Setting up WordPress and choosing a good niche website theme can be a daunting task if you are brand new to building niche sites. I know this to be the case for me personally, as I spent many hours figuring all of this stuff out on my own in the past. I combed through the internet and read several posts from other niche site builders to see how they do things. I spent many many hours playing with different free themes to try and get the look and functionality that I wanted for my niche sites. As a total rookie to WordPress and building niche sites, you can imagine my frustration! Now that some time has passed and I have learned a great deal, I feel like I can share some of my findings so that hopefully others won’t have to waste as much time as I did. Building a niche site both effectively and efficiently has gotten so much easier for me. As an example and part of this Mini Niche Site Project – I want to share exactly how I do things and what I use now.
Domains, Hosting and WordPress Setup
In my previous Niche Site follow along for 2012, I wrote a detailed post about domain purchasing and web hosting and how to set these up. A very basic step like getting your domain to point to your hosting account can be tricky for a beginner. This previous post is still relevant and shows you (with screenshots) exactly how I do it. I’ve been using the same hosting account from HostGator (affiliate link) for all of my sites. They allow an unlimited number of domains to be used on the same hosting account for one low monthly price. I still like buying my domains at GoDaddy (affiliate link). Always search the web for GoDaddy coupon codes before you purchase. You can almost always find a discount.
I wrote another detailed tutorial post about exactly how to load WordPress onto your domain and some of the very first things you should do within WordPress. Most of that post is still relevant. However, the plugins that I suggest towards the end of the post are mostly different from what I do today. I’ve since learned about some different (and better) plugins. More importanly, I now use a theme that makes several of these plugins completely unnecessary! First – I want to tell you about this theme. I will update you on the current plugins I use towards the end of this post.
Niche Website Theme
Spencer Haws (creator of my favorite keyword research tool Long Tail Pro) has had a ton of success with building and monetizing niche sites over the past few years. He, along with Chris Guthrie, has created a custom theme that has many of the essential aspects of niche sites built right in. He released this theme about a year ago, and nearly 2,700 people are using it already! I recently got my own copy and I’ve got to tell you – this theme is a game changer for me! I can’t even tell you how many hours upon hours I’ve wasted in the past trying to customize the look and layout of different free themes to try to accomplish the look and feel that I wanted. Not only that, buy trying to place ads in certain places on the site was just impossible for me with absolutely no coding knowledge or experience. All of this I can now do with ease within my newly acquired theme.
Introducing the Niche Website Theme! As of the date that I am publishing this post, version 2.0 of the Niche Website Theme is being released. Here are a few of the things that it provides:
- Quickly change theme layouts, colors, and styles on the fly without ever touching a piece of code
- Easily insert ads in previously difficult to reach places for maximum Click through rate
- Auto-rotate Google Adsense variations and colors to increase earnings
- Auto-match the color of Google Adsense ads to the colors of your theme (super-cool feature!)
- Create and save custom theme designs without coding
Regardless of whether you are creating small niche sites or focusing on larger “authority” sites…the Niche Website Theme will give you the power and “tweakability” you need!
The theme has been tried and tested on over 2,667 websites and is available now for 7-days at 70% off. (Feb. 20-26, 2013)
We all know that a small ad placement change can have a huge impact on your overall earnings.
This new WordPress theme makes increasing your click through rate and earnings so much easier!
My Review of The Niche Website Theme
I’ve been using the theme for a couple of days now. I’m using it for this Miniature Niche Site Project (Min NSP) and I also loaded it onto a couple of my older niche sites. To give you an example, I’ll share some screenshots of my niche site from my previous 2012 follow along. The site is not yet ranking well in Google and I haven’t done any work on it for several months, but I loaded the new theme on it just to experiment and play around with the options. Here is how my site gettingridoffleasnow.com previously looked with the free Magazine Basic theme.
I did the best I could to optimize ad placement within this free theme by simply placing ads in the sidebar and within the content. Note: it took some minor coding which took me awhile to figure out to be able to get the content text to wrap around the in-content ad block.
Here is how the site now looks with the Niche Website Theme installed
Notice how I now have an ad in the header. For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out how to do that on my own. Very easy to implement within this theme. Also, I now have those little text ads that show up directly underneath my navigation bar. Again, I could not figure out how to place those previously in ANY of the free themes that I tried. And the in-content ad block with wrap around text. I accomplished the wrap around feature with one click rather than trying to figure out code!
I love the easy customization features for all of the different layouts and color schemes. Of all of the many themes that I have experimented with in the past, this one is by far the easiest to customize.
I definitely encourage you to investigate this theme further if you are looking for the easiest way to set up your own niche or authority website. If you are reading this post between Feb 20th and Feb 26th, 2013 – you won’t be able to beat the price that it is being sold for! 70% off the regular price! Pick up your copy of Niche Website Theme today. If you are reading this post after that time period, click on any of the links to see what it is selling for today. Even if you have to pay full price, I promise you won’t be disappointed and it is totally worth every penny.
WordPress Plugins for Niche Sites – What I Use Currently
The following screenshot is straight from the WordPress Dashboard of the niche site that I am featuring for this Mini NSP – howtomakedishwasherdetergent.com. These are the WordPress plugins I currently have installed. All of these are totally FREE and work as described.
Akismet – protect your site from comment and trackback spam. This plugin is automatically installed with your WordPress installation. You only need to visit the Akismet site and get your free API key in order to activate it. In the past, I’ve uninstalled this plugin because I didn’t think it was necessary. My sites that didn’t have it got hit hard with comment and trackback spam. This plugin is an absolute must (in my opinion).
SEO Friendly Images – automatically adds ALT and Title attributes to images if you don’t do this manually. Essential for SEO. I always remember to add mine manually, but activated this plugin anyway just in case I forget or something slips through. Learn more about the plugin here.
ShareThis – this is the plugin that adds the cool looking sharing buttons to the bottom of each post (just like you see on this post). It is totally customizeable and easy to use with several different types of buttons to choose from. Learn more about this plugin here.
WordPress SEO (by Yoast) – if optimizing for search engines with in-content keywords is your goal, then this plugin is an absolute MUST! It is far and above better than any other SEO plugin I’ve tried with all kinds of useful tools built right in. It has an XML sitemap generator built in – so you no longer need a separate plugin for that. Rather than me bragging on about it, just visit their site to learn more. Trust me though – you NEED this plugin even if you don’t care about SEO, but especially if SEO is your goal.
That’s it for the current WordPress plugins that I use for niche sites. Some of the plugins I previously used are no longer necessary thanks to the Niche Website Theme. I had previously tried several different plugins for adding Adsense to my sites. None of them even compared to what I can do within the Niche Website Theme. Also, setting up your Google Analytics tracking is also built into the theme. I previously had to use a separate plugin for that.
If you want to save a whole lot of time, heartache and hassle – I highly recommend that you spend just a little bit of money and invest in the Niche Website Theme. If there is only ONE thing that I suggest you spend money on to build a niche site (other than your domain and hosting) to make your life easier – this would be it. Get your copy today while it is still available at the current low price!
All links and banners within this post that lead to Niche Website Theme are affiliate links. If you choose to make a purchase through any of these links, I will receive a commission. If you’ve found this post helpful and informative and do decide to buy, I greatly appreciate you doing so through one of my links. Thank You and happy niche site building!
Remember, there are several dumb ways to create passive income online, but only one site that is blogging about it! Dumb Passive Income… dot com.