Niche Meaning — It’s Not What You Think

I’m going to say something kind of controversial with regard to your niche meaning, and you may or may not agree. It’s something I get pretty worked up about because it kills me when I see people passing over a great niche because they can’t find the best keywords.

Keywords are not the main factor you should use to find your niche.

There, I said it.

Now, let me clarify.  If you’re an affiliate marketer and you’re trying to sell a specific product, then a good keyword search tool is essential and your keywords are the heart of your niche. But if you’re a solo entrepreneur building your business online, then you know it’s not about selling a product. It’s all about selling yourself.

So doesn’t it stand to reason that finding your niche should start with you?

Let’s start with a simple niche definition. A niche combines two elements — your WHO and your WHAT.  Who are you targeting and what solution are you providing for your target market.

If you are a health coach, for instance, your target market might be new moms and your solution might be helping them lose their baby weight through a diet and exercise plan that reflects their needs as a new mom.

My approach to finding your niche starts with YOU – your passions, interests, skills and expertise. Then, you find the best target market that can benefit from what you have to offer. It should be a target market that you are passionate about helping, one that has a burning desire for what you have to offer and has the income to pay for your products/services.

There are other considerations for your niche meaning, and whether or not you have a good niche. Things like the size of the niche, the competition, and the accessibility. That last one is really important — you want to ensure you can access your niche through clearly defined communication channels. In other words, you have to know where they hang out online (and offline).

Keyword research is going to help you assess your niche — specifically the competition and potential traffic. And having a great keyword search tool is going to make your life a lot easier (here is the keyword search tool that I absolutely love).

But there are lots of ways to drive traffic beyond SEO. Especially if you  understand the needs of your target market and how to reach your target market.

When you have that, you can create a strategic and targeted niche marketing strategy and build your list fast!

Did you found this helpful? If you did, please help me spread the word by clicking the Facebook and/or Twitter links above. Thank you!  And thank you for your valuable comments – you are appreciated!

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Eric Walker

Hi Cindy,

I agree and disagree…

First, I agree because you’re right, it does start with You. And I know and agree with what you said here:

“…your passions, interests, skills and expertise. Then, you find the best target market that can benefit from what you have to offer. It should be a target market that you are passionate about helping, one that has a burning desire for what you have to offer and has the income to pay for your products/services.”

People miss this very important aspect. Or others don’t follow it all the way down to the degree that it converts to success.

As people go through with that process, it’s my opinion that no actual keyword research is required. But I do think that the person drilling down their niche should be able to accurately predict with their audience will type into Google. Don’t you think?

Then I think the mission is two-fold:

1. Connect with the desired audience by hanging out where they hang out. Know them on a personal basis through networking.
2. Create content that they will want to consume.

At this point, I think a thorough SEO/PPC (search engine optimization) plan is needed.

Here’s why–

To do proper keyword research will truly benefit in many ways. In particular, it will allow a marketer to rank for their keywords at the search engines organically. This is a smart long term strategy. Secondly, by understanding which keywords are money keywords and then creating a PPC campaign, the marketer is getting a wonderful education/experience in creating a marketing funnel. This is very important. No funnel = limited ability to earn $

Thanks Cindy. I love your site and will be back often.

Eric Walker



Absolutely Eric. You raise some great points. I love how you describe at what point in the process the keyword research comes into play. And you’re absolutely right — we want to create a smart marketing pipeline to attract targeted traffic. Namely, we want to attract our target market. And understanding what our target market is searching for online (e.g. what keywords they’re using) is an important part of generating that traffic. In fact, I’m sure you noticed that this blog post incorporates some of my keywords:)

The reason for my post is to really drive home the point that for a solo entrepreneur, finding your niche shouldn’t be based on keywords. And to make a case for not abandoning a niche because you can’t find the ideal keywords.

Many thanks for your contributions and warm wishes!


Eric Walker

Hi Cindy,

My absolute pleasure. I like this blog a lot. I think I’ll come around often ;-)
Your main point of not “leading off” with keyword research when researching a niche is well-taken and spot on. Also, unless a person is well-versed in all the ins-and-outs of keyword research, it can be a bit misleading upon first glance.



Pam McKeen

Hi Cindy,
I agree with you. A lot of beginners start out with the keyword research and get stuck right off the bat. If you concentrate, as you say ,on the who and the what first.Then move to finding keywords that are applicable to your niche.Keeping in mind, that it’s more important to provide value and content that serves your audience.Then, as you learn and grow, the ability to apply valuable keywords will follow.
I love your blog and look forward to learning more.



Many thanks Pam. I appreciate your kind words and your valuable insights.
warm wishes,


Jj Mike

I thought that keywords/categories are niches? Am I right?



As you know, keywords are just words that people type in to find information on a particular subject.

We do keyword research to accomplish a number of things.

1) Evaluate our niche – we want to make sure that there is a sufficient number of people looking for information about our solution, and that it is not overly competitive.

2) Understand our target market – when we do keyword research, we’re tapping into the hearts and minds of our target market so we can understand what kinds of things they are looking for relative to our niche. We need to have this understanding so we can communicate with our target market in a way that is meaningful for them.

3) Be found via the search engines – When we use good and relevant keywords in our content, titles, urls, tags, etc… this makes it possible for the search engine spiders to find our content, which in turn, makes it possible for our target market to find us.

I hope that helps!


online marriage counseling

Just landed here from a google search, and i must say you hit the nail head on.


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