2015 Ultimate Niche Website SEO Strategy

Niche Website SEO Strategy

Search engine optimization is the most important factor when building your niche websites. Over two years ago I developed a niche website SEO strategy that has been used widely in my own practice. The problem is that over time Google has changed the way it values certain aspects of SEO. What followed was that many of my websites were penalized. If you are looking to build niche websites, this new strategy has proven to work for me and has drastically increased my traffic to my web properties. Keep in mind this is a link building strategy and you ALWAYS have to ensure you have proper on-page SEO optimization, the best internally link building, and are active on social networks to succeed!!!


What You Will Learn:

  • How to Effectively Research Keywords
  • How to Analyze Competition
  • How to Create a Niche Website Network That Lasts!

Niche Website SEO Strategy

Google has transitioned numerous times in the past few years leaving many niche website developers unsure of what direction to take. Do we build backlinks? Do we focus on content? Do we just write and hope for the best? Do we remove bad backlinks? Needless to say there are a lot of questions. The steps I am going to give you here will help you dodge all of these issues! I have been testing this method for the past year and a half and have concluded that it simple works!  The Primary Goal Now is to Create Niche Website Networks!

Unfortunately, gone are the days when we could spin articles, build backlinks to various sites, and our website would rank for our specific keywords. Now, the process takes a bit more time, effort, and skill. With that being said, it does not change the game completely. The focus is still on ranking for those keywords, but the method has changed!

Step 1: Keyword Analysis

Recommended Tools

Now, the first thing you absolutely need to do is to figure out your Primary Keyword. This is the keyword that you will focus on within your niche website. For example, your Primary Keyword may be “best puppy food”. Now, once you have this Primary Keyword you need to focus on analysis from a competition perspective. I have written about finding a niche before, so I won’t go into that here. The point is that you need to ensure some qualifications are met before you proceed.

Pages in Google

Google Search

Now, you can see above that the exact number of results for my Primary Keyword is less than 50,000. Is 50,000 a hard and fast number? Not necessarily because it depends on the niche. However, the lower the better. For example, I have a niche website with over 100,000 and the niche site is still ranking and producing. The primary point here is that you need to make it as easy as possible for yourself. If there is less information out there on a topic, then you inherently will be able to rank more easily!

Search Results


I realize the picture is small but get your reading glasses out, these are the first six results for the Primary Keyword exact search. What do we see? There are some reputable sites included such as about.com, Purina, and petMD. But do you also notice that bestpuppyfoodbrands.com and organic-pet-digest.com are in there too? This is already very attractive to me because I can be sure that other niche websites are currently ranking. Of course you will want to look at those websites first, but this is helpful. Bottom line: If all you see is MSN.com, CNN.com, Amazon.com and other VERY REPUTABLE sites, I would stay away as it is going to be close to impossible to outrank those!

Keyword Encyclopedia

Now that we have confirmed a certain comfort level with our desired Primary Keyword, we need to focus on generating more Secondary Keywords. The reason we generate Secondary Keywords is because we want to make sure we can capture as much traffic as possible with very focused topics! For example, if all you do is target the Primary Keyword then you are inherently going to be missing out on valuable traffic. Even more importantly, you will not be providing value to your readers and Google’s goal is to provide value to searchers!!

Go to the Google Keyword Tool and type in your Primary Keyword without any signals such as “best” or “review” or other words that are not the actual bulk of your Primary Keyword. In this case, I am now ONLY using “puppy food”. Make sure you click the box that only shows closely related terms!! Once your initial search results come up, you may see brand names included in the search. Exclude all terms related to brand names! Why? We want to gather all of the search terms that do not use brand names because brand names target their own brands. This is not to say you will not use those terms in your content, but you will NOT be targeting brands! Avoid unnecessary competition AT ALL COSTS! Here are my results below:


Notice that the brand names are absent! This is exactly what we want. Next, download all of the results into a spreadsheet. This will allow you to keep track of ALL of the possible Secondary Keywords you will be focusing on. Once you have downloaded all of those, you need to start thinking of domain names!

Step 2: Domain Name

I personally use BustaName as my primary tool for finding great domains. Use whatever is best for you but it provides and excellent way to just test out various names. Here, we are going to focus on what your actual www.xxxxxx.com name should be. Now I have to clear one thing up. A lot of people stopped using Exact Match Domains Names such as www.bestpuppyfood.com in the past couple of years. This is just dumb.

The whole thought was that initially Google gave website owners and edge in search rankings if you had an Exact Match Domain Name and now they don’t so we should stop using them. The point is that Google DID NOT and DOES NOT penalize websites with the exact match. It is just they don’t have the edge they once had. However, people are still the ones clicking links and THEY RESPOND TO EXACT MATCHES.

Now, I am not saying you need to have the exact match. If you do, great, if not, not a problem. What I am saying is that you want the SHORTENED Primary Keyword in there!!! So instead of www.bestpuppyfood.com you would have www.puppyfoodbrands.com. Believe it or not that domain is actually open as a I type this. The key is that our exact match Primary Keyword IS NOT in the domain, but our shortened version is!!

Step 3: Develop Keyword Anchor Texts

Now, if you remember in Step 2 you developed a whole listing of Secondary Keywords that include the Primary Keyword shortened.  This is where you will start to develop a List of Anchor Texts. An anchor text is something similar to the following: eating puppy food slowly.  It is the Secondary Keyword that you will be using to link to other content.

Here is my list below using my shortened Primary Keyword:


Alright, so I started out with over 400 possible Secondary Keywords and have cut it down to 30!! Here is my process: Once you have downloaded the spreadsheet, open it up and sort by competition. The lower the number, the less advertising competition, therefore likely less SEO competition. However, I normally only look at Secondary Keywords with 50 OR MORE searches!! The reason is because we are still looking for volume.

Any keywords with less than a .70 competition and more than 50 searches, I highlight in yellow until I get around 15 keywords. Next, I sort the list by search volume and pick out 15 or so competitive keywords with more than 200 to 300 searches per month. In the end we end up with Green Keywords and Yellow Keywords.  Yellow means these are less competitive, easier to rank for, and normally less volume. Green means more competitive, harder to rank for, and more volume. Keep this list as we will be using it in the next steps!! Above all, these will be some of your Keyword Anchor Texts for links you will build!

Step 4: oDesk Content Development

I have discussed how I outsource much of my writing to writers found on oDesk. This is probably the toughest process but follow the link above to get a grasp for oDesk. In a nut shell, we are going to be creating valuable content for our websites related to the link building process in the following steps. I normally engage 5 different writers for this process. Here are the steps I use:

  1. Setup job posting with the following requirements for each writer
    1. Minimum of 800 Words Per Article
    2. Provide 5 Yellow Keywords from the List Above
    3. Provide 3 Links to Reputable Websites to Incorporate Into Article – Normally I tell each writer to link out to Amazon.com products or Walmart.com products. Above all, ensure the links are actually on topic with the Yellow Keywords.

You will have each person draft 5 different articles. In the end you should have 25 different articles on the Yellow Keyword topics. This will form the basis for your SEO Strategy.

Step 5: Develop Standalone Websites

This is normally when everyone tells me that I spend way too much on a process for too little! Hear me out and I will explain what we are doing here. You are going to open up a separate BlueHost account that will be the primary place where you will host these standalone websites. I truly believe BlueHost is excellent for this because it is cheap and you can maintain 100 different websites with each account!!! I explain more about my love of BlueHost here!

Once you open an account, with a new domain, you need to purchase 4 more domains to use for your Standalone Websites. This means you will have a total of 5 Standalone Domain properties. On these sites, you will create all of the specific pages you need for a functioning website. Vary the content for those pages but attempt to make it as streamlined of a process as possible. Remember of course that you must install wordpress on each of these!

Once you have your 5 Standalone websites, I publish 5 articles from Step 4 on those websites. I normally publish 1 website each week for 5 weeks and sometime in the middle of the process I actually develop a sitemap and submit it to Google. This will help the Standalone Websites to get noticed by the search engines. The goal here is to provide valuable content from Step 4 and place it on Standalone Websites.

You might be asking doesn’t this cost a lot for so little? First off, you can use the BlueHost account for other niches. For example, I have nearly maxed out 3 different accounts using this process. So when we talk about building a niche website empire, you will understand that the hosting is not much. Yes, the domains will set you back $7 to $10 per year, but we are only talking about $50 max for a niche website that will be generating much more income than that!! So in the end, yes it costs money, but this is an effective method that has managed to provide value to readers and SEO value to my niche websites!

Step 6: oDesk Content Development

We will be using oDesk again but with different writers and a different purpose. Here are the steps I use:

  1. Setup job posting with the following requirements for each writer
    1. Minimum of 800 Words Per Article
    2. Provide 5 Yellow Keywords from the List Above
    3. Provide 3 Links to Reputable Websites to Incorporate Into Article – Normally I tell each writer to link out to Amazon.com products or Walmart.com products. Above all, ensure the links are actually on topic with the Yellow Keywords.
    4. Provide 1 Link to Content in Step 5

You will have each person draft 5 different articles. In the end you should have 25 different articles on the Yellow Keyword topics. As a part of those articles, you will link to the Standalone Websites you created using the Yellow Keywords.  At this point, you now have 5 articles linking to each individual Standalone Websites you have created above.

Step 6: Create WordPress.com and Blogger Sites

Now, at this point you have 25 articles with 5 a piece pointing to your Standalone Websites. The goal here is going to be to grow those Standalone Websites. I realize that none of us have the time nor the money to continue to build different websites and add more articles. However, here we are limiting it to 5 Standalone Website with ONE PURPOSE: To fuel growth on your main niche website!!!

To start, build 5 more, but different WordPress.com and Blogger sites. You are going to post 1 article per week onto these properties for 5 weeks. You will need to include about pages, videos, and other social sharing widgets or links to ensure the sites are usable. Remember, the content you are putting on these sites is valuable because you had people professionally write the articles. This should not be junk! The goal is to provide some support for your Standalone Sites!!

Step 7: Develop Your Niche Website

Once you have finished with all of the previous steps, you should have 5 Standalone Websites with 5 Supporting Websites that each have 5 articles linking to the Standalone Websites. This will create at least some linking power in Google and provides a very solid base for where we are going next. The following steps are exactly what I do when I am starting my Main Niche Website. This is a shortened version but read How to Start a Niche Website here.

Article Generation

I start out with the goal of creating 5 articles on very unique topics. In this case, you could create an article titled “Ultimate Puppy Dog Recipes” or “The Complete List of Large Dog Breed Puppy Food”. Above all, you need to ensure that the article topics are both unique and expansive as each article must have a minimum of 3,000 words!! I personally write each of these articles as it is extremely important to ensure they are quality. Beyond that, these are going to be the bulk of my natural link generation.

Next, go back to oDesk and get a writer that you have used in the past that did excellent work. You are going to ask them to write one article per week on a specific topic related to the Green Keywords. Now, you need to make sure each article is at least 1,000 words and they are of high quality. Engage the person for a period of 6 months. The key is that you need to ensure either YOU or SOMEONE is providing constant content to the site. If it is YOU, make sure you get that article out on a weekly basis.

In the end, you will have 24 1,000 word articles and 5 primary articles with over 3,000 words. Keep in mind I have not populated the site with ANY ADVERTISEMENTS OR PRODUCTS YET.

Step 8: Standalone Site Development

This is probably the toughest step but easily the most important. You need to start building up your standalone websites with more content. This does not have to be anything long or special but it does need to be something of value to potential readers. Keep in mind, at this point you have your Main Niche Website and 5 Standalone WebsitesThe goal is to start making those Standalone Websites Valuable!

Each week, I personally pick and individual Standalone Website and I write a 400 to 500 word article on an applicable topic. In this case, I start to write product reviews such as “Best Purina Dog Food for Large Dogs” and “Best Dog Toys for Small Dogs” and “How to Train Your Golden Retriever”. Remember, it is ONLY 1 QUALITY article per week. Now the important part. Each month, pick 1 site and embed a link to an applicable article using the Green Keywords as an anchor text linking to your Niche Website. For example, at the end of 12 months, you will have 12 different links. Make sure you rotate the Standalone Websites so the links do not come from a single Standalone Website.

What are we doing here? We are naturally, creating and effective network of sites all based around one Niche Website. This is different from a Private Blog Network because what we are actually doing is creating constant content for the Standalone Websites, which often bring in some income on their own, to your main Niche Website that has the best content on it. We are also still creating value but are expanding it to our own network.

Step 8: Niche Website Expansion

Once you have done this, you will certainly have built some strong link juice to your main Niche Website. You may be asking yourself if this is worth the effort? It is simply because you are trying to build something more than a one and done niche website. You are trying to build a niche website that actually has the legs to continue. Is this completely passive? Not at the beginning one bit. However, your next goal will be to continue to build up your niche website!

What does this mean? This means that each month you write one article for one Standalone Website and one article, another massive 2,000 word or more post for your Niche Website. What will be the results? You will not only get natural links, but you will have a layer of niche websites that can support your primary Niche Website no matter what Google may throw at you next.

I get it, this is a long process, but it works. I have managed to build excellent networks of sites. To me, I am coining this as Niche Networks. Some people say Authority Websites are the answer, and in some cases they are, but to truly create an excellent and passive income rich Niche Website, you need to focus on building Niche Networks.

Alex Ryan

Alex Ryan

Online Entrepreneur at Niche Website Blog
Alex is the founder of Niche Website Blog, a blog about online businesses, blogging, and financial freedom. He discusses how his entrepreneurial ventures have evolved and how he paid off debt, created online businesses, and ultimately creates financial freedom.
Alex Ryan

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