This hustle deals with your mind (yep, another one), and how you should correctly approach opportunities in this day and age. So put on your thinking cap, because I’m going to try to convince you to stop thinking the way you normally do.
Most of us have interests, and those interests are displayed in many sites on the web. If you like to buy and sell things yourself, you can use eBay or craigslist. If you like shopping, there are many online malls you can go to. Visit an online university to further your education, or visit flickr for some great photography. With the internet, there is virtually no limit to what you can find. What I am getting at is…some interests are more profitable than others, and those are the ones that we want to focus on.
The best way to determine profitable interests is to analyze the most popular search terms that people use in web queries. The ones that are at the top of the list indicate what people are currently into, and watching them over a period of time can help you to determine changing trends as well. For my example, I will use a list of the most common search terms on Google that I obtained from Google Trends. This site enables you to see how hot a search term is on almost any given day in the past month or so. On June 29 when Apple’s iPhone was released, searches for that skyrocketed, but soon after settled back down. The same thing happened today with searches for July 7th, and it’s many variations (July 7, 2007, 7-7-7, get it?).
Another useful search analyzer is Lycos 50. Now I like this one because it shows you not only the hottest 50 search terms, but how they rank and whether they moved up or down since the previous week. It functions much like the Top 40 Billboard charts, and it’s a great way to see what is a fad and what is something that people are really interested in. Yahoo also has one over at Yahoo Buzz, but it seems to be more basic than they other two.
“So how can I use this information to make some money?”
One way is to include these terms somewhere on your website. You could find a creative way to weave it into your content so people who search for the word will see your site listed in the results (you’ll need to optimize your site/post so that the search engines can find you. If you use WordPress, this plugin is great!). If a term has some staying power from week to week, consider developing a website devoted to the topic, so that your site and the search term go hand-in-hand when a search is performed. Basically you want to match your content to what people are interested in, so that you ensure you have a steady stream of traffic. Creating new sites based on this is ideal, because you don’t have to clutter your existing sites with information that is not suited for it. If I’m researching nursing homes on your site, I don’t really care that Paris Hilton got out of jail recently. Get my drift?
If you build it, they may come, but be sure to build something that they want.