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Locating niches and creating content for them

How to do keyword research, find trends, locate niches, etc. Tools, methods, ideas and Q&A can be found here...

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Locating niches and creating content for them

Postby quantikev » Fri Apr 15, 2005 1:00 pm

Hello everyone!

This is my first post on this community, and it looks like a wonderful source of help and information! Forums have proven an invaluable resource for me when learning new information, and I would like to ask my first question!

For a number of months now, I have been generally studying Internet
marketing through ebooks, articles, and other sources of info. In the
process, I have become familiar with some of the basic methods with
which income can be made, and the techniques for implementing these.

In recent times, I have been attempting to use some of this knowledge to create a website employing affiliate programs and possibly short information products of my own creation. However, as I understand it, having content valuable to a given audience is the cornerstone to the success of this type of website.. and this has proven elusive for me.

Foremost, I am attempting to locate a market which I can provide such a website to that does not have a hampering amount of competition. I have used some of the various tools to research ideas I have brainstormed such as overture, nichebot, keywords organizer, and Google's adwords tool, but haven't really found any definitive results. Any keywords with a good number of views that I located (10,000+) seem to already have significant competition from relevant content sites. Perhaps there are ways to do this more efficiently that could help me?

Next, I am not entirely certain how to go about creating the content for a site which serves the information needs of a market. I think I have a general idea; for example a website serving the needs of cyclists who are looking for information about what types of apparel is good to wear for the sport might include information about the available materials (polyester, rayon, ect), materials on the horizon, products available using some of the relevant materials, perhaps an interactive section were others can leave coments about the products, & more? However, I guess what I am uncertain about is how to 'come up with' enough content variety and quantity to provide a satisfactory amount of info for returning visitors, and perhaps how to best organize this content?

Overall, I think if I can find a project to get started on I can pick up on a lot of this as I go along. The hardest part seems to be simply going from nothing to something!

Quite a bit of typing :D , but writing it all down seems to help me better organize it in my mind. If you think you can lend a hand, your help is certainly appreciated! Hopefully I can contribute some of what I already know back to this community.

Thanks a lot!
Kevin
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Postby Lynn Terry » Fri Apr 15, 2005 3:01 pm

Hello Kevin & Welcome :D

You asked a great question, and I imagine it will spark some interesting discussion & resources. I'll dive in and give you my take:

If I were going to sell sporting goods and apparel, I would simply set up an online store instead of a content-based site. You can easily optimize store/sales pages just as well as informational pages (Karon Thackston has some really good information specifically on this topic, I'll try to look that up and give you the title - I believe it was a special report instead of inside of her main guide).

Content sites are great, but dont overlook the concept of a basic online store - there are plenty of them out there that are very profitable.

Back to content sites & locating niches and developing content: you can basically pick a topic off the top of your head and then research it from various angles at WordTracker (they offer an unlimited free trial). This will give you an idea of the 'demand' for that market, as they show the approximate number of daily searches for any given keyword or phrase. (note: look at the "Predict" column for this number)

It helps if you know the topic, or are passionate enough about it to learn everything you could ever need to know and continue working in that market. If it's something way out of your range, you'll quickly become bored or burned out with it. This is the reason people say "go with your passion" or "start with what you know".

Most people also advise you to go with something that isnt competitive (sometimes called "micro niche marketing"). But you can easily hit a very broad & competitive market and then break down your site by categories and sub-categories that are "micro niches" within that market. Each page of your site can be optimized to rank well for it's specific Primary Keyword Phrase, so the more 'depth' you have to your site, the more opportunities you have to capitalize on a whole slew of "micro niche markets" under the umbrella of a broad and competitive topic.

I'll share with you, too, something I wrote earlier this morning on a private forum which you may find helpful/interesting. It was in regards to affiliate marketing / developing content sites:

Lynn wrote:I think that one of the fastest ways to begin earning money online (starting from ground zero) would be to develop a free infoproduct in a less competitive niche - such as a report or guide - and to put viral marketing into motion. From this point you could build a list and earn a profit from the resources mentioned in the document as well as the follow-ups. In the time that followed, one could develop a website or forum (or even a blog) around the topic and direct all of their traffic (subscribers) to that. You could continue to build around that topic over time, of course, but you would have immediate profit potential from the beginning.

When I say "less competitive niche" I mean either completely outside of internet marketing, or something very focused/specialized within IM. Examples off the top of my head: growing roses, planting a vegetable garden, feng shui, over the hill party ideas, the single parents summer survival guide, grill recipes & quick outdoor/picnic dinner ideas, tattoo ideas/designs - or literally anything else under the sun that you want to develop and work within.

Before choosing a topic, you would want to do your research and make sure you could monetize it effectively. Search for affiliate programs, find out what is available in that market, potential JV partners, etc.


We were discussing quicker ways to generate income online, considering the change to Google Adwords Affiliate Policy and their Sandboxing (or evaluation period) for a new site in their search engine listings.


Developing content: You are obviously a good writer (your post above proves that), so choosing a topic you know would be a huge plus. You can easily read up on everything that is available online or at the local library, and then write from that knowledge/experience. If it was something you could do hands-on (such as growing roses, planting a vegetable garden, extreme sports, etc) then you could also take pictures and keep a journal which would make for great original content.

But when it comes to 'stuffy' stuff, things you really know nothing about but believe would be good money makers... you can simply re-print articles on the topic that you find in any of the major article banks. Another good source to consider is Public Domain content.

You can also locate the experts in any given field and offer them the feature spot in that category or on that page of your site (the one that is most relevant to what they do/offer). They can write up a unique article for your site, and in exchange you post their photo and link along with a brief bio.

I hope this helps spark some ideas. I look forward to hearing more from you & getting to know you a bit more!
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Postby cyriver » Sat Apr 16, 2005 3:13 am

Hello Kevin & Lynn,

Yours posts are great.
I was tempted not to read this thread because I had a mind of "long senteces tell me nothing!" But this time I was wrong.

As I'm a rookie and already many things are well adressed above, I'll try to make my opinion short.

I'd like to talk about two subject: finding niche by keyword search technique and content of web site.

1. I think keyword search technique never lead me to a definite conclusion.
It can't be accurate because for example, not all of suppliers found in SERP are my competitors.
I don't mean this keyword search technique is useless. Rather staring from this technique, I finally make a decision with the support of my intuition, passion, and analysis on my competitors. If find something my competitors are not doing but custormers are in need of, I would say "bingo, I got niche." The marketing term "Niche" is actually finding a demand within tough competition. In theory even in the saturated market is there a "Niche."

2. Concerning the content of web site, with the risk of exaggeration I'd like to say " No web sites are born to be good enough." I insist this to bring out the importance of action. If the contens are nothing but a rubbish at the begining, it may be difficult to improved them. Otherwise, I just publish my home page, and try to improve it by either adding contents or polishing published ones. I may not so carefull about this partly because I didn't think about making money from my pages. But the point is the jury who decide wether my site is good or not is not me but the visitors. Speed up the preparations-research, writing, registering domain, etc.
and let the visitors judge my site.

OK that's it. I thougt the above two things might be worthy for the second thoughts.

Regards.
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Postby Lynn Terry » Wed Apr 27, 2005 12:16 pm

Lynn Terry wrote:(Karon Thackston has some really good information specifically on this topic, I'll try to look that up and give you the title - I believe it was a special report instead of inside of her main guide).


Here you go -

Karon Thackston's Step-by-Step Copywriting Course:
http://www.selfstartersweeklytips.com/c ... course.htm

Her special report: How to Increase Keyword Saturation Without Destroying the Flow of Your Copy:
http://www.selfstartersweeklytips.com/k ... ensity.htm

It's in that 2nd link, her Keyword Density report, that she gives some great steps for optimizing your "online store" pages. This was one of my favorite "quick reads" when it comes to on-the-page optimization... but you can also get it as part of a package deal if you buy her Course (which covers SEO Copywriting - the combination of both skills - in great depth). Good stuff!
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Postby sweetcupcakebyjen » Thu Apr 28, 2005 9:33 am

WOW! Once again, I am impressed. I am building my team and starting to train them on web marketing, and was looking for info on Keyword Saturation! These posts and links reaffirmed my strategies and gave me some great resources to share.

Thanks Lynn- and everyone!
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Postby Lynn Terry » Thu Apr 28, 2005 9:48 am

Glad it was helpful, Jen!

Karon Thackston is a terrific writer & educator on the topics of SEO & Copywriting - be sure to sign up for her Business Essentials ezine. Many of her articles are great for passing along to your group!
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Postby Lynn Terry » Mon May 09, 2005 6:37 pm

I ran across a free report by Paul Smithson, and was reading it earlier today. It made me think of this thread, of course, as it was titled:

Secrets for Finding the Hottest Products to Sell on the Web!
Discover what the Internet buying public wants, what they can't live without -- and how much they're willing to pay for it

Discover ...

> what the Internet buying population is hungry for
> how to locate little-known areas where the "fish are biting" and
> the top 3 ways of finding products and services that sell like crazy on the Web

... so that you can cash in on the top-selling and most profitable products every time.


You can sign up for this free report here:
http://www.webservicenetwork.com/free-report.htm

Enjoy! ;)
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Postby Ladan Lashkari » Wed May 11, 2005 2:55 am

Hi Kevin,

Lynn wrote:If I were going to sell sporting goods and apparel, I would simply set up an online store instead of a content-based site.

I agree with Lynn. You don't have to spend a lot of time writing articles for your site. You can simply create an online store and start an affiliate program to let other people promote your website.

That's exactly how all Internet marketing experts sell their products... and it's very profitable. Let your affiliates create content based websites promoting your site, and then just convert the people they refer to you to customers.

Hope that helps! :)
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Postby Lynn Terry » Wed May 11, 2005 7:34 am

That's true, but what if you are the affiliate selling sporting goods or clothing?

As an affiliate you can still set up an online store type site featuring the products you are promoting. The key is to have your product link click through to the merchants site, to a page where they can find more information about that particular product (along with directions for placing your order).

If you are using a CJ merchant for example, you can log in and click "get links" and choose "by relationship" and then if they offer individual product links, you will have two choices: "view links" and "view products". Clicking to view the products will give you a list of individual product links that are already coded to take your visitors back to the correct page on the merchant site.
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Postby Ladan Lashkari » Wed May 11, 2005 9:23 am

what if you are the affiliate selling sporting goods or clothing?

Then I think the best way is creating a content based website instead of just linking to your merchants. For example you can write informative articles sharing helpful tips about choosing good sporting clothing or goods. Then you can recommend some good merchants and link to your affiliate links.

It would be much more effective than just placing some affiliate links on your site.
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Postby Lynn Terry » Wed May 11, 2005 10:39 am

Ladan Lashkari wrote:It would be much more effective than just placing some affiliate links on your site.


That's true... unless you take the time to create a very organized "online store" website. You are basically the front end for the store you promote, and send click-through's directly to internal pages of the merchant site (just as if they were surfing their main pages and clicked through). It can be quite effective! ;)
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Postby Ladan Lashkari » Thu May 12, 2005 1:07 am

unless you take the time to create a very organized "online store"

Yes, if you create an organized online store with a professional look and feel, it can be very profitable. But some people misunderstand it and just create a busy one-page website full of advertising and affiliate links. Then they wonder why they don't make any sales. :wink:
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Postby Lynn Terry » Thu May 12, 2005 10:16 am

Agreed ;)
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Postby Osobase » Sat Aug 13, 2005 10:38 am

I still don't believe I'm getting all of these tips for FREE :D

I'm learning everyday, and hopefully, someday I would be able to contribute meanifully and be of help to someone and everyone :wink:

Thanks for the tips!
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Postby Ladan Lashkari » Sat Aug 13, 2005 1:27 pm

You're very welcome! :)

Wish you the best of luck!
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