What Is A Niche?
In plain English, a niche is a distinct segment of a market. For example…if you were to take the music market and narrowed it down to “music of the 60s” that would be a niche. Obviously, with this definition, there are literally millions of niches known to mankind.
Think about anything in your home. Just about any item falls into a specific niche. For example…your coffee table would be part of the “living room furniture niche” within the furniture market. If you were to take apart all the niches of the furniture market, you could probably name dozens alone.
This definition of niche is not to be confused with the one that applies to people when somebody says, “He’s found his niche in the world through playing baseball professionally.” While these are similar in nature, they are not the same thing unless of course the niche you are targeting online just happens to be a service niche. Again, for example, if you were a voiceover announcer, you could make your living online selling your voiceover services. I actually know many people who left professional radio to do this.
However, for the purposes of this post, we’re going to refer to niches as segments where you’re going to promote a product. Tangible goods are sometimes easier to wrap our heads around than a service-oriented business. They are also a lot easier to run and manage and take much less time out of your day. Think about it. If you’re a copywriter, you can’t just put out a blog post and make money over and over again. You have to write copy after copy to continue to earn a living. This translates into many hours of work.
What Is Niche Research?
This is one of the areas where there is a lot of misinformation going around. Yes, some people can’t even agree on what niche research is and how to do it. If you ask some folks, they’ll tell you it’s simply looking up some keywords for a niche to see how many people are looking up these keywords and then looking to see how many competing sites there are.
Well, that’s a very small part of the process, but if you confine yourself to just those two things, you have a very slim chance of finding a niche with any true potential.
So what IS niche research? Niche research is the in depth study of a segment of a market in order to determine if that market has a sufficient demand to warrant the production of a product or service to fill that demand.
Why do I use the word sufficient? Well, let’s say you came up with a great idea and only one person wanted it. Now, in order to put that idea into action, it would take you 30 days of your time and about $10,000 of your money. However, the product, at least to the one person interested, is only worth $100. Naturally, if you go through the process of creating this product for just one person and sell it for $100, you’re $9,900 and 30 hours of your time in the hole…certainly not worth doing.
However, if you knew there was a market for your product of about 3,000 people, that translates into $300,000 in income. Certainly under those conditions, it would be worth it to create the product.
That, in a nutshell, is what niche research is. It’s determining whether or not it is worth you wasting your time on creating a product BEFORE you create it.
As I said, keyword research and competing site analysis is just part of this equation. There is a lot more to successful niche research than just these two steps. So in the next blog post we will go through all the required steps of researching a niche and even give examples of niches. Stay in tune.