10 Reasons Why You Should Start An Online Business

Whether you are attracted to an internet business because you hate your current job, want to improve your circumstances, or would like a more flexible lifestyle, the internet offers all these opportunities.

Why An Internet Business?

1- Flexibility

Many people come to find themselves with an internet business through necessity rather than deliberate creation. For me, I needed a flexible job which I could work around contract work. It didn’t come in often but when the phone rang, I needed to take the work. This presented all kinds of problems. Normal work didn’t pay as well and employers didn’t want me taking large chunks of time off when the other work came in!

I tried juggling several jobs over a number of years but nothing seemed to fit. At around the same time I was attempting to use e-bay to buy and sell for a bit of extra money. It wasn’t until later that I discovered affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing, for those who don’t know is a kind of referral selling. You point links from your website to other people’s goods and services. The link is tracked so that when you make a sale you are rewarded for it with a commission.

Once you know how to do this you can set up links from your online content to other people’s products and services. You can also use paid advertising to find people all over the world to sell to. This was perfect for my work because I could take my laptop anywhere with me and as long as I had an internet connection I could work. It didn’t interfere with the work when it came up, I had no boss to answer to so it was the perfect solution.

2 – Automation

There’s also a number of other reasons why I chose an internet business – and why you should too! The flexibility of the business was my primary concern. I wanted to be able to choose my own hours so I could take work when it came without any complications. But the other reason I chose this particular model was the ability to use technology to ‘leverage’ my time and income.

Once I had a website and content up and running, it kept going and I was able to make sales and deliver products without being physically present. This is the ‘magic’ of an online business. The automation involved with an online business means that you can do the work once and let that work keep running in the background. You can make sales and deliver products over and over through the same piece of content or advert, which can run an virtual autopilot 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year.

Each piece of content you create can send people to a landing page and sell a product. By creating many pieces of content and sharing them online you can build multiple sources of income which can all run continually, working as your own ‘automated sales team’.

3 – Ability To Scale

Along with this amazing automation is the ability to scale your business. Because there is no human intervention in the ‘sales loop’, multiple sales can happen instantaneously through the same platforms. Your content and advertising can be grown over time and scaled instantly (in the case of paid advertising). As your content gets more shares and more people flow through your website and content, your sales grow as a result. If you use paid advertising you can also scale a profitable campaign up easily by increasing your daily budget.

The automation of an online business makes it very easy to scale. In the case of a physical business this often means more staff, sales tools, larger office space and a whole lot more expense and hassle. With an online business everything is already in place. You simply need to send more customers through the automated sales systems with content and/or paid advertising methods.

4 – Low Startup Costs

When I started an online business I did it from my own pocket. I didn’t need a massive loan and I worked at a level which suited my budget. An internet business is very cost effective and you can start from scratch from pretty much any budget. If you have more to invest you can grow it faster with paid advertising. But, if you are on a budget like I was when I got started, you can get started easily and cheaply.

With a regular ‘bricks and mortar’ business there are many overheads to consider. Your costs include a business premises, staff, hardware and stock. Then there’s advertising and delivery costs. With an online business you just need a laptop and an internet connection – two things many people already have. Your main cost is getting the right education and learning the best strategy to build on.

5 – Simplicity

Technology has made it much easier than was previously possible to set up your own website and learn how to use simple online platforms to connect people to products and services. Advertising and content creation is now available for anyone to use. Websites can be set up with a few clicks and anyone with an email can learn to use the tools and strategies of online marketers.

Whereas previously website building was the domain of the tech savvy programmer, now anyone can use simple user friendly platforms and programs. An online business sounds like something for a technical person, but anyone can now learn the skills needed to build their own online business.

6 – Control

An internet business gives you control over your life. Of course it takes time to build up to a stage where it can replace your current income. But the flexibility of an internet business means you can work it around your existing employment until you can make this happen.
Once your income is beyond that of your employment, you are in a very good position to take charge of your life. You don’t have to do the daily commute, or put up with an uncomfortable working situation. If you don’t like your job you can quit. Don’t like your boss? Fire him/her!
One of the very best things about an internet based business is the control it gives you over your life. You can also build your work around your lifestyle, rather than the other way round. Most people are forced to put work first in everything they do. Family time, holidays and hobbies all tend to depend and evolve around work. An internet business allows you to prioritize the things in your life which mean the most. It can put you back in the driving seat of your life, both in terms of what you earn and how you spend your time.

7 – Work From Anywhere

Not only does an internet business offer great flexibility in terms of working hours but it also offers you the choice to work from anywhere globally. This appeals to many people who would otherwise be more trapped by conventional work in a localized workplace.
For me, it was the flexibility of being able to choose my own hours and not have a boss. But for many the ability to travel anywhere globally is the most important factor to owning their own online business.
Take your laptop anywhere with an internet connection and work while abroad and travelling.

8 – Learn Life Skills

The skills I have learned from building my own internet business also make me much more employable. I also worked for an internet based company with the skills I learned from my laptop while sitting at home!

Being able to reach people globally and target specific types of people is a great skill and very desirable in business too. I was also able to use the knowledge I learned online to build one of my other physical businesses much more quickly by using both my website building skills and paid advertising.

The internet is a fantastic opportunity for anyone to be able to improve themselves, learn new skills and build another source of income. Skills learned are yours for life, whether or not you continue down the path of building an online business.

9 – Independence

We might believe ourselves to be independent but many of us are very dependent on our work for income. As such, our employers tell us how much we can earn, how much holiday we can take and what we will be doing while at work. Financial independence is the ultimate freedom.

When we are financially independent we can take a holiday whenever we please and work in our own time and on our own agenda. An online business gives you the automation and independence to live life on your terms, without the agenda of an employer running your life.

10 – Sovereignty

Being an owner gives you sovereignty. The ability to call the shots in your business is what many entrepreneurs aspire to. As a business owner your actions determine whether you make a success of your business or not.

Having a successful online business gives you the kind of freedom which most people will never see in their lifetime. The ability to create your own life on your terms is the reward of having worked hard on your business and on yourself.

5 Things You Must Consider When Starting Your Own Business

Starting your own business may involve a lot of headaches. There’s having to find office space, getting permits, hiring people, and more. Aside from those, you also need a business plan. In what direction do you want the business to go? How much money would you like to make five, ten, or so years from now? Those are very important questions to ask, but since you’re still in the early phases of your business, you should also seriously consider these five things.

1. What sector will you be in?

Let’s say you want to be in IT (information technology). It’s a huge, cutthroat industry, with lots of companies, both big and small, competing for market share. It’s a lot tougher for you as someone just starting if you want to jump into the industry as well. So then, you first have to find your niche. What sort of products or services will you specialise in? What can you offer that your competitors don’t have? Don’t just go with the flow. Be unique and offer something really valuable to your potential customers. Ideally it’s something they’re looking for that your competitors just can’t offer them. That way, your business will stand out above the rest!

2. How much will you invest?

Of course, as a business, you need capital to turn your business ideas into a reality. If you don’t pour in the capital, your home business idea will be nothing but a big flop. One important thing to know is how much money your business needs to both begin and maintain itself.

Where would you get the money? You could use your savings, if you have a lot. If not, you could find some business partners and ask them for an investment. Or, you could take out a loan from a bank or a reputable finance group. You could even try crowdfunding like many startup owners do these days. Last but not the least, you can seek professional advice from financial planners, business experts, or business coaches.

3. Who will operate the business?

Managing your small business by yourself is never an easy task. It’s even less easy when your company is already expanding. One way or another, you will need to enlist the help of well-trained people to help run your business. Their knowledge and skills will be great assets to your expanding small business, helping it grow further.

4. When do you expect to make money?

Certainly you would want to make money at some point. How could any business owner not want to make money? With that in mind, it’s good to set a target date for recovering your capital and earning profit. And if you have a goal, you need an action plan. Let’s say you want to recover capital after one year of starting your home business. What actions will you take to achieve that goal?

5. Do you have what it takes to build your own business?

Running your own small business requires a lot of sacrifices on your part. And there’s even the chance that your business idea won’t work out. That’s something you have to contend with. You can’t avoid running into a few (or many) obstacles along the way. But if you’re convinced that running a business is your road to financial freedom, then go on ahead! By all means, do your best!

You may find these questions far too serious to think about, but one way or another you have to answer them. Starting your own business is a major life decision, and as with any major life decision, you have to be absolutely sure before you say yes. The more you know what you need to do to succeed, the more likely you will succeed. Remember that these questions are not here to discourage you from starting a business. Rather, they serve to prepare you for the journey ahead. So go ahead and start your business, for it may change your life forever!

How To Start and Run a Successful Lifestyle Business Online

A Personal Insight

Congratulations! You have chosen a really rewarding option into how your business and life will coexist happily ever after.” That was a little note to myself when I chose the lifestyle business option, quite a far cry from a traditional start-up that I was running in the entertainment and events industry after quitting my 9-5 job. The latter required me to be in a specific physical location of course so as to reach and serve my clients.

Today, I run a digital business model and all I need is a laptop handy and an Internet connection. I then choose when I want to do some work and where I want to get that work done. And that my friend is what I call a perfect match! My life meets my business everywhere I go, anywhere I am. The general business rules remain pretty similar and herein I will share my own golden rules that new entrepreneurs will particularly find informative… But first… if you are about to quit your job, you are probably wondering

Can Starting A Lifestyle Business Change Your Life?

No more dreadful Monday morning train commutes to work and staring into a stranger’s face seated across from me wearing sunnies on a cold morning, perhaps a subtle attempt to numb the pain of the lifeless surrounding. They are having the same thoughts as me. “Friday cannot come quick enough”. Then I start thinking about my email box and that Monday morning meeting that I have not prepared for. I have to fill in my boss on the current project status before he can go into another meeting with more important people than me to tell them what I just told him!

I remember having those thoughts and it just makes me queasy as I write this. I know you get the drift. I remember suffering temporary amnesia as I walked out of the house, holding car keys and looking for them all over the kitchen and lounge. I had spent a whole hour pre-occupied in thought on how I will handle the stress that was about to unfold for the next 5 days of my life.

The Road Ahead

As exciting as this new journey is about to be you want to get a few things in order straight away in your new ‘house’ to make this transition process as smooth as you possibly can. That business idea is looking great, you have done lots of research, consulted a few souls preferably smarter than you. You have also been making some new friends. I really hope none of them is still working where you just quit! I soon found out that these friendships only flourished over the years because of shared interests such as office politics that tended to specially thrive on Friday night at the bar when we didn’t have to whisper about overwhelming love for senior management.

The reality now is, you are in an elevated consciousness phase of your life, one that these friendships cannot exist. Your mindset needs to be fed with new insights and nurtured with refreshing thoughts about living a fulfilled life. You have some money saved up in the bank and probably have an actionable step-by-step business plan. There is something of value that you have to share and a strategy to get customers lined up ready to give your ‘something’ a warm welcome into this new world order.

But that is the easy part. I shall be completely honest here; apart from some money that I had saved up at the point of quitting, I really didn’t have much more than a rough idea of what I was going to do. I was risking it all. When I left my day job some years ago, I was at a point where it was either that or I lose my mind.

7 Golden Rules

A New MIND-set:

As with all things new, your mind is the first guy you want to put in check. Let him know there is a new sheriff in town. If you are like me, you have been spending the better part of the last 6 – 12 months buried deep in business books and ripping them apart in your spare time. At some point, you found personal development material captivating. Eventually, you started finding out why that constant nagging feeling of life and lack of fulfilment was. As an example, I had read books like Richdad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki and listened to the audio version of the same in case something was lost in translation! I had also read Think & Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill and Dale Carnegie’s How To Win Friends and Influence People among others.

This is an activity that you will not want to let slip into the overflowing ‘good habits to continue when I get time bucket’. I had one like that and needed no motivation adding more stock completely in autopilot. Mind food is paramount in this journey. You want to stay inspired a good chunk of the time because this is where the sowing is happening. The thing is as abstract as some of the ideas in this material may seem at this point; I found that with time, it all starts to fall into place as the journey progresses. So do not sweat any concepts that are not clear yet. Keeping the reading habit going is all you need. These books are not really designed for reading cover to cover. Think of them like the SAT NAV system your car or as you own version of a personal SIRI.

It is a known fact that our minds don’t like disruption. Whether that disruption is good for us or not, it is not very welcome without some whip cracking. The mind has got everything figured out. It is a very well trained machine with thoughts and habits that shape your life and works even when you are sleeping, doing the ‘regular chores around the house’.

The 9-5 routine mindset is still at this point deeply wired into your system. It’s advisable to start setting up ground rules so that YOU and the MIND are both on the same page. This takes a while and certainly took me the better part of 2 years. Don’t stress just know there are changes you will need to work on consistently in this area. Oh, remember when I mentioned who your new friends cannot be a little earlier?

Breaking The Bad:

I made the mistake of trying to keep a regular 9-5-like routine when I first started my entrepreneurial journey. Big mistake. What tends to happen as a result is, the mind in these early days of business life, is still largely unaware of the ‘new life in construction progress’. It actively runs the old familiar version of ‘code’ from its 9-5 days in the background in stealth mode. You might know what happens when you try to run a new version of Microsoft Windows on old PC hardware? Yes, exactly right!

All sorts of weird compatibility issues are not unheard of.

I did not understand this myself. The mindset driving my routine was still stuck in the old version. The correct term for this is the subconscious mind. So your poor conscious mind, which is pretty much what we operate on until new ways are ‘learned’ runs into a constant battle. It really wants to change the world for you, it’s ready to work hard, promising to cut the Friday night binge that serves no purpose other than a regular headache which eats away the Saturday morning and pinky swears to cut down on addictive TV shows.

Someone, please explain why my favourite big screen stars are also hanging out in these TV shows… like really?

The Deal With Time Management:

As a new entrepreneur what quickly comes into awareness I would say is the time management beast and what seems to be like an endless stream of unmanageable distractions. In a lifestyle business that is run from home, the park, at the beach, the airport lounge or while on safari at The Mara, this can be a constant battle. Don’t get too hang up on being perfect day one with this one. The more I tried to fight it the more I stressed about it. Stress did not improve my time management skills and only added to unfinished tasks that needed more worrying about… I thought! The time drama continued until I put measures to progressively learn how to improve time management.

Keep educating yourself on what works for your schedule and what sorts of distractions are overpowering you. I can tell you now it’s going to be technology related!

It didn’t matter that I was an early riser who wouldn’t go to bed until my eyeballs were literally unlocking themselves from my sockets in protest. Occasionally I got the odd finger in this scuffle! And sometimes I still wouldn’t give up. Now, this does not necessarily equate to being productive. The actual real result was a constant feeling of exhaustion, elevated stress levels, and anxiety.

Why You Need To Design A Routine That Works Around Your Lifestyle Business

I hadn’t changed my routine so my mind would expect the usual treatment, 9 am we are active at work and then at 5 pm it expects that we are on the ‘winding up for the day phase’. I, on the other hand, had with all good intent, added extra hours in front of the 9 and after the 5. Now you can see where the problem was once I kept this up for a while. Insane!!! Create a new routine and optimise around what works for you.

Decide When You Want To Work… Create A Routine… Then Follow It With Military Discipline

Perfecting this phase when you start a lifestyle business, which means your physical surroundings change constantly, it can feel daunting. However, with a well mapped out daily, and weekly routine that you have the discipline to stick with, you will start to see results. In no time, this will end up running on autopilot.

There’s going to be a lot of 10 to 12 hour days, maybe longer but they don’t and shouldn’t be in your constant daily routine. After all, it’s business around your lifestyle. I have 3-hour blocks and generally leave my ‘heavy lifting work’ for when I get into a state of flow, usually after midnight.

Understanding Your Personal Power and Peak Performance State:

This state starts becoming more regular with practice and awareness. Understand your highs (i.e. peak energy state), lows (this is no time to do the books and usually a good time to choose pizza toppings and make big decisions like thin or thick crust?) and my personal favourite flow state (this is creation mode and a good time to change the World). Pick a block of hours that works for you. Once new habits in your routine become solid you will have an easier time telling these states apart.

It’s not unusual for me to get into flow while at the shops looking at apples and kiwi fruit fresh deals of the day. This state for me comes through an insightful thought or sometimes as a series of thoughts back to back, so please keep a hardcover notebook at all times for these moments. You might just stumble on your best business idea yet!

Time management and productivity is a continuous optimisation process. All you have to do is decide how many hours you want to work. Pay attention to your body clock and maximise for times when you are at peak energy states. Then learn to induce these states through rewarding practices like meditation.

Schedule Fun Times on Tuesdays:

Although it’s not how I started off, I am lucky thus far to be working on businesses that allow me lots of flexibility as to when and where I actually work. If this tickles your fancy you are on the right track here. In my case, all I need is my mac book pro and decent wifi. Tip: When I am in a location where the menu has an under $10 dollar price tag frenzy going on, I move on swiftly.

About Tuesdays

Move all the things you used to do for fun on Saturday to this day. The Keyword here is FUN guys so if mowing the lawn is fun! Okay, you get my point. It doesn’t matter what the activity is but I recommend you do it in the early days of your journey. The feeling is absolutely incredible. For me, it was reading the paper and a coffee down the road.

Do you guys wonder why we still print newspapers today?

So, usually, one or two local Moms will swing by the coffee shop and that is all the action there is. The rest of the ‘real’ world folks are at work. This is my opinion but what I found with being Mr Tuesday is that it gives me a boost of confidence and that sense of freedom where I feel, “yeah that’s right, I can do what I want when I want”.

I will point out here that this has nothing to do with money. I have done this even when the reality at that time was ‘cash-flow challenges!’. I am not advocating that you should smile and be happy when you are broke, no no no. When you think about it, this is when you need your mind at a 100% and if all it takes is a series of 3-dollar coffees down the road, so be it. While on this topic, my ideal Tuesday day is on a yacht surrounded by endless views of blue seas at exactly 11 am and a safety vest in close proximity! Unwanted swimming lessons are not part of this plan.

What does your ideal Tuesday day look like?

Your Inner Circle… Your Players CLUB:

This is an interesting one because if you think about your ideal Tuesday above, how many people do you know today can do that? Initially, you will probably be alone or maybe with someone close to you like a partner, wife, girlfriend or somebody else who probably does what you do, or benefits directly from what you do. I found out that the friends I used to hang out with on Saturdays and Sundays in my previous life no longer fitted in the new life I was creating. It’s a delicate balance but I had to make some changes. For the same reason, of course, the folks at your old job will probably not take Tuesday off to hang out at your newly found happy place to share happy coffee with you.

I could go on and on about this inner circle area of the new life but what I realised and accepted was, I needed to decide as part of the journey, to be alone for a little while as more new quality friendships developed. This is still an ongoing process. As an example, a couple of months ago I was in HongKong for a week just by myself. I had a blast but would it have been nicer to share that escapade with someone familiar?

I met new people on that trip and did things I had never done before. I love travelling and it is one of the reasons why starting a lifestyle business was a brilliant model. The thing is, if I can make friends who also have time to be lazy on Tuesdays for happy coffee and random sun baking escapades, that is probably a good ‘new friend barometer’ check right there! Oh and hopefully of course what they do for money is generally not frowned upon by law!

On the real, though, I personally don’t have many of these friends but I found that this is a good time for me to reflect inwards and to focus on my personal growth. If you are new into this game, this could be a good time to spend with a business mentor, perhaps meet other like-minded people in your local community, go deep into nature or maybe just hang out on social media platforms and engage and find out the latest buzz like who got a cat! Seriously the point here is, have a lot of choices in your back pocket that you can go crazy with and if you have bucket list ideas all figured out, check them off weekly without fail.

Family:

Family is very dear to me and I would imagine it’s the same for you too. Perhaps, much so that you are making this decision to escape the 9-5 and really start learning new ways to make money outside the voluntary solitary confinement space (also known as office cubicle). One of my reasons for choosing this journey was my family. To be more available to them and to enhance my own life experiences. To fill those experiences with what I really want anytime I wanted it. The one thing I encountered and you probably might as well, those we love and care for dearly may not understand the new you. These moments may not be as dramatic such as waving placards in protest but you will see it vividly.

Remember how our minds don’t like change?

It’s not their fault and they are probably coming from a place of love for you. Embrace the response you get with love and remember your bigger mission. I had lots of strange conversations with people I love and would have like to be speaking a foreign language at the time. That way being misunderstood would have been spot on. Then one day I realised, they weren’t really saying they disliked my new outlook on life and crazy ideas like giving up a six-figure income.

They were just saying, “We don’t understand how to process this new information”. Please show us how. You might also take consolation in the fact that how well you manage this close relationship is a reflection of how you will do ‘out there’ where the World is short of people like you and me, people who are lost in self-indulgence and totally unconscious of their daily actions will not understand you either!

Remember, training takes time. That’s what it took for me until they somewhat understood. If you are lucky enough to get the all in response from them, great, if not, give them time and if need be, add the space element to it as well. Be kind to yourself.

At the time, I was on a roller coaster going through a myriad of changes both personal and business that required me to be very present. My first business was in an industry I did not know at all, the physical surroundings were not very familiar (I will discuss this in a later post) and a pending divorce as a result of a strained long-distance relationship. Now, this was a lot of action in one headspace!

In Summary

Your circumstances may be a little different from mine for wanting to come this way and choosing this journey. As you go along, it’s reasonable to expect moments where you will be tried and tested by fate. Things will happen that will be out of your comfort zone or out of your control and sometimes both.

In the end, I find that clarity on my why I do what I do sails me through choppy waters. I embrace whatever comes my way with love. Answers to what I don’t know come in the right time. I keep the bigger mission clear in my mind. Creating a life where I can live on my own terms is not free, there’s a price to be paid.

Another really important thing to have a solid business system. I found my answer with the six-figure mentors. They have a step-by-step business system that shows you how to leverage the Internet and start your very own online business. What’s, even more, is that if your goal is to start your own business say around your passion, the business skills you will learn are second to none. From experience with my first 2 ventures as a newbie without a mentor, I would recommend every new entrepreneur make getting a mentor, their number one priority. Looking at how I started my entrepreneurial journey, this was my single most expensive mistake up until today as I write this.