The Truth Behind Running a Niche Blog

Alex Ashton
5 min readJan 2, 2024

It’s both hopeful and depressing. Here’s why.

Photo by Ivan Samkov via Pexels

For the 16 months, I have been running a blog, news and information website for a niche topic.

Now that I have an entire calendar year behind me, I decided to review my progress. The results were both hopeful and depressing.

The topic is a third-tier professional soccer league in the United States, an area that is still relatively small, but growing. The lower leagues in general get scattered mainstream coverage in most markets, so the thought was to create an outlet that would cover all the teams in the league.

I’d heard plenty of supposed success stories of someone earning extra income or even a living from a niche blog. However, I’ve learned one important lesson here: you need a much larger, much more dedicated market than I have to get there.

First, the hopeful results from my niche blog.

In 2023, my website had 9,297 views from 4,681 visitors. Honestly, this was more than I expected when I started.

Three pages dominated the views, and all three were information pages, rather than blog posts. They contain useful information about the league that can be referenced all year, or at least for an extended period of times, such as a few months.

Blog and news posts come and go, but some did better than others. Two posts from a weekly feature were the top two posts, and the third was a special feature showcasing the midseason progress of the best players in the league. The fourth was a player interview.

Twitter (also known as X) was the top driver of clicks into my website, by far with 4,032. This was followed by Google Search, Facebook, Reddit and Instagram. Notably, very few clicks came from other blogs or websites related to my topic.

Also notably, Twitter is the platform on which I am most active with this topic. By the end of 2023, I had 525 followers there, many of whom are eager to engage.

I did not have a Facebook (more on that later), neglected Reddit after its recent user-unfriendly changes and have found Instagram a tedious place to share links.

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Alex Ashton

History, culture, family, religion, data, and technology from a center-left, civil libertarian, middle-class perspective. Publisher: The Missing Middle.