How Much Content Should You Be Using on Your Niche Sites?
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Have you ever wondered how much content you should have on your website? Have you ever questioned whether you had too little or too much content on your niche site?
If you have, then this post is for you!
A “niche site” is a difficult thing to define. In my view, the word “niche” is less defined by the amount of content the site has, and more by the type of content it covers. If the site covers a very specific topic and has a narrow focus, it's a niche site. If it covers a broad category like “technology news” or lots of different topics like an article directory or a news type site, then it's not a niche site.
So, if all your site talks about is “worm farms,” it's definitely a niche site. Your worm farm site could have one page of content or 1000 pages of content, but it's still a niche site because of its narrow focus on one particular topic.
So, the important aspect of a niche site is finding that focus on a particular keyword or set of keywords. I always use Long Tail Pro to search for keywords, and I have shown how I do keyword research here and here, and many other places.Check out Long Tail Pro here!
Once you have decided on a keyword/theme for your site, the content you write should be focused around that theme.
Ultimately, it's hard for me to say exactly how much content YOUR site should have, because it always depends on each individual circumstance and your unique goals. However, there's a pretty big range, from just a single page of content, up to a site with maybe thirty posts, and then up to a site with HUNDREDS or even THOUSANDS of posts.
Let's look at the differences between them!
A One Page Site?
Wait, a SINGLE page? Isn't one page of content too little for a niche site?
Maybe, but maybe not!
The answer depends on the purpose of your site and the keywords that you are targeting. As I mentioned in a previous post, lots of the sites that I built in August of last year are essentially one page of content! I really did these more as an experiment than anything else.
You see, about a year ago I built a site that was supposed to have 5 original articles on it. However, I somehow got distracted and only ended up putting one page of content on the site targeting my primary keyword.
A couple of months later, I realized what I had done and went back to look at how the site was doing. To my surprise, it was ranking #1 in Google for its chosen keyword! It was consistently earning me $3 to $5 per day with just one article on the site!
So, of course I decided to test this out on a few other sites. Most of the sites I built in August started with only 1 page, and you can see that they have done very well as far as rankings and earnings are concerned.
However, this is a very risky move… I have since started adding content to some of the sites. It's risky because of Google's Quality Guidelines about “little or no original content.” Although, I still make the argument that a one-page site with an in-depth, well written article is more than enough to answer a searcher's query.
Just be very, very careful here. I'm not recommending that people should start doing this. All I'm suggesting is that it's very possible to rank a one-page site on the top of Google for your chosen keywords.
After all, lots of keyword queries can indeed be answered in one page or less. Here are some Google queries that could be answered in a page or less:
- What is a prime number?
- Today's date
- Un-break my heart lyrics
- Chicken cordon bleu recipe
- How to copy and paste
At the same time, a lot of these queries can be pulled out into the featured snippet, a box at the top of the page that looks like this:
That's why it's important to be thinking in terms of more in-depth, long tail queries that you can answer. You can find these search terms with Long Tail Pro.Check out Long Tail Pro here!
Google Ranks Pages, Not Sites
Here's the deal: most queries can probably be answered sufficiently in one page! This is why Google ranks PAGES and not SITES!
Especially after the Hummingbird and RankBrain updates, Google is perfectly capable of understanding what an article is all about – it would rather than see one quality post on the topic with a variety of related keywords, rather than a bunch of thin posts that each cover a different aspect of the topic.
In other words, Google primarily looks at the content of each individual page – rather than looking at the overall value of the site – when ranking pages. That's why it's called “PageRank,” not “SiteRank.”
Google assigns a PageRank to each individual article on a site, which means the homepage of a site might have a PR of 6, but the ranking article may only have a PR of 1. This is why you should always look at the PR and number of links to the individual page and not the entire site when analyzing the competitiveness of a keyword.
Now, when I say a site with one page of content, here is what I mean:
- One original article targeting the primary keyword
- A contact page
- An About Us Page
And that's about it!
An Example of a 5 Page Site
You might be able to get started with just a single page of content, but to do a better job of staying within Google's quality guidelines, I would advise adding more articles sooner rather than later.
My standard niche site is usually started with around 5 pages of original content. These additional 4 articles on the site would cover related topics that the human reader would be interested in learning about.
So, if my chosen keyword was “Chicken Cordon Bleu Recipe,” I might write articles targeting the following keywords:
- Primary Keyword: Chicken Cordon Bleu Recipe (Possible Title: “The Easiest Chicken Cordon Bleu Recipe Ever!”)
- Secondary Keyword: Baked Chicken Cordon Bleu (Possible Title: “Why This Baked Chicken Cordon Bleu Meal is the Healthiest Choice”)
- Secondary Keyword: Best chicken recipes (Possible Title: “The Best Chicken Recipes for 2012”)
- Secondary Keyword: How to Cook Chicken Cordon Bleu (Possible Title: “How to Cook Chicken Cordon Bleu”)
- Secondary Keyword: Chicken Recipes for Dinner (Possible Title: “The Top 10 Chicken Recipes for Dinner”)
Of course, I haven't researched whether these keywords are good or not, but hopefully this gives you an idea of the types of additional articles that might be included on a niche site.
However, the question remains: how many articles is ideal?
A site dedicated to chicken cordon bleu may not be able to handle much more than 10 articles because it is such a narrow focus.
However, a site that is more broad – like “best chicken recipes” – could easily handle 100 articles or more as you review individual chicken recipes and how to cook them.
A Thousand Page Niche Site?
So, how many posts should your niche site actually have?
Well, that really depends on the topic you have chosen and your own personal goals for the site. If you have a site dedicated to “hosting reviews” or a more in-depth topic, you could easily fill a site with 1000 pages or more.
A site with a primary keyword of “hosting reviews” could easily dedicate an article to every hosting service out there and discuss each one's pros and cons. Since there are easily several hundred different hosting services out there, that's a lot of content right there!
Then, the site could also go into more depth about the benefits of VPS hosting, or discuss specifics about hosting WordPress sites, or best practices for organizing your server. The potential topics could go on and on.
The Amount of Content I Use for Niche Sites
As mentioned, I have built sites with as few as a single page, and yes, they can rank very well in Google (#1).
However, my standard niche site starts out with about 5 original articles. It may never grow to more than 5 articles, but if it's a site that's earning well, and I see room for expansion, then I will begin adding more secondary articles. I do have multiple sites with over 100 pages of content.
For the past month or two, I am trying to focus on niches that I can grow into something more significant, so I have been starting the sites out with 20 to 30 pages of content. Then, if I can get them to rank well, I will begin adding even more content.
What Are Your Niche Site Goals?
In the end, the decision is really yours.
Are you hoping to build 100 small sites, or are you set on building one or two larger sites? The strategy is still essentially the same in terms of picking a primary and then secondary keywords, but the amount of content can vary greatly depending on your overall goals and focus on the site.
In my opinion, due to the direction Google's algorithm has been going, you probably will get more traction with just a few sites where you can build up some authority and a strong brand. I'd put a decent amount of content on them – anywhere from 20 to 50 posts – targeting relevant long-tail keywords using Long Tail Pro.Check out Long Tail Pro here!
I hope this discussion has given you something to think about in relation to how much content you should have on your own niche site. I have simply shared what I have done and what's worked for me – it's hard to get too specific about what makes sense for you, because that takes into account your niche topic, keywords, competition, and monetization approach.
Ideally, you will be able to consider the options and develop a strategy that makes sense for yourself.
Anyway, I would be very interested in hearing your thoughts on the subject. Please leave a comment below!
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