The adage “consistency leads to success” holds true especially for your Print on Demand business.
Most of the time, entrepreneurs easily focus on trendy and popular niches to capitalize on. However, they can be very dependent on the existing demand that comes and goes through time.
If you want to have a successful merch business, finding an evergreen niche is the key to having a consistent income stream.
What Is a Niche?
If you’re new to the print on demand business or even to ecommerce itself, one of the basic things that you need to establish in your business first is finding your niche.
A niche is a specialized market that targets a specific demographic/group of people. Niching down is the process of narrowing down a market to cater to the needs of a more specific group of people.
When you establish your own niche, your products will specifically address the needs and concerns of your chosen group of people.
For instance, a “Fitness” niche is a general niche that addresses people who have lifestyles that range from going to the gym, running, and swimming, to doing sports and eating healthy.
A niche can also be more specific.
You can target weight loss products for instance.
This means that all your products and marketing efforts will aim to solve the problems and address the interests of people who want to lose weight.
Finding the right niche can be a challenging process. It takes a lot of time and decision-making.
It’s important to know at this point that there is a hard and fast rule in choosing a niche.
However, different choices may mean significant implications both in the short and long run.
What is an Evergreen Niche?
Niches in your merch business can be anything.
It can be something that came into being a few months ago, or it can be something that has existed for a very long period of time.
An evergreen niche is a niche that stays continually relevant and retains its freshness over time.
It continues to provide functionality and interest that is not limited to a particular circumstance, trend, or time constraint.
Speaking about having short and long-term goals, it can be quite predictable at this point that having evergreen niches can be more applicable for you if you want to have goals that benefit your business in the long run.
Trendy Niches Vs. Evergreen Niches
So what’s the big deal about choosing between a popular niche and an evergreen niche?
The mistake that new sellers make when they start a print on demand business is that they easily jump unto what’s popular at that specific point in time without thinking about long-term goals.
Experienced sellers try to stay ahead of trends to think about the sustainability of their businesses.
It can be very tempting to invest in a trendy niche. It can be a meme or a famous celebrity life event.
A trendy niche can be very profitable when it is at its peak. For instance, a good example is a reference from popular culture.
There can be a lot of avenues for profit when something goes viral in mainstream media.
The problem with trendy niches is that they can die down through time.
For instance, as a starter in the industry, you decide to hop into the trend and make it your business niche.
Without having due diligence, you invest in advertising, marketing, and product design to launch your brand with these products.
You gain a huge profit at the start of your business.
However, as time goes by, a new trend begins again.
Your brand seems to become less relevant over time.
Your target audience’s interests are no longer sustained.
Thus, your business starts to dive down as the interest subsides and you will have to think of a new niche to stay ahead of the game.
Following trends can sometimes be tiresome.
They can be great for short-term profits but not for long-term business success.
The Importance of an Evergreen Niche
In today’s gospel truth, here’s what you have to know: An evergreen niche is always important. It never goes out of style for your target market.
In other words, people always need the products you are selling no matter how long you stay in the business.
When you choose an evergreen niche, your profit is constant throughout the year.
Moreover, you do not need to be too aggressive in marketing your products since there is already an existing demand.
Needless to say, hopping into an evergreen niche is like having a security blanket, they become a much safer investment than trendy niches.
How to Find Evergreen Niches
Just like any kind of product research, you will have to diligently find an evergreen niche that will bring constant revenue to your business but at the same time not too saturated.
Here are some ways on how you can find your own Evergreen niche:
1. Focus on Your Hobbies and Interests
Your own interest is always a good starting point whenever you want to start a business.
When your POD business is in line with your personal lifestyle, you can save yourself from a huge amount of time doing research.
Moreover, you will be spending the rest of your business lifetime doing something that you actually love and understand.
This doesn’t mean that you won’t need to do product research anymore.
What this implies is that if your niche already interests you, you will be able to sustain your own interest in your business overtime, which is a very important yet often overlooked factor.
You can also contribute to your business’ success through your own experiences and knowledge about your own niche.
2. Identify the Feasibility of your Niche
The next thing to do is to test your niche.
Here is when you need to start your market research.
The first thing to do is to identify the size of your market.
You need to find a good size of market that will cater to the products that you sell.
One way to do this is to search for statistics of people who are interested in your niche.
You can try to look into any these reliable statistics sites:
- Google Public Data.
- Business Insights
You can also utilize Google tools to find out the number of people that search for terms online.
By looking into Google Trends, you can see the search volume of people that are interested in your niche.
Moreover, you will also see the level of interest that people give to this niche over time.
If you notice that the trend is fairly consistent over time, that’s a good indication that your niche is evergreen.
If your niche only appeals during a breakout, that may mean that the niche can only be sustainable for a short amount of time.
Other tools such as Ahrefs, KWFinder, and SEMrush will also show you the specific volume of searches that your niche generates.
3. Understand your Audience
Once you ensure that your niche can sustain the interest of the market over time, the next step is to know your audience better.
There are many ways to understand who your customer is.
There are many sources of data that will give you an idea of the nature and interests of your customers.
Information such as their age, interests, place of origin, gender, and lifestyle activities will be important in understanding your target audience.
These factors will greatly influence your decision in choosing your evergreen niche.
For instance, if your niche targets two different age groups, you can run a test advertisement on Facebook to identify which audience performs better on that specific niche.
Facebook audience insights will help you identify which works better for your business.
You can test it by location, age, gender, and interests.
4. Find Nuances in your Niche
Evergreen niches may be sustained over time but they have nuances that arise from time to time.
For instance, due to the pandemic, more and more people are investing in home workout tools.
Even if the fitness niche still holds relevant until this time, nuances arise that you should be aware of.
One way to search for nuances is to look into groups and communities online.
Social media is one of the best ways to stay up to date with your niche.
Facebook groups, as well as Quora and Reddit forums, will have numerous conversations about your chosen niche.
For instance, you will find many Facebook groups about fitness.
It will be a great idea to join in this group yourself and participate in their conversations.
For example, you can ask people a question specifically related to what they are currently using for their fitness home workouts.
This can give you an idea of how much your niche has or hasn’t changed over time.
5. Narrow Down your Niche
Some evergreen niches may have constant demand but may be too saturated because of how broad it is.
The more broad it is, the more competition you will have.
When you’re still starting out, aim to be a big fish in the pond rather than a small fish competing with giants.
One way to do this is to focus on a sub-niche with great demand.
You can do this by focusing on a certain gender or age group.
For example, you can focus on women’s home workout merch.
We’ve talked about the difference between a general and a specific niche earlier.
The advantage of having a sub niche is that you will get better search visibility.
This means that when people search your niche with relevant keywords, they are already interested in your niche and will more readily buy your product.
As a result, you will have more loyal audiences as compared to having a general niche.
Needless to say, there is also less competition, and therefore, more opportunity to earn more.
When there’s less competition, your products will also be less price sensitive.
6. Do Your Own Product research
After you have identified the evergreen niche that you want, you want to find which products will generate the best sales.
You will need to find products that are in demand in the market.
When doing product research, you can simply look at Amazon’s BSR or Best Sellers Rank.
The lower the rank, the higher the sales.
Look into products that have the most number of sales.
You can also do so by simply sorting out your product search results from most to least amount of sales.
If you’re still starting out on your business, less can be more.
You can start with a few products to launch that will catch your audience’s attention. By starting small, you can identify many issues easily on that specific product.
For example, if you sell women’s fitness shirt merch, you will easily identify possible problems that may arise on that specific product.
It can be the design, fabric, the fit, or the niche itself.
When you start small, you learn slowly with fewer risks.
In the long run, if you want to be more adventurous, you can provide something new to these products that will address your audience’s problems.
For example, you can offer pregnancy home workout merch that people are looking for in forum sites but are not yet too apparent in the market.
Let’s Wrap it Up
When Choosing an Evergreen niche, it’s important to bear in mind that your focus is to sustain the revenue of your business over time.
You don’t want to be a one-time seller that will soon become irrelevant to the market.
In the merch industry, things can change really fast.
When you easily hop on trends in the business, without due diligence, it may be a short-term reward rather than a long-term investment and an avenue for growth.
Investing time, effort, and research on Evergreen niches will bear consistent results.
As the business proverb says “Consistency yields success. Greatness will come.”