It’s very easy to tell if an online business owner is new to the game or experienced. How? Ask them what they feel about competition.
The new and unproven entrepreneur will be afraid of competition. They’ll have that “big idea,” but they’ll do a Google search and realize other people are already doing it. At this point, they give up, assuming there’s no way they can get into that market.
Well, they’re wrong. Competitive markets are some of the best markets to get into. Why?
A few reasons:
• The market is proven to be profitable. If it wasn’t there wouldn’t be competition.
• Competitors play off of each other. Instead of innovating, they copy whoever’s #1, leaving a massive hold in the market.
• Customers want variety. If everyone in the niche is doing the exact same thing in the exact same way, customers want to see a new business emerge.
And that’s where you come in.
But there’s a key to all of this:
Customers won’t want to help your business grow. You need to “appear” in the market offering exponentially more value than competitors and coming from a new angle.
The key to thriving in a competitive market is two-fold:
1) Start from the top.
2) Deliver value in ways your competitors aren’t.
Starting from the top is absolutely crucial. If you’re going to get into a competitive niche, you have to start off at the same spot your competitors are currently at.
For example, if you wanted to build the next Facebook, you couldn’t throw out a half-assed product that looked like it was built in 1997. No one would ever use that service, since right out the gate, Facebook is already dramatically better.
In order to compete with Facebook, you have to start out at least at the same level.
No, this doesn’t mean you need a billion active users. It means your presentation has to match Facebook.
Yes, we’re talking about your site’s design and functionality.
When a customer visits your site, they’re immediately comparing it to the top dogs in the market. So if you were building the next Facebook, as soon as customers land on your site they’re comparing it to Facebook.
And where do your customer’s eyes go first? Your site design.
Therefore, if you really wanted to compete with Facebook, the first step is to get a design that’s AT LEAST as good as Facebook’s design. That way, customers aren’t immediately turned off by visiting a lower-quality site.
And this is where you can stand out big time. Although Facebook is absolutely massive, in this situation, they would start out at a disadvantage presentation-wise. Why? Because they’ve already set the standard.
So now you can easily look at the standard and poke holes in it. What about Facebook’s design could be cleaner, more modern, more intuitive? Take extensive notes, then when designing your own website, answer all the issues Facebook has with theirs.
This is the same as design, only it’s after the customer has made it past the initial judgment stage. By starting from the top, you’ve created a website that looks better than Facebook. This is crucially important, as it’ll make sure customers click through to the next part – actually using your service.
This is where you can really innovate.
Look for every problem people have with Facebook. Look at all the problems you yourself have with Facebook. Focus on EVERYTHING – from the largest, glaring flaws to the tiniest pet peeves. This is how you will stand out, by being better than Facebook at everything.
Too often, people think they need to do one thing better than competitors to get the edge. They think if they lower their prices, they’ll be ahead in the game. Not so – the only way to get ahead of an established competitor is to do EVERYTHING better.
And not just “better,” exponentially better. When people visit your site, they have to want it immediately. There is no selling involved, they simply want it at first glance.
By using this strategy, you can get into virtually any market. As we’ve shown, even in the ULTRA competitive world of social media you can take over the top dog. No, it’s not easy. And in this case, it would likely cost a significant amount of resources.
However, it’s easy to take this concept and apply it to a niche not as competitive as social media. By doing so, you can take any niche over, regardless of the competition.
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