This is a follow-up to my previous post ‘My Story: How I Make Money Online‘.
When people discover how I earn a six figure income on the internet the next question is usually ‘how could I do something similar?’
Lot’s of people are dissatisfied with their jobs and want more freedom in their lives. I get it – that was me 8 years ago.
Unfortunately there’s no magic bullet or quick fix. And there are scams, dodgy schemes and short-term tactics out there keen to take your money and deliver very little.
If you are serious about creating an online business I recommend you either:
- Sell a Service
- Start an Authority Website
- Sell Physical Products Online
Sell a Service
Selling services is the quickest way to generate an income, and requires very little (if any) start-up capital. You simply provide a service and people pay you for it. Over time you can scale, productize and grow – but keep it simple at the start. Find a service you can offer and find people who want to buy that service.
There is a big market for freelance writers, developers, designers, social media managers, online marketing experts. Some of these require existing skills and experience, but others you can teach yourself enough to get started and learn ‘on the job’. Freelance writing, social media management and virtual assistance are popular ways to get started.
There is also demand for a wide range of other services which can be delivered online from accounting and lawyers to translators and tutors.
You can find clients through freelancing job portals, industry groups, social media, referrals and a variety of other methods.
Where to Learn More?
- How To Start A Freelancing Business That Won’t Fail: Very detailed post by Brennan Dunn
- How to Start a Freelance Business and Keep Your Day Job: Useful post by Jeff Hayden on Inc.com
- 20 Freelance Services You Can Offer Online
- 7 Best Freelancing Websites to Find Work
Start an Authority Site
An authority site is a website which is considered an authority in the industry or niche you are targeting. It could be a website relating to a particular skill you have, hobby you do or industry you have worked in. It could either
Authority sites get traffic from search engines, social media and other sources and generate revenue by by selling coaching, courses, downloadable information products, memberships, physical products, sponsored posts, advertising or affiliate income.
It could feature you and your personal brand, or you could create a ‘company’ brand to build a business that’s easier to sell and remove yourself from in the future.
It’s going to take a while before you start earning anything and will require some money to get started. This is a long-term option but something you can start as a side-hustle and transition in to a full-time business once it can sustain you.
Where to Learn More?
- AuthorityHacker: Blog / Podcast created by business partners who start and run their own authority websites
- Case Study of a Successful Authority Website
Sell Physical Products Online
This is quicker to get going than an authority website, but will require capital investment to buy initial stock and buy initial advertising.
You could either re-sell existing products in an eCommerce store, or create your own private label product which you sell yourself or through an existing platform like Amazon.com.
You don’t have to have your own warehouse as companies like Amazon and many others provide fulfillment and delivery services.
You’ll need to have a way to find customers using methods such as paid advertising, word of mouth, social media and search engine traffic.
Where to Learn More?
- Ecommerce Business Blueprint: How To Build, Launch And Grow A Profitable Online Store: By Shopify, one of the leading providers of eCommerce websites / shopping carts. Their blog provides information on starting an eCommerce business, success stories and more
- eCommerce Fuel: Popular blog, podcast and community for eCommerce business owners
What I Wouldn’t Recommend
- Starting a blog and assuming it’s going to make money quickly – most blogs make nothing and there are over 150 million blogs on the web already!
- Trying to do start more than one thing at a time. Choose one business model and stick with it. It’s easy to get distracted by shiny objects!
- Getting lured in to buying an expensive and over-hyped ‘make money online’ product. Most of them are selling a dream and nothing more. However there are some great online courses & I do recommend investing in a coach or course to help you avoid mistake and fast-track success.
Starting an online business or becoming a freelancer requires time, commitment and focus but the rewards both financially and to your lifestyle make any sacrifices well worth it!
Which online business model would you choose?