Affiliate Marketing Step by Step – Choosing Your Niche
We just looked at the first two steps to get started making money with affiliate marketing.
Here’s a link to that post so you can see what you missed. Affiliate Marketing Step by Step - Overview
In Steps 1 and 2 we saw what affiliate marketing is and how it works.
Today we’ll go further in our Affiliate Marketing Step by Step series to look at Step 3 Choosing a niche.
You must choose what niche you will focus on first before you can choose what product to promote. So this is an important step.
Here we go!
Step 3: Choosing a Niche
What is a Niche?
In the context of business here is what the dictionary tell us
niche /niCH,nēSH/ noun
“a specialized segment of the market for a particular kind of product or service.”
Any specialized segment of a market can be a niche.
With the world as your market on the internet, and with 3.2 billion people accessing the internet, according to Wikipedia in June of 2018, there are so many different segments of that market that the possibilities seem limitless.
You need to choose ONE to start.
But which one?
Let’s look at a few questions to help you make a well informed choice. Each of these questions help you build a profile of how this niche is likely to perform and how well you will like working in it.
Get out your legal pad and make a list of your answers. Then you can compare your results and make a more informed choice.
Does it interest you?
Asking yourself whether or not the niche you choose interests you is not an absolute necessity, but it is helpful.
Here’s why. When you choose your niche, you are making a choice to educate yourself at least to a large extent on that specialty in the market in these ways:
- Who is interested in this specialty/ niche?
- Why are they interested?
- What will draw them to your site or product?
- What is their burning need relating to their interest or niche?
- Which affiliate products will meet that burning need?
- How can you communicate with them to keep them interested and encourage them to buy?
The more you know about the niche the more effective you can be in answering all of these questions and executing your plans to sell to this market.
So the niche doesn’t have to interest you, but you will be working in that niche every day so at least some level of interest is certainly helpful and will make your job more interesting for you.
Does it interest enough other people?
If this niche interests you, then it interests at least some other people. That is a starting point but there are more questions to ask before deciding on your niche.
You will be putting quite a bit of time, work and money into building your business even using affiliate marketing step by step.
For that reason, you want to be sure you are investing your time and effort into a niche that has the possibility of successfully making sales and making commissions for you time and time again.
How many people have to be interested for you to be able to sell things successfully to them?
There is no exact number but its true that the greater the number of people who are interested in the niche, the better your chances are of being able to not only sell something but instead to sell to them regularly.
Do a google search for a term related to the niche you are researching.
Here’s an example of some differing results that point to one market being larger than the other.
I did a Google search on the term pecan shellers. I like pecans and they are cheaper if you buy them unshelled but shelling them is not fun. So let’s see if “Pecan Shellers” would be a good niche to sell to in long term.
My google search for pecan shellers came up with 59,400 sites. Sounds like plenty right?
Let’s compare to three other Google searches on other possible niches.
Diabetes - 611 million
Skin Care - 2.6 billion
Golf - 4.22 billion
All 3 of these possible niches have a far greater chance of success when it comes to selling products than the niche I’m researching "pecan shellers".
The size of the internet makes the market wide open to everyone who wants to sell, but you have to think in terms of very large numbers.
You will reach a very small portion of any market you target. That’s not a bad thing and its not saying you will be doing a bad job. Its simply a fact. Its because of the sheer size of the internet and the number of people there.
So if you are going to reach a small portion of the overall market you are targeting, the larger that market, the better chance you have of reaching more of them. Its just math.
Are they talking about this niche?
This one is fairly easy to check out. Use google, and social media to see if people are talking about this niche.
Again, compare overall numbers of people who are talking in several niches to be sure you can evaluate if enough people are talking.
If they are talking then you have a chance to enter the conversation and grow a following.
Ultimately on the internet you will enjoy more success if you focus on growing a group of people who WANT to hear from you and communicate with them via email, social media, text, etc.
You are growing your list of subscribers and you can then build a relationship with them and that will help you sell to them.
So answering this question about who is talking about this niche is very important.
Are they buying products in this niche?
Another simple question to answer. Look on google, amazon and other sources to see if products are being offered in this niche.
You want to see a high number of products and products that have been sold over a period of time.
People don’t keep paying money to place ads unless people are buying. So finding ads for products in good numbers and over time is a good sign for you.
At the same time, you can see if there are products that can be sold as an affiliate. If not, that niche won’t help you. But in most niches there are products that offer affiliate commissions.
Can you reach them?
This is a very important question. If you want to sell products to people in a target market you have to be able to reach them with your message.
So check out google, social media and blogs to see where people are advertising for that type of product.
- Are there ads?
- Do you see the same ads in many places and for a period of time?
- Are there places you can stir up interest to get free traffic on social media for example?
- What are people paying who are advertising?
That last question really matters.
If you pick a niche that is expensive to advertise for when compared to advertising costs in other niches then you won’t be able to advertise enough to make it worth the cost.
You'll have to do some research but in the long run doing this advance work will save you time, money and frustration.
Answer these questions on several niches you are considering and then look at your legal pad and it will become clear which niche is best for you.
Until next time...