Selling online: How Do I Choose a Niche?

When a seller first decides to start a e-commerce business, one of the first things they need to do is find a niche. That is not always easy as it sounds, but fotunately, there are some ideas you can use to help you decide.

First,consider the old adage “do what you love and the money will follow.” Choosing a niche that you are passionate about is usually a great place to start because you already have some knowledge and experience that can help you decide what to sell. As an example, if you like to go cycling then you generally already have a lot (or at least some) knowledge about helmets, bikes, clothing and riding gear. You know what you like and you probably have a fairly good idea of what the “hot” items are for cycling right now. This is a GREAT place to start building your niche on the Internet.

   

What do you do though if the things you like and are passionate about aren’t really the types of things that sell very well? Say, that maybe you still love collecting Beanie Babies even though they really don’t generate the kind of money that they use to. Well, instead of trying to sell something that won’t return much of a profit, think about something else that you are interested in — maybe a new hobby or lifestyle that you would like to get into. You can then research those types of items right on the Internet and see how they rank and how well those types of items are selling. Take it one step further, however, and do some additional research by reading books or magazines on the subject. Think “outside the box.” Do you see an upcoming trend that no one on the Internet is aware of yet? Well, there’s your niche.

It is possible, of course, that even though you have a hobby or an interest it still doesn’t translate into something that you can make money on. If so — don’t despair. You can always fall back on the tried and true “keyword search” and good old “market research.” Many people make a good living on eBay and Amazon by selling the discontinued grocery items and clearance items that they find at stores like Kohl’s, Target, other “big box” stores, and local grocery stores. Some people even find their niche in items that are popular in their region or state, but hard to find anywhere else.

Once you choose your niche, I think you will be surprised at how the opportunities start presenting themselves. As you gain experience, you will begin seeing the trends before they happen and know what items are worth listing and what items aren’t.

So — what will your niche be?

About our Guest Blogger
This guest post was contributed by Kat Simpson. Kat is a trusted eCommerce author, speaker, educator, and entrepreneur. Kat Simpson has been a successful eCommerce merchant for over 10 years; is an eBay Education Specialist and Gold Level PowerSeller, as well as a successful Amazon merchant. Currently Kat is the hosts the popular weekly eCommerce Podcast That Kat Radio

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