Broad Niche or Narrow Niche?
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One of the fundamental questions you need to ask yourself in internet marketing is whether you should be boosting relevancy by targeting a very precise niche or going after numbers with a broader appeal.
The answer to that question is complex, and differs depending on your business strategy and size. With this in mind, here are a few considerations and methods you can use to find the answer.
What Type of Customer Do You Have?
First and foremost, you need to know when and why your customers are going to buy your products.
Is it the type of product consumers buy in the moment or do a lot of planning for?
Does the product have a long or a short life cycle?
Is the product seasonal?
Are purchases more quality or price oriented?
In general, if you are selling the kind of product that is easy to sell in the moment, a relatively narrow niche may make more sense. On the other hand, if consumers need to know about you for a while before they are in a situation where it makes sense to make a purchase, it’s usually better to go broad.
The reason for this is that you aren’t going to develop an audience by blogging about a particular product over and over again. Followers will lose interest and move on to other things. Retaining a long term following requires a more broad approach.
A second consideration is whether there is enough room in your niche for promotion. A more narrow niche typically requires fewer links to dominate the search results, but there is a catch. It can also be harder to get guest posts, interviews, and collaborative opportunities if your niche is “used car oil filters.”
When you take your niche up a level or two it starts to get easier to find these kinds of opportunities. There is also a much greater opportunity for growth. It’s generally easier to take a broad site in a more narrow direction later on down the road than it is to go the other direction. The more narrow the topic of your site, the more likely a webmaster will look at it and say, “spam.”
The Middle Ground
The optimal solution for many sites is to take a middle ground approach. But there are actually two different ways to think about how to take the middle ground:
1. The obvious approach – Write half of your content about a small group of closely related niche keywords, and the other half about broad industry subject matter and even subjects that aren’t necessarily in the same industry but appeal to the same demographic.
2. The inbound approach – Instead of thinking about whether the content on your site is relevant to a specific niche, focus more on whether each article is relevant to a specific search term. For example, if you sell tents, you could write articles about camping gear, outdoor life, starting a fire, etc. But for each of those articles, you could focus in on a very specific keyword and target it, making sure that it perfectly answer’s the searcher’s question.
Of course, these two strategies aren’t mutually exclusive either.
What’s your take on broad verses narrow?