blog. This isn't random at all. It's actually something I learned from a webdesign class back in school. Supposedly when people scan through a site they do it with an "F" pattern so I was thinking I'd strategically place my ads in those places. It's always nice to have some sort of scientific basis when doing these things.
Okay, now on the most obvious question of having one's own domain. Of course it would be a great advantage and surely a stronger brand identity. But I also think that people should stop thinking of it with such a zero-sum mentality. I think there's something so untapped and overlooked with using Blogger or Hubpages or other blogging sites that offer monetization and a free subdomain. It's really all about having the proper techniques and reckless creativity.
I have compared them in my Blogger vs Hubpages article. I have personally experienced the ranking power of Hubpages. I mean, their staff are surely equipped with amazing SEO skills and really try to improve their services everyday. Blogger on the other hand, as I have mentioned in the comparison article, is owned by Google and it wouldn't make sense why it wouldn't be good for optimization. If I had my own domain, I would have to do all of that work by myself. So one undeniable benefit would be convenience. It's absolutely fine that they get a share from my income because we both benefit from this trade anyways.
SEO Keyword Trackers
How do you know what keywords to use?
There are many websites that offer keyword tracking services. This one that I go to is very detailed and even shows the numbers of competitors with the specific keyword suggestions. That's really useful information.
As you can see, I typed the word "lechon" and it suggested relevant and trending keywords and shows me the average query per day in the different search engines. I mean, not that the other search engines are even relevant. Google is just a dominating giant ,that's for sure. But that being said, trying to beat Google by myself is like a David and Goliath battle. But that's why the plan is to have the right tools and strategies and it becomes very possible.
And so I chose different keywords and decided to write about them as fast as I can. I was thinking that since I can write 5 in less than two hours, it is something I can do everyday. Of course, as you try to increase the speed of writing and amount of output, the quality is sacrificed. So I make sure I try to put as much quality and relevance to my articles as I can.
I actually think that if American Idol wasn't on I would have written more articles and would have been more focused and increased the quality even more. I actually just wrote 5 articles, but decided to add another one cause I didn't really have anything better to do. Now the plan is to see how well these articles will rank on Google. I will be blogging about how well or how bad they ranked in Google. Of course, even if it all fails, at least I was able to create a lot of backlinks to my other articles that are already ranking and getting a lot of traffic.
White Hat vs Black Hat SEO
Obviously with this knowledge that the search engine is beatable, many people will be taking advantage of it. Many ethical issues must be considered because this sometimes leads to what they refer to as "black hat" SEO or people who just want to rank even if they don't have relevant information. This includes me.
Many of my articles are actually ranking even when I don't have the credibility or right information to talk about them. Of course Google, with their massive research capabilities and all the geniuses they hire, is trying hard everyday to eliminate this. I even wrote about the IBM Watson Challenge where a computer challenged two humans in a game of Jeopardy. I am sure technology will one day be able to provide the most relevant results.
This is why recently I have been focusing more on quality and writing about things that I am really knowledgeable in and have motive to help others when I write by sharing what I know. This helps in keeping a standard of quality with my writings and at the same time, I realized, it is actually much easier to write. It becomes more natural because the topics are really ones that are close to my heart.
Of course I will continue to write on it. My plan is to write about all the suggested keywords. The goal is to be the number 1 result in Google's front page even without my own domain for all queries about the word "Lechon"--conquering the internet one keyword at a time.
Also I have made a new blog specifically on my ideas and thoughts about SEO here: Beating the Search Engine Blog