Build A Niche Store Part 2 – Niche Brainstorming And Domain Name

Build A Niche StoreIn part 2 of the Build A Niche Store series we’re going to look at brainstorming a profitable affiliate niche on eBay using my favorite free keyword tool and the eBay search function. We will also be looking at what you want to get in a domain name. This post won’t be much about BANS itself, only about the foundation of your store.

It may come as a shock to you, but I don’t do very involved keyword research. If I were to create a monster site, that might be a different matter, but at the level of what I’m trying to do, extensive keyword research is a waste of time. To locate a niche as I did for the store I will be building in these tutorials, I just think of a product people need and head over to the Keyword Discovery free keyword tool to see what comes up. I like this one because it is a lot like the old Overture keyword suggestion tool. I really hated to see that one go.

Normally what tells me if something is a good niche is that the root keyword has more than 25,000 searches per month. What I mean by root keyword is something like watches, air purifiers, shoes, etc. Obviously you will probably building a more specific store with more targeted words, but you want to have the overall category be one that is fairly active and popular.

I’m building a site about air purifiers so I put in the word air purifier at Keyword Discovery and get all sorts of results. This is a great niche because the main keyword generates more than 37,000 searches per month and there are all sorts of more specific keywords under the main word. And these are great words too because they include a manufacturer or a specific brand that the manufacturer makes. When you get keywords such as this, where people are being very specific, they are doing involved research or are ready to buy. Consequently I will be building many pages that feature these specific names of air purifiers. EcoQuest, Oreck, Sharper Image, Honeywell and others are all brands I will be putting up individual pages for.

I then go over to eBay and use their advanced search feature to scope out my keyword and see what kind of auction activity is going on. I won’t go deep into how I use the advanced search feature because I’ve already written an extensive tutorial on it here. By using advanced search and the keyword air purifier, I found that at the writing of this post, there are 147 items (mostly air purifiers) in the Heating, Cooling and Air category on eBay that have at least 2 bids with more than half a page of auction items priced at more than $100 and 20 items that have 10 or more bids. This looks like a very active niche and one that I want to take advantage of.

Next we’re on to choosing a domain name. I like to use my specific keyword in a domain name because I think it’s descriptive to your niche for the people you are trying to reach and I tend to think it does give you some advantage in the search engines. Now, there are a lot of very successful sites that don’t have a keyword in their domain name such as Facebook, Digg, StumbleUpon, YouTube, etc., but we aren’t even close to competing in that realm. Remember, you are building a niche store that will probably never get more than 2,000 visitors a day if you are very lucky and more like 500 or so per day is good, so we don’t want to go cutesy on the domain name. You want niche recognition, not cute. I also always get a domain without dashes and always, always, always get a .com name. You can read more about what to look for in a domain name here.

I use Godaddy.com to look up my domain names just because I like their suggestions if your domain name is already taken. Now, I would never host a BANS site with Godaddy because there have been way too many problems reported in the BANS forums with them. I use 1and1.com for hosting and I purchase my domains through them as well because it’s a simple process where you buy your domain and set up a directory within your control panel and you’re good to go.

These are the basics of setting up the foundation of your store. Next on the tutorial agenda will be installing and tweaking your store and uploading a logo.

You can get a copy of Build A Niche Store here if you are interested.


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15 Responses to “Build A Niche Store Part 2 – Niche Brainstorming And Domain Name”

  1. […] the basics of what Build A Niche Store can and cannot do. Part 2 of the BANS tutorial will cover how to brainstorm a profitable niche using a couple of tools I like and deciding on and getting a domain […]

  2. How do you feel about buying existing, active domains for a BANS store? Either ones with related keywords to your topic and/or ones with age and PageRank.

  3. Great series, I’m looking forward to reading them all. I haven’t had a lot of luck with BANS, maybe I’ll pick up some tips as I watch how you build your store and I’ll give it another shot.

  4. What about bigger priced items like travel trailers or a type of car that seems to sell well on ebay. Would it make more sense to use a higher priced item even if you don’t sell as many?

  5. Terri,

    Even though cars are and other transportation type products are very high priced, they have a flat $50 cost to the seller, so an affiliate wouldn’t make as much as you would think they should.

    Popular tems that are priced around $500 to $1,000 seem to pay the best for an affiliate. See my advanced search tutorial mantioned above for more info.

  6. You may also want to try domainsbot.com to search for domain names. Their system has helped me on many occassions.

  7. Great post. As I read the Keyword Discovery page, they report searches over the last 12 months, not searches per month. The Total column has a question mark, and if you click on it is says it is searches per year, not per month. So I think “air purifier” nets 37,000 searches per year, not per month.

  8. Reality TV,

    I don’t think that is correct because I know of several keywords I used to keep track of in overture that are very close to what keyword discovery is telling me.

    I believe it is giving monthly search results.

  9. Regarding the domain name, do you like to explicitly add “auctions” into your names (e.g. dohickeyauctions.com)? Does that add any lift in terms of traffic or conversion rates or authority because visitors have more clarity on what they are going to the site for?

  10. Good point Alan, I did read that on your advance search tutorial and found some very interesting items to use. The list is endless with ebay.

  11. This is a really good series. I’m starting to be convinced to try it out myself.

  12. Bob,

    Yes, I do like to add “auctions” to my domain names for a BANS store. I think people love to bid at auctions and there’s always the hope for the shopper that they can get a really great deal.

    I think when people see the word auctions in their search results, they are very likely to visit that domain.

  13. Hey Alan what are your thoughts about building on subdomains, i was thinking about building a kind of department store with all kinds of different products and try to fish out the golden nuggets.

    But if i had to buy 50/100 domains for that well you understand that could be very costly so i was thing about using subdomains.

  14. Kool tutorial. I learnt about BANS a couple of days ago. Trying to learn more about it before I start one. Thanx a lot for the valuable info.

  15. Hi Alan,

    “Build A Niche Store Part 2″

    Question: My root keyword is 25k in Keyword Discovery. So what should I look for in a “specific” keyword? Also, the numbers in the free keyword tools vary so much. Not sure which to use. It’s confusing.


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