Picking a niche for your store might be one of the most important first steps – going after the right industry can make or break your store. If you're just getting started and you're stuck, then I'm here to get you unstuck!
Here are 3 ways to find and choose a niche for your store:
#1. Go With What You Know
Many people have created businesses from their hobbies and interests. Anything you're an expert in automatically puts you at an advantage to your competition.
You can shortcut the many avenues of market research by relying on the research you've been doing for years following your interests. Also, selling to a market is much easier when you are the ideal customer you would be marketing to.
Find Your Passion… Make It Happen!
So start narrowing down your interests… make a list of your top 5 interests and passions. It might be sports, pets, writing or fashion – or something very specific. It will be something you spend a lot of time doing, maybe you are subscribed to Groups online about it and are always trying new things and keeping up to date with the latest reviews.
Being passionate about your store also helps you stick with it and create product descriptions that really speak to people and thus increase your sales. Your audience can match your demographics (age, gender, education, employment) and the kind of people you would know.
Passion will also help you persevere if you don't see results immediately.
Success For Tomorrow
Creating a niche store gives you a break from hunting for top-selling products, it takes the focus away from the product and on to the customer. You can take a step back from product-hunting and instead find an audience to target.
A niche store benefits from customers adding several items to their cart, being able to follow up purchasers with similar products and offer upsells. This creates an evergreen store where products might come and go but your audience stays the same.
The disadvantage of this strategy is the time it takes to build a brand and takes a longer time to your first sale. Customers are more likely to “browse” without buying so ensure you follow them up and retarget!
Narrow It Down
Not all passions translate into products. I'd recommend you cross-reference the list of your top 5 interests with this matrix to find the sweet spot where your interests meet opportunity:
Ask yourself; is this something many people are passionate about? Are people so passionate that they purchase items to complement their interests?
If this is something you are interested in, when was the last time you purchased something? Did you find it hard to find? Did you buy online because of that fact? If so, I think you're on to a winner.
#2. Go Where There Is Opportunity
Traditionally most people created a business because they had a problem which no one else had solved. Realizing others have the same issue they saw an opportunity.
As opposed to passionate purchasers, many people can buy from your store simply because you are solving a problem they have.
Using sites like Quora or Reddit where people post questions they need answers to is a great place to look for ideas, keep a lookout for people looking for recommendations for a product or posting reviews.
Offer people a solution that solves a common problem – many top-selling products do exactly this… from wireless headphones and portable speakers to fruit peelers!
Dropified and other dropship platforms connect you directly to a huge number of suppliers. There is opportunity in such a huge number of products from global suppliers. You could introduce new products that are popular in one country but haven't yet been introduced elsewhere.
For example you can go to any category on Amazon.com to view the top selling items: https://www.amazon.com/gp/bestsellers/pc/335604011/
Then go to Amazon sites outside of your target audience such as Amazon.de for Germany and find their top selling items. Since dropshipping is borderless and suppliers ship globally you could cross reference popular products in one country with any country in the world to find opportunity.
Languages change but demand for products that solve a problem do not!
The downside with this strategy is that you're always looking for new products which won’t appeal to the same customers who previously purchased from you, but on the upside there always will be something new.
#3. Ride The Trend
Finally you can jump on trends for hot products. You might think a market is crowded but that can actually be a good thing if it's a large enough market! The more demand there is for a product, the easier it is to sell.
Taking a small slice of a much bigger market is a winning strategy that many household brands follow. It's also easier to find your market when it's a much larger proportion of the population.
Products that are already top selling are by default easier to sell.
To find a long list of trending searches the best place is the Popular searches page on AliExpress: https://www.aliexpress.com/popular.html
On that page I got ideas for products that I never knew existed… with thousands of SALES!
Whichever method you choose trying to combine a bit of each will grant you the best chances of success and make your marketing easier.
Try to find products that you or others are passionate about, solve a problem or a new opportunity and which are currently popular with some segment of the population. Good luck!