The most important step to starting an eCommerce website, especially if you aren’t creating original merchandise, is knowing how to brainstorm products to sell on your website. Offhand, it may sound either very easy, or extremely intimidating. Where to start? How to continue? There’s so much variety out there, how can one even begin to narrow it down?
We’ll tell you how, through a series of useful tips and tricks.
Verify Trending Products
Google Trends is an excellent FREE TOOL you can use to determine the popularity of your query based on total search volume. Here’s what we particularly love about it:
- Top cities and countries: This tool displays the countries and cities that the item(s) you search for is most popular in.
- Interest over time: You can use this to have an understanding of how popular the item you search for has been over time, going as far back as 2004. It’s interesting to see how the results look on the graph, especially for seasonal items that spike in popularity during certain months, and quickly cool down in others.
- Compare: As the name implies, you can use this to compare the popularity of different products. This would be useful to make choices between items based on their longevity.
- Interest by region: This displays a world map with a visual representation of interest based on intensity of shades of color. Very handy if you would like a general understanding in a quick glance.
- Related topics/queries: This provides an understanding of what Google users that searched for your query have additionally searched for. For example, if your query is “Matte Lipstick,” the top related topic that shows up is “Kylie Jenner,” which is understandable considering the intense popularity of her matte lipstick collection in her makeup line, which practically became synonymous with pop culture. Her lipsticks show up under the related queries, as does “Colourpop lipstick,” which quickly became popular as an affordable alternative to the matte lipsticks by Kylie.
Subscribe to Trend Publications
Here’s the thing with trend publications- while they may not be useful for finding exact products worth selling, they are excellent for gaining an understanding of the general interest of certain products/categories. They will help you get a better feel of the direction of consumer buying patterns. Reading such publications will serve as inspiration for ideas on what to sell. One recommended publication is TrendHunter, which offers trending product ideas in fashion, tech, social good, eco-friendly, luxury items, and more.
Similar to trend publications, you could also check out product review blogs and online magazines which will also serve as a rich source of information that will help spark spinoff ideas. Uncrate is a great example of such a review site, which covers numerous areas including style, body, tech, and cars.
Check out product curation blogs and marketplaces
In theory, product curation blogs and marketplaces are comparable to trend publications, as they select the best products that are available in larger marketplaces. That serves as a major time-saver, as you will not have to waste hours going through pages of junk to find quality products. These sites present you with all the needles from all the haystacks. Two recommended sites are Thieve.co, and Canopy. Thieve.co curates the best products from AliExpress, and Canopy curates the best and most durable products from Amazon. In these cases, you can take comfort in knowing that the featured items are all manually selected with love, not through AI.
Scan visual social networks
Visual social networks, such as Pinterest and Instagram come in very handy because you can get perspective on what it is that consumers find interesting, straight from the consumers themselves. Since it’s all visual, you can scan the content and gain knowledge very quickly. Take a close look at the items that make frequent appearances, and let those inspire you with your purchase decisions.
Look into consumer marketplaces
Most consumer marketplaces (sites that sell directly to the end consumer) offer lists of the top selling items on their websites. For example:
- eBay has a popular page, and a watch count page
- Amazon has a bestsellers page, and a movers and shakers page
- Etsy has a trending items page
- Aliexpress has a popular page
There are numerous other approaches that can be taken to discover trending products that could potentially sell well on your eCommerce site. These suggestions are only meant to serve as a free starting point. Regardless of the approach you decide to take, don’t rush it. Take your time and do it with care.