Choosing Your Niche

The biggest mistake people make in life is
not trying to make a living at doing what they
most enjoy.
Malcolm S Forbes

Do not underestimate the power of this.

It takes time, work and dedication to build a website. If you choose a niche only because your research indicated that it stands a good chance of success, but have no interest in the subject, you will either fail (most likely) or have a horrible time succeeding.

Choosing a niche/theme is critical to making a successful online business website.

Understanding the Basic Terms

The terms theme and niche are used almost interchangeably when talking about web sites. I tend to use the term theme to describe a general area and niche for a more specific one.

For an example a theme would be websitesa niche-
WordPress websites
and a micro niche would be WordPress
websites for estate agents
.

Why are Themes/Niches Important?

Having a clear theme for your site is important because

  • Search engines appear to group websites by theme/niche
  • People search for information on a particular topic
  • It makes your content easier to structure, and for
    visitors to navigate.

The most common mistake people make when making their first web site is to choose either a  general theme, or no theme at all.

How Broad or narrow Should Your Theme be ?

There is no easy answer to this, but what you should be aware
of is-The broader the theme:

  • The larger the competition.
  • The harder it is to rank in the search engines.
  • The longer it takes to rank in the search engines.
  • The more pages you will need to create.
  • The larger the income potential (Usually but not always)

and the narrower the theme then:

  • The smaller the competition.
  • The easier it is to rank in the search engines.
  • The less time it takes to rank in the search engines.
  • The fewer pages you will need to create.
  • The lower the income potential (Usually but not always)

Products as Niches

A product can be considered as a very tight niche, but it can represent a large market. Just look at all of the sites focused on windows XP, Vista and windows 7.

The problem with a product approach is that some have very short lifetimes.

However although Windows XP stopped selling  in 2008 (software package), I am writing this (Nov 2010) on an XP machine, which I will probably be using for a couple more years.

I still have a site that originally was about outlook express, and again outlook express was discontinued with XP, but  it still gets 1000s of page views per day.

So products can make for good niches, but just be careful.

Local Niches

The Internet is now so pervasive that it is being used by more and more people for more things. From shopping to entertainment to keeping it touch.

Websites will replace many of the tradition paper based systems we have grown up with, from the telephone directory to the local business directory, to the many local magazines and leaflets.

There is a huge opportunity for creating various locally focused websites to serve your local community.

Choosing the Best Niche

The best niche for you will :

  1. Excite you – You are going to be spending a lot of time on it -enjoy it!
  2. Have strong demand -plenty of people searching
  3. Have low Supply- Not many competing websites
  4. Display plenty of opportunities for niche related keywords -lots of keyword combinations.

Interest vs Passion

You don’t really need to be really passionate about a topic to make a business out of it, but you do need to have an interest in it. Sometimes that interest develops the more you understand about that topic.

Here is a very useful video that discusses passion and interest.

Niches to Avoid

The Internet marketing niche is often the first one that comes to mind for most beginners, usually because the products they have purchased have an affiliate program.

Please try and avoid this niche as it is overcrowded and usually over hyped.

Testing Your Choice

The best method I’ve found for testing my ideas is to try and write a couple of linked articles on the topic.

What I’m looking for is to get a feeling for the difficulty of the topic, and the the ease with which the topic relates to other things, and the ideas that crop up as I write.

If I find it very difficult to write about it, or no new ideas come
to mind while I’m doing it, and it is difficult to interlink the pages in a structured manner then I rethink that niche.

Some Topics are more difficult than others and just don’t generate much variation. See Dead end Niches

Continue —-> Choosing Domain Name and Hosting Provider

Resources:

Here are some other articles/videos that I have found very useful.

Choosing Your Niche
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11 thoughts on “Choosing Your Niche

  1. Sam Koenik

    It is really difficult I find to finding that uncompetitive niche. Do you have any tricks or software you can reccomend?

    I went fortreadmills which is alot more competitive than I thought.

  2. steve Post author

    Sam
    Sorry I don’t. Most markets that you can make money in with have competition and as you will be using affiliate marketing or adsense then you need an active market.
    The main trick if you can call it that is to go for a small piece of a large pie and that means mini/micro niche.

  3. Annon.

    im finding this very helpful. i have spent literally hours per day for 2 months trying to learn everything i can and i must say, this is one of the easiest to understand. thank you.

  4. Casanova Brian

    Thanks for posting this, I’m struggling to find niches as we speak.

    What do you think is the best for ranking above the competition? Simply more backlinks and basic SEO, having the keyword splattered all over?

  5. steve Post author

    Seo isn’t that difficult but there is a lot of misleading information around on the web. Create content for people to read and not for search engines. Include your keyword/s but don’t just splatter them over the page keep it sensible and readable. Get some links from directories and/or article marketing,youtube by creating videos etc.
    If you choose the niche correctly then you shouldn’t need to do lots of SEO. Remember that you need to target a narrow niche especially for a beginner.

  6. Ben

    Im finding your write up interesting to read, but i am finding it very difficult to come up with a niches, what do you think is the best niche to go into.

  7. steve Post author

    Ben
    There is no best niche. Some topics are difficult to make money with but when it comes to building a site that attracts visitors you will have more success with topics that interest you. If you choose a topic just because you think that it will make money then it will be hard work. Some people especially those who are sales driven can probably do it but any time I have tried that approach I lost interest.
    If this is your first site then choosing a topic that really interests you is a really good way to learn about building and marketing websites. You can always try the money niches later if you need to.

  8. Brett

    Take a look at FindAForum.net – it’s full of ideas for niches. And almost all the forums featured on the site are potentially making big, big money.

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