When creating an online business or becoming an entrepreneur, the first step you’ll want to take is finding your niche. Have you ever heard the expression “the riches are in the niches,” and wondered what that meant? One strategy for success is to focus on catering your services or product to a small market for better sales.
Identifying your niche is vital when creating a TPT store, building digital courses, or providing a service. Why does this strategy work? Simply stated: the market is over saturated, but you still have space in it. With all of the other products or services out there, we tend to have option overload. Your target audience should be able to see your product and service and identify that it is made specifically for them. And once you’ve picked up momentum, built fans, and connected with that audience you can start to expand into other niches.
With both of my small businesses, I’ve had a lot of success with this strategy.
Finding Your Niche with a TPT Store
When you are starting to sell on Teachers Pay Teachers, finding your niche can start off simple by asking yourself a few questions:
- The grade / subject I taught.
- What did I enjoy teaching the most?
- The content I created that was unique.
TPT has thousands (if not hundreds of thousands) of other sellers you are competing with. You’ll build your own audience, so you’ll want to stock your store shelves consistently so customers know what to go for you for. For example, if you saw a 1st grade lesson in my store, you’d expect to find more 1st grade curriculum. It would be strange if you returned to my store and all I had was advanced High School Business curriculum.
If you want to check out this strategy in action, check out my TPT store Kitten Approved Curriculum. It’s easiest to start with #1 – the grades/ subjects that you have taught and you are familiar with. Creating content outside of your area takes more time. I’d wait before creating curriculum for grades you are not familiar with. I taught 5th grade, with some of my classes far below grade level. In addition to that, and I’ve also taught the GATE cluster. Because of this, the curriculum I create is between grades 3-6. I developed unique games and project based learning, so my customers identify my store with those specific resources. Finding my niche came naturally through trial and error of what worked and didn’t work in my store. As you build resources, you’ll be able to identify what works for you.
Niches For Products or Services
When thinking of products or services to offer, finding your niche will differ than the TPT strategy given above. Use the following framework to help you identify your niche for a digital course, coaching, or physical product.
- Skills you are particularly good at or an expert in
- Things that you really enjoy doing and would love to learn a lot about
- What people will pay money for
When advertising in the digital world, you’ll want to niche it down to help you focus on a specific demographic. For example, if I was scrolling through the internet and saw a weight loss program, I may not even click on it. There are SO many weight loss programs out there, I may not be interested in learning more. However, if this weight loss program was for brides-to-be or for a vegan diet I would be more inclined to click. Your audience should be able to see your product and know “that was made specifically for my needs.”
I used this framework when I created my digital course The Teacher Career Coach Course to help teachers transition out of the classroom. After I transitioned out of the classroom for a role as an educational consultant, I constantly had teachers asking for advice on how to find other positions. I was confident that I had the skills necessary to help others succeed. Instead of just creating a course to help anyone transition to a new career, I am only focusing on teachers and their specific needs.
When you are working on finding your niche, you may change your mind a few times. That’s completely normal! Just play around with your content and see what people engage with. Building a business is a lot of trial and error, so don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and gauge interest first before committing to anything.
Want to learn more?
After finding your niche, you’ll need to start putting together all of the other pieces to building your business! Sign up here for my free newsletter to learn more about creating a business outside of teaching.