You want to quit your miserable job. You want to travel the world in style. You want to get paid by grateful clients without breaking a sweat. You want to start an online business fast that is profitable and risk-free.
You are blown-away with the mind-boggling growth of online businesses. You are convinced that moneymaking from online businesses is turbo-charged and you want in. You assess with aroused passion your options to start an online business.
You diligently do your research. You are drowned with information overload. You hesitate and do not know where to start. Worries start to creep in.
You are worried about the start-up costs. You are worried about the risks. You are worried about your ability to cope with the fast-pace internet world. You are worried about your age and whether the online world of business is suitable for you.
You are right to worry as more than 90% of all online start-ups fail within the first 120 days.
However, there are always 2 sides to a coin. On the flip side, 10% of online start-ups succeeded and went on to become “Click Millionaires”. These Click Millionaires have enchanted the masses to try to follow their footsteps.
You can make money online, in fact, an indecent amount of it. You just need to approach it with the right attitude and understand the key principles to having lasting success.
The secrets to a successful small business are the same for an online business as for a brick-and-mortar business.
You can start an online business profitably, fast, and risk-free with a mastery of the evergreen principles and tapping into the fast-pace high-tech world of the internet.
Let’s dive in.
Why Should You Start An Online Business
With the global coronavirus pandemic ravaging the world, remote working and working from home are becoming a norm rather than an exception.
Global economies are wrecked with the twin evil of the current Great Depression and the rampaging Coronavirus. Many people are finding themselves out of jobs and stuck at home.
Starting an online business appears to be a natural option with enticing benefits:
The World is Your Playground
The Internet is accessible 24/7 globally. Your market reach is anywhere with internet access and payment gateways. Transactions can be instantaneous in the case of digital online businesses. Online businesses have been growing at a phenomenal rate, especially during the pandemic as businesses started shifting to the digital world.
You have multiple cost-savings compared to a brick-and-mortar business:
- No investment or rental needed for a store-front
- No store-front overheads such as electricity bills, water bills, security & maintenance bills, etc.
- No full-time staff overheads
- No investment needed for renovation, furniture, and on-site inventory
Flexibility in Location and Time
You can work from anywhere in the world and manage your time without an imposed schedule. Some digital nomads work remotely from foreign countries, coffee shops, public libraries, co-working spaces, or recreational vehicles. They rely on wireless devices to hook up to the internet and do their work wherever they want.
Greater Business Efficiency
You can reach your clients quickly through a multitude of online options and improved client service through greater flexibility. Customers can find out about your products and services through your websites, blogs, and social media instead of visiting you in person.
In e-commerce, you have various options for faster delivery of products to your clients. You are also able to tap on a full range of digital services for business, such as online webinars instead of the hassle of arranging on-site training. There is less paper waste and you increased your professionalism with automated processes.
Sack Your Boss and Get Paid While Traveling The World in Style
Income can be earned passively with automated processes for online businesses. You also have the coveted option to quit your miserable job and get paid while traveling the world in style.
Before you launch into the enthralling world of online businesses, let’s take a look at the 8 success principles.
8 Success Principles of Online Business
The irony of success for an online business is that you don’t start with the intoxicating objective of making an indecent amount of money. If you are doing it only for the money, chances are that you will fail, miserably.
I have seen too many people obsessed with the millions and billions of dollars that they can make from the colossal possibilities that online businesses present. Get-rich-quick schemes rarely succeed and like all businesses, an online startup must be grounded in solid business principles.
You must have good reasons for starting a business, whether it is online or offline. You should start with an assessment of your own goals and interests. You need to understand the implications of a new lifestyle from starting an online business.
Here are 8 Success Principles to get you started:
Tip #1: Don’t Think of Making Money
Think of helping people first and not how to stuff your bank account. When you get the first part right, the money will follow.
Critically look at your strengths and where you can use it to help people solve real problems that bother them painfully. The stronger the pain points you can address and solve, the better your chances are at succeeding in the niche you have selected.
Just be attentive and observant and think of what people often approach you for advice or help. If most of your contacts view you as someone to confide in for their relationship problems, their pets’ problems, or health problems like losing weight, you have a niche.
That brings us to the next point.
Tip #2: Change Your Image
You have to be able to position yourself as an expert to have a better chance of succeeding in an online business. People tend to trust “experts” and will pay good money for expert advice that can solve their problems.
Don’t get me wrong here. I am not asking you to pretend to be what you are not. You have to look at positioning your natural strengths and talent. It’s the “packaging” or marketing part of the business.
If you are good at helping people lose weight through proper exercises and diet, you can position yourself as a fitness coach. You can start by sharing simple fitness routines for free to gain trust in your capabilities as a fitness coach.
Once you have a decent following, you can progress to offer more in-depth exercise routines through paid courses. You can also sell e-books and supplements through your website or blog. Once you have a proper website or blog that has decent monthly traffic, you have the option of making money through advertisements.
You have to position yourself as the go-to person in the niche you have selected, and be genuinely good or knowledgable at what you are offering for lasting success.
Tip #3 Let the Machines Take Over
When your online business is set up properly, you can take a 4 weeks vacation while your online business continues to rake in the cash. The beauty of the online business is the automation options available through technology and software.
For example, if you have properly set up a blog on weight loss, you can program a Google Ad or Facebook Ad campaign during your absence, or set your autoresponder to launch a new e-book to your tribe of loyal followers.
If you are wondering about the stuff you can’t automate, like answering customers’ queries, you are on the right track for our next principle.
Tip #4 Deploy Virtual Assistants and Chatbots
Once your online business is running smoothly and you can automate most of the operations, the portions you can’t automate can be outsourced to virtual assistants (“VAs”). You can engage VAs on various recruitment platforms.
IT and AI technology has been advancing rapidly and it is also possible to install chatbots to answer queries from your customers. Free your time for higher priorities like in-person engagement with clients and strategic planning of your business.
Tip # 5 Develop Your Content Strategy For Audience Engagement
The traditional advertisement has been largely replaced with digital marketing for online businesses. Digital marketing needs excellent content and we often refer to digital marketing as content marketing.
You will understand why when you realize that content marketing is estimated to be a $412.88 billion industry by 2021. Your content strategy is crucial for the sustainability of your online business.
Content marketing aims to generate leads by giving something valuable. Your clients find you because of the valuable content you provide. Once the potential customers choose to be your audience, they join your database and you build your tribe of loyal followers.
Once you have a sizeable following, you can engage your tribe to get their contributions to your content, like comments on your blog, forum discussions, and product reviews. Such testimonials are invaluable as highly credible content and case studies.
Tip #6 Scale Your Business
You scale your business when you are ready to increase your revenue while the operating costs remain low. For example, when you have a decent following of say 10,000 followers on your database, you can increase your range of services or products to sell to your loyal tribe members who trust your recommendations.
Alternatively, you can look into enlarging your pool of followers with appropriate outreach programs such as targeting your potential clients with suitable marketing campaigns, eg. content marketing in different languages for certain geographical locations.
Tip #7 Focus on recurring revenues
Once you have a stable base of loyal supporters, you can explore replacing one-time sales with automatically renewing subscriptions such as for memberships, newsletters, coaching, support, or advice on demand. With recurring revenues, your income base will be more stable and passive.
A word of caution as you move into automation: You should always strive to provide value to your hard-earned customers and not sail away into the sunset. Otherwise, your customers will leave you when they no longer perceive value staying with you or they find better value going to your competitors.
Tip #8 Don’t Graduate
You must always be hungry for knowledge and keep up with the phenomenal pace of development on the internet space.
Online businesses are forever evolving and there are always new techniques and new software coming onto the market. That means fresh competition constantly coming on-stream.
If you don’t keep up, you will be left out.
If you want to stay ahead of the game, you have to be constantly learning and staying current with the development in your market. I have been amazed time and again at the number of new launches in compelling software applications every month.
Rapid development in the internet world includes the following:
- Google is constantly upgrading its search engine algorithms
- Computers are constantly being upgraded for speed and efficiency
- Software companies are constantly developing faster and better applications to serve the market
- Viruses are constantly devastating unsuspecting computer owners who take cybersecurity too lightly
You get the point.
Online business is like any other business. You have to stay ahead of your competition by remaining aware of the development in your market.
5 Key Criteria For Online Business Success
I want to be perfectly honest with you here. As a beginner, you’ll face the daunting task of beating the odds of more than a 90% chance of failing in an online business.
You have to ask yourself if the prize at the end of the rainbow is worth it, or you have alternatives to venturing onto this unforgiving fast-paced quest to an elusive pot of gold.
The secret to this pot of gold at the end of the rainbow is to be an online ‘Leprechaun’. You must acquire the knowledge and skills of an online ‘Leprechaun’ to have your pot of gold.
Apart from the 8 success principles, there are 5 key criteria for online business success you need to take note of as a newbie:
- You don’t want to risk high upfront cost
- You want to start the business quickly
- You want high-income potential
- You want the business to self-generate income eventually
- You want to minimize your risks of failure
Now that you know the success principles and the key criteria for success as a beginner, let’s take a look at the steps to starting a profitable online business.
Steps to Starting a Profitable Online Business
I have made a bold promise in the title of this article:
Start An Online Business 101: Profitable, Fast, and Risk-free for 2020 (Even For Beginners)
I intend to keep that bold promise but let me be upfront and frank with you here: The transformation from a newbie to an Online Leprechaun is by no means easy.
I have wasted time and money going down the wrong path many times and I want to help you avoid those excruciatingly painful steps. The online business journey is not easy and despite my best intentions in sharing, you will face problems.
As a management consultant, I always tell my clients that starting a business involves constant learning and problem-solving. However, you can have fun and you should love doing it, especially if you have chosen the right niche you enjoy doing.
Always remember the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow and the many famous people who have achieved success, not because they are special but because they have the X factor in them. They have that ‘oomph’ in them that separates them from ordinary mundane folks who live constantly in regrets and unfulfilled dreams.
Before I reveal the secret to my bold titled claim, here are the steps to starting a profitable online business:
- Identify a real problem many people faced
- Critically look at whether you can solve the problem with skills you possess or products you have access to supplies
- Research the market to understand your competitors and whether you have a Unique Selling Proposition (‘USP’)
- Study what the market says about your competitors and what they are doing right or wrong
- Market your service or your products based on your preparation work above
- Constantly monitor your key competitors and stay ahead of them
- Deploy technology and get a team to help you automate the processes
- Rinse and repeat to scale
The steps are all there in a nutshell. However, you know the proof is in the pudding and there is knowledge to acquire, skills to master, and experience to her. I hate to sound discouraging but every step mentioned can be easily expanded into a long-form article to guide you along.
You want a faster, profitable, and risk-free route.
The Profitable, Fast, and Risk-free Path to Success
Starting a business requires both time and resources (money in its most basic form).
If you have money, you can engage the top consultants and best human resources to set up everything for you — you spend less of your time.
If you do not want to spend the money, you spend the time to acquire all the knowledge and skills to DIY your way through, taking in your strides all the sweat and tears.
There’s a middle path: you wisely spend your money on a good mentor or program that can guide you through the landmines.
I have experienced all 3 of the scenarios above. I started by paying for “gurus” to teach me affiliate marketing, Amazon FBA, website design, SEO, etc.
My conclusion is that majority of the “gurus” out there are charlatans who are touting outdated systems that no longer work. Their sole means of survival is to use outdated data of their past glory to entice you into paying exorbitant fees so that they can maintain their extravagant lifestyle.
The more someone shows me their Lamborghinis and properties to entice me to part immediately with my money, the faster I’ll run in the other direction. I know now how to look beyond the cheap psychological tricks and to focus on a clinical review of the offers on the table.
I was disgusted after constantly losing money to such charlatans and went the hard route of trying to learn everything myself. There are tons of information on the internet and you can easily find free “lessons” with the amazing search engines behind google, youtube, and other online channels. However, you need to spend a tremendous amount of time studying and deciphering what is workable.
I eventually developed enough understanding and knowledge to know what skills I need to pay for mentorship and what skills I can get ‘free’ from the internet. That allows me to balance between spending my precious time and exchanging valuable cash for skills and knowledge.
I have developed my system of starting a successful business and have shared them in a separate article on Medium.
The short-cut to success is to find the right mentor or program that can impart you with the key skills and resources to start your online business. Always remember that you need to trade-off spending your time or your money. The trick is not to lose money on charlatans and to spend your time wisely.
This article serves as an introduction to online business startup and I am unable to cover important concepts in-depth. However, I will highlight one key concept you have to get right for success in an online startup: lead conversion. You need to get the lead conversion process correct and working to succeed in an online business.
There is a MasterClass coming up end of September 2020 where I have access to Free passes. I would like to offer you a Free Pass to the 3-day MasterClass from 28th September to 30th September. Just sign up through this link and I will forward you the details of this upcoming MasterClass and future ones I can get hold of.
There is no obligation to buy anything at any of the free courses I recommend. I just want to help out budding online entrepreneurs avoid the mistakes I made. You want to be there to find out what is the latest development in the market or what you might be up against.
If you want more details about the September 2020 Master Class, you can check out the Lead Conversion Squared Review. The lead generation to lead conversion process is the lifeblood of online businesses. It’s good to understand what is out there and to stay current in the online space if you are getting on-board.
Pot of Gold At The End of The Rainbow
You can be a knock-out success in starting an online business.
You know the evergreen principles to follow. You know the key criteria for success. You know the key steps to follow. You even know the short-cuts to avoid the mistakes that have snared the great majority of beginners.
You know you are close to the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.
You need to start applying the principles, adopt the criteria, and follow the key steps. Just do it one step at a time and have the adventure spirit to resolve issues as they arise.
You know if you need help, it is just one link away and you can always drop me an email (click on my picture profile at the top right-hand corner)or subscribe to the free passes for Master Classes I have available from time to time.
Start your journey today and take the first bold step!