#65 | 7 Non-Negotiables When Choosing A Niche

How to choose a niche?

That’s the question I get asked more than any other.

Because honestly, if you choose a bad niche, you’re going to have to work a LOT harder to get anywhere.

About 1000X harder than if you pick a great niche (rough guess but probs not too far off).

So today, I’m going to explain my niche selection process…

And share 7 non-negotiables (dealbreakers) when it comes to picking a niche.

Here we go…

Firstly, let me preface this by saying


The niches choose me.

What does that mean?


I’ve never in my life thought, “I want to start a new site, which niche shall I choose?”

Instead, I’ve found myself researching something online and then thought, “Wow, I should make a website about this.”

Now, if you haven’t started your first site yet,

You may be thinking:

‘Ok, good for you, but I DO need to choose a niche’.

And if that’s the case, my advice is this…

Think about what you’re into, or what you want to get into.

Spend some time searching for info to learn more about this topic.

And while you’re learning, think about how easy it is to find the info you want.

  • The perfect scenario – is that you already know more than what’s easily accessible on the internet.
  • The next-best scenario – is that you’re willing to learn more than what’s on the internet, from offline sources.

I’ve heard a lot of advice that says, ‘when you have a niche in mind, just start, don’t spend too long thinking about it’.

But I think that’s pretty bad advice, tbh.

People who do that just look down and go ‘I’ve got a dog’ or ‘I’ve got eczema’ or ‘I’m sitting on a chair’

And they start a site about dogs/eczema/chairs and it does terribly for a number of reasons.

Instead, treat choosing a niche like you’d treat choosing a tattoo.

Pick one, but then don’t commit yourself that same day!

Wait a while, and make sure you don’t end up with one of these…

So you’ve picked a niche, and there’s info that’s not covered well enough online…

Before you get started, here are the 7 things I would consider to be non-negotiable red flags…

1. Low Search Volume

It could be that the reason nobody has written the content is that nobody is searching for it!

You could rank number 1 and still get no traffic.

Get yourself a free trial of SEMRush and see how many people are searching.

2. Declining trends

I wouldn’t touch a niche that’s becoming less popular over time.

Head over to Google Trends (for free), choose ‘worldwide’ and ‘past 5 years’ and see how many people have been searching over time.

Here’s the Google Trends data for ‘keto diet’…

That one’s a big fat nope from me.

3. Cheap products

Making pennies on each sale as an affiliate is just not worth it.

If you sell a $5 product on amazon you might make 25c if you’re lucky.

But if you sell a $100/month subscription through another affiliate program, you could be making $30/month or more from a single sale. Recurring!

Even if you plan to monetise with ads, this matters.


Ads are often shown alongside relevant content.

So your post about designer watches will have ads for designer watches (or ads for other things aimed at rich people who buy designer watches).

Advertisers won’t pay anywhere near as much to be featured on your post about cheese graters.

4. NSFW topics

This is porn, gns, dr*gs, etc.

I don’t even want to put the words here for risk of this email ending up in your spam.

Anything that’s ‘not safe for work’, basically.

Traditional ad networks won’t touch a site with this content, so I’d only do it if I had a solid affiliate plan.

5. Super seasonal topics

I have a site that gets 10X the traffic for one month of the year.

Sounds fun, right?

Well no, it’s not actually.

You have to prep like crazy before the event and there’s no guarantee that you’ve done a good job, and by the time you know if you have, it’s too late.


6. Anything too narrow or too broad.

  • Too narrow = knitting needles
  • About right = knitting
  • Too broad = crafts
  • I’d recommend starting with a broad domain name and working through the narrow niches within it one at a time as categories.

Or – I sometimes do 10 posts on each category, see which performs the best and then build them out in order starting with the best one.

7. Anything ethically dubious

Remember to honour your personal values.

As a vegan, I’d never write about how to kill animals, for example.

But if a restaurant serves meat, I’ll happily include it in my round-up.

Only you can decide what you’re comfortable with.

Write about things that sit well with your beliefs unless you want to feel icky about yourself forever.

I hope you found that helpful.

If there’s anything, in particular, you’d like me to cover in future emails, reply and let me know.

I’m travelling so I won’t see it straight away, but I’ll get to it and add it to the list.

Until next time,