Tired of working the nine-to-five job? Tired of your boss? Tired of working to make someone else rich? Want to work at home so you can be with your family more? Do you like the Internet?
Some of those questions are the titles to spam emails you get. They offer get rich schemes, just fill out surveys and get paid, get paid just to surf the web, get paid to shop, etc. etc.
But what is the real scoop about starting my own Internet Business from home? In this article we will help you learn some of the facts about owning your own home business based on the web. We will tell you how to avoid the hype and tell you the straight facts about how to start and maintain your own Internet Business. Are you ready?
You have all probably read many stories about how people with nothing have become millionaires on the web. You have no doubt received tons of spam email promising you that the same thing can happen to you, all you have to do is buy this ebook, this software, sign up as a member, etc. etc.
Multi-Level-Marketing or MLM programs were around before the Internet was in everyone’s home, but since then they have boomed. There are many programs that offer to “get you in on the ground floor”. All you have to do is sign up and those who sign up after you will make you rich.
Most of these are actually pyramid schemes. If the primary goal is to recruit new members and not to sell products, then it is likely a scam, so beware of those.
The first thing you should know about starting any business is that it is hard work. You think your boss was bad? Wait until you are your boss.
For some reason many people think that while starting an offline business is hard work, starting one on the web is easy. I really don’t understand that philosophy, except for the fact we get so many emails promising to make you rich with little or no work at all.
Let me tell you this. When you start any business, whether it’s a store, a gas station, or whatever, you know you will have to go in everyday, put in long hours and be smart if you are going to become successful. It is no different when starting an online or home business. If you are not prepared to put in the hours and the work, you will not be any more successful online than you would be offline.
There are no shortcuts, no magic pills, no marketing plans that can make you rich online without hard work. If you are not prepared to put in the time and the work necessary to any successful business, don’t quit your day job and just continue to be a consumer surfing the web instead of trying to find a way to get rich without work.
That may sound harsh to you, but the web is full of people trying to get something for nothing and we don’t need any more of those. However, if you are a person who is willing to put in the time and effort, the web can be a great place to make your living.
How do you get started? Well, first of all, what are your interests? If you choose a business you don’t have a lot of interest in, you will find it very difficult to stay motivated. Look at things that interest you when deciding what type of online business you want to have.
Not all online businesses require having a website, but most do, so we are going to start there. Lets say you have chosen what you are going to sell, whether it is products, services, or promoting affiliate programs.
You will need a domain name. The first thing people think is that they should have a catchy name that equals the name of their business and that it should be their domain name. Not true. Generic domain names that contain keywords that describe your products or services are best. Your company name will be on the front page of your website, but the domain name is what people will remember and what will help people find you through the search engines.
Where do I register my domain name? There are many cheap registrars out there for registering domain names, but don’t go with the cheap ones. You get what you pay for. Go with the ones that provide you the most service. Do you really think saving $20 per YEAR on your domain name is going to make or break your business? If so, stop now, do not pass go, go back to your day job.
Now you have a domain name, now what? You will need hosting for the new website you are going to build or have built. Again, look for the hosting that provides you the most service. You want 24-hour tech support. You want a lot of space, but most of all you want a lot of bandwidth. You want easy access to your files and a control panel, not just ftp access.
You also want a host who provides a lot of extras like “instant install” of gallery managers, content managers, calendar programs, and other scripts for forums, blogs, and more. The more they offer, the better, because you don’t know where your business might lead you. A cheap host is just that, a cheap host.
Now you will need a website to put up on the host. You can buy a website on Ebay or from others that are already built and ready to go or you can have one built to your specifications. You can also learn to build your own website and save money, but make sure you research how to do this very well before you choose that option.
Building a website that is not optimized for the search engines or one that does not function or navigate easily will hurt your business, so if you are not ready to build one you are sure will work, have the work done or buy one.
Also, people have the perception that their website must be beautiful in order to be successful. They think they must have flashy introductions, databases, dynamic content, great graphics, etc. etc.
None of those things I just mentioned will help you become successful on the web. They are great to have, but do not put undue importance on the dressing. Promoting your website will be the key to it’s success along with the content that is in your website. Those are the things you will focus on if you wish to have a successful online business.
On building your website or buying one, make sure that it has a lot of text content rich with keywords that apply to the products or services you will be selling. You want it to have a professional look and feel, but you don’t need it to be too flashy.
There are a lot of freelance websites out there where you can post the job you want done and people will bid on doing the job for you. That is a good way to find a web designer that wants to do a good job for a competitive price.
Now you have your domain name, your hosting, and your new website. What now? Well, it’s not like in the movie Field of Dreams, where ‘if you build it, they will come’. That doesn’t apply to websites unfortunately.
You will need to promote your website. This is where the work starts. This is what will demand the most of your time, because if you do not promote your website, the customers will never come buy anything. They won’t be able to find you out of the millions of websites that are out there.
You have to be better than the next guy. You have to be willing to promote your website for more hours than the next guy. And you have to beat the next guy to the latest and greatest methods of website promotion.
There are several things you will be doing with your new website. First and foremost, you will be writing articles like this one about the products and services you sell and topics related to them. You will also spend time submitting these articles to websites that offer free content to webmasters.
A lot of website owners are hungry for good original content. They go to these content providers and pull articles related to their products and services and put those articles into their websites. Ensure your article has an author bio section at the bottom with links to your website, every website owner that inserts your article into their website is now another website that links to you.
That increases your link popularity, which in turn helps you get better listings in search engine results for your keywords. Writing at least one article everyday will move you up in the search engine rankings before you know it. This is my fourth article for the day, just to give you an idea of how much I’m willing to promote my website.
You can also post a lot on blogs and forums that are related to your products or services. In the signature line you put a link to your website. In this subtle way you not only create another website that has a link to your website, but by participating in the forum or blog you may just have users there want to see your website and might want to buy your product or services.
You also want to put your link in your email, on your business cards, on your letterhead, and anywhere else you can. Having your own business, whether online or offline is a way of life, not a nine to five job. So be sure you are ready to do whatever it takes to be successful. Because if you are not ready to work harder than you ever have before, having your own business is not for you.