On the issue of demand: how to assess your niche on the Internet
30.01.2013 12922

On the issue of demand: how to assess your niche on the Internet

Any business requires an understanding of what is happening in the market in general and in a particular segment in particular. And e-commerce is no exception, especially if the company is just planning to go online. Mikhail Fedorov, technical director of the Kompleto marketing group, tells how to assess the demand for your product, as well as the saturation and possibilities of your niche on the Internet.

Determining the current and forecasted market conditions - both available right now and potential - will help you find out if there is already a formed demand for your product on the Internet, or if you have to create it yourself. To understand this, you can use several assessment methods that will help to study the issue from several angles. These methods will also allow you to analyze the main trends and the current market situation, determine the real and maximum coverage, the main opportunities and risks, as well as approximate budgets for achieving the planned coverage. Method of using search engine statistics A good tool for estimating demand can be, for example, the wordstat.yandex.ru service. Using it is very simple. In the field "Keywords and phrases" you enter the names of your products or products, the names of brands included in your assortment, as well as more general queries that reflect the intentions of a potential buyer. For example: “leather men's shoes”, “women's wedding shoes”, “Adidas sneakers”, “buy winter shoes”. Based on the results of studying query statistics, you can understand how often users of this search engine were interested in products from the assortment of your store. For the most objective assessment of the situation, you should create the most complete list of search queries that can be used to characterize your product range. In order for the assessment to be most accurate, it is advisable to avoid phrases and words that have too broad a meaning, such as the word “shoes” or “buy women's shoes”.

Having studied and summed up the results, you will approximately understand the maximum number of potential customers who visit, figuratively speaking, the Internet shopping center in your city. Of course, the figure obtained is not applicable for predicting the future number of visitors to your site, but it will help to understand the general trend and understand how your potential customers express their thoughts in the Internet environment, how they form requests, and what they are looking for.

Important: to find out the number of queries per month for a specific phrase without various qualifying words, as well as in a specific number and case, enter the search query in quotation marks, putting an exclamation mark in front of each word. For example, like this: "! White! Wedding! Shoes." If this is not done, the estimate will not be accurate. Also, be sure to indicate the cities in which you plan to sell in the "Regions" field.

The method of automatic selection of search queries according to the list of goods

To apply this method, upload your product list to a separate file, for example, to an Excel spreadsheet or xml file. Then you should upload it to any of the contextual advertising automation services for online stores, for example, elama.ru or context.apishops.com.

Such a system will independently select suitable search queries for your products. You will also find out the approximate monthly volume of conversions to product pages - conversions that are carried out from advertising systems with payment for their quantity, as well as the approximate budget for such advertising for your assortment.

You will understand how often potential customers are looking for products similar to yours, and what approximate volume of visitors you could attract using this advertising method. Assuming that at least 1% of these visitors orders goods from you, you can roughly calculate the forecasted volume of orders from this type of promotion and its profitability.

Please note that you may encounter a situation where the models and brands that are in the assortment of your store are not requested at all by Internet users. If this happens, then for promotion you should find more general words and phrases that describe your assortment.

Competitor Analysis Method

By analyzing search queries, you may find that the demand for your range has already been formed. In this case, you have the opportunity to more accurately assess the future costs of attracting visitors. This can be done by studying the competitor’s online business.

First of all, you need to choose a successful online store with the same assortment and price level in your region. After that, you can use the various tools and services listed in Table 1.

1 table. Services and tools used to measure competitor performance:

Service or tool

What allows you to explore

What does this give for evaluation


Keywords that a competitor uses for advertising in Yandex.Direct

You can calculate the forecast of attendance, as well as the budget for advertising for these requests using Yandex.Direct https://direct.yandex.ru/registered/main.pl?cmd=ForecastByWords


Search queries for which your competitor is currently in the TOP-10 search engines

You can estimate the approximate monthly budget for the promotion of these words. Please note that the amount of expenses received using this service will not, of course, take into account the cost of maintaining the site and writing texts.

Data of statistics counters installed on the competitor’s website, with the numbers displayed on them

The total daily traffic to the site

You can approximately find out how many visitors come to a competitor’s site daily. If you compare this volume of traffic with the forecast from search engines, as well as contextual advertising systems, you can find out how many visitors get to the site from non-search sources.

Using the services from the table, you will evaluate the real attendance of a competitor’s resource, which you can strive for. You will also understand the approximate budget that will be required every month to achieve this level of attendance. At the same time, remember that with the help of contextual advertising you can attract visitors from the first day of the site’s work, but to get serious traffic from search engines, serious work of qualified optimizers is required for at least six months.

A method of researching the situation of other Internet market players

This method differs from the method of competitor analysis in that it involves researching not so much direct competitors as industry leaders like online stores at the level of zappos.com or its Russian counterpart sapato.ru and other participants in online trading. It is needed in order to identify the main trends, opportunities and risks.

Various foreign reviews, online media, forums and newsletters from the subject communities will help you work on this method. For example, datainsight.ru sends out very high-quality informative reviews and market research, and it’s completely free. 

Using these sources, carefully study all the information related to the footwear trade. Based on them, formulate from five to ten major risks, as well as several potential opportunities for your development. They will allow you to understand what obstacles and challenges you will encounter during the development of the online store.

Method for creating dynamic search ads on Google.Adwords

Take into account the specifics of the niche is necessary not only at the stage of market research, but also at the stage of company promotion on the Internet. In order for the ad to be targeted exclusively to the target audience, use dynamic search ads. At the moment, this functionality is most conveniently implemented in only one of the three popular contextual advertising systems (direct.yandex.ru, adwords.google.com and begun.ru), namely Google.Adwords. For it to work, your product catalog must be indexed by Google.

The convenience of the Google.Adwords functionality is that you need a minimum of actions to launch an advertising campaign, which will be quite effective at the same time. You must first create one or more ad templates. Please note that at this stage you only need to create a description, since the title and page address are substituted automatically. For example, you can do this: “An excellent choice of men's shoes. German quality. Free delivery in Moscow. " Next, you need to specify the site url mask for advertising for each of the templates, for example, like this: http://www.site.ru/catalog/man_shoes/casual/. After completing these steps, you just have to track the ineffective keywords and add them to the list in stop words.

As a result of these settings, the system itself will begin to determine by what requests it is best to show the pages of the site and itself will generate ad headings. According to the experience of the Kompleto marketing group, the statistics on the display of ads and selected search phrases of an advertising campaign, which can be viewed in the system’s interface, serves as an excellent start for further manual compilation of ads for the most selling queries that are selected by the system.

Any business requires an understanding of what is happening in the market in general and in a particular segment in particular. And e-commerce is no exception, especially if the company is just planning to enter ...
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