Product research is the key to success. In fact, the more you know about product research, the more prepared you'll be to start your new business. In this tutorial, we will discuss the process of product research and introduce the tools you can use for effective, in-depth research.

New merchants often start out with what is potentially the most daunting of tasks: choosing a product. Many of us suffer from indecision and fear that we will choose the wrong product and be unable to sell anything. Almost everything on the planet is now being sold successfully online in some way. If you follow a few simple guidelines, you can find your product. Here we will try to simplify the process and discuss a few resources so you can proceed from the "no idea" stage to the "ready to sell" stage as quickly as possible. Use the following steps and resources to help you focus your product research and narrow down your choices.

Step 1: Brainstorm

Take 5 minutes for association, discussion, etc. and come up with 10-20 ideas. Start with ideas with which you are familiar and don't limit your possibilities. You were introduced to this concept at the workshop. Remember the rules? No criticism allowed, not even of your own ideas. If you come up with an idea, write it down.

Step 2: Narrow the Field

From your brainstorming list, remove any ideas to which serious objections arise. Is the product dangerous or restricted? Is this a product you want to sell?
Step 3: Reverse search Research the remaining ideas with the Reverse Search Tool to determine market demand. Eliminate the least popular ideas and eliminate over-saturated products. The Reverse Search Tool will tell you how many people searched the Internet for this product in the last month. This can indicate whether there is a market for your considered product. Think about it! The Reverse Search Tool tells you if there a demand, then Google or Alexa can tell you if that demand is being met. You can know in a few minutes if the product you have in mind has both a demand and a supply.

Step 4: Google the Competition    


Use Google to find other sites and companies selling the same products. Take note of the number of businesses you find in the listings. investigate their websites to see if they are true competitors in the same market, if they sell the same products but to a different market, or if they sell in a different way than you intend to sell. Remember, there are many ways to sell a single product.
Step 5: Use to check on the competitor's traffic and links. This can provide an accurate idea of whether a product's demand is being met by the competition. If the sites you investigate are getting limited traffic (or sales) compared to the large number of people searching for the product, then you know that their website is either poorly marketed, poorly designed, or for some other reason, it is not meeting their customer's needs.

Step 6: Eliminate Weak Products             


Eliminate any product ideas that do not show signs of demand. Also eliminate product ideas with too much supply (saturated market). Keep in mind that Internet markets are huge. The market can support many competing businesses as long as there is adequate separation of those businesses in the eyes of the consumer.

Step 7: Select Your Product


Eliminate and research your ideas until you have narrowed your list down to one product. Then commit yourself to this option. Don't spend valuable time second-guessing yourself. Make a decision and stand behind it. New information can change your mind, but commit yourself to giving your business a fair chance. Most businesses fail when businessmen give up. All businesses will have challenges; those who never gave up are called successes.

Choosing a product is an intimidating concept only because it represents commitment. Once you choose a product, you must begin working and committing resources to your business. If you can make yourself commit and decide once and for all that you WILL take a chance and start your online business, the product you choose will not be the most important decision you've made.

Visit again next week!
Robert Schow
StoresOnline, Inc.

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