Nowadays, just about anything and everything can be sold online. So as a new online business owner, it can be hard to know where to begin, especially if it looks like everything’s already been done before. But cheer up, my friend. Don’t let the web get you down!
What you’ve got to do is pick a niche.
Your niche is made up of your site’s products, services, and unique selling point; these ingredients together can persuade customers to buy from you, even in a sea of online businesses. So how do you choose your niche?
Think About Your Passions
If you’re still not sure what to sell, take a minute to list your passions. At the end of the day, you want to sell a product that you are familiar with, that you care about, and that you’re knowledgeable about. But a word to the wise: don’t become blinded by your passions. Always ask yourself: am I being realistic? Is my community willing to pay for this product? Is it the solution to their problems?
Know Your Customers
Take a minute to think about the type of customer attracted to each of your passions, and get to know them through social media or sites that are similar to yours. You can even go out and talk to them; take them to lunch. Learn what they’re looking for in a product or service.
Do Your Research
Narrow down your list of passions to see how profitable each passion is. You need to look at keywords that are commonly searched for and are specific to your products (for instance if I sold shoes I might search for gladiator sandals).
You can find good keywords using Google’s keyword tool. You’re looking for keywords that accrue a minimum of 1,000 global searches a month. The keywords that do best can help you determine your niche. Do a traditional Google search to see how many pages come up that are related to the best keywords. You don’t want to sell something that is overly competitive, but you want it to be something that has enough competition so that you can make your mark.
Tell Them What Makes You Different
Remember that you’re selling more than just products. You’re also selling what’s unique about your company. Discover any holes or voids in your niche’s community, so that your site will stand out by filling those voids. Tell your customers specifically what makes you different—your customer service, amazing prices, the value of your products, free shipping, etc.
Become a Specialist in a Few Areas
Focus on one or two specific areas or markets so that customers can easily find the products that will help them fulfill their needs and solve their problems. Find a specific market that you’re good at and stay with it.
Picking a niche is one of the most important things you can do to see success from your site. It takes work, and time, but your efforts will be well worth it in the end.