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Find out why you must focus on one online business niche and how to do this. This is critical in giving you the best chance to succeed in making money online. I will show you why this is true based on my own experience and give you a free printable to choose the online niche you can start working on today.
After trying to start several online businesses at the same time, I let the balls drop and most of them have been abandoned to dwindle into cyber oblivion. Offhand, I can tell you that I currently have an Amazon store selling children’s products, several ebooks, this blog, branded merchandise in an online marketplace and a niche website all sitting in the online world. I’ve probably even forgotten a few.
How many am I actively building and marketing? Ummmm, one. This one.
How are the other online businesses doing without any input from me? Not very well, despite a tremendous amount of money and effort that I put into getting them up and running. Now, these are what I call ‘school fees’ – the fees you pay in money and effort to not get the result you want, but to learn some life lessons and gain experience.
And I have learnt one very valuable lesson, which is all I’m talking about today: Why you MUST focus on starting one niche online business.
Choosing a niche for your online business
When you have your hands in many cookie jars, you cannot give each business the time and investment it needs to get off the ground properly. Instead of building two or three successful businesses at once, you actually end up with none. And believe me, one successful business is worth far more than two or three struggling ones.
Now let’s go even deeper. When choosing an online business, you MUST niche down in that business. I paid even more school fees to learn this, even though all the experts warned me about this.
What happens when you don’t choose a niche
You see, when I signed up for the Elite Blog Academy course several years ago, I had big plans to run a lifestyle blog. I wanted a gorgeous, vivid, full-of-pretty-pictures blog where I could talk about anything and everything. I didn’t want to ‘limit’ myself. But this actually limited me in so many ways…
After 1.5 years of very hard work on my lifestyle blog, I had a slump one random Thursday morning and finally realized that:
- I simply couldn’t finalize my elevator pitch as it changed each time I wrote about a new topic. Every time someone asked me what my blog was about, I had a different answer and kind of mumbled something about empowering women, but also a bunch of other topics in case they might be interested in those too. So I couldn’t promote my own blog with confidence in person.
- I couldn’t launch the blog properly on social media as I couldn’t tell social media sites what value Tiara Tribe would really give its visitors. Was I blogging about gardening, money, or fitness? If Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram don’t know what I write about, how can they promote me to others and build my social presence?
- I had so many blog categories it was mind boggling. I couldn’t maximize the benefits of SEO as I had no real focus niche and each post was unrelated to most of the others. There was no golden thread between my stories or any coherence between my topics.
- I couldn’t come up with consistent blog post ideas or write enough content to fill all my categories, leaving many with one or two posts and little else. After doing a user testing of the site, the feedback was that visitors couldn’t immediately tell the topic of my blog when landing there and one lady was kind enough to say it looked either abandoned or brand new – she wasn’t sure which.
- I spent a lot of time many times over trying to organize my blog categories for them to make more sense as I added articles. This meant that after 1.5 years I still hadn’t organized my menus, which was frustrating me, my web designer, and probably my visitors to my site.
- I was struggling to implement tactics I learnt in courses because my categories were too broad and I had no clear vision, which limited my productivity, the value I got from these courses, and took a lot of enjoyment out of the entire process.
- My email list and site visitor numbers were growing, but very slowly and with a lot of hard work. I had a pin about gardening go viral on Pinterest (it still performs very well), but all the visitors from that pin couldn’t find any more articles on the topic they were interested in – gardening – so they didn’t stay longer than that post and they never came back.
All of this led me to a point where I had to admit to myself that I had made a mistake and needed to start again. This was not an easy choice and was not made lightly.
Social media group support is key
But there was a light at the end of this tunnel. A big bright one, and luckily it wasn’t a train!
I opened up to a Facebook blogging group about this. I’ve found online groups invaluable as blogging can be quite a lonely job. When I wrote about my difficult choice to start the blog from scratch and focus on a niche, I got well over 200 responses about this.
And do you know what? Not one of them said I was making a mistake. Most agreed with me and many had made the same mistake and were in the same boat as me!
How to keep your audience happy
I’ve adapted one member’s beautiful response as I think she made the critical point of choosing an online business niche crystal clear:
If you open a pizza shop and sell great pizzas, you will build a customer base of people who love your pizzas and support you. But then you decide not to ‘limit’ yourself and you start serving fish sticks and hamburgers, just because you enjoy eating them and you want to please everyone in the neighborhood. You soon lose all your customers because you’re focusing on keeping fish stick, hamburger and pizza eaters happy, spreading yourself too thin.
Instead, you should focus on making the best pizzas on the block. Source the freshest produce, try new delicious combinations, and give great customer service. And do you know what? Your pizza shop will thrive!
Are you ready to choose your online business niche? Great!
How to use the printable to choose your online business niche
Here’s how to use the free printable I’ve created for you to choose the online business niche to start with in four easy steps. Take note that my printables are designed for those who love writing down lists and those who love brainstorming as more creative or visual people.
You can get the free printable at the end of this post, along with all the other goodies in the Tiara Tribe resource library.
STEP 1: Write down all online business ideas that interest you
Start by writing down all your business ideas that you’re interested in for making money online. Here’s a list of ideas to think about:
- Publish ebooks
- Sell physical products
- Sell digital products
- Offer services
- Teach courses
- Start a blog
- Build an affiliate website
- Sell merchandise in an online marketplace
- Start a podcast
Write down everything you are interested in either as a list on page 1 or brainstorm your ideas on page 2 in the printable. These ideas will be kept safe and you can refer to them any time you want in future.
STEP 2: Choose your favorites
Write down your three favorite online business ideas on page 3. For example, I’m most interested in starting a blog, publishing ebooks and creating courses. These are my three favorite online business ideas.
STEP 3: Cut it down to one
Choose your favorite business idea of the three options in step 2. Which one are you most passionate about? Which idea would most fulfill you?
STEP 4: Define your online business niche
Now it’s time to niche down. By ‘niche down’ I mean choose something very specific that you will focus on with this online business. If you want to publish an ebook, describe the ebook. Will it be fiction or non-fiction? What age group will you write for?
What will the book be about? Do you have an idea for the title?
This is not the time to spend hours on the internet seeing what the competition is doing or looking for more ideas for online business. Write down what’s in your heart and on your mind at this stage. We will get to the research, planning and analysis later on. Today is about choosing one online niche business idea to get you started and to minimize overwhelm, so you have the greatest chance of success in building an online business you love.
Get the free printable to help you choose an Online Business Niche today
I’m super-excited to have you here!