Is it worth starting a blog in a saturated market just because I enjoy the content?
I started a small automotive blog that is basically dwarved by the bigger blogs out there. Mine focuses more on providing usedul tips and guides for saving money while buying cars, but also has opinion based content on models and automotive segments.
It's been about 3 months since I have launched and I have only had about 2k views, most from social links but only 55 organic results. Is this good or should I not waste time?
I really love cars and it's been fun, but it is also very time consuming and has taken several hundreds of dollars. Will anyone ever notice my content?
I feel that is a bit of a gambled statement. The blogging world is already jam packed with people that covers a lot of areas, but it does not go to say about your voice and thoughts. If ya really want to get yourself out there more, look into Search Engine Optimization (SEO) users or try to gather more intel how to get more viewers/followers, but overall, it's up to you on whether you truly want to keep it up. Blogging is always going to be time consuming. It is not easy, especially when topics start to not be as fresh (but I don't think that is the case you are stating).
I'm dealing with a similar questions as the writer about a blog on my hobbies- based on the comments in this thread, its common. Blogging in general is saturated, so you need to understand your reasons for blogging.
My blog is new enough that I am still excited over the technical challenges (ie. learning markdown, exploring social media, learning to take better photos etc). I started thinking 'I'm not worried about numbers', but since I am putting in work, and think I have something to add, I'm trying harder to make sure I reach an audience.
I also feel that I have a perspective that is lacking. With the content you create, how are you adding value? Ie. why should someone read your blog over the larger ones?
In my case- I'm a homebrewer of beer. When getting into the hobby, I felt that many brewers (including friends) over mystified the process, emphasized complex (expensive) set ups, to make the biggest and bestest beer they could no matter the time/equipment/mental space cost. I want to add a voice that says making good beer is straightforward, and for everyone!
These are great points. I think the thing that really sets me apart from the other big sites is similar to your differentiation-my perspective. I drive and shop for cars as a hobby, so it's not just some obscure review of a car or "chopped" based competition content. It's from the perspective of an enthusiast on a budget you could say
It sounds like you should keep at it then!
I don't know how you promote your blog out there, but embrace the passion and the 'hands on' aspect. Since the money factor seems to come up in your comments, maybe re-frame how you are approaching this. Its going to be a hobby, best case is break even, as long as you keep having things you believe need saying, keep blogging, but maybe start spending less (and putting less pressure on yourself to be a superstar after just 3 months). Best of lock!
Thank you so much for the encouragement! I think you're right too, it shouldnt be about money son I just need to keep moving forward!
If your goal is to make money, it's probably not worth it. Unless you can compete with the biggest sites in your niche. If you enjoy doing it for fun, then keep it up.
Most blogs don't see a ton of organic search traffic until at least the 6-month mark because Google doesn't value brand new websites.
Why has your site cost you several hundreds of dollars? That seems excessive.
Thanks for the advice although it is a little disappointing to hear that there probably will never be any money made. I have a few hundred into it between hosting and themes and some other mistakes I made early on
Honestly, a lot of those blogs will be SEO-first, targeted content specifically aimed at ranking, getting eyeballs and written by someone whose job it is to write content they have little interest in. While that does work to an extent, well-written content with a genuine point created by someone with love for the topic should have some value.
Whether that's enough to create an income stream is debatable, as is how long it takes for the value of your content to gain attention but as already stated here, if it's your hobby, doing something you love, then why not carry on? Plenty of people spend lots more on hobbies that will definitely never make them any money, isn't that kind of the definition of hobby?
If I were you I'd carry on creating your content as best as you possibly can, then try to apply best practices after the fact, rather than the other way round as many places and people do.
I run a couple of blogs for pretty large companies in very dry, overly competitive spaces, it's not car insurance, but is in a similar category of no one reading it for fun. Practically all the big players, in all the big industries, even the ones in interesting industries – fashion, film, other culture – are manned predominantly by people without passion, that shit gets squeezed out fast.
Maybe look back at your 5 or so best pieces of content, that you think really are valuable, and try to edit them to have some SEO value so at least your competing even if you aren't winning – think headers, alt tags, hyperlinks etc – don't crow bar them in or spam though.
The bottom line is if you believe what you're writing, are writing well and get genuine enjoyment out of the process, then does it matter if you're not making money?
Thank you for the advice i do think passion will yield quality and quality will yield value. I think my take away here is not to give up and i really appreciate everyones input
I am not an expert but 2k views in three months is not bad, imho. How is your SEO game? Have you SEO-audited your blog? I would recommend optimizing/improving everything on your blog first and then try to build links. There are quite a few SEO audit tools out there. And also keep in mind that it takes time to rank on google. Three months is not enough to make a decision like that (again in my opinion).
Thank you for the feedback! I haven't done an SEO audit so I think I will do that and see if I can optimize some of my content.
It doesn't even have to be content optimizing. Just proper meta tags, load speed, image optimization etc. The basics.
edit, forgot keyword research
That's good to know, i appreciate the tips!
Your blog is only 3 months old. Obviously it's going to be dwarfed by other bigger, more established blogs in your field.
It takes time to be trusted by Google, so don't expect an avalanche of search engine traffic from the very start. If you've been blogging for a year and you still have a handful of organic traffic, then you should start worrying. But it's only been 3 months. Your blog is still a baby.
For the first 3-6 months, you should stop worrying about traffic and just write quality content.
I'm blogging in a saturated market too (tech) and I had my fears and worries in the beginning, thinking that nobody would read my blog. But I really enjoyed talking about tech, so I just wrote and wrote.
Slowly but surely my content started getting noticed. People started reaching out to me. And I also started earning money from my blog (nothing to write home about but it's a start). It's been 9 months since I started my blog and my organic traffic has been growing slowly. In fact, my organic traffic has increased by more than 30% from the previous month.
I never did any SEO. I just wrote and wrote and wrote. So who cares if I wrote about stuff that people have already written about. People still read that shit. Lol.
So just blog and if it's still not performing well after a year or two then you can talk about quitting.
Thanks for the toughtful response, I think everyone is right, good content is all that matters
You're welcome. I visited your blog and the text is really small. I had a hard time reading.
Dang that's good to know thank you. Were you on mobile or desktop
Thank you for letting me know! I had no idea desktop was showing up that small
2k views in 3 months is pretty good tbh it takes at least a year for a site to gain meaningful traffic
How has it costed you hundreds of dollars? Hosting and domain should be $80 max for a small site
I have put a couple hundred into domain, hosting, and themes. And i think I am going to pay for a professional logo too
A niche being saturated doesnt really matter sometimes, what matters is the quality of contents you're pushing out to the internet
All of those larger blogs started off somewhere. If you've already gotten that many views, that's great! I think you're probably on your way up, if you want to keep going. I have a just for me blog as well that's been going for 3 months, and I don't think I've hit 50 views.
Well thank you for the kind words of encouragement!
Yes, absolutely. I started my blog for fun (travel blog) knowing full and well that it was super saturated and very unlikely it would go anywhere, but I just really wanted to and thought it was really fun.
… 2 years later it's my full time job, I'm pretty darn successful in my niche, and I'm being invited to speak at conferences amongst folks who have been doing this for 10+ years. So yes, it's never too late to start.
That said, it's INSANELY time consuming and you're going to spend a lot of money (and time) before you ever earn a cent, so don't do it unless you really love it!
That's so awesome! Great for you and thank you for the encouragement!
This is awesome!
There are a lot of blogs out there, but the two most important things to keep in mind is that first you are doing it for the passion. Second, you need to keep it authentic and let your personality shine through. Some people give up because theres a lot of competition and think they won't break through. Some blogs are all the same, others stand out. Its just a matter of keeping it real and letting your enthusiasm do the work. With time, it pays off. Just takes patience.
I think they'll notice. Your passion and knowledge will probably be obvious, whereas lots and lots of blogs exist just to make money, or the person running them isn't as interested in the topic as you are. So some of your competition could easily fall away over the short and long term.
And although you've spent several hundred dollars on it, you would have spent those several hundred dollars on something else at some point in your life; right? It's good to spend money on things that are important to us and do good in the world. So the money you've laid out for your blog is probably well spent. Better than blowing it all at a bar drinking every weekend rather than staying home and working on your passion, right? ;)
Don't stop – keep it up!
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