"What Should *I* Sell Online?"
Posted on February 13, 2001
by Scot Dantzer
With the US economic outlook getting bleaker by the day, more and more folks are beginning to look to the internet as a way to earn extra money.
And why shouldn't they? The hours are great and I've never had such an agreeable boss!
But the key to online success is much more than millions of dollars in venture capital funding - history proves that. No, the quickest road to a big fat online paycheck is your *product*.
Let me put it as simply as I know how - if there aren't buyers for your product on the web, you won't sell very many products. Makes sense, right?
Here's a quick and easy way to determine the approximate size of *any* market online.
First, get yourself a copy of GoodKeywords (from http://goodkeywords.com). This free software is my crystal ball into the world of desirable online products. It queries a number of popular search engines and in many cases it will tell me exactly what I should be selling online.
A similar free tool is available to clients of the pay-per-click search engine Goto. Visit them at http://goto.com
The best way to illustrate this process is to use an example:
For instance, I'm a musician so I'll pick a general term such as 'keyboard'. GoodKeywords tells me how many times that word was searched in the past 30 days AND different phrases that contain that word.
Something that catches my eye in the results is the phrase 'casio keyboard'
I know Casio is a brand name, so I'll refine my search for phrases that contain the word 'Casio'. These results tell me *specific* products from Casio that surfers are looking for.
Now all I need to do is find an affiliate (or commissioned-reseller) program that pays me to sell Casio products. Once I sign up with the merchant, I'll be able to create separate pages to sell the individual products. AND I'll make a commission for each product I sell.
Finding online merchants with affiliate programs is easy. Just visit http://refer-it.com or http://associateprograms.com. These sites list hundreds of affiliate merchants who will pay you to sell their products.
Now for the hard part - bringing traffic to your individual product pages.
Typically, I rely on search engines to bring traffic to this kind of site. More specifically, I tend to lean toward pay-per-click search engines (like Goto.com and FindWhat.com).
Visit http://payperclicksearchengines.com for a complete list of 'PPC' search engines.
Pay-per-click search engines let you bid on your position for your search terms...essentially buying your visitors one at a time. In most cases a top position for a certain product costs no more than .01 or .02 per click - and you pay *only* if someone clicks through to your site.
This can add up quickly for certain phrases BUT the advantages far outweigh the very small cost.
When you use pay per click advertising your link is displayed ONLY to the web surfers who are looking for information on your product.
This kind of 'targeted' advertising can be very profitable since you're approaching a visitor who has asked (by searching) to see your website!
One final note: Even the most expertly constructed web page won't make a sale to every visitor. Studies show that many folks research online, then buy offline - especially with big-ticket items.
But your chances of making a sale are much higher if you present
your sales message to a truly targeted audience, rather than
'any old Joe' on the web.
Scot Dantzer used his 'MiniSite' System to generate $13,146.13 in online revenues in a single month. Visit his site at http://smarthomebusiness.com/zine.htm to learn how to duplicate his success in as little as 20 minutes a week.
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