What Groupon did for local businesses and Woot did for overstocked merchandise, a thousand other possible websites can do for other industries. The concept of offering daily deals has ballooned so greatly that some people fear it’s saturated the market, that there’s little money left available to similar entrepreneurs. With so many possible focuses, though, that won’t happen for a long time. The key, people discovered early on, to a successful daily deals website was to find a unique niche—a specific product for a specific market. Simply trying to steal customers from the big names will almost certainly lead to failure. But finding your own specialty, your métier, can tap into a user base that no one has yet to find.
Everyone travels, everyone eats, and everyone enjoys entertainment. Groupon found its focus by targeting the everyman: a daily deals website that supplied everything everyone wanted. If you’re going to eat out, their marketing implied, you might as well try something new, and you might as well try it for 50-65% off. Few people can resist that, but those offers that appeal to everyone are actually quite limiting.
Finding products and deals that the majority of people want is constrained to a few industries. A niche, however, can draw in customers with products and services they need—not just want. Catering your daily deals website to moms, to caterers, to struggling artists might severely limit your customer base, but it creates the potential for a more committed clientele. Woot shoppers are fickle: they’ll only buy a discounted TV if they happen to have the extra money on hand. Targeting a specific group with specific needs, though, will greatly increase the chances of a sale. A niche won’t appeal to everyone, but if its sales ratio is significantly higher, it can balance out the infrequent purchases of the everyman.