For some reason, researching a niche before entering it is the one thing most people hate doing, yet it is the best way of determining whether that niche will have a high chance of being profitable or not.

Why would you want to spend weeks or even months doing hard work on something that doesn’t have a chance of earning the income you desire? I can only put it down to one of two things, either people find it boring (maybe feeling it is an unnecessary step) or they simply don’t know how to do it.

If you find it boring, then be my guest if you would rather do it the hard way, but if your reason is because you don’t know how to do it, then this report is for you. I can easily spend a week doing research on a niche if I feel it is going to be a good one. Listen, the more research you do in the way I’m going to show you, the less work you will have to do for the following months. To whet your appetite, research can also be considered competition spying, think of it like detective work, it can be quite fun!

Getting Years of Research and Hard Work Done For You

So here’s the big secret about research and taking the short cut to success. Instead of banging your head against the wall trying to figure out what is going to work in your market, how your website should look, what products you should promote, how you should promote them, how to write your adverts and so on, simply look at what the leading websites are doing in your market and do what they are doing!

You may want to read that previous paragraph again as many people miss the importance of what has been said, most don’t realise what the power of the Internet has put before you. There are people in your market who have spent years of time finding out what works and what doesn’t work, and have spent thousands in advertising dollars, and you can now just swoop in an see everything they are doing to turn a profit online.

Action Steps

IFirst of all create a blank spreadsheet in either Excel, Google docs or Open Office which will form the skeleton of your research. The first thing you want to do is some basic keyword research to find the main keywords for your market. They don’t have to be too specific at this stage, we’re merely looking for the theme of keywords people would be typing to find your niche.

1) Place these keywords on the first tab of the spreadsheet, any number up to 20 keywords should be sufficient at this stage.

2) Next, open up Google and type the first keyword in the search box. Click with your right mouse button on the site title and choose copy link (or manually copy the web address) and then paste it onto the second tab of the spreadsheet called websites. These are the websites that show up within the organic listings. At this stage, don’t include any at the very top of the listing with a slightly shaded background as this is a paid listing. Do this for the first 3 pages so that you have around 30 websites in your list.

3) Go back to the first page of results and do the same for the Google adverts at the very top of the screen and down the right hand side, copy the destination link so you can see the specific page they are directing you to rather than the main domain, as you want to see exactly how they are monetising their ads. IF you plan on using Pay Per Click advertising yourself, you may also want to copy the actual ads themselves and paste them into a document for later use. It is useful also to see the terminology they are using to grab the attention of their prospective visitors.

You will want to repeat the process again with the Google ads every few days over a period of a month to see which websites are continuously advertising, as pay per click can be quite expensive, the fact they keep advertising shows they are likely to be making money. These are the sites you want to pay close attention to.

4) The next stage would be to visit all of these sites (you don’t have to do all this in one day remember) to see exactly how they are running their business. In your research spreadsheet, make notes of things like the colour schemes they are using, headlines they have to pull the reader in, products they are advertising, methods used for advertising such as banner or text links and so on.

Look to see if they are capturing leads by asking for your email, what are they using as an ethical bribe in return for you email etc. You may want to set up a separate email account purposely for your research studies. Use this email to sign up for their newsletter / report (or whatever) and take note of what happens after you sign up. Do they try and sell you a product straight away, or take direct you to another website? These are all important factors to note.

Once you receive the free gift, look at how it is structured, is it information only, what type of information is it, does it include links to recommended products (quite possibly affiliate links), or is it promoting another product of theirs?

If instead it was a newsletter, read the letter and look at how the email is structured. Again, is it contents only, do they make recommendations? Also note the frequency of the emails. Anything you can think of, note it down, right down to the language they use, niche specific jargon etc.

5) Now do a similar exercise but for videos within YouTube. Search in YouTube for the phrases you used from you first tab and copy the URLs of the videos that come up on the first 3 pages. You can of course go beyond 3 pages.

Once you have your list, visit and watch the videos (you can just to 3 a day rather than all in one go) and look at the layout of the videos, whether they are presentations, live videos, online demonstrations. Note the number of visits and see if that ties in with the title of the video. Make a note of what you think it was that grabbed so many viewers. Look to see if they have any links in the video or in the description box, visit the links to see what they are directing the traffic to, are they trying to monetise the traffic or gather leads?

Also, look at any keywords they are using in their title, description, tags etc. There may be keywords you haven’t come across, potentially with high searches / low competition.

You should also visit this video’s channel to see what other videos they have posted, look for those with high views or those highly related to your topic.

6) Do the same in EzineArticles. A lot of people posting articles on this site are marketers just like you. You can use this exercise to learn more about your market, as well as seeing which articles are getting the most attention. Make notes of anything that stands out, such as the title, introduction, the length of the article and the Bio. Take note of any links the article is pointing to, most likely in the Bio section and visit the site. As before, look at the website and take notes as per point 4 in this report.

In Summary

Just by doing the things laid out in this report, you will be doing more than 90% of other marketers, probably more actually. It’s not really hard work, mostly just copying, pasting and reading. I can assure you though, this will give you the best head start you can get when entering a new market, a short cut that can shave months off your research time.