And then some others (the majority) struggle with both.
So I thought it would be a good idea to do a short video for them explaining a dead simple method I use.
Then I thought "what the heck?", why don't I share this with the boys and girls at the Warrior Forum and then send my subscribers there instead? And pick up a few WF referrals too...
Two birds, one stone.
I've now done the video and transcribed it and I've copied the text to this post, which is why it's a little large (sorry).
This method uses free web based tools to find a niche, and I'm sure you'll straight away realise you can use the same method to uncover lots of other niches too. To my knowledge, no-one has openly discussed this exact process before and I suspect it may be considered a competitive secret by some. You may tell me otherwise if you know better.
Using this method, pretty much the base research needed to decide if a niche is worth pursuing is done for you before you even get going - finding a niche, amount of search, and keywords to target.
In fact I believe that these freely available tools plus a bit of old fashioned brainpower are every bit as good as the expensive paid for ones.
And... I also suspect that a lot of the paid for tools use the free online tools in the background to do the job, scrape the data, and then amalgamate it all and put a pretty interface on the front.
There's no doubt that probably speeds things up a little, but in most circumstances you don't need it, and in some cases it may deter you from pursuing a worthwhile niche or even end up confusing you.
I've been confused many times to the point of agonising over what to do. I hope this will help you to avoid that same confusion I've felt in the past.
You don't need expensive tools to do market research, like I said, all the data you want is available online for free.
Okay? I'll stop waffling now. Here's the transcript from the video...
In this video I'm going to show you how to find hot UNTAPPED niches just by spending a few minutes at an easy to do market research method which doesn't cost you a penny.
#1 - I'm going to show you how to use a new(ish) search tool from Google to find high level niches where people are searching for products to BUY.
#2 - I'm going to show you how to dig a little deeper into that niche using the Google keyword tool to find a sub-niche that's getting a reasonable amount of search each month.
#3 - I'm going to show you how to check the number of competing pages just by doing an ordinary Google search, so you can tell when a niche is worth pursuing.
#4 - And finally. I'm going to show you how to select a good domain name based around your target product.
Okay, let's get started.
The first place we're going to look is the Google Keyword Tool at:-
This is supposedly a tool for AdWords account holders (accounts are free), but you don't need an AdWords account to use it.
Once you've gone to the page, you'll see there's a link to a relatively new tool called the Search-based keyword tool, and this is what I'm going to use to show you how to find HOT niches.
Search-based keyword tool
The Search-based keyword tool is supposed to work by you entering your domain, and it then shows you relevant keywords based on the content on your web site. But you can also use it in reverse to find RED HOT niches.
Once we've found a suitable one we'll then go back to the Google Keyword Tool and use it to find a better defined sub-niche that's getting either a lot or a reasonable amount of search.
Right, once you're on the page for the search-based tool, scroll to the bottom and click the link that says "Or see top keywords across all categories".
Search-based keyword tool
On the left you'll see a bunch of categories that are getting the most searches on Google right now. Okay?
Google are literally telling you what people are searching for to BUY. And they're categorising it all up for you.
How can you go wrong?
Let's take a look at one of them.
Click on Consumer Electronics and this will expand downwards to show some other categories.
It will show you in the right hand pane some likely candidates for us to spend our time on. But we're not going to bother with any of those, we're going to dig a little bit deeper.
The sub-category I'm going to take a look at is Home Audio and Video.
Once you've clicked on that, then in the right hand pane you will see keywords that are getting huge amounts of search each month - they're getting the most amount of search within their sub-category.
HUGE amounts of search.
But better still, these are all PRODUCTS that people are BUYING.
And Google is telling you this for FREE. For free! Free! Hehe.
Who needs an expensive marketing tool when this information is ready for grabbing and has been pre-processed and packaged up for you, from the biggest database in the world?
This is the most accurate data you could wish to get and gives you perfect examples of hot markets, because people are SEARCHING for them.
I GUARANTEE that you can find plenty of niches here that you can start mining for GOLD.
In fact... more niches than you'll know what to do with when you apply a bit of brainpower and imagination.
You can also see how much Google is suggesting you'll have to pay for each click if you use AdWords.
Ridiculous prices - they're just taking the mickey. There's no way I'd pay any more than a few cents per click if I were using AdWords. These prices are all just a joke.
But somebody out there is paying them, so you have to assume that somebody is making money from those niches...
Well that doesn't matter, we're not going to pay anything.
What we're going to do is pick a likely niche and then see if there isn't a sub-niche or variation on the expensive keywords that no-one else is using.
(If there isn't we'll just try again.)
Then we're going to see if there isn't a domain based on that keyword. If you can get a keyword based domain and you're prepared to put in the work to put up a site that ticks all the Google quality score boxes, then you're laughing all the way to the bank.
Okay, enough waffle. Let's get on.
Just looking down this list, the one that's grabbing my interest is "hdmi cable". I don't know much about hdmi cables or what they do - High Definition something or other maybe? To do with TVs and PCs? But I do know I can do a bit of research and find out some more about them.
Now before I even look, I'm pretty sure that someone out there has probably already spotted this niche and is working in it. But that doesn't bother me at all.
Because what I'm going to do is look to see if I can't find a sub-niche within this niche, and start working that instead.
So now we have a likely candidate, let's go back to the Google Keyword Tool.
What we're going to put in is hdmi cable... And see what other suggestions Google might have for us. Good old Google.
I live in the UK, so you can see that Google is presenting me with UK based data. But you can change that just by clicking the "Edit" button.
We'll sort by "Approximate Average Search Volume", and we'll also turn on "Search Volume Trends" to see if the niche has a history.
Right. Okay. Ladies and gentlemen, I think we have a winner!
"ps3 hdmi cable" is getting 49,500 broad match searches a month. Broad match means that those three words may be mingled and jumbled in with other keywords.
Such as "ps3 high resolution hdmi cable" or something like that.
Let's take a look at exact match, it just takes a moment.
Okay, 2,900 searches a month. That's not brilliant but it's okay, certainly worth spending a couple of hours work on, and according to Google no-one is bidding on those keywords. Cool. No competition.
But let's see how much competition there really is in terms of how many pages we're up against.
Okay, 1.67 million competing pages in the UK. I can beat that with a little bit of effort.
Usually, anything under 500,000 pages is relatively easy to beat. It depends on who your competition is.
If your competition is other affiliates and they're established, then you might have a hard time getting to the coveted #1 slot.
But if your competition is general shopping sites like Amazon or Game or Play.com, then they're fairly easy to beat with a little bit of patience.
I'll explain how in a minute.
In this case, 1.67 million is a little higher than I'd like, and the number of searches aren't quite as high as I'd like either - as a guideline I prefer more than 5,000 searches a month.
I bend these rules to suit myself. ;-)
You get a feel for it. Once you've done it a few times you get a feel for it.
So, if we look at an exact match search, then there's only 87,400 pages of competition, and that's very easy to beat. You could almost put up a single page and get to #1 with that.
So let's assume that in this case I've found a search term I like the look of in "ps3 hdmi cable".
The next step is to check to see if there's a suitable domain name available.
So let's go to my favourite registrar. Paste "ps3 hdmi cable" in there...
Ah, yep, I'd be interested in the .co.uk variant as I live in the UK. I'm happy to see that someone has registered the .com, which tells me that someone has had the same kind of idea as me.
Having said that, I'm willing to bet that nothing is being done on that domain.
Let's just have a look.
Yup, just a standard holding page.
Okay I reckon (a bit of an aside now) from personal research that about 9 domains out of 10 are registered and never used.
So even if you see a domain registered, you shouldn't think that's any kind of competition for you.
Now I'll only register a domain if I'm going to do something with it right away within a few days of registration, otherwise I might as well just open a window and throw $10 out.
What I'm saying is, don't be tempted to do a "land grab". You'll regret it.
ONLY register domains you know you're going to work on soon. Within a week, preferably the same day. Be strict with yourself.
So anyway, I think after this video I'll go register the ps3hdmicable.co.uk myself and I'll put a few pages up talking about PS3 HDMI cables whatever they are.
Once you've registered a domain, just put a few pages up promoting the product that people are looking for. Use plenty of words describing, discussing and reviewing the product in question, and then put an affiliate link to Amazon, maybe using one of their cool widgets to monetise the site.
Don't waste your time with AdSense. No, I mean it! DO NOT put AdSense on your site, your income will be minimal. Use something else that pays more, such as one of those Amazon widgets that I just mentioned. Or maybe an eBay widget.
Amazon are good at converting browsers into buyers and their commissions are good too.
eBay pay varying amounts, the maximum they pay I think is about $25 for a new user.
It's up to you really.
Okay then. That's pretty much it.
Let's just recap.
#1 - I've shown you how to use the newish Google Search-based keyword tool to find high level niches based on searches of physical products, where Google is telling you what people are searching for to BUY.
#2 - I've shown you how to dig a little deeper into that niche using the Google keyword tool to find a sub-niche that's getting a reasonable amount of search each month. Anything above 5,000 is good. 10,000 is better, 20,000 is excellent.
#3 - I've shown you how to check the number of competing pages by doing an ordinary Google search. Anything below 500,000 is good, 250,000 is better, 100,000 is excellent.
#4 - I've shown you how to select a domain name based around your target product.
And that's it.
The only thing I'll add to what I've already said is don't get put off if you were say going for ps3 hdmi cable, and all the variants were gone.
Because you can just do something like take the same words and add HQ to the end (short for head quarters) and you'll almost certainly find no-one's registered any of those, so you just pick one of those instead.
And you stand just as good a chance of doing okay with it if you put the work in, as you would without having HQ on the end.
When you've done it all for yourself once, your brain will go into overdrive and you'll come up with all sorts of variants to get at those little sub-niches.
You'll just see loads of them.
Thanks for your time, I hope you've enjoyed this, and if you have any questions, then just follow up with me through the usual channels, my blog or support desk or the forum etc.
Okay, that's the transcript of the short video, it actually takes less than 15 minutes to watch, and you'll probably get a better feel for what I talked about above if you watch it rather than just read the transcript.
Whatever. Everybody's got their own learning styles.
Here's a link to the video.
Market Research - Vendiva.com - Frank Haywood
If you want to download the above transcript as a PDF for reference, here's the zip.
And before anybody says it, I know, I know. I could have written a compelling sales page and released this as a low cost WSO with resale rights or something.
I've bought worse.
I just hope this does someone some good, and more importantly doesn't do anyone any harm!
All the best,