Niche Site Case Study 1 (Part 1) - Origin Story


A niche website is a site with a narrow focus. Done right, they can be very profitable. In early 2015 I started trying to make money with niche websites. One of the first was 'Everything Asterix'.


Origin of a Niche Site- Everything Asterix

In April 2011 a student gave me a USB stick with every Asterix book in PDF form. Um… thanks?

I read one of them and, for the millionth time in my life, came across a panel where Pegleg, the old pirate, said something in Latin.

What did it mean?

When I was a kid I just shrugged and got on with the comic, but in the meantime mankind had invented THE INTERNET. And it's not all cat gifs and porn - there's information out there, too!

So this time I typed the quote into Google and found the translation. Oh-kay. Didn't really see the connection between the quote and the story, so I shrugged and moved on.

It bugged me, though. And it was a bug that could not be shrugged.

Goscinny was a brilliant writer and the translators were world-class - if they'd chosen that Latin quote out of all the options, there had to be a reason.

I got in touch with a Scottish friend who was a top scholar of Latin and Greek. He gave me a better translation of the Latin and some background on who wrote that phrase and why. Suddenly it clicked.

The quote WAS funny! And appropriate to the story!

But only if you knew Latin AND had read the classics...

How many millions of Asterix fans were missing out on the joke? I had to share it. And so my project to translate and explain all the Latin jokes in Asterix was born.

It started on my shitty Blogger site back in 2011 and over time became quite popular. Those Asterix posts accounted for 80% of all traffic to the blog.

Come 2015 and my primitive understanding of niche sites, I decided this 'Asterix - Latin Jokes' content was pretty much a ready-made niche site. All I had to do was transfer it across to its own home and build up a little Asterix site around it. People would come for the Latin, stay for the fan fiction, and I'd turn those visits into money somehow.

Easy, right?

Next - Baby Steps and Missteps

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