Starting a blog is always an ideal option for creating a stream of online income. One of the hardest parts about getting started is choosing your topic or niche. Should your blog be personal or in a specific niche? Either can earn income online. I’ll outline the differences in a personal blog vs niche blog for creating an online income.
One thing that matters most regardless of whether you create a personal or a niche blog is that you get started and stick with it. Blog abandonment is huge. Many people never know the success that is possible because they give up too soon.
Difference Between a Personal Blog vs Niche Blog
Knowing the difference between the two blog types is important so that you have a better understanding of which direction you want to go in.
Blogging requires ongoing content creation. If you start a blog on a topic that you are not truly interested in, you will eventually stop creating content.
Therefore, it is important to figure out if you want to keep your blog personal or focus on a specific niche that you have a great interest in.
What is a Personal Blog?
A personal blog is just that…personal. You can blog about anything related to you. You can track your moods, goals, frustrations, favorite books, and so on.
What is a Niche Blog?
A niche blog is a type of blog that focuses on one specific topic. There are all types of niches and any niche blog can earn income.
Here are some niche examples:
- Personal finance
- Weight loss
There are all types of sub-niches within the broader niches. For example, if you are interested in personal finance, you may focus on the sub-niche of getting out of debt.
Weight loss sub-niches could include specific diets such as Keto, Paleo, and more. Gardening could focus on the sub-niche of growing a garden in a city (apartment living.)
Which Type of Blog Makes the Most Money? – Personal or Niche?
All blogs have the potential to earn income. However, niche blogs tend to earn more than personal blogs. This is especially true if you want to promote affiliate products.
There are personal blogs that can earn a good income. I remember a blog that I used to follow years ago.
The blogger was a woman but she remained anonymous. She would blog about going from living in her car, being in debt, to working her way out of debt and becoming financially free.
It was an interesting personal blog to read. Another that I remember from years ago was that of a taxi cab driver living in New York. She would blog about the interesting people she came across in her cab.
Personal blogs tend to earn income from sponsored ads rather than promoting specific products. Although, all things are possible. It really depends on what you’re writing about.
I do recommend starting a niche blog if you are focusing on earning an income online. Niche blogs can earn income from sponsored ads as well such as Google’s Adsense ads or Mediavine ads.
Promoting affiliate products can earn a significant amount of income depending on your niche and the product that you are promoting.
Here is a flowchart of how affiliate marketing works on a blog:
The key to promoting affiliate products is when you have personally used or know that the product(s) you recommend will benefit your readers.
Here is a link to an article I wrote previously which explains how affiliate marketing works for beginners.
Your earning potential is really unlimited when it comes to running a blog.
Why a Personal Blog May Be More Difficult to Earn Income With
A personal blog is a bit more challenging to earn income because it often lacks focus. You may blog about your favorite movie one day and the next you are writing about why you hate your job.
You have to remember that people that are searching on the web are often seeking information to answer a question they may have.
Think about why you search the internet. Are you looking for a recipe? Need help figuring out how to get a stain out of your favorite dress?
Personal blogs don’t often address the queries of internet users. While some people may come across your personal blog and enjoy your writing, it will likely be extremely difficult to generate web traffic.
SEO and Keywords
Blogging means relying on SEO (search engine optimization.) A big part of helping your blog posts rank in the search results is by using keywords—preferably long-tail keywords.
A long-tail keyword is a keyword that contains several words and is way more targeted. For example:
- Broad keyword: credit cards
- Long-tail keywords: credit cards that earn travel miles
The keyword “credit cards” would be extremely difficult to rank for. Competition would be fierce. However, writing about credit cards that earn travel miles would be easier.
It would still be competitive but you would have less competition.
The Keyword Research Tools That I Use
You can do your own long-tail keyword research absolutely free. I don’t use anything fancy. I do pay for one keyword tool that I really like.
Otherwise, I utilize two free options to include Google’s auto-complete:
and Answer The Public. I really like using Answer the Public because it provides you with questions that people type in relating to your keyword.
The only paid keyword tool that I use is called Jaaxy. It is simple to use and easy to understand:
When using Jaaxy, I choose keywords that have an average monthly search of 100+ and a QSR at 100 or less.
If I find keywords using Google or Answer the Public, I will check them using Jaaxy to see if they meet my criteria.
My Own Tips for Running a Blog
Here are some tips that I have for running and earning income with a blog:
Choose a Topic You Truly Enjoy
- Running a blog means creating content on a regular basis. Every day is awesome, 2 to 3 times a week is ideal. If your blog is on a topic you don’t care much about, you won’t be motivated enough to keep creating content.
Research Your Keywords for an Entire Month
- I am not perfect at this but it is a tremendous time-saver when you take the time to do it. You can simply choose the keyword you want to write about that day. It is a great way to increase your productivity.
- SEO is a slow process. A blog post you write today won’t likely begin to rank until 6-months later. As your blog ages and becomes more established, ranking may not take as long. Remember that the work you put in now pays off later.
Don’t Give Up
- It is challenging to put work into a blog and not have any immediate results. The key is to not give up. Have faith in the work you are putting in. Read other blogger success stories for inspiration.
Blogging to earn income with affiliate marketing is possible regardless of the type of blog that you start.
However, I do recommend choosing a niche blog over a personal blog. Most bloggers that earn income online do so with a niche blog.
If you are ready to get started earning income with a blog and need help starting, check out these ready-made niche affiliate websites.