Coming up with an idea for a business is one thing. Actually making that idea work is quite another. This is where researching your niche comes into play!
Thankfully, you can start researching your niche idea easier than ever online with free tools. Yay!
You can use any or all 9 tips below to research your niche idea.
Start researching your niche with a Quick Google Search
Start researching your niche idea with a quick Google search. Type your idea into the search box on Google.
How many results came up in the search?
A million or so search results don’t mean a flooded market in this niche. Someone with a unique spin on a popular niche can succeed. A large volume actually shows you there is interest.
Also, you have to consider this. Sites appearing in Google for this search doesn’t mean they are what you’re thinking of doing. When researching your niche this way, check a few of them out to see if you searched for the right words. You may need to narrow down what you’re searching for if the topic is too broad or the top results are too far off course.
Check Google Trends to Research your Niche
Google Trends is a Google feature for what is trendy right now. When I opened it up, we have World Cup, Taylor Swift, and the Kardashians.
You can narrow it down by typing your topic into the search box, thus researching your niche to discover timely related topics. Google Trends will show you the search volume of that topic recently. You’ll also see some demographic information on those who search for this topic on Google.
Researching Your Niche with Google Keyword Planner
No matter how you feel about Google, they have SO MANY tools to help you when researching your niche.
The Keyword Planner tool works with your Ads account. Without an Ads account, you’re not going to have the same level of free access that others have. The Keyword Planner can still be helpful.
Keyword Planner will show you how many average monthly searches happen for your search. The tool also suggests alternative related words to use as Keywords on your site or in your ads. In the Keyword Planner, you can also see how competitive a keyword is.
I prefer LongTail Pro for actual Keyword Research because they are so much more thorough. But, that is a paid program. When you’re trying to confirm an idea, you don’t need something so involved.
Check out YouTube for researching your niche
YouTube can also help you gauge interest. It works like a search engine and can give us valuable insights. Start off by running a search on YouTube for your idea. Are there videos on the topic?
Check out the engagement on those videos. Look at:
- How many views does this video have?
- Number of comments on the video
- Does the video have likes?
All these aspects of engagement on videos relating to your topic show you how much interest there is on the topic. A low number of likes, watches, and comments can mean the topic doesn’t have much of an audience, at least on video.
Researching Your Niche on Pinterest
When I suggest clients, readers, and friends use Pinterest to validate ideas, they usually assume I’m not serious.
Depending on your niche, Pinterest can be a great gauge for interest on a topic. I find it handy for researching your niche if your target audience is likely to use Pinterest.
Most topics that appeal to women do well on Pinterest. This means home, family, fashion, health, fitness, child-rearing, and education. Yet, a growing number of guys have been getting in on the Pinterest action lately. A large percentage of my website traffic comes from Pinterest, and yet I’m not very engaged on that platform.
How does this work, exactly?
Run a search on Pinterest. See how many pins come up. Pinterest doesn’t tell you the number, unlike other search engines. That’s okay. You’ll eyeball it.
If the results seem too general, you can select one of the boxes near the top. These are search suggestions to narrow your search based on other searches from other users. They are in order from most searches on down.
So, if you need to narrow your niche idea down too, this is a great way to find ideas on that topic.
When you click on a Pin in your search results, you can find out if this topic is interesting to searchers. You can see how many times repinned it as well as how many comments it has.
If the topic of the pin relates to the Pinterest user, you can also gauge interest. You can see how many people follow this person or brand AND how many people follow the board with this pin.
Amazon Helps You Measure Interest Too
In the same way as YouTube and Pinterest, Amazon can help you measure the interest in a topic. Once you run a search, you can see how many results there are. You can also see how many reviews there are on products (whether books or other products).
If you’re trying to figure out how to set yourself apart from the competition, these reviews can help. You can use negative reviews on related products to educate you. What frustrates these customers? How can you do better to set yourself apart?
Using Facebook and Other Social Media for Niche Research
Search Facebook for groups or pages on the niche. This also can show interest and involvement.
Don’t look for a sparse niche. Look for one that has interest and involvement from potential customers. If the niche is popular, there’s room enough for everyone to succeed.
Facebook groups on the topic can help you do further research as you build your business and your brand. By listening to the needs of engaged customers in your niche, you can figure out ways to better serve their unmet needs.
A caveat: do not promote yourself on the Facebook groups unless there are specific days to do so. Research only. Don’t be a jerk.
Do Some Recon on Niche Blogs and Websites for Research
Next, look at some of the blogs on the niche topic.
In particular, look at the engagement on the blog. Are people interacting with the content? This indicates a good topic.
While looking at this, think of ways to set yourself apart from the competition. What are some things you can offer on this topic that are in your wheelhouse?
Research your Niche with Surveys with Typeform
If you have access to potential customers in your niche, test your idea with a survey. Typeform allows you to build free surveys. They have paid options available for heavier use. Their forms are easy to use and attractive.
Ask questions to gauge interest in your product or service. Your questions should also find out more about your ideal customers. In particular, look for pain points and areas with unmet needs in your niche. What can you offer this niche that people need?
A Caveat to Niche Research
Keep in mind, as you test your niche idea, you are only getting a general idea of interest in this topic. Success is never guaranteed.
A little research can help you figure out if you should pursue a topic further or move on. The research can also help you narrow down your focus even more. Niche down as they say.
To get you started, I’d like to send you my free ebook, “7 Questions Everyone Must Answer Before Getting a Website”. This ebook will help you think through what you need and why with regards to a website.