When deciding to make money online, a big part of that decision is choosing your marketing niche. Marketing niches define what, exactly, you’re going to do and how you’re going to do it. If you like dogs, you might want to build a Website around the needs of dog owners, though that’s a bit of a broad market. What you want to do instead is choose from a number of marketing niches within the overall market of dogs. Dog training, for instance, or dog toys, or perhaps dietary requirements for dogs might qualify as marketing niches, whereas the overall market for “dogs” is a market, rather than a niche.
Of course, when choosing marketing niches, it’s easy to become overwhelmed by the potential number of possible things to do. The list is nearly infinite, and that can make it difficult to pick a market segment that you’d like to address in terms of making money. Granted, some marketing niches are going to be more popular than others – weight loss, for instance, is always going to draw more potential customers than a Website devoted to knitting. If you’re just starting out, one of the best guidelines is this – pick a niche that involves solving people’s immediate problems.
In a previous post, I discussed some methods that you can use to promote products that are in competitive niches. Niches such as dating, weight loss or the make money online niche are super-competitive, which might cause you to decide that you don’t want to pursue them. From one perspective, that can make sense; why go where the competition is tough? In a business where it can already be difficult to make money, it can be even harder to make money if you’re facing stiff competition from well-funded, experienced marketers. On the other hand, there is a lot of money to be made in competitive niches, and that’s true even if you’re one of the little guys.
In that previous post, I suggested a few ways that you could make yourself stand out from the competition, giving you a bit of an edge even if you didn’t have a big Website, a big mailing list, or a ton of advertising money. Those methods are valid, and if you’re willing to take the time to pursue long tail keywords, offer something extra that the other guys don’t, and make the effort to offer superior contact and customer service, you can succeed. But I forgot to mention the most obvious, and in some cases, the most effective way to succeed in competitive niches.
Use marketing twists to promote your product in a way that’s dramatically different from the way everyone else is doing it.
There are lots of ways to make money online, and affiliate marketing is one that has a low barrier to entry. It’s not the only way, however; you can also do well by selling physical products, and lots of people do that, too. The problem with selling anything online is that you’re likely to have competition no matter what you’re doing. It’s pretty rare to have a niche all to yourself, and most people gravitate to selling things that a lot of people want. Competitive niches are fine, but you may find yourself struggling against larger, longer-established sellers.
How can you survive in competitive niches? Most people take the wrong approach, by simply trying to do the same thing that everyone else is doing. They’ll try to optimize their Website or blog for the same keywords that their competition is using, and they’ll try to sell the same products at the same price as the leaders in that category. The result is usually a bad one – as a small, or even a newbie, marketer, you’re likely not in a position to compete on price, and targeting the same keywords as the industry leaders isn’t going to help, either, since you’re unlikely to outrank them. Think about it – how likely are you to outrank Amazon in the search engine rankings for any keyword?
People often ask “What are the profitable niches?” There’s no short answer to that; there are hundreds of niches that are profitable, and in theory, any niche can be profitable if you’re good at promoting it and have a good product to sell. Of course, for those who are new to affiliate marketing, it’s easier to start with a niche that already has a lot of built-in interest.
Beginning Internet marketers will likely see some success if they first try in one of the “evergreen” niches, such as dating sites – niches that are always popular and never, ever go out of style. The advantages of going with evergreen niches is that you’ll have lots of customer interest and that isn’t likely to wane. The downside, of course, is that these niches are popular with both consumers and marketers, and that means that niches such as dating sites are likely to have a lot of competition, and many people feel that this niche in particular is saturated. Is it still possible to make money with dating sites? The answer is – “maybe.” Read on for more about making money with dating sites.
Something I see a lot on marketing forums and other places where affiliate marketers gather is a question of how to pick a marketing niche. Everyone wants to find hot niches, that is, the ones that draw a lot of traffic and make it easy to make money, but it can be hard to find those, especially if you’re a newbie. Lots of people say, with good reason, that you should “follow your passion.” That makes sense; if you’re going to create a blog and you’re going to add a lot of content to it, you want to create something that interests you, because you’re going to be spending a lot of time with it. You don’t want to get into a niche that bores you, because you’re going to quickly tire of the topic before you can profit from it.
That said, the fact that something does interest you doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to be profitable. There are plenty of niches that you might be passionate about that might be hard to monetize. So there’s more to it than finding something you like and blogging about it. You need to find a marketing niche that interests people, interests you, and which has the potential to allow you to make money from it. It’s that combination of things that makes for the “perfect storm” of a blog topic that you can use to quickly become profitable. And with that in mind, you need to be aware that there are some hot niches that are, day in and day out, niches that interest people and which offer the opportunity to make money.