Affiliate Marketing - How to Pick a Profitable Niche

Want to make money in affiliate marketing? Your first step is to pick a profitable niche. This seems easier said than done: how do you know whether a niche is a gold mine or a waste of time?

The key to niche marketing success is this: test your prospective niches with research before you invest time and money into them.

I like to pick niches in which I have some experience, because it makes it easier to write content once I start promoting products in the niche. However, this is completely up to you. If a niche is completely new to you, it just means that you have to spend a little time getting up to speed.

How to Do Fast and Easy Niche Research

There are many ways to do niche research. I've streamlined my process into four simple steps; try this process to see whether it works for you.

1. Are There Forums in the Niche?

The first step is to see whether people are discussing the niche online. If they're discussing the niche, then they're used to the online world, and may be buying products in that niche online.

Just type "niche +forums" into Google. If you wanted to find dog training forums for example, you'd type "dog training +forums".

2. Are Products Being Sold on eBay in the Niche?

This is another way of identifying whether people are buying products online which are directly related to the niche. In our dog training niche example, just type "eBay dog training" into Google's search query field.

3. Can I Readily Identify Target Markets Within the Niche?

If the answer to the first two questions is "yes", it's time to dig a little deeper. Visit some of the forums for your niche, and investigate what's selling on eBay. Make some notes.

You're trying to discover who your target markets are, and what they respond to. In the dog training niche, you may identify several markets: pet owners, show dog owners and trainers, and professional trainers, for example.

4. Can I Reach These Target Markets Cost Effectively?

Once you've got a list of your target markets, it's time to decide what it will take to market to these different markets within the niche. Can you use article marketing? List marketing? Pay Per Click? Social Media Marketing? Make a list of the marketing methods you could use.

You haven't finished your niche research. You'll need to choose a target market within the niche, and find products to sell to them. However, the hardest part of affiliate marketing is over: you've identified a profitable niche.

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