How to Define Your Online Business's Target Market

How to Define Your Online Business's Target Market

One of the most crucial components to a successful online business and marketing strategy is having a clearly defined target market at its very core. But with the seemingly unlimited options when it comes to online businesses, you might ask yourself why pick an ecommerce niche and target market when you can just target everyone? What could possibly go wrong?

Since you may be wondering this in your search for a viable online business, targeting everyone just isn’t practicable. Remember, even big players like Amazon started as a niche-oriented online business that sold only books. An online business with the idea of “targeting a wide range of people” could be unfavorable because it means the marketing strategy does not have a clearly defined aim. If you decide to go and target everyone, then you might as well target no one.

It’s best to think of a marketing message as a dart and you are aiming at the bulls-eye. It would be easier to focus your energy and attention on hitting one mark at a time, than simultaneously hitting two separate bull’s-eyes with one dart in each hand.

If you want to acquire an online business that is worth your while, the business should have a clearly defined target market profile of the kind of individuals who will be most receptive to purchasing its products. In this article, we’ll talk about how to flesh out your ideal target market to maximize an online business’s marketing efforts:

Identify the Problems your Products Solve

Take note that you aren’t just selling products and services. An online business should be positioned to solve your potential customer's problems and fulfilling their needs and desires. Knowing your customers' problem or pain point will help you solve their problems more effectively, bringing you closer to knowing how to convince them to buy your product.

An effective way of selling is not to focus on the product itself, but to emphasize the results of satisfying your customers’ needs and desires. If you own an online business selling outdoor equipment, don’t just sell your customers a thermal jacket, sell adventure and excitement!

Ask yourself:

  • What problems do my products solve?

  • What desires and needs do my products fulfill?

Know your Target Customer

Now that you have figured out the problems that your products are designed to solve, we can begin to create a profile of the people who are most likely to buy them.

To do this, you must ask yourself some specific questions about your targets. Important characteristics include:

  • Age group

  • Location

  • Hobbies and interests

  • Income level

  • Life stage

  • Purchasing power

  • Purchasing frequency

Evaluate your Findings

An online business needs to be profitable. Just because you have identified the benefits of its products and the target market for a store, does not necessarily mean that you should jump in immediately. You must first evaluate your findings because the market you are eyeing may or may not be worth serving.

You must ask yourself:

  • Are there enough people for this target market?

  • Is my target audience easily and readily accessible?

  • Can my target market afford these products?

  • Are there a lot of competitors in this line of ecommerce business?

The kind of information that you require may already be readily available online. Try to do some online searches on your target market, read blogs, and check out some analysis and stats on the kind of market you are targeting. If you can find survey results, even better. If you can’t, you can begin a survey of your own and ask for customer feedback.

Back to You

Ecommerce business owners and those who wish to join the world of ecommerce through the purchase of an established online business need a defined target market to have a more efficient marketing strategy.

These 3 key steps in defining your ideal target will not only help you get a clearer picture of your customers, but will help you deliver a more successful marketing message. Both of which will save you time and allow for a better return of investment.


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