When it comes to being a successful online merchant, few things are as important as your product choice. After all, your products are what will get customers in the door.
They’re what will determine your inventory, warehousing and shipping costs. They’re what will impact your SEO and market efforts. They’re also what determines your pricing strategy (and potential profits). In short, products set the entire trajectory of your business from day one.
What Makes a Great Product?
The best products to sell online are ones that serve a purpose, are unique and provide value. Specifically, they:
Solve a problem — ideally one that lots of people have
What are some problems you have in everyday life? Getting out of bed quickly in the morning? Making that perfect cup of coffee? Finding your keys? Start from there and work backward. What products can help solve these problems and reduce friction for people? These are the products people want to buy.
Are drilled-down and honed-in
Selling a product that does everything for everyone might lead to some sales, but it’s not a recipe for a million-dollar business. The best products are ones that serve a very specific purpose and audience and are extremely honed in on what that audience wants, needs and feels. Niche products also lend themselves to stronger branding and marketing campaigns (see above), meaning more sales potential in the long run.
You also want your products to be unique — even if it’s just in a very small and incremental way. Maybe you offer a different color or pattern than your competitors, or maybe there’s an entirely different feature or component. Whatever it is, it needs to differentiate you from other products that are currently on the market.
Lend themselves to great branding
It’s important to remember that your products won’t exist in a vacuum. They’ll be associated with your name, your logo, your branding and your overall marketing efforts.
That’s why it’s best to choose products with lots of potential in these areas — ones that call to mind images, videos and social content that can be shared, retweeted or even go viral.
Profitable products are ones that people feel strongly about. Whether that strong feeling is love or hate doesn’t really matter, as long as it gets people curious, talking and buying your products.
Ideally, you want to have a love for the products you sell — at least in that you use them, understand the need for them and feel strongly about their value. This will allow you to put your full self behind their marketing and sales.
Finding the Best Products to Sell Online
So you know what makes a good product, but where do you actually find them? Obviously, you can look to current trends. What’s hot with today’s influencers?
What are some of the higher-selling products on Amazon, Etsy, Ebay and even Facebook? Try to drill down into categories you’re actually interested in, and see what’s trending there. Is there anything you could leverage and put your own spin on? If you end up choosing to sell digital downloads, find a web host like MadBeeTech Web Hosting that specializes in setting up websites specifically designed to sell downloadable files.
You can also identify potential niche segments and start there. What specific industries are lacking great or cutting-edge products? What sectors are online merchants forgetting about or ignoring? These could offer some very lucrative potential audiences if you can tune into the right product.
Looking into the past is another solid method for finding a great product. Are there any nostalgic buys that could be re-spun and given new life in today’s market? Maybe there’s a product you miss or have fond memories of that could be re-imagined with today’s technology or tools?
Finally, use SEO tools to your advantage. If you have an inkling about what to sell (or even just a potential industry to sell in), then go to Google’s Keyword Planner and start doing some research. And speaking of SEO, make sure to find a good SEO provider such as seo.madbeetech.com to get your website ranking for Google searches related to the items you sell.
Once you find out what users are searching for in your niche, you can hone in on what’s popular, where there’s a void and where you might have a market opportunity to launch a new product.
Research Criteria: Finding New Products To Sell Online
These are the things you can keep in mind as you scan through products and ideas to immediately shortlist or reject a product idea. But what about the advanced stuff that sets us off to a great start? Pay close attention, as these are the things that we need to actively research:
The “Weirdness Test“. Look for an obscure product, not easily purchased at a brick and mortar store. Usually, the obscure products that have demand are the best. Popular products tend to have high competition and it’s much harder to break into the market. Also look out for products not dominated by an existing or leading brand, and avoid legal issues and trademarked or patented products.
Consistent and sufficient demand. At business.gov they poiont out that the best way to verify demand is to find monthly sales estimates for similar products that are already selling on Amazon. As a rule of thumb, it’s best to see at least 2000 sales per month amongst the top 10 sellers of a given product idea. You can check out our free Jungle Scout sales estimator to get you started.
High profit margin per unit. We need to know that we can make money from this product. We need to take a look at the price (remembering we want to hit at least $20), but also ensure that the cost to purchase the product, alongside the Amazon FBA, shipping and other fees leaves us with a good amount of profit per unit.
Limited competition. Is it easy to enter the market as a new seller? Do the top competitor listings have less than <100 reviews? Can you find any pain-points with existing competitor products, that you could improve or fix with your private label version to enter the market with a clear benefit? The Secret Sauce. Essentially, you are looking to focus on profitability, with opportunities that have demand but not too much competition. From here you are finding ways to add value, add quality or differentiate from similar products already on the market.