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Effective Internet Market Research.

A Vital Piece of Marketing Intelligence!

In my opinion, all marketing on the internet is "niche" marketing...

And although that word often carries with it certain connotations of being something different... as I said, it's all the same to me.

By placing the word "niche" in phrases like niche market, niche marketing, or niche market research it's implied that what's being referred to is smaller and narrower in scope...

While this may be true, I believe that all markets on the internet (some broader than others) are really niches in essence.

So the issues involved in internet market research, necessary to estimate a niche's potential are exactly the same...

Its scope matters only as far as selection, but not as far as the research involved in studying it.

Generally speaking, research still remains in all cases just a matter of estimating marketability and profit potential in terms of...

Demand expressed in search volume, and number of competing websites.

But there's certainly much more to internet market research that just supply and demand... that's just part of the puzzle!

When doing your marketing research you must also consider a niche's intangible assets like content offer, brand relevancy, and sources of value.


Looking at Hard Numbers Via Keyword Research.

This is the initial phase in estimating potential profitability of any particular niche on the internet... looking at the cold hard numbers.

A simple study of supply and demand for any given niche on the internet is only done through keyword research.

Let's take the demand side first...

On the internet, "marketable goods" are essentially content, products, and services...

It basically boils down to those three, and demand for these "marketable goods" is estimated by using search volume as the prime indicator.

Consumers that'll ultimately be buying on the internet will, in their search efforts, be using the keywords and keyphrases they think will be most effective in helping them find what they want.

In this respect, it's important for you to know how potential customers search for what you intend to sell, the words they use in those searches, and the number of times each of those words are used.

It's simple logic... a high search volume for a given keyword is understood as high demand for whatever it is that the keyword is relevant for.

The same applies to the supply side...

Supply is estimated by the number of websites on the internet that optimize for the same search terms... so a large number of those websites usually means a highly competitive market.

Although it does sound quite simple, and it certainly can be with the right keyword research tool...

It does require careful thought, consideration, and understanding in getting it right because it's not something you can just breeze through.

It most probably won't be a perfect situation!

Estimating a niche's true profit potential will require that you brainstorm many keywords and keyphrases that are relevant to your internet business's theme and concept.

You'll certainly see that some with high demand are also very competitive, and those that aren't may not be used as much by searchers, indicating low demand numbers.

What's really important here and where the greatest opportunities for value are at, is in your mix of keywords and keyphrases.

It's vital that you recognize the inherent value of a given niche in the amount of keywords relevant to your theme and concept with which you can build a long list of search terms that enjoy a relatively high demand and relatively low demand.

In this regard, it's important that you don't look at a group of keywords in isolation, because if you do you run the risk of mistakenly dismissing a niche's real potential by considering it too narrow or too broad.


Consider Intangible Assets in Market Research.

The cold hard numbers of supply and demand are only one part of your research efforts...

They give you an idea of the important structural aspect of a market's current reality, but they certainly don't provide you with the complete picture.

A vital part of research is also gaining a clear idea of how solutions are provided to customers within a market...

Are content offers important in getting sales?

Is it being provided effectively?

How relevant are brand names in the market?

Are there certain sources of value not being picked up by competitors?

Are products being marketed effectively?

These are vital questions that pure keyword research doesn't answer... you can't answer them by simply looking at a long list of keywords with supply and demand numbers alongside.

It's absolutely necessary that you have an actual look at your competitors and get a sense of what their value strategy is all about.

Know that your marketing research is incomplete if you fail to do this!

Return to "Designing for Marketability" from "Issues of Internet Market Research to Find Niches Online"

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