Bootstrapping Your First Affiliate Niche Site – Side Hustle on a Shoestring

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If you’re reading this post, then it is possible that you are not *yet* a real Niche Addict. However, you’ve stumbled upon the idea of making money online and you are thinking about starting your first site.

Congrats. It will be a fun journey, and you will learn a lot along the way.

Beware. All along your journey you will be inundated with shiny objects to purchase. All with promises to make you rich.

Paid plugins. Expensive courses. High-end hosting. It all adds up!

So, I’m going to show you how to start your first niche site on a shoestring budget. Let’s get started…

What you will find in this article

  • You Do Not Need a High-End Hosting Plan
  • Use Free Plug-ins to Bootstrap Your Site
  • Write Your Own Content
  • Invest Time – Not Money – In Learning

You Do Not Need a High-End Hosting Plan

I can’t tell you how many new online marketers get caught up in purchasing a more robust hosting plan than they really need upfront. You can always upgrade later!

If you keep reading the Niche Addicts blog, you will see that I promote Siteground Hosting. I use it for all of my sites, and you probably should too.

But here is the thing. You can get started with their lowest tier plan which is called the StartUp plan. I promise it will be enough to get you started.

Image 2020-05-02 at 10.40.21 AM.png
The Siteground StartUp Plan is sufficient for all new online marketers
Siteground Wordpress Hosting
Starts at $.99/mo

I host all of my sites with Siteground. I love their support when I need it and the dashboard to manage my sites is super easy.

If you click this link and make a purchase, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

Use Free Plug-ins to Bootstrap Your Site

You can lose lot’s of time and money searching for the perfect plugin to make your site look just the way you want it to.

The truth is that the look and feel of your first site doesn’t really matter that much.

What is important? The content. Content is king.

Some of my favorite plug-ins that I use on my sites are free. Sure they might have a paid tier (a pro version) but you really don’t need that until your sites are growing and making you a nice monthly income.

Here are some of my favorite FREE plug-ins:

There are a ton of ways to boostrap your niche site, and free plug-ins such as these are one way to save your money.

Most entrepreneurs begin with the cheapest tools available, bootstrapping, and doing things themselves to get up and running with little cash. This isn’t a problem. In fact, it’s necessary so that the entrepreneurs can train outsourcers later.

Tim Ferris – The Four Hour Workweek

Write Your Own Content

There will become a time in your online marketing journey where you will be able to outsource content writing via Upwork or or some other writing service.

Now is not that time.

Just like all small businesses, at first the owner does everything. If you were starting a restaurant this means that you would be the cook, the cleaner, the accountant, the strategist, etc…

New niche sites are no different.

I’ll admit that outsourcing tasks so that you can scale your business is sexy. Damn sexy. But we must first walk before we run.

You may not be the world’s greatest writer. That’s OK.

Grammarly is one of my favorite tools to ensure my sites have great grammar and my writers provide unique content that is not plagiarized.
If you click this link and make a purchase, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

This is one reason why I believe that you should choose a topic or niche that you are personally familiar with for your first site.

If you choose to create a site about kitchen appliances, then you had better be sure that you can sit down and pound out 1000 words about the best blender for smoothies!

Invest Time – Not Money – In Learning

It seems that everybody these days has a course to teach you how to make money online.

Now. I’m not saying they are all bad. In fact, you will find that I promote some courses on this site.

However, if you are bootstrapping it, then you are likely someone who has more time than money.

If that is the case then you should invest your time into learning all that you can about online marketing without paying for expensive courses.

Two easy ways to learn for free are Youtube Channels and Podcasts. I can’t tell you how many hours of each I’ve consumed. It would be scary to add it all up. I am an addict you know…

You can find the entire list of my favorite Youtube channels and my favorite Podcasts on my resources page. However, here are a few to get you started:

Youtube Channels


All of these resources are rich with real actionable tips, lessons, success stories and other commentary relating to online marketing and niche sites.


Let’s face it, If you talk to 10 successful niche site operators, 9 of them will tell you that their first site was a complete failure. It’s sort of a rite-of-passage.

Your first site might not be the one that makes you the most money, but it definitely could be the one that teaches you the most lessons. Don’t get caught up in spending all kinds of money to get that site going.

Bootstrap it instead!

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