Blogging today is a more competitive field than it has ever been before. In fact, many of the big-name bloggers that you idolize did not work their ways up in such a difficult market – they were the pioneers of blogging – they got into the business before it became everyone’s business: Google estimates that there are close to a billion blogs on the web, and that a new blog is being created every second.
Don’t let this statistic deter you, however, because I’ve put together a list of a couple of tips to help you make your blog stand out from the rest of the sites in your niche. Follow these guidelines, and you’ll be sure to make your blog unique, useful, and more prone to receive high levels of stable traffic!
Do What Other Sites Aren’t
I want you to get a list of some of the top sites in your niche; the sites which get the most traffic and have active readers and an active community. Now, I don’t want you to take this tip the wrong way, so listen carefully. Sure, there are obviously things that the blog is doing great, it’s a leader in its industry, but there are always things that you can fill-in on – areas that aren’t covered as heavily already.
Think about it this way – I write for another blog that likes to focus on geeky culture and products, a niche that, unfortunately, is pretty saturated. So, I went and took a look at some sites and asked myself, “what are they not doing that the community needs?”
I saw that while many blogs in this area of expertise were offering great, concise product reviews, they were offering barely any tutorial type posts or helpful articles – things of that nature. Thus, I took advantage of this gap in my topic, and saw my traffic go up as a result.
Don’t read this and automatically think that tutorials will solve all of your problems – your market could already be flooded with tutorial posts. It may turn out, in fact, that there aren’t as many product posts in your niche – this would be the opposite of the situation I just described, but it is not inconceivable. Take a look at some of the sites out there are doing, and see if there’s something you can add – if there’s a gap you can fill.
Don’t Try To Steal Readers
Many readers of high-quality blogs like the ones I discussed above become loyal and attached to that site – that is where they go for expertise on a certain topic, and they’re sometimes blind to other opportunities if the site has everything that they need. To be honest, it’s going to be very difficult for you to do something better than another well-established site and end up stealing a large chunk of their audience. There are a couple reasons that this isn’t a good strategy:
1. Blogger Relations
The blogging community is supposed to be a beneficial environment – bloggers help bloggers, bloggers link to bloggers, etc. When you start doing the same thing as another prominent writer, and they see that you’re stealing a ton of their visitors, I can assure you that relations will not be comfortable. This can result in that writer, who obviously has connections, bad-mouthing you to others in your niche who you may want to later make connections with.
The above situation can happen, but remember, chances are that you won’t be able to take much of their traffic anyway, so there’s not a huge incentive to try and do something better than another blogger.
2. The General Dislike Of Change
For whatever reason, many internet users, unless they have an issue with the content they’re getting from a certain site, will not switch to visiting a different blog on a regular basis. They figure that they are happy where they are, and that there’s no need to switch. This makes it even more arduous of a task to take traffic from well-known sites – the only reason that you will gain readers from such a blog is if they see you are offering something that they can’t get at their favorite blog – if you give the same kind of content, users won’t feel the need to check you out any further.