How to Start an Online Business in 2021
As you are probably well aware, we are currently in the technology age. This means there is more opportunity now than there ever has been to start your own business and succeed. In this article, I will share insights on how to start an online business and the options you have.
Whether you are completely new to the online world or not, building an online business may be perfect for you. With the rise of users and software advancements, there are countless new ways for individuals to start online. This is a blessing no doubt, but can also very overwhelming for newbies. Hopefully, this article will help you get some clarity on where you should start.
And don’t worry, you don’t have to be tech savvy to start. With the right mindset and a goal you wish to achieve, you will find a way to succeed.
Good Online Business Ideas
One of the easiest ways I have found to decide what kind of online business I want to start is, work backward from the end goal! Think of what things interest you, what tasks you like doing and look for successful people who are doing those in that industry. Then from there, start at where they are at now, and figure out all the steps they had to go through, to get there.
Hopefully after a bit of research on blogs, Youtube videos, and “how-to” guides you’ll find out what the timeline for building this business will entail. If you are stuck for ideas, here are a few types of good online businesses ideas you could use.
- Online publication/magazine
- Dropshipping Store
- SAAS (software as a service)
- Online Education (courses, ebooks, coaching)
- Creating a Marketplace
- Freelancing Business
These are very broad categories and could go miles deep for each item, but it will help spark a few ideas for you.
My First Idea as an example
When I first decided to do something online, I really was attracted to the dreamy lifestyle travel bloggers and influencers had. Being able to travel the world, share stories and imagery of their journey and have income coming in from that.
But what I found after working backward is that it was not what it seemed. Here’s a basic overview of what I found while working backward:
- Getting paid to travel
- Brand sponsorships
- Get paid for hosting ads
- Website getting 500k visitors per month
- Building a massive email list
- Make affiliate sales on articles
- Create an article base of 200+ articles
- Build Social Media accounts
- Rank on Google for traffic
- Get featured on other blogs
- Write articles about previous travel
- Start a blog
This is a rushed version of what my initial thought process was when wanting to become a professional travel blogger/influencer. One thing I noticed after doing deep research was that the majority of bloggers don’t actually make much money if any. Also, the timeline for actually being eligible to make money was a LOT longer than expected. I wanted to start making money as soon as possible, but this would set me back at least 4 – 12 months (if I was lucky). The majority of bloggers spend years without any success, was this really the right path I wanted to go down to start my online business?
I personally ended up scrapping the idea of being solely a travel blogger, and instead focused on Affiliate Marketing and Social Media Marketing. I did keep the travel blog going on the side and had great success years down the track too! Make no mistake though, Affiliate Marketing and Social Media Marketing paid the bills.
Most Profitable Digital Businesses
If you are anything like me, you might be wondering what is the most profitable online businesses out there. Just make sure you don’t fall into ‘shiny object syndrome’ when Googling how to start an online business. You will definitely be presented with ads that include ridiculous claims and tiny disclaimers at the bottom.
However, I do believe there is a great opportunity out there though. Here are some recommendations on the most profitable online businesses out there with little upfront costs.
- Affiliate Marketing
- Coaching (life, business, spiritual)
- Web Development
- Social Media Management
How to start an online business
Once you have decided the path you want to go down, it’s time to do your research and figure out the steps from the beginning until the end. Then if you’re happy with what you see, you’ll know how to start an online business and everything it involves.
One of the great things about the internet and all the different paths or careers you may go down, you will always learn something. Even if you fail on your first attempt, believe it or not, the more you try these things the more you will learn. Everything on the internet is relevant so don’t think it’s wasted time, instead think “what did this journey teach me?”.
I hope this article has given you some insight on how to start an online business and what to think about before you do start. If you’re interested in affiliate marketing, make sure you subscribe to my email newsletter for great marketing tips! Thanks for reading.
Phil Wilson is a full-time content creator and affiliate marketing expert. Before diving into the digital space, Phil was a Carpenter working a job he hated just to get by. Now he helped 1000’s of people all around the world growth hack their new online businesses. Read more about Phil here.
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