I created The Pay At Home Parent in February of 2018 to help you be a successful home-based business owner, blogger or side hustler. As a wife, mom and frugal homemaker, I still make a full-time income on a part-time work schedule and I know that you can too!
I see this among new bloggers and business owners all the time. They enter the world of online business or blogging and choose a niche that they know nothing about.
Why? Because they’re thinking of the money they could make and not the knowledge they can give away for free.
Wait, what? Did I really just say “… instead of the knowledge they can give away for free”? Yes.
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New online business owners and bloggers will have a nearly impossible time of starting a home business without first establishing trust. And to do this, your brand needs to be memorable, relatable and accessible (free content).
So let’s talk about the 5 most common mistakes that new business owners make when they first launch their home-based business. And more importantly, I’ll explain how you can overcome these common pitfalls and shift to a successful niche with a simple rebrand (if necessary).
5 Mistakes To Avoid When Choosing A Niche
Mistake 1: Choosing a popular niche because it appears to be lucrative
Solution: Choose a niche you have experience in
I can’t tell you how many times I see a brand new blogger join the rank of blogging, tell readers they’re brand new and proceed to push their tips on how to become a profitable blogger.
Do you see the same problem here that I see? I suppose it’s an honest mistake, but land’s sake, it’s obnoxious!
If you haven’t made money blogging or working from home, then why are you trying to teach others how to blog or make money from home?
When I first started my blog, I had already earned up to $50,000 in a single year working from home. And yes, I earned a good chunk of that income as a freelance writer for other businesses and blogs. That is why I chose a niche to teach others to work from home or start a blog.
Why did you choose this niche (or another niche you have no experience in)?
Think about it for a minute. If you wanted to learn to play a new instrument, would you pay for lessons from someone who didn’t know how to play it herself? Absolutely not.
New businesses and blogs are the exact same. There has to be a certain level of knowledge and experience in the niche before you can be successful in it.
Mistake 2: Choosing a niche that is far too specific
Solution: Broaden your niche enough to grow your traffic and revenue
Are you regretting choosing a niche that focuses solely on fishhooks? I don’t blame you!
If you started your online business around a single product or service but you’ve since realized how small it really is, maybe it’s time to broaden your reach.
You’ll want to make sure that people are searching for keywords and topics related to your niche. To do this, simply start typing searching into your Google search bar and see what phrases Google suggests.
After you complete a search, scroll to the bottom of the search results and take note of the “searches related to…” keyword list.
I use a free Google Chrome extension called Keywords Everywhere to show the monthly search volume of a keyword phrase.
If you search the word “test” on Google then you’ll get a similar list of related keywords:
Make sure to test search volume and popularity of keywords in your niche before limiting yourself on a topic. You may find that no one is searching for the topic that you’ve chosen to base your business on!
Mistake 3: Choosing a niche that is oversaturated
Solution: Niche down your content to bring in a more targeted audience and customer base
On the opposite end of the spectrum, perhaps you’ve chosen a niche that is searched for hundreds of thousands of times per month, but the market has been oversaturated.
If you’re a latecomer to a popular niche, it could be incredibly hard to become known in the niche. It’s certainly not impossible and if that’s where your expertise lies, then you can become well-known in your niche in time.
It’s important to write professional, information-packed content that solves the problems your target market struggles with.
Mistake 4: Choosing a niche that has an offline target audience
Solution: Reevaluate your niche if your goal is to run a successful online business
This mistake isn’t terribly common, but I’ve seen it creep in! Believe it or not, there are still target audiences that don’t hang out online.
The most important thing to do is find out if your target market is online and if so where they spend time. If it’s on Facebook, then you should be there. If it’s on Pinterest, then you should be there.
You may find that people search for related queries on Google, but don’t necessarily congregate in an online community. That’s okay too, but if this is the case, it’s more important than ever to master your SEO strategies.
Mistake 5: Giving up on a niche that naturally takes time to dominate
Solution: Diversify your income in the meantime while you build your online business
Last, but not least, giving up on a good thing is rampant. So many bloggers and online business owners give up because they don’t realize how long it can take to become successful.
Some niches naturally take more time to move into and that causes entrepreneurs to quit early. Don’t let this be you! If you need help knowing if your business can be successful online, I encourage you to find your target market once and for all and start building relationships before you give up.
How To Find Your Niche In Business
Keeping the previously listed niche mistakes in mind, let’s talk about how to use this information to find your niche in business.
Utilizing a niche research tool
To help you find your niche in business, use this free tool to get keyword ideas for your favorite niches.
By simulating different keyword searches, you can see the competition you’re up against as well as other more specific keywords to consider.
There’s no need to get sucked into paying for a niche research tool when you can use this one for free. Simply keep in mind that no tool is 100% accurate and you will need to use compare live search results and consider whether you think it’s possible to outrank your competition on a topic.
Profitable niches with low competition
Finding profitable niches with low competition can be difficult, but when you use your knowledge and expertise to narrow your options, you can get creative. If you love to crochet, but feel that basing a site on “crochet” is too broad, then narrow your search topic to “Crochet patterns for beginners” or “how to start a crochet business on the side.”
The goal is to narrow your niche enough to find topics that haven’t been oversaturated while not limited yourself too much in the end. Use your best judgment for this and never be afraid to branch out if you feel like you’ve covered everything in your niche corner market.
Knowing how to find your niche market
As we discussed earlier, you have to learn how to find your niche market. Where do they hang out? Are there any online communities that you can contribute to and use to build authority in your niche?
If there if there is not a good Facebook group or online forum in your niche, consider starting one. But be sure you have a few people who share your passions to help you get it off the ground because it can be hard to gain new members without interaction.
Knowing how to find a niche product
When it’s time to create your own product to sell to your target niche, it’s important to know how to find a niche product. You don’t have to invent something new in order to successfully sell your own product. You simply need to create something better than the competition and promote it to your website traffic, email list and niche market.
Give Away Free Knowledge In Your Niche
Remember when I said that you’ll need to give away some of your knowledge for free? Well, I meant that. If you notice one thing about all successful online businesses and blogs it’s that they are giving tons of value away for free. By doing this they are building a reputation among their target market. It’s only a matter of time that their most loyal readers will buy something from them.
Where are you stuck when it comes to choosing a profitable business niche? Perhaps you simply need to revisit your business plan and choose something that resonates with you and your target market better.