In this guide, we’re going to be walking through a step by step process that I use to choose a niche.
We’re going to be covering five steps starting with brainstorming ideas. Next, we’re going to be specific and narrow down the idea.
Then we’ll be talking about ways that you can determine whether there’s a market for your niche.
After that, we’ll be making sure that your niche solves the problem. And lastly, we’re going to talk about testing your niche in a live market.
Before we get into the process, let’s talk about what a niche actually is, and why it’s important.w
What Is A Niche?
To put it plainly choosing a niche is just categorizing yourself or your business. People want to put you and your business into a box and categorize it like a finance site or a portfolio site or whatever category you might fall under.
So just learn to accept it and categorize your content into one thing.
The definition states that:
For instance, the larger market could be something very broad like:
Whatever you might want it to be.
Underneath these broad categories, you can come up with a niche or a smaller subcategory.
So under Fitness, you could try something like:
You get the idea. It’s basically choosing something specific from a broad topic and essentially categorizing you or your business.
So let’s move on to step number one which is brainstorming.
#1. Brainstorm Your Ideas
Firstly, you don’t need to brainstorm your specific clientele. Because often when you’re new to a market, you don’t know who your clientele is going to be.
Instead, you want to think about what you’re knowledgeable in and what the demand is for what you’re providing.
In order to do this, you need to sit down and put together all of the ideas that you have, look at it and see what you’re good at, see what you want to talk about, and see what you can come up with.
Conducting brainstorm is easy.
You start with a giant list of everything that you can think of, and then you narrow those ideas down to start put all of your niche ideas down on a piece of paper.
So for instance, you might be thinking about fitness, food, or clothing.
Underneath each of these different ideas or categories, you want to put down all of the different subcategories or sub-points that you can associate with them.
You’re essentially doing a content dump of everything that you can think of underneath each different category that you already have.
So under fitness, you might think of CrossFit or hit workouts or any other kind of workout that you can think about.
Under food, you might talk about different cuisines.
Under clothing, you might think of different seasons or different brands.
As you continue to dump these ideas down on paper, you’ll begin to notice that some of these categories, you can think much easier have subcategories rather than others.
For fitness, you might be dropping tons and tons of ideas. And then for food and clothing, you might be struggling to come up with a lot of different topics.
This is important. Because you might be passionate about all of your initial ideas.
But passion simply isn’t enough when it comes to a niche.
You need to be knowledgeable, consistent, and passionate, but most importantly, knowledgeable and consistent.
Any niche you choose, you’re going to have competition.
So the reason I say that choose a category that you’re knowledgeable in, and it’s easy to come up with ideas with is that you’re going to be met with other people who offer the same material.
So you must provide it in a better way.
Questions To Ask Yourself
While you’re sifting through your ideas in the middle of the storm, ask yourself following questions:
I do want to make something clear, there’s a difference between being passionate and being able to tolerate something.
Maybe you don’t enjoy a niche as much per se as another but it’s something that you’re naturally gifted in and knowledgeable in.
Obviously, finding something that you love and that you’re naturally good at and knowledgeable in is ideal. Just know that there are some exceptions to this.
If you’re willing to tolerate talking about that thing for the next foreseeable future, you might have a profitable niche.
Although you might not be as passionate about the niche idea as others, you can find passion in helping your audience solve a problem and using the best product that they can.
Finding passion in helping people the best way possible is another way that it can work.
#2. Niche Down The Idea
So after working through your brainstorm and choosing one idea from the many, it’s now time to take that niche and narrow it down even further.
The goal should be to at least go two or three levels deeper in your thinking.
Notice the examples that I gave at the beginning of the article, they’re always twofold.
They clearly state what the product or service is and who it’s for.
So weatherproofing jackets for hiking is just jackets for hikers.
It’s pretty self-explanatory. In a like manner, when I’m thinking about a new idea. I like to ask myself three different questions.
For example, let’s say that you want to build a niche in something like Fitness.
Okay, so who are you using fitness for? College students, let’s just say.
So what type of students need you? Maybe it’s students who don’t have the resources to go to a gym or students who might be in the middle of a pandemic and can’t come.
So what problem are you solving for them, you might be teaching them how to use things around their home that they can use without needing gym equipment to still get a workout in.
And just like that, you’ve got your niche. Now, you are a personal trainer who instructs college students on how to do home workouts, it’s that simple.
#3. Market Research
Step number three is to figure out if there’s a market for your idea and then analyze that market.
This is a really important step. After coming up with a narrowed down niche that you want to try, it’s important to take this next step.
It’s to do research into the market for your idea. If, for instance, you have a $200 million market, it’d be really easy to pull out $100,000 versus pulling the same $100,000 from a $1 million market.
So checking to make sure that there’s profitability in your niche is also the next checkbox that you wanna make sure you can cross off.
One thing that you can try is to type in your search bar, the industry that you’re trying to get into, and do a little bit of digging to see if you can find out what you’re looking for.
You can also look for publicly traded companies and review their revenues and see how big the market actually is.
After you’ve done a little bit of digging, and you found that there is a market for your niche, you might be able to refine your niche even better now that you have an understanding of the industry and what problems people in that industry are looking to solve. So the solution is twofold.
Importance of Uniqueness
Remember, when choosing a niche, it’s about solving a problem. But at the same time, you need to solve it in a unique way. If you’re not unique, then you’re going to blend in with all of the other competitors that you have in your niche who have already been in the market for a lot longer than you have.
Don’t Worry About Competiton
Another thing that I want to point out is that it’s okay to have competition in your niche. This means that there’s actually in fact, a large market for your niche because there are obviously other people offering services and making successful businesses from them.
So after checking if there’s a market for your idea, take into account monetization.
Keep In Mind Monetization
If your business or website gets very popular in the future and begins to gain traction, how are you going to monetize it later on down the road?
What affiliate products or ads would pair well with your niche?
You can search affiliate marketing websites like clickbank.com, for example, for products that are related to your niche.
Now, clickbank.com is a website that provides digital products only. You can also check out Amazon’s affiliate program where you can sell Amazon products for a commission.
This way, you don’t have to physically handle any products yourself. And you can also make a passive income online.
If there are a bunch of products that are related to your idea, then you obviously have a plentiful niche.
You can also try looking at competitors and analyzing them in your niche. Analyzing the direct and indirect competition is incredibly helpful.
Analyze what they’re providing, and how they do it. Pay attention to the audience and see what their audience is telling them, learn from it.
You can definitely learn valuable information from your competitors, because if they’re successful, then you can be too.
One last thing that you can do is to look at social media for hashtags that are prominent in your industry or niche.
This will give you directional data as to what your target market is looking at.
#4. Solve a Problem
I felt like I needed to reiterate this and its own step because it’s absolutely crucial.
At this point, you should know how to write an online business plan
This is the bedrock. For creating any niche and becoming successful in any sales endeavor, you must solve someone’s problem, whatever it may be.
So just make sure that you can cross this checkbox off.
#5. Test your Niche
Alright guys, so step number five is to test your niche. The final step in creating your niche is to test what you have so far, and to pay attention to the metrics that come from it.
You’ve already hopefully done extensive research into the industry that you’re seriously considering.
So actually getting some hands-on experience and testing your niche in a real market can show you a lot.
Create MVP Product
One way that you can go about testing your niche is to create a minimum viable product or MVP.
It could be a single-page website or sales funnel and offer some sort of free information book or something that might entice people in your target market to look at what you’re offering.
For example, using the college student niche idea that I had earlier, you could create a quick landing page that is professional and intriguing.
And then offer some sort of single free workout plan for one day to give them a taste of what you’re about for home workouts.
After creating a landing page, you can drive traffic to that page by using services like Google ads and pay attention to the metrics and traffic that come in.
This will show you the amount of interest in your service.
Use Surveys To Test Your Market
Anyways, one more tactic that you could employ would be to distribute surveys that are about your niche and pay attention to what your target market responds with.
You could then publicize your survey in guest posts or industry-related groups or forums on social media or using Google Surveys.
You can pay Google to promote it for you.
The last thing that I want to talk to you guys about is more of a future step. We’re a year maybe two or three years in the future right now.
Listen To Your Audience
You now have your own niche and you’ve created a website and a business around it.
You’ve gained quite a large following and you’re gaining traction in the industry becoming a big name among your competitors. It’s important to understand this; later on down the road, you want to adopt a little bit more of a fluid niche or an updated niche.
And what I mean by this is that you want to listen to your audience. Listen to what they want, and you can adapt your niche to serve those needs.
For instance, let’s use the college student workout example that I used earlier.
You might find out by paying attention to your metrics, that most of your traffic actually isn’t coming from college students. Instead, it’s coming from a stay at home moms looking for a healthier lifestyle.
You can then morph your niche and change the direction of your content to be centered around stay at home moms because they seem to be your strong majority.
So be sure to listen to your audience because they’re going to tell you what they want.
Finding an Online Business Niche Final Words
I hope walking you through the process that I use for choosing my niche was able to help you all in some way. If there’s one thing that you take away from this guide, and I cannot stress how important it is, it’s to choose a niche and to uniquely solve a problem.
So whether you’re walking through these steps to create a niche, or you’ve read this article to verify the niche that you already have, you need to remember to be specific and helpful in your business to actually work.
If you still struggling to find your niche, check this list of best online business ideas in 2021.