Last month, I decided that I wanted to upgrade my coffee maker. I asked my team for some recommendations and they gave me so many ideas – an AeroPress? An espresso machine? A Moka? I got super overwhelmed because there are a lot of coffee devices out there.
And so I did whatever one does, and I went to Google. But when I was looking for information on Google, I wasn’t just looking for “world’s best cup of coffee” – I’m not Buddy The Elf.
Every website and coffee blog that I visited had really detailed info on types of coffee makers, different brands, the pros and cons of each, etc. And the reason I was able to get the information I was looking for from these sites is because they had niched down.
These blogs and websites were made for coffee aficionados – people who really care about their coffee quality and are willing to spend more on their coffee. So by being super, super specific, they’re targeting those high end buyers.
So what does my coffee maker search experience have to do with your business SEO? Well, if you’re wondering whether or not you need to niche down in the ways that those coffee blogs did, or maybe you’re scared that choosing a niche will limit your potential audience or client pool, I’m here to tell you that doubling down on a niche can help you get found more easily and more quickly in search results.
what the heck does “niching down” even mean?
When we talk about niching down your business, we’re talking about choosing a specialization. Essentially, focusing on a specific area of expertise.
So maybe you know something better than anybody else, or you want to sell a particular thing to your ideal client. That can be your niche.
Choose your specialty
The biggest concern that people seem to have when it comes to niching down is, “But if I niche down, aren’t I just decreasing the pool of potential candidates to work with me?”
And yeah, that’s one way that you can think of it – but can you imagine a gynecologist saying, “I don’t really want to niche down to just women – I think I want to treat everyone. I’ll totally get a bunch of male clients.”
This would be crazy! Instead, they became a specialist in one particular area.
4 ways to specialize your business to get clients more easily
So how can you choose a niche for your business that will help you get found?
Sometimes when people consider niching down and they feel a little bit nervous about it, it’s because they don’t want to pigeonhole themselves into doing only one thing or having only one type of client forever.
I struggled with this as a web designer when I started working with a lot of interior designers. I loved working with interior designers, but I thought, “what if I still want to work with therapists, coaches, or people in other industries and the only people who are coming to me are the interior designers?”
The good thing was that those clients knew I had experience working with interior designers, so they were constantly sending me word of mouth referrals to their friends and colleagues. And then as I put more of those interior design examples into my portfolio, the more of them found me. So it didn’t feel like I was limiting my pool of candidates, it felt like I was deepening my pool of candidates.
Now, this didn’t mean that I couldn’t work with therapists or coaches, it just meant that I would need to create some additional resources for those particular audiences.
My piece of advice: don’t get stuck in the, “I can only do one thing forever” frame of mind.
Niche down to boost your SEO
When you choose an expertise, it doesn’t have to be the main focus of everything you do, forever and ever.
Maybe you decide to dedicate a section of your website to your area of expertise. In my case, I could have a blog post on how to create a great website for interior designers that links to those portfolio pieces, and another blog post that’s all about how to do web design for therapists – and have more resources just for that audience.
By intentionally selecting the industries that I loved working with as a web designer, I was more likely to get more of those ideal clients finding me through both word of mouth and search.
Niche down by your audience
Choosing specific industries often feels like the easiest way to niche down. But maybe you don’t want to niche by industry – maybe you have a specific type of person or a condition that they have, that you want to help them with.
I have a client who works with moms with ADHD who specifically wants to help them organize their homes and make sure that their kids are getting the support they need while also taking care of themselves. She chose this niche of helping a specific target audience without needing to choose an industry.
How your approach can help you niche down and boost your SEO
Another option is to niche down by the way you want to support people and the training that you have.
I have a client who’s a personal trainer, but she doesn’t focus on weight loss. Instead, she takes a body-neutral stance to it. She helps her clients get stronger and healthier without necessarily using the scale as the way to evaluate their success.
What will your client’s outcome be?
You can also specialize based on the outcome that your client’s gonna get from working with you.
Maybe they’ll have a really organized Notion workspace after working with you, or they’ll have a client onboarding process that works really well for them.
Niche down by your geography
If you don’t want to niche down to a specific industry or audience you can specialize by marketing your services in a specific geography.
If you’re an accountant living in Seattle, you could choose to just work with small businesses in Washington State. Your clients will trust you a little bit more because you’re a specialist who knows the rules about how to submit taxes to the state of Washington and maybe even the specific county that you’re in.
Finding your product market fit for SEO
The cool thing about niching down your business in these ways is that it really sets you apart from other people who may have similar training than you or a similar background to you.
I actually made a list of the 24 coaches I’ve worked with in the past two years. For each of these coaches I was able to identify what they help people with and what the outcome is that they help people get. This way, I would be able to refer each of these coaches to different people based on their needs.
There was no “one coach to end all coaches.” Instead, it’s about making sure that you have what’s called a good product market fit.
It’s about making sure that people who have a specific need can find you at a specific moment and you can answer the need that they have.
What’s nice about niching down is that even though there may be fewer potential clients when you show up in those search results, the results are going to be less competitive, because fewer people are talking about what you do. And when people find you, they’re going to be like, “Yes! This person gets me – this is exactly what I need.”
So I want to give you permission to specialize your business in some way. Whether that’s the industry or audience that you serve, the software that you use, the outcomes that you give people, or the location where you’re helping people, find some way you can specialize so you can help your ideal clients to find you more easily and make them feel like you’re what they need right now.