Knowing Your Niche and Doing It Well
What is your niche as a sign shop owner? How do you know what it is? Where can you go to find what it is if you’re interested in many areas of the sign business? Is a niche even easy to find as a business owner?
Let’s talk about niches and how you can find yours to start maximizing on your shop’s existing strengths.
What Is a Niche?
By definition, a niche is what your sign shop does well. It’s an area of the market that you know well and are happy to serve.
Most sign and print shops do everything. They do some printing, some fabrication, and some installing. In many cases, that is perfectly fine. It works for most shops. You want to be the one-stop shop for all your customers’ needs.
However, we’re discussing niches, including why you would want to get into a niche and how you can go about it. So, let’s learn more about that.
Why Is It Good to Find a Niche?
Why would businesses want to focus on one aspect of their craft and do it really well instead of being everything to everyone?
The truth is that many shops do things well, and they ultimately progress to do them even better. They may grow so large that they need to start with a new print shop software to keep everything organized. This is how business operations grow, and there’s nothing inherently wrong with it.
But consider the marketing side of things. If you are a sign shop that does everything, how do you advertise yourself? Think of your digital marketing on Google and other platforms. If you’re getting into paid media marketing, you have to create many ad types to target all the markets to which your business caters.
You may even run into problems with this because, while you rank for Google keywords such as “vehicle wraps” and “screen printing,” maybe you don’t show up for “sign fabrication.” You might work in sign fabrication, but it’s simply a lot more work to do to market yourself for all these terms.
The reverse is that, if you are a niche shop, you make one type of ad or focus on one set of SEO keywords and target your entire market at one time. You can double down on your niche marketing efforts by focusing on just your sector’s keywords, focusing your time on getting your name out there for just that one market area.
How Do You Find Your Niche?
How do you go about identifying your niche? It should be what your shop does best, and something with which you are comfortable.
Even if your shop currently does it all, you should still know which part of your business is the “easiest” to crank out. For instance, maybe you do channel letters exceptionally well. You might have all the machinery to do it, and perhaps as time goes by, you invest in better machinery to create the letters more efficiently.
If you become known for doing this one thing well and always getting it done in a timely manner, you will start to build a customer base on that basis. Your marketing will become more focused and easier to handle.
Be warned, however: the hardest part of being a niche shop is turning away customers who want you to do something outside your niche. You may be able to do what they ask, but if you’re a niche shop, your focus is on your niche, no exceptions.
Aside from the idealistic part of it, know also that deviating from your established mode of working could create cracks in your process. If you don’t normally do this type of job but agree to it one time, you may run into a problem that makes for a dissatisfying customer experience.
Even if you don’t want to become a niche shop, it’s still worth finding what you do well and improving on that. You will become known as the go-to sign shop for this or that service or product, even if you do other things. It could make all the difference for your business.
But there are plenty of advantages to becoming a niche sign and print store, from marketing to efficiency. It’s definitely something to consider!