Calling Out James Holt RE: Dropshipping & Niche Sites

By Jamie McSloy / July 28, 2018

Calling Out James Holt RE: Dropshipping & Niche Sites

So the other day, James Holt sent out an email about whether you should combine niche sites and dropshipping. In this article, I will give you my thoughts on this topic.

But before we get to that, let’s just address this:

The email title, “Don’t try to outsmart the system,” triggers me.

If you read that title and think, “Yeah, that’s me… I would never try to outsmart the system” then you are a normie and I don’t know what you’re doing on this site.


If you aren’t trying to outsmart the system… you’re losing the game.

(Time Out: If you’re enjoying this article, then you should probably sign up to my mailing list, where I give out ideas and business tricks that I don’t share publicly. Click here, fill out your details and get yourself on the list! You won’t leave this page.

Now Back To The Regular Programming Schedule…)

Let’s move on.

What Did James Holt Say About Combining Dropship Stores With Niche Sites?

I won’t post the whole email James sent, because a) it’s not my email and b) I can summarise.

If you want James actual thoughts on topics, you should sign up for his list.

Here’s an excerpt from the email:

Ever since I’ve started discussing niche sites in addition to dropshipping, I’ve been getting messages from people saying they are going to combine the two.

Generally, they ask how I would do this or what I think of their idea.

And I always say the same thing: Don’t do it.

How would I do it? I wouldn’t.

There are a bunch of different reasons why I don’t think this is a good idea.

For beginners, the main issue is focusing on too many different things. You need to learn one business model and get that profitable before you start messing around with mixed-forms.

Most dropshippers fail anyway. Don’t make life harder for yourself by adding a niche (content) site to your dropshipping store.

Even if you’re more advanced, I still don’t recommend it.

And then he lists some reasons for why advanced people shouldn’t combine the two forms.

  • The audiences aren’t the same for dropship stores vs. niche sites
  • The buyer intentions aren’t the same for dropship stores vs. niche sites
  • Men read niche sites, women don’t

And I’m taking out the context with that last one a little, so forgive me for that. Besides, the question you should be asking is:

Do I agree with this advice?

Well, let’s find out.

What Do I Think About This?

I agree with the general point. When you’re new to dropshipping and niche sites and the whole thing with making money online, it’s better to pick a method and model and stick to it.

If you’re short on time but have money to spend, dropshipping is good.

If you’re short on money but have time to spend and can wait for income, niche sites are great.

Here’s where my view differs from James’ view.

Niche sites and dropshipping sites are both part of building up a big set of complementary skills and base of knowledge for online business:

  • SEO (Niche sites)
  • Content writing (niche sites)
  • Copywriting (niche sites AND dropshipping – long form vs. short form)
  • Paid traffic (dropshipping)
  • Site design (both – but very different skills)
  • Customer service (dropshipping)
  • Working with supply chain stuff (dropshipping)
  • Affiliate marketing (niche sites)

All of these skills combine to the whole being greater than the parts.

Dropshipping is competitive. Any edge will help. Niche sites can drive traffic for free and help you see off competitors.

Niche sites rely on affiliate marketing, which is a fickle beast at times. Wouldn’t it be great if you knew you were sending people to a good offer that’d be there tomorrow?

And the niche market research stuff that James says… I don’t agree.

Women do like reviews. They watch hours of shopping haul videos and make up demo videos, which are advertorials. You can build a niche site for women. Just make it pink with a handwritten-looking font.

(Slightly joking with that, but only slightly.)

What I’d Do

So I agree with James’ point and I disagree.


Here’s what I do, and what I’d do if I were new.

(Assuming you have some time and money and can learn both, because with all the possible iterations we’d be here forever.)

Don’t try and make one mega-site where you’re reviewing stuff and then trying to sell stuff. That’s weird and I don’t know how it’d work.

Hold off on the niche site for a while in terms of buying a domain name and the like.

Start researching for your dropshipping store. We’re going to go with that first if money isn’t an object for you. To find out whether it’s an object, I suggest you read my thoughts on dropshipping economics in this review and if you want to take the plunge seriously, get James Holt’s course.

And we’re going to find our audience. If it’s hippy chicks, then great. If it’s dudes who like electronics parts, then that’s great too.

Test the audience to see if it’s a buying audience, and otherwise get your store up.

Keep researching your target audience because that’s who you’re creating an online web for. The more you know about them, the better. This is the basis for your niche site as well.

Then simply answer the questions you need to in order to get both:

  • Who are your audience?
  • Why have you picked the products you have?
  • What’s the best option on the market, and why is it you?

These all form the basis for your store, and as well your niche site. Your niche site acts as a funnel to your dropship store in addition to market research and monetising your competitors as well.

If This Is Too Much To Handle…

If the above sounds too complicated, then don’t follow it. A lot of people find that they get overwhelmed and that’s fine.

But if you want to combine niche sites and dropshipping stores, that’s the path I’d suggest you take. If you do that, then you’re guaranteeing that every step you take makes sense in terms of building your business.

But it’s cool if you just want to dropship and it’s cool if you just want to build niche sites. Both of those methods work perfectly fine independently. This is all big picture stuff.