7 Truths No one will tell You about Starting Online Business Today

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In my over 11 years of running online businesses, I have learned some hard lessons, which I’ll be sharing with you in this video.

The lockdown that was imposed due to the corona virus outbreak has to lead many people to seek alternative ways to earn an income. And people have turned to the internet to look for ways to make money. I thought to share from my experience, with the hope that someone out there will be inspired to make the right decisions.

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I started my first online business in 2008. Then Facebook was barely four years, YouTube 3 years; twitter 2 years, and Instagram had not even existed. The channels to gain your business were limited because there weren’t that many people on social media at the time. Over the years, I have watched many trends come and go. I have seen many online businesses start and close down. And I have learned a lot both from my experience building an online business with over 30 team members at some point and from the experiences of others.

It’s easy to find information on how to start an online business online. So this article is not about steps to start an online business. Instead, it’s about important things you must know before starting. If you are considering starting an online business or are still trying to figure it out, you want to read this article to the end.

Watch – 7 Truths No One Will Tell You About Starting Online Business Today
  1. Don’t spread yourself too thin on social media.

Your typical online guru will tell you to sign up on all social media channels; Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube. Create your pages and start posting. But this approach is in most cases counterproductive. It’s like the corporate financial guru telling you to create multiple streams of income when you haven’t even created one stream.

Do this instead. Figure out which of the online channels are most suited for the business you want to start or for your industry. And start with a combination of at most two. For instance, if you want to build your personal brand as a HR professional, or Excel trainer, LinkedIn and Twitter may be your best choice. If you want to become a social media influencer, you have Twitter and Instagram. If you want to grow a modeling career; Instagram. If you want to grow your email list of potential customers, Facebook may be your choice. Don’t just jump on all social media and start trying to build everything all at once. You will spread yourself too thin and burn out quickly. Pick the ones that are best suited for your business and concentrate your effort there. Once you have developed a sizable and engaging following on one platform, it’s easier to leverage your audience to grow following on other platforms.

  1. You will get frustrated at some point. So be obsessed and driven to succeed

Sorry this had to come in early. Starting an online business is not a quick way to get rich. There are over 1.5 billion websites on the internet today. Although not all websites are for business purpose, the larger majority of people who start online businesses fail. The interesting thing is that those who succeed often end up creating impressive results.

It took me two years to earn my first $100 from my online business; two long years of consistent work. Today, you have a lot more tools and channels to grow your business, but you also have a lot more competition. You will not get rich overnight from starting an online business. Depending on the business you start, you may not make money in 6 months, one year, or even two. But if you are doing the right thing and are consistent, your compounded effect will pay off in due time. But you cannot be consistent if you are not passionate about what you do and driven to make it succeed.

  1. Pick one thing and stay consistent

This is one of the best advice you’ll get. There are many online businesses you can start and different business models you can adopt. There is e-commerce, blogging, Vlogging, Freelancing, Affiliate marketing, software development and deployment, book publishing, and so on. You will be tempted to do different things at different points in your journey. Don’t fall for it. Jeff Bezos, the richest man in the world today started Amazon for selling books online. Nothing more; just books. Today, Amazon sells just about anything you can think of. Decide on the online business you want to start and stick with it. Big ideas do not come when you are trying to do many things at a time. They come when you are focused on one thing. Let everything else fade into the shadows.

  1. You will have to spend money

You must have seen some of those articles promising how to start an online business with zero capital. Well, it’s possible to start with zero capital, but it’s impossible to grow without spending money. If you want to grow a blog, you’ll have to buy a domain name, pay for hosting, training, advertising, performance tools, freelance services, and so on. If you are starting a YouTube channel, you have to invest in at least basic gears and training.

The good thing is that you don’t have to invest a lot of money all at once. Technology tools make it easy for you to pay for what you need and use at the moment. So you can start on a low budget. You just have to make your money work for you.

  1. You will have to hire people

Advertising tycoon David Ogilvy famously said, “Hire people better than you are, then leave them to get on with it.” The era of solopreneurship is winding down. To remain competitive, you will have to hire people. You don’t have to employ fulltime staff. You can hire freelancers per job bases. If you have some funds and believe in your business, you don’t have to wait until you start making money to start hiring people.

A new online business I started about 18 months ago with six full-time employees didn’t make a cent in its first year. At the time of writing this piece, it’s all time revenue is equivalent to just three months salary. But we’ll keep investing and building the business because I believe in it.

The point is that online business is a serious business. You have to invest in material and human resources to grow.

  1. The power of compound Effort

A close friend of mine spent about $10,000 to build his online business within a space of 18 months. Within the following 12 months, he made an average of $10,000 per month with a little overhead cost. Imagine investing $10,000 somewhere; 18 months later, you get 100% interest every month. That’s ridiculously insane, right? Well, that’s the power of compound interest. In this case, it’s not the compound interest of money but of effort.

Have you noticed how a YouTube channel you saw two years ago with 1,500 subscribers, grow to just 7,000 in one year and then 240,000 the next year? That’s the power of compounded effort.

But there are no guarantees. In the same business someone invested $10,000 and is now making $10,000 per month, someone else has been trying to make it work for the past 3 years. No guarantees. You just have to keep the faith, keep learning, and keep improving. But never stop compounding your effort.

  1. Part of being successful is knowing when to give up

Instagram first started as Burbn, a check-in iPhone app that includes gaming, photo, and other elements. The team had to give up on its initial product to build Instagram. Twitter founders started with Odeo, a network where people could find and subscribe to the podcast. With iTunes taking over the podcast niche, the team decided to come up with a new idea for a micro-blogging platform named Twitter.

As you gain more knowledge and experience, you may get to a point where you realize you are not in the right place. You may discover you don’t have a sustainable interest in your niche, or you find a new idea to refocus on. These are genuine reasons to give up on one thing for another potentially more deserving thing.

So remember these 7 things;

  1. Don’t spread yourself too thin on social media.
  2. You will get frustrated, so you must be obsessed and driven to succeed
  3. Pick one thing and stay consistent
  4. You will have to spend money
  5. You will have to hire people
  6. Leverage on the power of compound Effort
  7. And part of being successful is knowing when to give up.

If you’ll want to learn more about starting an online business, leave a comment with specific questions in the comment section below. If we get enough requests, we may create more articles on this. Like and share this article with someone if you learned something from it.