Niche Research In Detail. Part 1
Okay, let’s get right down to the step by step process of niche research, starting with your brain.
I’m going to assume that you know absolutely nothing about Internet marketing and don’t have any idea of how to begin thinking of a niche, let alone researching it. So that brings us to the first question.
Where do we start?
The easiest place to start is with your own experience in life. You do live, right? Good…I hate talking to dead people. Anyway, in everybody’s life, each person has, I hope, at least one interest. Even if that interest is simply staying alive to see tomorrow, you have to have at least one. Hopefully, you have more than one.
Okay, here’s what I want you to do. I want you to take a pad and a pen or pencil. Yes, get away from the computer. Go sit on a couch somewhere. Take your pen and pad and write down everything in your life that you enjoy doing. I don’t care how silly it is.
Okay, have your list? Great! What we’re going to do is have you take the first thing on your list for this next exercise. And in case you’re wondering, this was my list when I first did this exercise for myself.
Notice anything about my list? Well, if you understood my definition of niches, these are NOT niches. They’re markets. A niche is a segment of a market. So what do you think I had to do when I looked up these markets thinking that they were niches?
Right…I had to further break them down into niches. See how easy this is?
Okay, so let’s take any item on my list. You take yours. Since I don’t know what yours are, I’ll use mine as an example. You just take your market (unless you already picked out a real niche) and plug that market into the formula I’m going to give you below.
Ready? Let’s begin.
The first step in our niche research is to first break our market down into sub-niches. Now, I don’t expect you to know all the sub-niches off the top of your head. Besides, there is an easy way to do this.
On the Internet, there are sites that allow you to look up keywords that will not only show you how many searches there are on a daily or monthly basis for that market but also show you any sub-niches for that market. These tools come in very handy.
The problem with these tools is that they come and go. Tools that were the rage yesterday are gone today. Overture was a perfect example of this. It came and went and came and went. I’m not sure where it is right now. I’ve stopped keeping track. Instead, I use a tool that seems to be very stable as of the moment. It’s called Google Keyword Analyzer.
Here is the URL where you can find it, at least for now.
Tomorrow it could be scraps for the dog.
If you go there, you will see the following screen.
It’s pretty intuitive to use. Plug the keywords in where it says, one line at a time, enter the captcha, and then click on Get keyword ideas and a whole list of relevant keywords will come up.
This is just one of the many keyword tools out there. Each one will give you different results. No, they don’t all match.
So it’s time to put another piece of misinformation to rest. These keywords panners are NOT 100% accurate. Truth is, nobody really knows for certain how accurate they are because these figures that they use to compute their monthly searches are, as they say, estimates.
Having said that, over time, if you use this tool day after day, you will begin to see some patterns of monthly searches in relation to how many actual clicks you get to your website. From these patterns, you will eventually get a feel for how well a given keyword will perform based on the numbers, regardless of whether the actual numbers are right or wrong.
Yes, this takes some practice but if you do it long enough, you’ll start to get very consistent results. Hey, I never said niche research was easy.
Okay, let’s plug in a keyword to see how this works.
I’m going to use “sports”
After typing in “sports” I’ll click on the button that says Get keyword ideas and we then get the following screen. I’m only showing part of the monster list that you’re going to get.
Okay, there is our list. Well, a partial anyway. Like I said, this is quite a monster sized list and I don’t want to print the whole thing. There are over 100 keywords in it. How do we determine which one we want to tackle? Remember, we want to hit one segment so that we can concentrate our efforts there.
The more concentrated our efforts, the better chance we have of success. Sports, in general, is just too broad and won’t get us anywhere. Think about it…what would you promote?
So going back to our list, our job is to now look through it and pick a niche. It doesn’t matter which one we pick because before we have any competing sites stats, one niche is as good as another.
In your case, I suggest to pick a niche that you’re really interested in and work your way from there.
I decided to choose “sports swimming pools”. Why? Well, see this little bar?
This tells us that the level of competition is relatively weak. If the whole thing was shaded in, or most of it, that would mean the competition is strong.
Is this an exact science? No…so don’t let it be the be all and end all for you.
Some niches with almost no shaded area turn out to be very hard to get into.
Now, there are two ways we can go with this. We can either stop right here and move on to check competing sites, or we can reenter sports swimming pools into our tool and check out sub-niches of this sub-niche if there are any.
So let’s do that and see what we come up with. We now get the following list of more keywords in our next week’s post.