It’s no longer a question why you should start an online business. The question really is, WHY SHOULDN’T YOU START AN ONLINE BUSINESS?
Here’s a little trivia for you:
Global online retail sales are growing and is estimated to reach 8.8% of total retail spending in 2018 as compared to 7.4% in 2016. [Source: Invesp]
Wait, there’s more!
#eCommerce is the only Trillion Dollar market projected to grow at double digits! There are 12-24 million #eCommerce stores selling products online around the world today.
Personally, I have always been biased about online businesses because of its capability to be location independent, to be run anywhere in the world. I don’t want to get tied down by putting a traditional mortar and brick shop especially when we’re now living in the digital age and customers are more connected and online than ever.
Retailers have made it very convenient for shoppers that with just one-click away, they can get what they want. No time spent on travel, finding a parking, long lines, etc. You can even order groceries online and wait for it to be delivered at your doorstep.
And what’s good about online businesses? Startup costs can be very minimal. So, you really don’t have to worry about risks because low costs equal low risks.
Eager to know more? Here are 4 online businesses that you can start with minimal (to almost zero) costs:
People still think that blogging is just a hobby and you can’t really earn good money from it. I respectfully disagree.
If you are like me, reading blogs during my free time, you will see how professional bloggers can actually earn tens of thousands of dollars monthly. It may have started as a side hustle but with hard work, persistence and consistency, these bloggers were able to quit their day jobs simply because they successfully turned their blog into an income-generating platform. And they managed to transition from an employee to a full-time blogger and entrepreneur.
Do your research and you will see that there are so many success stories from bloggers available online. I’ve been following a few who managed to earn a million dollars in one year! Crazy, right?
The cost of starting a blog is only between $100-200 depending on the platform that you will use.
- Domain name registration and Web Hosting – $95 for 3 years [Bluehost is the one I’m using and I highly recommend it.]
- WordPress premium theme – $49-69
That’s just a one time payment of $150! You can easily save that much and setup your blog today!
[Note: Other expenses will just come in if you decide to upgrade a program and purchase valuable add-ons (i.e. ConvertKit for your Email marketing; Yoast SEO, and more).]
Related post: How to Start a Blog worth Reading in 60 days
Be careful now and know that it’s not my intention to sell you that “blogging dream”. Truth be told, only 5% of the entire blogging community actually earn a full-time income.
So why in the world am I telling you to venture into blogging? Because you will never know unless you try. Because you may be part of that 5% within a year’s time if you start today. What have you got to lose anyway? Nothing and everything to gain!
Keep in mind that even if you don’t have writing skills but you excel in other areas like video editing or photography, you can still setup your own video blog or setup your own photography online portfolio and sell your services.
2) Sell your own t-shirt designs
Ever heard of Printful, Teespring, Humanitee? These companies created a platform for artists and creative people alike so they can create and sell their own t-shirt designs with no financial investment on their part, just skills! Order handling, printing and shipping will be handled by these companies.
How can artists sell their own designs? Through their own social media accounts! Just imagine the number of friends and followers these artists have on Facebook and Instagram. That’s the potential number of customers an artist can have!
Best of all, these platforms are very user-friendly and signing up is absolutely FREE!
So, what’s the cost of starting this kind of business? Financially, zero. Your only investment here is time and skills.
Now, ain’t that a win-win?
3) Social Media Management and Online Services Company
If you are addicted to social media and know your way around these platforms then this online business could be for you. But before you get excited, you must have marketing knowledge, and minimal copy writing and graphic design skills to be able to pull this off. Because let’s face it, how can you help your clients grow their business through social media marketing if you have no idea what to do?
Related post: How to Create a Social Media Marketing Plan
You don’t have to start big. Just think of the small businesses in your neighborhood or your entrepreneur friends, and approach them with a marketing pitch. Your selling point could be this – there are so many social media platforms available and managing all of it for your business can be time consuming, so why not just hire someone to do it for you so you can concentrate on growing your business?
If you manage to land your first 3 clients, the next ones will just come by easily. And the best part, you don’t have to market your services because your existing clients will do that work for you. They will be your number 1 referral as long as you are delivering all their expectations. Convert your clients to raving fans and you’ll have a continuous flow of new clients and that’s a guarantee!
Remember, eCommerce business is continuously thriving so just imagine the number of companies that will be needing social media management services.
As for the costs, there are no financial costs involved when you are just starting out. You can easily manage 10-15 clients on your own. You will start incurring costs once you start to grow big and you will need to hire social media specialists and virtual assistants to do the legwork for you. Also, automation tools (i.e. Buffer, Hootsuite, Boardbooster, etc.) are a necessity once you start growing.
The possibilities for this business is limitless because the needs of your clients are bottomless. These clients would also want their own website or have someone do their marketing collateral. As such, your company can easily be a one-stop marketing management company.
Don’t panic! You don’t have to worry about mastering all these skills! What you can do is outsource these services and hire talented individuals to do the work for you. What you don’t know, just leave it to the experts and focus on doing what you’re good at and make it a point to always provide high quality service to your clients.
Always keep in mind that these clients are helping you grow your business so it’s only natural that your main goal is help your clients grow their business through social media marketing.
For a pool of virtual assistants, web designers and social media specialists, Fiverr is a great source.
4) Business Consulting
If you are good at creating business plans, helping startup companies to launch their businesses, or creating processes for existing businesses, then starting a business consultancy company is your best bet. This entails a highly specialized skill and knowing the different industries’ best practices. A lot of my mentors from the corporate world transitioned to consultancy and these people already have decades of knowledge and practice. They are trusted and well sought out in their respective industries because of their brilliance and capability to grow and manage a business.
These consultants can’t be good at what they do without decades of learning and experience. They didn’t learn all these in school but in battling it out in the corporate world. They’ve been through all the politics and drama, which is why they understand better how the system works.
There are no financial costs with this unless you want to have your own office and pay for rent and other operating expenses, which I believe are unnecessary. Your only investment here is time and your own website, which can cost you the same as when you start a blog ($150). It doesn’t have to be as complex as a blog. A one-pager will do the trick as long as it has all your contact details, services offered, background of your expertise, and testimonials from clients if you have any.
I understand that starting a business can be daunting but if you know that your ideas are good and you are more than willing to do what it takes, then there’s really no reason to be scared. Feels like it’s too good to be true, right? It’s not and it’s the real deal! Again, you’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain!
On the other hand, if you feel you don’t have business management skills or don’t see yourself as an entrepreneur but would love to earn extra income, here’s an article just for you.
If you want to start today but don’t know how, sign up now and I’d be happy to assist you! I will hold your hand and help you take that leap of faith. Let’s not waste any more time and let’s start creating the life that we want!