Select a Niche Market for Ecommerce
Choosing a carefully pinpointed niche market should be one of the first steps that an internet business owner has to take. A very common way of describing a niche market is 'a targeted group of individuals with very specific and similar needs or interests.' These people engage in similar activities and hence they would most probably demand the same goods or services to cater to their needs. Online businesses that drop ship their products to their customers would thrive by focusing on a specifically targeted niche market. In this article, I would focus on the advantages a niche market can bring to an online Drop Ship business. This article also provides you with practical steps for you to select your niche market.
By focusing on a specific niche market, Drop Ship businesses gain an edge because they are like 'monopolies' for that particular niche. The 'monopoly' for that niche would be able to provide a much wider range of products and better services for that market, enabling it to dominate. Because there is a very large number of niche markets on the internet, most Drop Ship businesses are able to survive and thrive online by selecting a niche that no major competitor is targeting, and directing their marketing efforts to their respective niches. With limited resources, a small Drop Ship business just starting out cannot hope to sell 'mainstream' products that are also supplied by huge competitors like Wal-Mart.
It is critical to first establish a market with an unfulfilled need and then develop products or services to meet these needs. Most online ventures fail by first selecting a good product, and then looking for the market for that particular product. They fail when the product's demand is insufficient, or when the product already has a strong competitor supplying to the market.
The internet is not the only medium where niche marketing dominates. In our corporate world, the majority of the successful companies also selects a niche market and develops products or services that cater to their specific niche. Microsoft develops software as operating systems and platforms for computers. Nike offers shoes and footwear targeted at the sporting population. This illustrates the importance of first selecting a niche market for your business to focus on.
There are a few simple stages in the selection of a niche market:
1) Brainstorm for niche markets that are related to your area of interest or expertise. It is simply easier to succeed if you focus on an area that you are passionate about and have the most expertise in. This way, along the learning curve of starting an online business, the frustrations that you face along the way will be reduced because whatever you are doing feels more like fun instead of work.
2) Research the market in detail. This involves producing a detailed profile of your market, including the estimated demand for your products, the products in the niche likely to have the highest demand, and where these prospects normally congregate online.
You can use the free Overture search term suggestion tool to gauge the market size for the products you have in mind. It is available at http://inventory.overture.com/d/searchinventory/suggestion/. Simply type in the product keywords and this tool can suggest more specific keywords, and also the number of times this word has been searched over a period of time.
Chat rooms, forums and newsgroups are where your target market normally congregates online. By monitoring these discussion boards, you should be able to determine the evolving needs of your target market, and what new product is likely to be in high demand soon. Forums can also be a good source of ideas for your products. Google Groups is a good place for you to start finding newsgroups or forums for your niche market. It is available at http://groups.google.com.
3) Select a niche market that has a need not currently being adequately met instead of targeting a niche whose need a competitor can fulfill very well. From the newsgroups, discussion boards and forums, you can get valuable information about business opportunities. For example, if consumers voice out their dissatisfaction about any unfulfilled need, you can quickly find and offer any product as a new solution to their problem. This fills a 'gap' in the market and your business is established.
4) For the niche markets that do not have their needs adequately met, conduct research on the major businesses in that field. If there are no major competitors, you can congratulate yourself on finding a suitable niche market for your Drop Ship business. If there are several major market players, you have to either develop a Unique Selling Proposition (USP) to differentiate your products from your competitors, or you can narrow down the definition of your niche market to a more specific level. For example, if your niche market is the group of individuals passionate about oil paintings, you can narrow down your focus to abstract oil paintings by Rembrandt or Renoir.
If you want to be a retailer of Rembrandt oil paintings, for example, note that your competitors are not the websites selling oil paintings from all artists, but the websites that focus only on Rembrandt oil paintings. All things being equal, an online shopper will certainly choose a website focusing only on Rembrandt oil paintings, instead of a website selling paintings from all the famous artists. This is the edge that a niche market can give to a small Drop Ship business.
You can use the free Overture 'View Bids Tool' available at http://uv.bidtool.overture.com/d/search/tools/bidtool/ to gauge the competition for your products. Overture is a Pay-Per-Click search engine, which provides search results ranked in order of how much businesses are paying for every click-through to the business websites. This tool lists the amount that each business is paying for every click by visitors. The higher the bid for the keyword, the more popular the keyword, thus the stronger the competition you face for your products.
5) Test your market. Once you have confirmed your niche market, you must test your products for that market. Start off your business by selecting a few of the most popular products and placing them in your catalogue. Next, you announce your products to newsgroups and discussion boards and gauge their response to your products. Observe how well the individuals are reacting to the introduction of your products. If you did your research properly and fulfilled a need well, most probably you would receive a very warm response from forums and newsgroups.
Finally, as the online retailer for your niche market, you should aim to be the best online resource for the market. Articles, strategies and guides should be included on your website to provide your niche market with valuable information. For example, you can write your own guides on how to properly use tools for magician tricks if that is what you are selling. However, it is not advisable to start off by selling an enormous catalogue of products. You should first establish your credibility by supplying your market with useful know-how for the products, and recommending them a few popular products. As your business stabilizes, you can slowly expand your business catalogue to include other products.
Selecting a niche market is one of the most important steps for setting up a Drop Ship business. It lays the foundation for how your business will develop in future. Thus, spend some time carefully deciding on your niche market before taking the plunge into your business.
You are welcome to reprint this article as long as you include the Author's resource box with the article.
About the Author: Ray Yee is the founder and president of Dropshipperscentral, a website which provides a wealth of informative articles, tips and resources on everything you'll ever need to know about setting up a Drop Ship Business and marketing it. Click here for the Wholesale Drop Ship Directory from http://www.dropshipperscentral.com
The Trouble With Luxury E-Commerce The Business of Fashion
How To Use Pinterest For Ecommerce Search Engine Journal
17 Most Valuable E-Commerce Companies in the World Yahoo Finance
Internal linking for ecommerce: The ultimate guide Search Engine Land
12 new Google Analytics 4 ecommerce dimensions and metrics Search Engine Land
Amazon and Alibaba lead in cross-border ecommerce Digital Commerce 360
Why small business now counts more than ever on B2B ecommerce Digital Commerce 360
Maersk goes greener on European ecommerce delivery Digital Commerce 360
How to monitor the carbon footprint of your ecommerce supply chain Digital Commerce 360
Italy seizes large-scale fake ecommerce websites Digital Commerce 360
How ChatGPT Drives Ecommerce Conversions Practical Ecommerce
Ecommerce Product Releases: February 1, 2023 Practical Ecommerce
Becoming Indispensable: Transitioning from e-Commerce to L-Commerce The Financial Express
China’s e-commerce sector sees at least 89 platforms go under in 2022 South China Morning Post
The future of B2C ecommerce - ThePaypers The Paypers
How To Create A WordPress Ecommerce Website Search Engine Journal
3 ways to build brand loyalty through e-commerce Retail Customer Experience
First Steps to Sustainable Ecommerce Practical Ecommerce
Why it's a great time to launch an ecommerce business The CEO Magazine
Charts: U.S. Retail Ecommerce Sales Q3 2022 Practical Ecommerce
How to grow your eCommerce business during a recession Elite Business Magazine
How to maximize your ecommerce campaigns with Performance Max Search Engine Land
Scaling eCommerce Should Not Crash eCommerce; SMBs Need a Platform That Grows With Them - Yahoo Finance
Scaling eCommerce Should Not Crash eCommerce; SMBs Need a Platform That Grows With Them Yahoo Finance
TikTok's E-Commerce Management Structure Undercuts Claims of ... The Information
Road to India@100: A new era in e-commerce Business Today
FedEx scales back Sunday deliveries again as ecommerce wanes Digital Commerce 360
Why do you need gorgeous product photos for your e-commerce website? Business Insider Africa
The Next Evolution of E-Commerce Progressive Grocer
Retail and eCommerce news from the week beginning 9 January ... Enterprise Times
7 E-commerce trends to look out for in 2023 Alibaba.com
How Everyday Fraudsters Pose a Threat to Ecommerce Retail TouchPoints
NEXUS Automotive International Creates Ecommerce Business Unit AftermarketNews.com (AMN)
How Brands Can Ready E-Commerce for 2023 With AI Total Retail
World e-Commerce in the Mattress Industry Report 2022: Impacts of Delivery Options, Services and Return Strategies, Bed-in-a-box, The Role of Industry Suppliers, One-Size-Fits-All, Payment Methods - Yahoo Finance
World e-Commerce in the Mattress Industry Report 2022: Impacts of Delivery Options, Services and Return Strategies, Bed-in-a-box, The Role of Industry Suppliers, One-Size-Fits-All, Payment Methods Yahoo Finance
EDITORIAL Why ecommerce must now become a socially-engaging ... InternetRetailing
The Digital Marketing Tools Independent Grocers Need to Drive E ... Progressive Grocer
Retail and eCommerce news from the week beginning 2 January ... Enterprise Times
Got the message? Retail panelists dish on changes in ... Furniture Today
Budget 2023: Promoting Indigenous Manufacturing Tops ... Outlook Startup
GeM, ONDC, AA framework driving e-commerce in India: Economic Survey The New Indian Express
Grocery e-commerce sales jumped 2.4% in December Supermarket News
3 ways how ONDC is democratising eCommerce space in the country The Financial Express
Consumer E-Commerce Spending Could Be Weak in 2023; Time to ... The Motley Fool
Top-performing e-commerce category revealed Business Plus
Amazon India offers 50% referral fee waiver for e-commerce businesses Business Standard
Need to return an Amazon purchase? The ecommerce giant has doubled its return options. - Yahoo Finance
Need to return an Amazon purchase? The ecommerce giant has doubled its return options. Yahoo Finance
Shopify invests in US-based e-commerce analytics aggregator ... BetaKit - Canadian Startup News
MaterialsXchange launches e-commerce platform for building ... woodworkingnetwork.com
What is Shopify? The ecommerce website builder explained Expert Reviews
Intranet Project Names - Some Ideas
"What's in a name? That which we call a rose By any other word would smell as sweet."In this famous quote from Act II of Romeo and Juliet, Juliet tells Romeo that a name is an artificial and meaningless convention, and the fact he is a Montague and she a Capulet (warring families) means nothing to their love.
Rules for Achieving Online Success
The Internet brought a great deal of benefits to our life. Access to a lot of free and useful information is, probably, one of the most important out of them.
E-marketplaces from Sellers Perspective
What is an E-marketplace anyway?E-marketplace is a business to business web based venue, where buyers and sellers meet online, generate business leads and conduct business transactions. The e-marketplace features are tailored in a manner so that a large numbers of buyers and suppliers can be serviced as a community.
Cost Effective Ecommerce Solutions
Ecommerce use to be about spending thousands of dollars on setting up your shop and hundreds of dollars on getting a merchant. My, how things have changed over the years.
How to Boost Conversion Rates, While Lowering Merchant Account Fees!
Using an Address Verification System (AVS) when processing your online credit card transactions can help to reduce the number of fraudulent transactions you receive. However, most online merchants don't know that using AVS can also reduce your number of legitimate orders.
Stakeholder Analysis and Stakeholder Management
What is a Stakeholder?Try "define: Stakeholder" in Google and you will be surprised by the huge differences in the way this simple word is defined. It perhaps proves - in a way - just how confused people get about Stakeholder Management and how inconsistent the different approaches to it can be!My simple definition is "anyone affected by a decision and interested in its outcome".
Home Sweet Home Page
"Your home page is the world's introduction to you and your company. Make it COUNT!" - Heidi RichardsThink of your home page as the cover of your brochure.
The Five Steps of E-Commerce
You set up a retail business, you advertise in your local newspaper, you get customers coming into your store, and you receive payment at the cash register. Create an online store, and.
Shop: Is Shopping Online Secure?
Is shopping online becoming popular and safe enough for you and I to do the vast majority of our shopping on the Internet?As I contemplated, when I initially set up my website: www.shopshopshop.
How To Accept Credit Cards Online
Anyone with an online business, whether for auctions,services, or virtually any type of product, has asked thesame question at some time during their quest to createthe ultimate online business - "How do I accept creditcards?"Since over 90% of all transactions on the Internetinvolve customers paying by credit card, acceptingplastic money rates a must for almost any business.The problem for most small online business ownersinvolves the high cost of setting up and maintaining acredit card merchant account.
5 Tips for Online Shopping
Shopping online has become more and more popular in America as we are all looking to save a little time and money. E-commerce sales are growing at astronomical numbers ranging from 20-25% per year.
Accept Credit Cards Online Without a Merchant Account
There are two major ways to accept credit cards on your website. The first and most expensive is to have your own merchant account.
Online Shopping: Legal Challenges for Taxing Authorities
E-commerce offers customers the chance to eliminate many stages in the sales/distribution chain. The mark-ups that occur between manufacturers, wholesalers, distributors, retailers and consumers can add the cost of goods purchased by consumers.
Tell Them Whats in The Can!
What does 'the can' mean? Well, its literal meaning relates to canned goods on supermarket shelves. If your can is up there among thousands of others, the label had better state pretty clearly exactly what's in the can.
Do You Need A Merchant Account?
Deciding when to get your own merchant account for internet sales can be a confusing and expensive venture. If you have a small to medium sized business and only sell a small amount of products then having your own merchant account may not be the answer for you.
Saving Money On Your E-commerce Site
After building and transferring many e-commerce sites it still amazes me that owners of e-commerce businesses are still wasting money in three basic ways. For fear of stating the obvious, saving money is the same as making money $100 saved is $100 added to your profit margin.
7 Suggestions for an i-Mom Friendly Web Site (e-commerce news and statistics)
The Internet began as a male dominated medium, but those days are long gone and merchants are advised to make sure their websites are female friendly to faciliate the rising surge of busy i-Moms shopping online for their family and friends.Women now account for 51.
How to Start a Business on the Internet
So you want to start a business? Good for you. Really, I mean that sincerely.
Three years ago I was doing some work for a local university helping to redesign an internal website they wanted updated and made more user friendly. When the job was done the person I was doing the job for wanted to use his school issued credit card to pay for my services.
Something new in e-commerce: the Echo System Build
How four partners build and manage an exclusive art posters web site by emulating the way the echo works.Imagine a top-notch photographer, some demanding visitors and an e-commerce site that wants to make money.
|home | site map|