Niche research and marketing is the most important part of this endeavor. The niche is where you will be making your mark, it is area in which you choose to market a subset of products. It is the topic of your website and the general focus of all your products. You want your niche to be popular but low on competitors. This guide will help you find your niche.
Your website can’t sell everything. Amazon already does that; they’ve cornered the coveted Everything niche. You want to corner your niche. You want your website to be the first result on Google anytime someone Google’s your niche.
Your niche should be specific.
So, say you like backpacking in the wilderness (instead of sitting at your computer, like me). So you wonder, is backpacking a good niche? No, it is not. It is too big. You have to think smaller. Well, what about backpacking tents? That is a good start, but maybe you can go even smaller. “Backpacking tents” is already a crowded area in Google. I’ve got it, you say, how about cold-weather backpacking tents? That’s perfect. That is a good niche. A certain subset of the subset of the subset of people who want to go backpacking will Google something like “good cold-weather backpacking tents,” and they will find your site, and they will go on it, and they will buy something.
If you want to market for other backpacking supplies, make more websites. One for warm-weather backpacking tents, a couple more for sleeping bags, one for stoves, one for dried food, one for those extendable walking sticks, whatever you want! I know, it sounds counter-intuitive. All these things could be on one website, but those websites already exist. Just Google “backpacking supplies” and look at all the entrenched websites you would have to compete with for space. It seems counter-intuitive, but that is how niche marketing works. And believe me, niche marketing works.
Once you’ve thought up an idea for a niche, you need to do some research to see if your idea is actually a good one. Your main focus will be on competition and how many people search for that niche every day. This is alternatively called keyword research, because you are researching the keywords people use on Google to search for things in your niche. This can be a complex process, but there are products out there that simplify it.
Personally, I use Market Samurai
. You can buy it here: marketsamurai.com
. It costs $149, which is pricey, but it is goddamned powerful, and nearly invaluable And its leading competitor costs $249, so it seems like that product area is just a little inflated.
You don’t need Market Samurai; you can do the research yourself using Google keyword analysis. I’ve never done it that way and I don’t really know how.
Market Samurai is a little imposing when you first look at it, so I’ll put some links to tutorial videos to help you out:
And here is a video on keyword research in general, to help you wrap your head around the process: