How to Find Your Business Niche

3 Ways to Help Better Position Your Business for Market Success

Finding your business niche is the first step of defining your brand. If you don’t understand how to position your business in the market place or know what you’re selling and why, then you won’t be able to effectively market your business.

It’s important to find your business niche so you can:

• Differentiate yourself from your competitors;

• Optimize your website for the right keywords;

• Have a clear message on all marketing materials;

• Develop new ideas or products that appeal to your target market.

Here are 3 ways to make finding your business niche easier:

1. Narrow your focus.

You’ve heard the saying “Go big or go home?” Not in this case. To stand out from the competition and attract more visitors to your website, you need to be very specific about what you offer.

For example, business may offer a variety of marketing services. However, they wouldn’t get very far if we only used the keyword “marketing services” on their website or put that term on their business cards.

Instead, they promote a number of different services on their website, marketing materials and in the real world such as Brand & Marketing Consulting, Website Development and SEO.

Get focused and you’ll find your business niche or niches.

2. Define your target market.

You’ll hear this again and again in marketing advice: finding the right audience to target is crucial.

Many business owners make the mistake of trying to be everything to everybody, or launch a website filled with content that doesn’t speak clearly to the people they want to reach.

Think about who wants what you’re selling. Is it entrepreneurs? HR professionals? Stay at home dads? Tech-savvy millennials?

Once you’re come up with your target audience, you can narrow down and define your business niche even more. Plus, you’ll be able to craft search engine-optimized content that will engage and inform exactly who you want to be buying your products or services.

3. Know the competition.

It’s essential to know what kind of competition you’re up against when you’re defining your business niche. Start with Google.

Search the keywords people might use to find your business. If you see pages and pages of results and a lot of PPC ads (those are the paid ads that appear to the right and sometimes above the organic results), competition is high for that keyword or keywords.

You’ll probably want to narrow down your niche even further, or find another niche to target. For example, if your niche is corporate fitness training but there’s a lot of competition, brainstorm some other keywords to optimize your site for – maybe in-office corporate training, executive fitness training and corporate weight training.

The trick is to find the balance between low-competition keywords that have a decent search volume. If you’re the only one using a specific keyword but nobody is searching for it, you’re not going to get the results you want.

Once you have defined your business niche, you’ll be able to market your products or services more effectively.

You’ll know your focus, target market and competition, which will make differentiating your brand and defining your unique selling proposition (USP) much simpler.

A good brand strategy takes time, and ideally some professional help to ensure you’ve got everything you need for a clear, concise and compelling brand message.

The Shiny Object Syndrome in the Home Business Industry

If you’ve spent any amount of time online looking for legitimate ways to work from home and make money online, you’ve probably been exposed to hundreds of different business models. Some of these business models are legit and others are not.

Due to social media, the search engines and online advertising, a new issue has developed. I like to call it the “Shiny Object Syndrome.” This syndrome has left some people depressed, others in financial ruins, and it’s even chased others away from our industry altogether.

What is the Shiny Object Syndrome?

It is the promise that there is an easier, faster and cheaper way to make money online. It is a promise of done for you marketing. Just sit back, do nothing and collect a paycheck. It is the promise of “push button” profits. It is the promise of easy money.

The Truth

I’ve found that no legitimate online or offline business is fast, free or easy. Businesses cost money and take time to launch, grow and stabilize. Sadly, most people don’t want to hear this.

Many people looking to make money online are in a tough financial situation and they are looking for that magic pill to solve their money problems today.

These ads promising “instant riches” do well because they appeal to people’s greed. Many people want something for nothing. What these folks don’t realize is that these “easy riches” do not exist.

My Advice to You

# 1 Find a Need in the Market Place

All successful businesses offer products and services that people want or need. There must be a legitimate demand in the marketplace for what you are promoting, whether it is a product or service. The demand can already be in place, or you can create a new demand by developing a new product or service that is unique.

# 2 Offer a Solution

Entrepreneurs provide solutions to their client’s problems. We are solution providers. Our job is to identify a need and then offer a simple solution. The solution must provide value and solve your client’s problem. If you can do that, you will make sales.

# 3 Put in the Time and Work

All businesses cost money to start, nurture and grow. More importantly, all businesses take time to grow. It takes time to learn the skills, learn from your mistakes, and figure out how to do everything you need to be doing. Once you start a new business, make a minimum two-year commitment and do nothing else during that time. Focus is key.

# 4 Avoid Shiny Objects

Put on your blinders. Avoid Shiny Objects at all costs. Focus on what you are doing. If you go down the path of chasing shiny objects, you will lose momentum, lose credibility and keep starting and stopping.

10 Legitimate Business Models

Some legitimate online business models, if done right, include:

Network Marketing

Affiliate Marketing

Blogging

Selling Items on eBay or Craigslist

Video Editing

Work as a Freelancer

Social Media Manager

Information Marketing

Sell Your Own Product or Service

Editor

Of course, not all of these business models will be a good fit for everyone. You have to pick something that aligns with your strengths, personality, skills, budget and available time.

The Bottom Line

The bottom line is that the Shiny Object Syndrome is alive and well, all over the internet. Your job is to find a legitimate way to make money online, get started, make a minimum two-year commitment and never look back. Do that and there is a good chance you will be successful.

How to Bring Your Brand Story to Life with an Explainer Video

Have you created a whiteboard or animation video for your brand yet? If not, now is the time to get started. Video animation is one of the most effective ways you can engage and increase your audience. Below are some great tips as to how you can bring your brand story to life with an explainer video using video animation techniques. Know your audience One of the best ways to bring your brand story to life and connect with potential customers is to know your audience. Sketch out the picture of the ideal customer for your brand and imagine what they like,

10 Tips to Drive Affiliate Marketing Success for Your Ecommerce Store

Can you trace 16 percent of your revenue to one source?

The digital marketing world is benefiting from one type of promotion that accounts for 16 percent of all online spending.

That promotion is: Affiliate marketing.

If you’re not honed in on the benefits of affiliate marketing, you’re missing out of what’s expected to be a $6.8 billion industry by 2020.

Starting an ecommerce business and generating sales is much more than pushing a product into someone’s inbox or Facebook feed. Building a loyal customer base is key to eCommerce success as it costs 6 to 7 times more to acquire a new customer than to profit from a previous buyer.

What is affiliate marketing?

Affiliate marketing is the process of partnering with an influential blogger, business, or brand that promotes your products.

Those websites, also known as affiliates, get paid when one of the visitors they send to your site makes a purchase or completes an action. Affiliate marketing is quickly taking over ecommerce marketing plans as one of the most effective ways to rack up revenue.

Affiliate marketing facts:

  • Eighty-one percent of brands utilize affiliate marketing.
  • Sixteen percent of all online orders are generated through affiliate marketing.
  • Thirty-eight percent of marketers say affiliate marketing is a top customer acquisition method.
  • In most affiliate programs, less than 10 percent of affiliates drive 90 percent of conversions.
  • According to Google Trends, between September 2016 and September 2017, search interest in the term "affiliate marketing" increased by 30 percent.

While affiliate marketing may be growing in popularity, having affiliates and having effective affiliates are two entirely different things.

Invest the time to build real relationships with your partners, and use these tips to drive affiliate marketing success for your ecommerce store.

Affiliate marketing tips for eCommerce stores

1. Use established affiliate programs

By running your own affiliate program, you limit yourself to affiliates who already know your brand. Running your own program also means you have the setup and overhead costs of managing affiliates.

Partnering with effective affiliate platforms, however, introduces you to a core of affiliate websites who otherwise wouldn’t have been introduced to your products. Those affiliates can find you organically on an affiliate platform, link your products to their audience, and increase your revenue.

2. Design banners in multiple sizes

Even the best of affiliates can become habitual in their promotional efforts. For this reason, you should take it upon yourself to create banner ads in multiple sizes and designs.

An affiliate may be used to running 300-pixel-by-250-pixel ads, but if all you offer are 728-pixel-by-90 pixel leaderboards, the affiliate could skip over your product completely.

Offer a wide range of creative material to attract the most influential affiliates. Different designs will also prevent banner blindness and allow affiliates to choose the style and color scheme that works best for their needs.

3. Offer a competitive commission

Most affiliates are willing to work with a flat fee or tiered commission approach if it’s worth their while. If you set your commission rates too low, affiliates will look over your program, assuming the payout won’t be worth their time.

Your commission rates will be highly related to the ecommerce vertical you are in, so make sure to check out your competitor’s rates. The average affiliate marketing rate is between 5 and 30 percent. If you can grow your commission to 20 percent, you’ll attract the strongest affiliates, but if you’re looking for a good starting point, go for 8 to 12 percent.

4. Build partnerships with affiliates

Don’t think that jumping into a reputable affiliate program takes care of your strategic marketing plan. You need to keep the lines of communication open and support your affiliates in any way possible.

Consider sending them sample products, offer incentives beyond the base commission, and provide fresh creative material periodically. PayLoadz reports the three most important factors affiliates consider: 

  • Commission — 19 percent.
  • Merchant reputation — 13 percent.
  • Relevancy of the product to what they promote — 11 percent.

5. Monitor for fraud

Be aware of where your affiliates are placing your links and if the traffic you get comes from real people. Look for warning signs like:

  • Conversion rates are too low: Your ads are placed among many others, creating ad blindness.
  • Conversion rates are too high. Check to see if affiliates are using your links too often to increase their commission.

6. Offer affiliate guidelines

Without proper guidance, affiliates may begin to promote your products in a way that doesn’t align with your brand. To prevent these situations, give guidelines of how your affiliates can use your logo and branding.

If necessary, ask to approve the post before it’s published. Use an online tool that keeps up with your brand mentions and your affiliate’s work.  

  • Mention: Monitors news sites, affiliate blogs, and social media for specific brand mentions.
  • Google Alert: Receive an email alert when a new webpage, blog post, or research is complete on your predetermined keywords.

7. Close the deal

Affiliates will get the traffic to your site, but you need to be prepared to make the conversion. No matter how visitors arrive at your ecommerce site, it’s your job to ensure they make a purchase before they leave.

The top reasons why people don’t make a purchase on an ecommerce site include:

  • Buying process isn’t easy.
  • Complex checkout process.
  • Overpriced items.
  • Hidden charges.

Prepare your site to convert traffic into customers with straightforward, transparent directions, high quality product pages, and an easy checkout process.

The more sales you make and higher earnings-per-click, the more motivated your affiliates will be to promote your products.

8. Powerful mobile site

With online shoppers using their phone or tablet more than ever to discover new brands, take in content, and read reviews, your mobile site needs to be ready to handle traffic. OuterBox reveals just how prominent mobile use has become.

  • Ecommerce revenue makes up 10 percent of all retail revenue.
  • Sixty-two percent of smartphone users have made an online purchase with their mobile device in the last six months.
  • One-third of all ecommerce purchases during the 2015 holiday season were made on a smartphone.
  • Eighty percent of shoppers used a mobile phone inside of a physical store to either look up product reviews, compare prices, or find alternative store locations.

9. Focus on high AOV products

Focus on the products that bring in the highest AOV and make your affiliates aware of those products. To increase your AOV, use these tips:

  • Offer a first-time buyer discount: Encourage your new customers to make their first purchase by offering a 20 percent discount when they provide their email address.  
  • Free shipping threshold (all orders more than $100 ship free): A retail study shows 90 percent of online shoppers say free shipping is the number one incentive to get them to make a purchase.
  • Minimum spend discount: Incentivize shoppers with a discount scale. For example, get $15 off when you spend $75, get 20% off when you spend $50, or get 30% off when you spend $100 or more.

10. Find influencers

Don’t just rely on affiliate marketing platforms to find influencers. Do your own due diligence to find the influencers in your niche and invite them to partner with you as an affiliate.

One of the simplest (and cheapest) ways to find influencers is to search for websites and bloggers whose audience falls in line with your target market.

Use Google to search for what you would consider your target audience, then sift through the results for possible influencers. Tools like Buzzsumo can also analyze what pieces of content are performing best for any topic.

Summary

Affiliate marketing can become a key source of online revenue for your eCommerce business. In 2019, people are expected to spend an average of 170.6 minutes each day online and affiliate marketing can grab those customers and push them to your website.

As more shoppers turn to the online world, you need the support of affiliates to put your brand front and center.

 

About the Author

Adam Enfroy is the Affiliate Partnerships Manager at BigCommerce. He is passionate about leveraging the right strategic partnerships and software to scale digital growth. Adam lives in Austin, Texas and writes about affiliate marketing at adamenfroy.com.

How Positivity and Happiness Can Effect Your Business

Have you ever heard CEOs or managers tell people to smile? Believe it or not, there is a legitimate reason for the request. People prefer to shop at places where employees appear to be happy and are always smiling. You can view multiple studies that prove this both here and here. The problem lies within your employees and yourself. You can’t force them to be happy. And forcing them to smile and pretend to be happy can increase mental and emotional strain, causing a decrease in performance and a higher turnover rate. So what do you do? Keep reading. I’m

Cloud Based Software Turns Links & Keywords Into Content Videos & FREE Traffic In Minutes . .

If You Really Want to Make Money Online You Need Targeted Traffic Daily.

Link2Vid: Unique 100% Newbie Friendly Solution [Step-by-Step Training Included]

Turn Any Link or Keyword into a Content Video & Start Driving Free Traffic & Online Profits Today… Full System & 3 Years of Proof Included.

Can You Spare 5 Minutes?

FREE ‘Evergreen’ Targeted Traffic… Daily – With Content Videos Is EASY

Turn Any Content Into Your Own EVERGREEN Traffic and Sales Machine… In Minutes

Link2Vid: Unique 100% Newbie Friendly Solution [Step-by-Step Training Included]

Link2Vid Can be used in any niche | Income screen shots derived from health niche…We’ve Been Doing This For 3 Years

Link2Vid: Unique 100% Newbie Friendly Solution [Step-by-Step Training Included]

3-Step System We Use To Bank $231.47 Per Day Without Any Tech Skills Or Experience

CASE STUDY: Get The Exact 3-Step System We Use To Bank $231.47 Per Day Without Any Tech Skills Or Experience And Just 30 Minutes!

…It’s Simple. It’s Fast. And It’s SO POWERFUL That It Will FORCE You To Make Money, Even If You Have Never Made A Dime Online!

CLICK HERE TO GRANT ACCESS !

This Is Like Nothing YOU’VE SEEN BEFORE.

  • You don’t need any special skills or experience to make money with this
  • ANYONE can start doing this method right now – even if you’re a total newbie
  • This has nothing to do with tricking people, or any other shady method you’ve seen before
  • If you’ve got JUST 30 minutes per day, you have everything you need to make $200+ per day
  • Easy traffic method included for fast profits
  • Scale this up as BIG as you want
  • Start earning in less than 24 hours, even if you’ve never made a dime online!

Here’s What Actual Users Are Saying :

8 Greatest Ways To Converting Your Traffic Into Your Greatest Profit

The Secrets behind a Great Profits from Traffic finally revealed! If you want to know how they make it, you’ll definitely need to know what they’re doing.

Do you have a website which pulls in large number of visitors everyday? You can actually benefit yourself with the traffic and earn a great, residual income if you give a little more effort. Here are some of the greatest ways you can convert those traffic into mountainous cash:

1. Sell a product/service
Of course, to earn money you need to sell a product or service to your visitors. It is the best way to profit from your own product. Usually, an e-book or software works the best – they can be downloaded right away, no shipping included, no handling to be done. You earn 100% of the profits without any investments to be taken before that.

Other than that, selling your own product allows you to set your own price.

CHECK THIS FREE COURSE TO START !

2. Opt-In list
It is very crucial that you try to convert every visitor of yours to a subscriber of your mailing list. The most important asset that an Internet marketer has is his or her list of subscribers. They define whether you will go far in the online business venture.

CLICK HERE FOR THE BEST MAILING LIST / AUTO-RESPONDER

With an opt-in list, there are tons and tons of ways you can profit greater in the future. You can make previous customers purchase again from you, making them your repeating customers – that is of course, if they are in your mailing list and you can urge them to buy again.

Building a closer relationship with your own subscriber will be the best thing you can do. By having your subscribers ‘trust’ you, you can endorse many other useful products to your subscribers and the chances that they will buy from you will be high – because they trust you.

3. Viral marketing
You can provide a free product or bonus to be listed on your site to be downloaded by your visitors. Usually it’ll be an e-book where people can read from and learn useful information. In this bonus, you include give away rights and urge readers to give it away to anyone they want to. This way, you increase your own publicity and branding.

In the future, you will receive great benefits as when you are known, people will trust you more and this profits you. Between a product – let’s say a tooth brush from a beggar and a doctor, who will you prefer to purchase from? Unless the beggar offers something special, it is hardly that you will purchase the tooth brush from him.

YOU SHOULD TRY 14-DAYS FREE TRIAL !

4. Pay-per-click
In this case, you don’t pay for every click but earn instead. There are many advertising programs that give you a percentage of the bidding on a certain keyword. The famous ones are Google Adsense, Chitika, Yahoo Publisher Network and Kontera.

When people click on the ads shown from either of these advertising programs, you will earn a small portion of money. Nevertheless, if you have high traffic to your site – these programs alone can generate your residual income.

5. Offer an advertising space
Usually websites which brings in very high traffic will sell a small portion of space on their web page. You can charge a minimum of $300 for advertising someone’s ad a single month on advertising fee if your web page is pulling more than 2000 visitors a day.

Other than that, you can also create exit pop-ups that advertise other websites as well. By doing this, you don’t clutter your website with too many ads and you can earn a better reputation from your visitors.

6. Affiliate marketing
If you don’t have your own product for sale, you can sell other’s products instead and receive a commission on every sale. With affiliate marketing, you have an unlimited source of products to sell and you don’t need to go through any problems after your sales.

No customer service, you don’t need to issue any refunds, just let the owner do everything else for you after each sale. If you have a mailing list, you can endorse many other products and earn very great profits from your subscribers.

Best Place to Start !

7. Pay-per-lead
Instead of earning money from every click your visitors clicked on, you are paid if you get your visitors to subscribe into other’s mailing list. Nevertheless, it is not necessary that you just get visitors to become other’s subscribers.

There are a lot of bigger companies like Coca-Cola and Pepsi which holds survey every few months. By referring your visitors to them in order to complete a survey, you can also earn great profits from it.

Applied correctly, you can make a huge fortune on the Internet and build a steady online business – taking over the place of your day job. Take some time to put effort in either of these strategies, because it can make your day bright.

Best Place for Solo-Ads !

Do-follow Links vs No-follow Links – Does it really matter?

One of the biggest debates in the SEO world (and one that shows absolutely no signs of ever going away) is the do-follow vs no-follow links debate. There is one camp who stringently argue that the only links worth anything are do-follow ones; on the other hand, there is a group who say that it doesn't really matter.

So who is right and who is wrong? Is there any hard evidence when it comes to do-follow vs no-follow and their importance to the humble affiliate marketer? 

The Do-Follow Links Argument

The proponents of the "do-follow only" camp have a pretty logical argument backing them up. In terms of SEO value ("link juice", to use the nomenclature) Google should theoretically only count do-follow links. Any link that is no-follow has a direct and clear instruction telling search engines to ignore it. Think of the rel=nofollow tag as one of those detour signs you occasionally see. The street is still there, it's just you're being told to pass by it.

The No-Follow Links Argument

On the flip side of the coin, some people believe that no follow links actually do provide some form of link benefit. Over and above this, they can provide great referral traffic from people clicking through your links. An excellent example of useful no follow links are blog comment links. The vast majority of blogs are no follow these days, which was put in place to discourage comment spam. Howevever, a well-place blog comment on a popular blog can deliver hundreds of visitors in a very short space of time. 

Wikipedia is another great example of the usefulness of no follow links. Way back in the day, Wikipedia links were actually do-follow. But then link spammers caught on to the fact that this was a huge authority site that anyone could edit add their own links to. No-follow links were introduced on Wikipedia to directly combat this. However, a link from Wikipedia even today still makes your site look more credible, and more to the point, you can get lots of referral traffic from it. One of my websites recently got a link from Wikipedia (it was credited as a source) on a fairly obscure article, but that single little link still sends around 100 visitors a month. Not bad, if I do say so myself.

The Evidence

There isn't really much solid evidence to back any side of this argument up. In fact, when it comes to SEO everything is an inexact science. What works for one person may not necessarily work for you. That being said, I strongly urge you to take a "balanced" and holistic approach to link building.

Build a stable of quality, context-relevant do-follow links to your website to boost it up the search engine rankings. Guest blogging, blog networks, web directories, and article marketing, these are just a few ways to get do follow links to your site that will help deliver that all important link juice. Check out the Affilorama SEO lessons for more great link building ideas.

Then, once you've done that, start building some no follow links from blog commenting, forums (some forums are no follow) and other places that are going to deliver you high quantities of referral traffic. If you can pre-sell effectively then big bucks await from quality referral traffic. Having an opt-in newsletter list is even better, as you can seize that traffic and keep them in your sales loop over and over again.

The Conclusion

The conclusion is simple – do-follow links provide better "link juice" for boosting your website up the search engine rankings. This cannot be denied. However, no-follow links can often be highly context-relevant, and come from sources that are likely to generate greater levels of referral traffic. In addition to this, search engines are more likely to regard a mixture of both types of links as following a "natural" link profile. This is a good thing, as an unnatural link profile is much more likely to see you booted from the front page of Google for SEO malpractice.

Therefore, it is prudent practice to balance do-follow links with no-follow ones. I wouldn't stress too much about whether the links you are getting are do-follow or no-follow. In fact, I wouldn't stress about it at all. Why? The reason is simple – if you are actually out there actively building links to your site, you are taking action, and that counts for more than anything.

What are your personal thoughts on the do-follow vs no-follow links debate? I'm sure your opinion probably differs greatly from mine, and I'd absolutely love to hear it. Just leave a comment below and get the discussion started. 

How to Think of Small Business Ideas

Has a product or service ever hit the market and the first thing you thought was, “I totally could have made that!” And you know what? You’re right. You could have. But you didn’t, did you? Someone else beat you to the punch. They come up with a business idea, they came up with a prototype, and then they followed through on building the business and promoting their product or service. The reason you didn’t come up with it first is you weren’t ready. I firmly believe this. Starting a business takes a certain type of person, this is true,

1 2 3