When you’re looking to buy a business, choosing the products or services the business offers is one of the most important aspects to consider. The skills needed to run a business that sell furniture may be significantly different than running one which sells fashion products. Knowledge of the niche can be acquired, but ultimately running something that you are passionate about.
Determining Market Interest & Trends
Finding a product you are passionate about is extremely important, but ensuring that others are passionate about the product as well is just as important.
Google has an immense amount of data about what consumers are interested. Being one of the first places people go to when interested in potentially buying a product, it can be a good way to gauge the popularity of a product. There are two tools you can use, each of which have their own pros and cons.
Google Trends allows you to see volume for a search term indexed to 100, with a value of 50 being half as popular as the peak. This means you don’t actually know how many people are actually searching for the term. This allows you to determine if a product has peaked in popularity, still growing, or you can try to identify if it is a seasonal product that may spike in interest again later.
How can we read this graph for “dog outfits”?
We can see in September the volume for the term beings to dramatically rise, which would align with when pet owners might begin looking for Halloween costumes. Analyzing search term data is a bit of an art that requires further digging and research. In this case, we can see that even past Halloween the peak continues. The trend could continue with Christmas themed outfits as it doesn’t start to decrease until mid-December. By doing another search for “christmas dog outfits”, we can see that this specific term has very little volume compared to the start of November.
Google Keyword Planner
The Google Keyword Planner tool is also powered by data from the largest search engine and will give you rough estimates of volumes for different terms.
One of the benefits aside from getting an idea of the average monthly volume of searches is that you can see the cost per click bid ranges to get an idea of the competition for this term.
First step is to choose the location of the data you are looking at. For more niche terms we’d suggest adding multiple countries to be able to see more data. If you’re shipping your products to multiple countries, and there are few reasons not to, then you might as well view the data for all of those countries. In our example we’ve chosen our main core markets for our “dog outfits” store.
It’s advised to turn on the “Google and Search partners” option so you are able to see as much data as possible.
The data on Google Keyword Planner matches up with Google Trends, however, one of the downsides is that all data is delayed by about a month. This is one of the reasons we suggest using both tools.
By going deeper into the “dog outfits” keyword by looking up our Christmas outfits, we can see that there is a large amount of volume for the term, with volume peaking at 110,000 searches in November.
What is high volume?
The search volumes quoted represent the monthly search volumes for a specific term. A search term with a monthly volume of 5000 would have 60,000 searches annually, assuming the historical trends are consistent.
This means that while looking up a specific term gives you a good indicator of the volume, there is much more volume related to that term which you aren’t seeing data for. What the other related and more specific search terms are can be impossible to determine, and Google even recently confirmed that 15% of all searches have never been completed before.
Even if a site is ranked as the number one result for a search term, that doesn’t mean your site will receive traffic equivalent to the volume number. For some terms a searcher may click multiple results or only the top result. An analysis by Advanced Web Ranking showed that the first term receives on average a 31% click through rate (CTR) the second falls to a 15% CTR. Being the 10th search result is 1.33% CTR, meaning the top results receive the majority of the traffic.
Note: branded terms are ones which contain the product or company’s name in them, whereas an unbranded term is one which is generic and does not contain the brand name. For example, Jim’s Electronic Store is a branded term, whereas electronics for sale is an unbranded term.
Given that the top search results receive most of the search traffic, finding a term which very high volume may result in it being difficult to outrank the current results and gain any significant traffic.
You may have a much easier time getting ranked a number one rank for a term with only 2500 volume and receiving 775 clicks (with an average of a 31% CTR) than rank 10 with a term with 25000 results 333 clicks (with an average of 1.33% CTR).
Categories of Stores for Sale to Start Research From
The following categories are a great start pointing to research market trends using search data. On Exchange there are thousands of businesses for sale, from stores that sell hot tubs to transportation equipment so the options are really endless. If you’re able to identify a hot product but can’t find a store which sells the product on Exchange, you can always use a store in a similar vertical and expand into selling the product.
Home & Furniture
Businesses in the home and furniture category range from shops selling single items of decor like lamps, curtains, paintings and more, or all of the above. Some businesses sell products like mattresses or fun kitchen cooking gadgets. The prices can range from under $10 to $1000s per item based on the products. Stores for sale range in price from $200 up to $2.5M.
Fashion & Apparel
The Ecommerce fashion industry is expected to grow from $481 billion in 2018 to $713 billion in 2022 and there are plenty of opportunities to take part in this growth. There are over 900 stores for sale in the category right now with revenue from an average of a few hundred dollars a month up to $198,000.
Jewellery products are great to sell online as they generally have few sizing requirements which mean few returns and the small size makes for low shipping costs. There are currently over 100 jewellery stores for sale selling male, female, and youth items.