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How do I test a market niche?

A good web master tests all angles first with the minimum of effort.

Before investing days, weeks, months and years of my life into building a handful of authority sites, I want the market to prove itself worthy first.

And I want to see this proof without prior headache or risk.

There is only ONE WAY to accomplish this:
Autoblogging

If autoblogging brings cash, it means the niche is promising and warrants more effort.

Let me make this really clear: nothing gives better insights into a market than autoblogging.

By autoblogging

•    You’ll develop a refined taste of the organic search competition

•    you are going to see all the key phrases people are really using, instead of the heavily fragmented picture Google‘s keyword tools delivers

•    you can compare your competitor’s conversion ratios

If autoblogging fails in the first place, the niche is saturated and chances are that anything short of a miracle would likely fail as well. You’ll end up fighting over crumbs.

Consider that autoblogging is a convenient tool for you, whether you like to be a autoblogger or not does not matter here. It is not a moral issue, neither is it a legal one.

It’s purely a technical requirement for sustainable market domination.

Cool thing: on a sideline it provides cash for really refined campaigns later on.

It also provides volume to be used to fuel these campaigns.

Here is how I do it:
First I always have a group of nice sounding domains (20-30) for testing multiple niches: short, non-descriptive, “cute” names – yahoo, twitter, flickr – does that ring a bell?

Such domains guarantee good click through rates in the search results.

To give you an example: if you searched for eyeglasses, which site would you rather click: eyeglasses.toenailfungus.com or eyeglasses.voodr.com?

These domains are registered under various registrars with privacy protection.

I log into my Mothership account. I go to the WP Installer and paste in this list of domains.

I run through and put sub-domains in front of them which are specific to the respective niches.

As in:
toefungus.domain.com
nailcare.domain1.com
nail-fungus.domain2.com
toe-nail-fungus.domain3.com
And so on

Each line will receive an installation of wordpress.

As I’ve used these domains before, Mothership already knows where each of them is hosted, so I don’t need to set up the servers directly. Installer does all the heavy lifting for me. It ads and configures each of the sub-domains in cPanel, installs WP and picks a different theme for each installation.

Minutes later all my new blogs are ready for content.

Now I swipe a list of several thousand keywords from Google keyword tool and store them in my keyword bank as an initial deposit.

I then spin out some nice long tail phrases using the keyword bank’s built-in databases.

The next click takes me to the content generator. Here I schedule a couple of hundred posts per site to be published over several months – slowly and cultivated as the spiders like it.

For even better ranking I will inter link a few using Link Transmitter to help with indexing.

Now I look for a couple of affiliate programs. I prefer specialty shops focused on the respective niche. They obviously provide better results than a superstore would because of

A. fewer affiliate restrictions and

B. because here I can learn more about the selected market.

Now I redirect the traffic from each of my new sites evenly to these affiliate shops.

A couple of weeks later I will check redirection stats to see how many visitors landed on each of these destinations and how many sales I achieved there.

Now I can figure out who is converting the best.

It takes a few months to finally establish:

A. Does perform well enough to warrant the next phase by either conversion or traffic?

B. Did it cover my costs well enough to be run for some more time? (Remember: a well maintained site performs the better the longer it runs…)

C. Did it flop and needs to be cut off?

With a little routine this whole set up will not take more than 30 minutes of my time. Easy money.

And this process I will of course use for multiple niches at any given time.

Truth be told: not all that shines is gold. Most hopefuls will not even pass this first inspection.

It is of course only for the winners to enjoy the privilege of my long-term commitment to this very niche.

To any naysayers: please be my guest to offer a better solution in the comments section below.

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