Post HCU World for Niche Site Owners

Manuel Campos

Do you want to make money blogging?, are you thinking about creating a niche site?

The terms mean different things for different people but Niche Sites focus on a specific topic, industry, or audience segment. Niche sites typically target a narrow and specialized audience rather than trying to appeal to everyone.

If you want to start a new site, you better check your sources because Google kinda hates niche sites.

Since September 2023, Google started hitting sites algorithmically so if you want to make money writing content online, you better distance yourself from recommendations that put a target on your site.



The Niche Site Bubble Burst.

I have never made tons of money from display ads and affiliate marketing but there were moments when I thought that the best thing that you could do with your time was to create a WordPress website, write content and start making money with it.

I started my first blog as a resource for my students and when I realized that I could make money with it, I started listening to all the voices in the space saying that you should diversify and create more sites.

I decided to create more blogs in niches I knew a little about because lots of publishers kinda did that.

I created WordPress sites and bought domain names to start niches in Spanish or English about minimalism, running, anime, teaching, religious beliefs, WordPress etc.

I killed some of those sites because I lost enthusiasm after writing less than ten posts on those niches.

I kept a few because back in the days, if you couldn’t work actively in those sites, it was worth to keep it, let it sit for a while, write a post every now and then and start adding content again when you didn’t have much on your plate.

Then Artificial Intelligence came and made writing content easier so I started playing with Jasper a little bit to write content for sites who have been neglected a bit.

I felt that AI was going to speed up the writing process and that Google was gonna do something about it because they were not going to let niche site creators pollute the internet.

The helpful content came in September 2023 and I lost some traffic but none of my websites were hit.

Then the March Core Update came to finish what it started last September, some of my sites lost some traffic again but one of them got clapped real hard.

The site wasn’t getting tons of views but I was happy with the direction where the site was going.

I bought the domain in 2020, I wrote like 40 posts myself and then I got a Jasper subscription and added like 60 more posts in 2021, Then I used the free version of ChatGPT and added probably another 50 posts in 2022 and 2023.

Now the site gets no love from Google, it went from 500 clicks on September to 6 to 8 clicks on March.

Niche sites clapped by Google

The sites gets like 90 to 100 views from Bing and makes me twelve bucks a month from Display ads.


Thoughts on the Update?

I think that a core update targeting not helpful content was necessary but I don’t agree about the results.

Quora is pretty much garbage, I avoid and I think you should avoid it if you don’t want to waste your time.

I like Reddit but I don’t want to see it seven times in the first ten results.

If you didn’t test a product and wrote a review and a big brand didn’t test anything either and did the same thing that you did, I have no issue seeing the big brand ranking about you.

If your reviews are legit and your reviews are not ranking above big brands or not ranking at all, Google should be ashamed of itself.

Too bad for the sites who got hit and deserved something better from Google.

It sucks if a site is 100% trash and it is still ranking, I wonder how they get away with it.

Let’s not play victim here, there were bunch of people writing content about lots of different subjects without a clue about the subject matter. I don’t think that they will be missed.

The serious issue here is: Can we rely on Google Algorithm to get it right and deal with the collateral damage?

If your site is found guilty by association, they won’t do anything to save your *ss. That’s scary as hell.

Finally, not all sites deserve to comeback.


Do I Recommend Creating New Niche Sites?

Helpful Content Update

If you want to create a niche site or an authority site, you should probably:

  • Choose a niche that you really care about. I don’t think that you can pick a topic you don’t know or care much about and start a blog and be successful at it.
  • You should try to build an audience on social media.
  • You have to build an email list.
  • You should probably build a brand, if you don’t know what that means, pay attention to what Kevin Espiritu is doing at EpicGardening.com.
  • Now more than ever, check the competition and see if you have what it takes to beat what’s already ranking. (Authority, Budget, Team, Resources)

I think the days in which you could write 50 posts, sit back and relax are probably gone.

Making money from niche sites is getting even more difficult and more problems might come as Artificial Intelligence makes their way into search engines.


Niche Sites Gurus and So-called Experts

Niche site gurus and so-called experts who shared some of their projects know that we know that their sites got also hit by the helpful content update.

Those gurus are still trying to explore other sources of traffic and they still have the same f*cking desire to sell you a course or a membership or some sh*t you probably don’t need.

Keep this in mind if you want to give your hard-earned money to the gurus who prey on Facebook, Twitter or Reddit

  • At this point, no site who got hit pretty hard by the update seems to have recovered so we could say that nobody has figured out how to bring a niche site destroyed by the update back to life. No content, Backlinks or tricks has worked so far.
  • If a niche site guru shows a new site ranking pretty well, we don’t know if that site is gonna be here within six months or a year. Those charts are test right now.
  • If you have a site with lots of authority ranking well, that’s a different game. Those are not niche sites. You can compare your sites to those sites with big budgets, big teams and big authority.
  • No matter what people point out as the reason for your site getting hit, there are lots of cases to counter that arguments. Sites with lots of ads have been hit, site with no ads have also been hit. Sites with a mega menu have probably been hit, sites with a simple *ass menu have also been hit.

Big Brands or Big Websites Mostly Winning?

Mr French

I can’t stop thinking about Mr French from the Departed film, when I read that someone is whining about a big brands getting away with whatever they are doing.

Well, I’m the guy who tells you there’s guys you can hit and guys you can’t. Now, that’s not quite a guy you can’t hit, but he’s almost a guy you can’t hit

Mr. French – The Departed

So if you find a big website or a big brand placing ads every two paragraphs, they can get away with it, your site won’t, they can have mega websites, you can’t.

I understand the frustration but there is a difference between high authority sites and niche sites.


Manuel Campos, English Professor

Manuel Campos

I am José Manuel. I am writing about things I know and things that I am learning about WordPress. I hope you find the content of this blog useful.

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