Do Some Entrepreneurs Just Have That Elusive Knack Of Spotting Highly Profitable Niches – And Are The Rest Of Us Doomed to Expensive Trial-And-Error?
After reading what the expert niche-pickers have to say on this topic, I am convinced they are just willing to work a lot harder than the rest of us to find a profitable niche. And they give themselves time to find “the right one”.
At Solohacks Academy, our roundups usually pick topics that most people would consider a question that begets inspiring answers. On a topic like finding profitable niches for online businesses, we’ve tried to see what the smart ones do to find those niches with the potential for cash rain. There appears to be data-science, intuition, and homework involved.
In the collection of thoughts we’ve put together here, you’ll notice everybody highlights a different point. But overall it seems you have to look harder at some of the data and do the math. For example, ask: “Why are some people bidding huge amounts against certain niche keywords, unless these were hot earners?”
Our picks for this Solohacks RoundUp include 10 great quotes from the blog posts of John Rampton, Neil Patel, Doug Cunnington, Chris Ducker, Brian Edmondson, Louie Luc, Adam Connell, Henri Junttila, Victoria Sullivan, and Artem Minaev.
1. You want to make sure there’s a need for your niche; or your work will be a hobby, never growing lucrative: John Rampton
John Rampton in the article “A 5-Step Formula To Find Your Niche”:
Figure out if there’s a market for your niche. Having a passion for a particular niche isn’t enough (I wish it were!). You also want to make sure there’s a need for it; otherwise your work will stay a hobby, never growing into a lucrative business. One way to start figuring out the market is with some basic keyword research. The Google Keyword Planner is a great tool for this.
Plug in some keywords related to your niche, and see which words and phrases get suggested. Narrow down the suggestions by monthly search volume, competition level, and suggested bid. For search volume, stick to 1K-10K per month. Any less than this probably means there’s not much of a market for it; any more and it may be too hard to rank for in Search.
For competition, go with low-medium. While this tells you how competitive the word or phrase is in AdWords (not organic search), it can still give you a general idea of organic competition levels. For suggested bid, higher bids often indicate a high level of commercial intent. So, higher bids often mean people will pay more because they make more when they rank for those keywords.
At this point, you may want to narrow your niche down even further. For instance, you may have found that “freelance writing” is a popular niche, but want to see if you can find an even narrower focus for your niche. One of the best ways to do this is to visit related forums, Facebook groups and subreddits.
Use a tool like Redditlist to see which subtopics or sub-niches you might want to pursue. Simply type in your main keywords and scroll through the most popular subreddits to see if any appeal to you. Delve even deeper by visiting these subreddits, as well as niche groups and forums, to see which topics or questions come up regularly. This could help you further define your niche (e.g., “freelance science fiction writers”), as well as help you come up with additional sub-niches or blog topic ideas for the future.”
2. See if competitors are bidding high on Cost Per Click (CPC) because they’ll know if there’s big money in the niche: Neil Patel
Neil Patel in the article “How to Find a Profitable Niche in Affiliate Marketing”:
To get started, head to Google AdWords’ Keyword Planner. Next, type in your keywords for your niche. Focus on related words that will bring up diverse results. Then, hit “Get ideas!” The key here is to look at average monthly searches, competition, and the suggested bids. The monthly searches will show you how much traffic these niche keywords get.
The competition will highlight how difficult it will be to rank for them. For example, travel and travel deals are going to be tough to rank for with higher search amounts and high competition. The suggested bid will help you understand if a keyword niche is worth spending time on.
Next, click on the “Suggested bid” column to sort your results by bid amount. We do this to see which niche searches have marketers willing to pay high amounts for a single click. This usually indicates that there are high-value affiliate products to sell for these searches if someone is willing to pay big money for a single click.
This shows me that it’s popular and has the ability to produce significant returns. Think about it: If marketers were only generating $10 per sale on the credit card deals, they wouldn’t be bidding over $20! And that means they are bidding $20 because they know that there is big money involved in closing a sale. Once you’ve got this down, you’ve found yourself a profitable niche.”
3. The trick here is to find a niche that will yield quality leads and audience while not being too exclusive: Doug Cunnington
Doug Cunnington in the article “How to Find a Profitable Niche in 2020 (10 Steps)”:
Prioritize profit. Time to figure out who you want to sell to. Did you have a target audience in mind? How did you pick them? There are multiple ways to figure this one out. Rather, there are multiple angles you can look at on this issue. For example, use geography as a “filter”. Which country’s market do you want to tap into? Narrowing that further, which region has needs that you can address?
Take a graph that shows, by region, the worldwide advertising spending growth. What this tells us is which region is a potential target audience and where businesses are willing to spend their advertising money. This implies that their audience is willing and able to spend. Otherwise, these companies would be spending all their money on advertising with little return.
The point is to find a niche that will generate potential profit for your business. You’ll have to make sure that your chosen area will have the buying power needed to purchase your product or service.
Once you find that general niche, try going deeper. It won’t do you any good if you target an audience that’s too general. Conversely, you’ll want to make sure that you aren’t being too specific with your audience. The trick here is to find a niche that will yield quality leads and audience while not being too exclusive.”
4. Pick out the most profitable problems – some problems your audience will gladly pay to solve, others will be a hard sell: Chris Ducker
Chris Ducker in the article “4 Proven Steps to Finding a Profitable Niche”:
So how do you get started finding a profitable niche? Follow these 4 straightforward steps:
Brainstorm an audience. You can do this in a few ways.
- Choose an audience that you represent yourself (for example, male university student between 18 – 25 years old, or middle-aged professional male)
- Choose an audience that you gravitate toward (in other words, people you like hanging around with).
- Work backwards, and choose an audience by first picking a niche topic that interests you. This could involve picking a niche like “hangover cures”, then doing research on sites like Quantcast to figure out the dominant groups of people that are looking for a cure for hangovers.
Identify the problems your niche audience has. This involves doing research into the problems, challenges, pain points, aspirations, and desires that your niche audience has. There are many places online that you can find this information, including niche forums, how-to websites, popular blogs, and “trend” websites.
Pick out the most profitable problems. Not all problems are created equal. Some problems your audience will gladly pay to solve; others will be a hard sell. You need to understand the difference, and you can do so using “filters” such as:
- The number of monthly searches related to a problem
- The number of searches that imply intent to solve that problem
- The stability of search terms related to that problem
- The amount of good-quality, free information on the Web
Understand profitable problems deeply. It’s not enough to simply know that, for example, males between 18 and 25 are looking for hangover cures. You need to find out what exactly they want in a hangover cure, and the problems they have with current hangover cures. There’s more to it then simply finding your niche, however. You also need to understand the language they use in describing their ideal solution, so you can echo that language back to them in your ad copy, sales page copy, etc.”
5. It’s a lot easier to go after a proven market that already exists. Remember, it’s the pioneers that have arrows in their back: Brian Edmondson
Brian Edmondson in the article “10 Best-Selling Most Popular Niches to Make Money Online”:
I’m not suggesting that there is no room to come up with new ideas and bring new products that don’t exist into the market. Henry Ford is famous for stating that if he had asked people what they wanted… they would have said faster horses.
What I am advocating though, is that if you want to have the best chance of success in any business ventures it’s a lot easier to go after a proven market that already exists. Remember, it’s the pioneers that have arrows in their back.
With that said, if you want to go where the sales are, you need to know the best-selling niches online and get in on that action. You’ll discover your unique place in that overall niche, whether it’s with your own product or with someone else’s through affiliate marketing.
These niches aren’t “trendy.” They’ve been best-sellers for a long time because they appeal to people’s deeply-held wants and desires. The products may change, but these are core niches that will never go away and will always be part of the human experience. In most cases, these categories have been around long before the internet and are popular offline in bricks and mortars stores as well. And that means they’ve got staying power.
The idea here is you want to go into a bigger market that has longevity. An example is the fitness and weight loss market vs the Keto market. If you focus a business around the fitness and weight loss market you’ll always have an audience. You can market and promote the hot trends of the day, but when those go away you can easily move onto the next big thing. If however, you go narrow and build a site and audience just on the Keto market, when the health trend ends, so does your business.
If you want to start a profitable online business with the best chances of succeeding out the gate; you can’t go wrong entering a market that is already proven to be profitable.”
6. Different markets have different inner workings and consumer behaviors- some are more profitable than others: Louie Luc
Louie Luc in the article “How to Find a Profitable Niche: My Simple, 3-Step Formula”:
There are three major markets that are known for their evergreen profitability: Health, Wealth, Relationships. Together they represent about 95% of the most profitable markets both online and offline and are guaranteed sources of income and success, as long — it goes without saying — as long as you properly explore their niches and sub-niches.
The Health Market goes beyond being just a need; it’s more of a crucial requirement. We all want to feel young, be fit and look beautiful, right? Every one of us aims to live long and happy lives and we want the same for our loved ones, for our pets and friends. It’s no wonder, therefore, that there are a ton of people out there willing and (unfortunately) having to spend a lot of money in the health market — which opens the doors to a panoply of profitable niches.
Who doesn’t want to be rich? Or, at a very least, have some money in their pockets? I mean we all need to pay our bills, make a living and have enough money to live a comfortable life with everything we need for ourselves and our family and our pets. As such, the Wealth Market is filled with great business opportunities, because people are always looking for ways to save more, pay their debts, improve their careers and increase their income.The Wealth market is filled with great business opportunities, because people are always looking for ways to save more, pay their debts, improve their careers and increase their income.
In the Relationships Market, we all want to feel loved, be attractive, have a wonderful relationship with our better half, be accepted by our peers, welcomed by those who matter most to us and recognized in our community. Unsurprisingly, we’re definitely willing to invest some cash to achieve all of that.
Why are these three markets so powerful and strong? Why are these three markets so profitable? Because they represent our basic human needs. People are willing to spend money in these evergreen markets, because they are triggered by emotion — their needs — rather than reason. Chances are they’ll never be satisfied with the products they buy and they’ll keep on spending money on the next big thing, the latest best solution. As long as you make sure your niche falls into one of these three major markets, you really can’t go wrong.”
7. Your first stop should always be to see how other blogs in your niche are making money – get ideas of monetization options available: Adam Connell
Adam Connell in the article “How To Choose A Niche For Your Blog (And 100+ Profitable Niche Ideas)”:
If everything has gone well with your basic niche brainstorming, it’s time to figure out whether you can actually make money from this thing. If you’re creative, it’s possible to make at least some money from pretty much any niche, as long as you have an audience. But no amount of creative monetization can get around this fact, Some blog niches are always going to make more money than others. So how do you figure out if, and how, you can make money with your niche? You guessed it – more research!
See how other blogs in your niche make money. Your first stop should always be to see how other blogs in your niche are making money. Go open a few tabs with popular blogs in your niche. Then, go through them and see if they display banner ads or other advertisements on their site, write about certain products with links to where people can buy, or sell their own information product.
This should instantly give you some idea of the potential monetization options available to you. Although, displaying ads isn’t always the best way to go. It does work great in certain verticals though.
Look at popular products on Amazon. Amazon is a gold mine for monetization ideas. Basically, you want to see if there are products on Amazon that your readers might be interested in. If you find products on Amazon that sell well, you can either create similar products for your own blog, or write blog posts to promote high-quality products and get paid a commission.
Check for big affiliate programs. Affiliate marketing is a partnership where you get paid a commission for referring people to products. Shareasale is one popular affiliate marketing platform, but you also might have niche-specific opportunities that can provide a great income. If all goes well, you should be able to find some high-quality products you can promote and make an income.
See if there’s a way to make your own product. This method requires the most upfront work, but it can really pay off if you do it right and have a large audience. Basically, you create your own digital product – like an eBook or an online course. Then, you sell that product to your audience. If there’s any way you can add value – either by teaching or just compiling resources – this can be a great way to monetize a niche.”
8. You don’t have to figure it all out right away – when I started my online business, I didn’t know what I wanted: Henri Junttila
Henri Junttila in the article “5 Ways to Improve Your Content Marketing Efforts for 2019”:
The truth of the matter is that if you do not pick the right niche, or focus on serving people who are willing to pay you, chances are that you will fail. But this doesn’t mean you have to figure it all out right away: when I started my online business, I didn’t know what I wanted to focus on.
I knew I was passionate about personal development. I also knew that the personal development market was extremely saturated, but I didn’t know what else to do, so I jumped in anyway. I started building an audience, and as I started getting feedback, I started to discover my niche.
You see, it’s not about perfection — it’s about constant improvement. If you have a vague idea of what you want to do, but aren’t sure, the best thing you can do is to jump in and see what happens. If you can’t figure it out, you just have to take action, otherwise you’ll stay stuck for a long time.
One of the main reasons people fail is because they are unrealistic. They may follow their passion, but they never stop to think if people would be willing to pay for what they want to do, so always stay focused on what problems people have, and if they would be willing to pay you to solve those problems.
When I started, I dove into the personal development market. My odds of success were low, but I knew there was demand. I knew the market was viable, because there was competition; I could find books, courses, workshops, and coaches. If I could just build an audience, I could succeed. I didn’t know what I was doing, but I took things one step at a time, and here I am today, getting paid to do what I love.”
9. Typically, niche products are not mass produced — hence why they are “niche” and they command a higher price point: Victoria Sullivan
Victoria Sullivan in the article “How to Find a Profitable eCommerce Niche”:
Narrowing in on a profitable niche requires some important considerations, such as:
Your Target Customer: You need to understand who your customer is — this includes their passions and interests, hopes and dreams, struggles and pain points. This will help you determine which area of theirs you’ll serve — and how best to serve/market to it.
Price: One niche seller says that “expensive niche products perform better” and recommends items around or higher than $200. This means targeting an upper-middle class audience with disposable income and existing online shopping habits. Typically, niche products are not mass produced — hence why they are “niche”. This commands a higher price point.
Competition with National Brands: Find a niche that doesn’t heavily compete with established/national brands that have super loyal customers. For example, once an Apple user, (most) always an Apple user. So look for products that don’t already compete with established brand loyalty — i.e. with a customer that is willing to spend a lot regardless of brand.
Factoring in this information will help you further narrow your focus and find a profitable niche. For reference, some popular niches include beard oil for men, CBD for pets, sustainable fashion, and vegan beauty. Some areas to think about that would fit the ideal market (i.e. disposable income and confidence/comfort in shopping online) include: travel (like luggage and carry-on bags, packing accessories, etc.), obscure or emerging hobbies (like paddleboarding, for example).”
10. We recently did a survey with more than 1000 bloggers and 59.81% of bloggers admitted to making money: Artem Minaev
Artem Minaev in the article “How to Find and Validate Your Niche As a Blogger”:
Who doesn’t want to make money with their blog! While many bloggers only began blogging as a means to explore their talents and hobbies, they soon realized that it’s also possible to drive profit from their endeavors. Some make no more than kitchen money while others are making a legit living with their blog. We recently did a survey with more than 1000 bloggers and 59.81% of bloggers admitted making money through blogging.
The chances are that you might also be intrigued about the monetization potential of your niche. But you might already know the answer – if you found active blogs and social media pages or magazines on your niche in the last section, it means that your chosen niche is, in fact, very alive and profitable.
Here’s a quick guide to ensuring that you can make good money by blogging in your chosen niche:
- Have you seen other bloggers in your niche selling info or products related to the industry? If yes, then there is money to be made.
- Do businesses often advertise with bloggers in your niche? If they are big brands or eCommerce stores, you might be in luck.
- Do you see affiliate offers on other blogs in your niche? Check out affiliate networks like Clickbank.com and Amazon Affiliate to see if your blog can qualify as well.
These pointers can help you figure out if you’ll be able to generate an income with your blog niche.”
So What Are Your Thoughts? Do Share!
This post is incomplete without your input. The community of Knowledge Commerce solopreneurs would feel galvanized to hear from you … so do share your thoughts on this topic with us, in the comments field below this post.
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