Like many of us, when we first decide that we want to start working for ourselves, sack the boss, quit the day job, generate more wealth, create more time freedom and all that, we don’t really know where to start.
What sort of business can I run? I don’t have any products or expertise. I’m not tech-savvy. I don’t use social media. Often thoughts like these will run through our minds and we feel blocked before we even start.
We search online perhaps, looking for “How to’s….” and are met with a glut of information, products, promises, platforms, applications, programmes etc, and can often feel more confused than before we began our searching!
When you can cut through the thick of it all though, really it boils down to you only needing a few “basics” that will form the foundation of your potential business, whatever your niche and products.
Whether you already have your own products or services or are promoting affiliate offers, you will need some basic tools to help you take these to the market:
- A “squeeze page or funnel”, whereby you attract people to you who might be interested in your offer. This page, or these pages, should contain a capture form so that interested parties can swap some of their basic information (often just first name, and email address) in return for an incentive you offer them (perhaps a free “How To” report, eBook, or video). These contacts then become your opted-in “leads”.
- An autoresponder system, where your leads are automatically placed, and from where you can continue to communicate with them, not only about your current offer, though any future offers you may have. You might have already heard the term that “The money is in the list”. Basically, the people who have opted-in to your list(s) have given their consent to hearing from you, and in that respect, they “are yours” to market to. They can of course choose to unsubscribe at any time, and you must include an unsubscribe link in each of your emails. Also, it’s good to let them know that you’ll never spam them or share their contact information with anyone else.
- A website or blog; is where you can post articles, information, reviews, tips, topics etc all relevant to your niche. Your website and posts will become “ranked” on Google, and the competition can be high for certain keywords and phrases that people search for (so you might not always appear on the top of page one!) However, if you can master the art of creating search engine optimised (SEO) articles with some of the lower hanging fruit, over time, you’ll have a better chance of being found online. And in due course, this will have a compound effect and you’ll gain better credibility.
- Traffic, that often elusive commodity, especially when you first start out. Traffic is essentially the equivalent of the “footfall of people coming into your shop”. How do you find the traffic that will be interested in your shop window enough to come through that door? There are a few routes, and the two main channels to find traffic would be through either paid or free options. While not costing you anything in monetary terms, free options will require more of your time as you’ll need to spend more of your time perhaps sharing your articles and offers through the various social media channels. Paid channels can be a minefield in themselves, which is another subject in itself! For now though, just bear in mind that if you choose to go down the paid route, please make sure to only buy from reputable sources, offering high-quality leads.
- Tracking tools are an important and integral part of your business building toolkit. They let you know how your advertisements are performing, which ones work better than others, and where your traffic is coming from. You can compare one version of an advertisement against another (split testing) to see which performs better. You need to understand how your promotions are working so that you don’t waste unnecessary time and money on ads that aren’t performing.
These are just 5 of the tools that will help you get started with your online business. There’ll always be add ons and integrations as you progress though for starters, as the saying goes, KISS = Keep It Simple Sweetheart!
If you’re just starting out, or have already started though feel lost in a sea of overload products and information, you might want to look at the tools I’m using here. I like to call these my “Business In A Box”
All the best!