A niche is a general high-level topic that you will be basing your site around. The Big Four are Health, Wealth, Relationships and General Interest (I’ll go into more detail about these later).
Within those high-level niches, you have sub-niches. These are smaller profitable topics within the larger area - think diet and nutrition within health and fitness.
You should generally focus your website around a sub-niche so that you have a well-defined audience.
Try to think of it from the audience perspective. If you were looking for advice and help with golf, what kind of website would you trust more? A generalised sporting goods site or one that specialises in golf only?
You have to strike a balance between getting granular/ deep enough to become a trusted source of advice in a defined topic but not so granular that the audience is not big enough to make money.
Before we get into the details of how to find your niche... a word of warning! A lot of people spend way too much time on trying to find the ‘perfect’ niche and never get going.
So my first bit of advice is to get going as quickly as you can. With the model that I follow and teach, you can (and probably will) create multiple websites, so don’t procrastinate trying to find something ‘perfect’. Follow the steps below and get going as quickly as you can.
Passions, Problems and Money to Spend
The first rule of thumb to find your niche is to ensure that you are focussing on an area where people have money to spend. If people don’t buy things related to that niche, then it likely won’t make you much money.
You also want an audience that has a lot of passion about the topic or people that have problems to solve/ fears to overcome.
Golf is a great example of a niche that has a combination of both. Golfers are always looking for advice on how to improve parts of their game and most golfers are REALLY passionate about golf.
Topic or Product based Niche?
You can generally divide niches into topic based or product based.
Product based niches are purely focussed around reviewing/ introducing products to their audience. For example a site based around tech gadgets.
Topic based niches are focussed on providing people with information, training or advice. For example a site based around healthy cooking.
Want To Create A Course?
Consider if you may want to create your own course in the future.
If you think you may want to create your own course at some point, keep this in mind when examining potential niche ideas to see if it is a topic where you can teach people certain aspects as an online course.
Don’t let this stop you from moving forward though! I’ve seen a lot of people get stuck trying to find a niche that they can create some kind of course for. This isn’t a core requirement for this method to work.
You can choose a topic that isn’t right for course creation to begin with and apply what you learn to your next site. This is an iterative process and the more you actually do the quicker you will learn. Don’t spend weeks or months trying to find the perfect niche that ticks every single box.
How to Find Your Niche Topic
To find your niche, test out the different ideas you have, by assessing them against my simple '3 circle check'.
In the below diagram we've got three circles. Each one represents the following:
• What you like
• What you're good at
• What is profitable
Number one is the sweet spot as it's a combination of all 3. If you can find something that sits in this area then focus on that, as it’s likely to be your ideal niche topic.
Number two is a combination of what you like and what is profitable.
Now, this can still be a good area for you, it just might take you a little bit longer, because well… you're not good at it yet. But if you like it, and you know it's profitable, you've just got to start learning about it. And a lot of people start like this.
It's very possible to get started in a niche where you don't have a lot of experience because you can start out as a kind of reporter in that field. This way you can share useful information that you are learning from others.
As a reporter (as opposed to a teacher) you can position yourself as being in the same group as your audience, you'll be learning and going on a journey together with them.
And this can be just as powerful as positioning yourself as an expert.
And as you start to increase your knowledge and experience, you'll naturally become more of an expert in that topic anyway and you'll become an even more trusted source of information.
Number three combines what you like and what you're good at, but if it's not profitable... it's a hobby. This is fine to do in your spare time, but it's not something that you should try to build a niche website around.
I see a lot of people falling into this trap... they put a ton of time and effort into trying to make money from their hobby.
Just because they like it and it’s something they are good at it, they "assume" that other people will be willing to pay for information about it...
It has to have demand from people who are willing to pay for stuff around the topic area for it to work!
If you’re not sure if your idea is profitable check out this article where I show you a really simple method that I use, to validate a niche idea actually to see if it has the potential to make money.
Ok so finally let's look at number 4
This is a combination of what you're good at and what is profitable. Which on the surface, sounds like it should be a winner, right?
And that could well be the case, but if it's not something that you really like and you're just doing it because you know it's potentially profitable, then longer term, it might wear you down.
To make a go of this, you do need to put in some hard work, and if you don't really like the topic that you've chosen you may start to lose motivation over time.
Okay. So make sure you validate your ideas against this very simple check and try to find something in the blue or green areas if possible.
The Big Four
Health, Wealth, Relationships & General Interest
Think about it; most people want to be healthier, want more money, would like to have better relationships and get more out of their hobbies and interests.
This means there’s a huge number of lucrative topics in those areas and therefore a huge number of physical and information products relating to them for people to buy.
These 4 areas have the most demand. Demand equals money so stick to one of these.
Demand vs Competition
If there is a lot of demand in a niche it generally means there is a also a lot of competition… so doesn’t that mean it will be difficult for me to stand out?
The more competition the more it signals there are customers ready and willing to buy.
Competition within a niche is actually a good thing. It’s a clear demonstration that people are finding success within the niche… and success leaves clues that can be copied!
It’s very rare that there’s too much competition in a given niche. The Internet is such a BIG place, there is more than enough room for everyone!
The point is that high competition in a niche should not prevent you from entering.
It should show you there’s a high demand for information and products from hungry buyers ready and willing to open their wallets.
These markets include diets & weight loss, fitness, medical conditions and addictions.
If we quickly examine just the healthy eating, nutrition and weight loss sector. This market has grown 108 percent since 2010 and is now worth over $648 billion.
And if you also consider that in America alone, 108 million people are on a diet at any given time, with most of them attempting to lose weight up to 5 different times throughout the year, you can see just how profitable this market can be!
Imagine making a mere 1% of $648 billion – that’s $648,000 and it’s just a drop in the ocean!
Examples of sub-niches for Health:
- Dieting/Fat Loss
- Stress Management
- Muscle Gain
- Natural/Alternative Healing
- Spirituality & Alternative Beliefs
- Specific Health Problems
- Vanity Niches
Dating & Relationships Niches
This category includes sex, dating, family, marriage, relationships, and pets
Let’s face it... everyone wants to be more connected. Whether it’s on a date, with your wife or husband, with your kids or even with your pets!
That’s why this niche is so popular and profitable.
Anything that teaches us to connect better is going to be profitable and will likely be around forever!
Example sub-niches in Relationships:
- Getting Your Ex Back
- Dating For Women
- Dating For Men
- Body Language
- Dog training
These markets include finance & investing, business & marketing, employment, personal finance and gambling.
Many people incorrectly believe this niche is saturated due to the huge number of products available but it couldn’t be further from the truth.
Due to the volume of offers many people struggle with unproven strategies or just poor guidance. This means there is a massive audience of hungry buyers who need help!
Not only that, it’s increasingly popular as so many people are unsatisfied with the standard 9-5 job and desperately want to earn some extra income in their spare time.
Example Niches in Money Markets:
- Real Estate
- Investing and Trading
- Money Mindset
- Start or Grow an Online Business
- Small Business Marketing Online
General Interest Niches
This category includes skills, education, hobbies, activities, travel and food.
Example of General Interest sub niches:
- Done For You / Ready Made solutions (think Woodworking plans, Tatoo designs etc)
- Art/ Graphic Design
- Time Management/ Productivity
- Personal development
- Food/ cooking
When looking to find your niche choose something where people have pain points that they want to fix or a lot of passion (enough to spend money on it). Ideally both!
Your aim as an affiliate is not to sell but to become a trusted advisor. So make sure you are comfortable with the kinds of products and services you will be introducing to people.
To ensure that the area is profitable and that you will be motivated to keep going try to choose a topic that combines the 3 circles mentioned above; what you like, what you're good at and what is profitable.
If you're not sure, just share a few ideas with me in the comments and I can guide you from there!
If you haven’t done already, download my free guide as that goes into more details about the big 4 niche categories, and also gives some example sub-categories as well as example products that you can promote.