Everyone wants a winning product for their store. The best items with the best prices. But how do you choose? Sometimes going for the hottest product might not be as beneficial for your business as you like, especially if you are a small business owner. Not to mention, products like that do not sustain your business long term.

A popular product just means everyone is selling it. And with mass competition like that, you’re better off finding a different product to sell. Your best bet is to do proper product research to find the best fit for you and your store.

Remember The Basics
Keep watch for simple requirements to achieve when looking for products. A lot of these basic criteria are common knowledge among experienced entrepreneurs but if you’re a newbie or just a common folk trying to make it in this world, these things might just go over your head.

Try to find products with the highest profit margin. Figure out what is selling and launch new lines. You could also start selling to your website or pick up quality products that are already successful to do white labeling. Although take note, white labeling requires a huge sum of capital and should not be pursued if you cannot fork out a large amount. Products should be within your budget bracket. Anything too low and you’ll have profitability issues but anything too expensive means spending much more money to get started. Look for quality, durable products. The higher the quality, the less likely it gets sent back. Also, look out for shipping options in the product, how much does it cost to ship globally? Does it provide free shipping?

These are some basics you should keep in mind when doing product research.

Locating Your Niche

Perhaps one of the most, if not the most important part of your research, finding out what is the ‘Right’ product to sell may be harder than you think. Looking for the most popular product will leave you with plenty of competitors. Good niches or good products almost always have advertisers. If you manage to find a product with no advertisers, there’s a 95% chance there is no money in that market. What you need to look for especially as a beginner, is a major unmet need in a market. And a major unmet need in your market that is not readily obvious from keyword research. Or you could consider entering a less mature niche.

Consistent and Sufficient Demand

Look for a target product that has consistent and sufficient demand. Evergreen products that are not tied down by seasons or viral trends. Add value and always aim for quality products. Find a product with high sales but low ratings. Why? These are products with great demand but have an average of low rating reviews, which means there is potentially an opportunity for you to increase quality or to add value.

Keyword Research

Do your keyword research, Google offers a free to use application called ‘Google Keyword Planner’ where it will help you determine the right keywords to use for your ads. Keywords provide insights into what customers are searching for online. Which includes exact words and phrases. In layman’s terms, keywords act as a compass, where it tells you which direction you should go to. Your simple goal when doing keyword research is finding out what your target audience is looking for, and what it will take to rank for those keywords. Once you’ve fetched all necessary information, you should optimize your site or online store to target words or phrases that are most effective in catching the audience’s attention according to your research.

Conduct a Survey

Though it is easy to dismiss, conducting a survey is an essential measure to take. If you are unaware of what will reach your audience best, why not reach out to them? Find out their needs, expectations and wants. This will help you to understand customers’ tendencies towards buying products. It can boil down to what amount of money do they spend for their products or services, inclination levels among customers about upcoming features or products, what are their thoughts about the competitor products, etc. Hearing from the customers’ feedback can also strengthen your data allowing you to make well-informed business decisions. Several ways to conduct a survey are to attach a survey form to your website, check out relevant Facebook groups that your target audience frequently visits, or simply have short conversations with people who are part of your target market and ask their opinions. There’s are many ways to do this, you are not tied down to the options given but they are the most recurring ways to conduct a survey.

Scout Your Competition

Analyze what your competitors are doing to sell the products you have picked. Try typing out the appropriate keywords on Google or other search engines, and see if their results are showing up. From there, you can see if any of your ideas clash, what’s good to take into account, and what’s bad and shouldn’t be replicated. If no ads pop up, then good for you. You’ve found an untapped niche. Besides that, you can purchase the product from your competitors (if it is affordable for you) and check the kind of services they offer. You can always learn the best practices from them and find out ways to improve it while selling yours.

To turn your business idea into a reality is never easy. And product research plays a vital step in making that dream come alive. It gives a competitive edge, and it provides us with useful data. And like any successful business owner would agree on is that it is up to us to continue to provide customers with products that solves their problems, and brings value to their lives. After all, it was Steve Jobs who said, “It isn’t the consumers’ job to know what they want.”