How to Start an Online Business

how to start an online business

So you want to know how start an online business?

Well, bravo and welcome to what is the most rewarding and the most frustrating business on the planet.

As the beginning of 2018 dawns it’s traditionally the time of year when most people start a new online business, and with that in mind I want to talk about a few things (a reality check) and tell you what you need to get started.

First of all let’s start off with the why question. Ask yourself WHY you want to start an online business. You need to know that before you get into the how bit…

When I’ve asked that question of new online business owners before the most common answer is “to make money.” Well yes every business wants to make money.

But let me say here and now, that shouldn’t be the reason you start out!

Most people (including me when I started back in 2009/10) get sucked or suckered into the online business/marketing world by the promise of easy money. And depending on how you look at it, I was in the right place at the right time to buy into a business opportunity that promised a ton of cash for very little work.

And at the beginning of every new year you’ll see “start a new online business here” type text ads, video ads, emails, articles, blog posts, tweets, status updates, images, banners, forum signatures etc, popping up all over the place.

It’s just how this industry rolls.

Perhaps you’ve seen one and thought hmmm, sounds good!

Quick back story

I was made redundant from my job as a trainer at Christmas 2009. There where rumours that some of us where heading for the chop a month or two before so I got stuck into searching for a new job.

That’s when I saw a “Here’s how to start an online business and make money at home” banner (when banner ads worked really well). I clicked on it filled out a form, got a phone call and was sold right there.

Fortunately my wife had a full time job and as I was going to be making a fortune from home with a few clicks of the mouse each day, we decided that I would become a stay at home working dad so I could do the school run and look after the family home.

I was an easy sale, I definitely had the million dollar fairy dust sprinkled into my eyes and I was convinced it would be easy – That’s what I was told on the sales call anyway.

So my motive, my reason why for starting an online business was without any doubt at that time – MONEY.


If money is your reason – WRONG, Wrong, wrong.

You’ll quickly realise that whilst starting an online business is easy, making it profitable despite what all the guru’s out there will tell you, isn’t.

Well at least for the 95% of people who start. That’s the online business failure rate by the way!

Still with me?


So what is a good and ultimaltely profitable reason for starting an online business?

Simple, it’s PASSION!

Now I know that sounds a bit tree hugging hippyish. But that’s what you need.

start a business around your passion

You need to really care about what it is that you’re trying to sell online.

How many times have you spent your hard earned cash something you didn’t give a
s*!t about?

None I’ll bet.

And yes, you are going to have to spend some money to start an online business. I’ll get to that in a minute.

My point it this…

If you work hard on something you don’t care about that’s called stress! But if you work hard on something you love, that’s called passion!

So, what are you passionate about? That’s your answer to the why question. And it’s the niche market you’ll be working in.

Then you need to find or create a product/service that has value and helps the other people who have the same passion you have. And they’ll buy it because they’ll care about it.

Any business that is built around a passion has a far better chance of being in the 5% of successful online businesses, because the product or service you’re offering is driven by a person with passion.

Okay so that’s the why and the what to sell taken care of.

Here’s how to start an online business.

Once you’ve found or created a product that solves a problem the people in your niche have, you need to get it in front of them.

No you can click here  or on the “Must have’s” tab in the navigation bar at the top to get more details on what you need, but essentially it these:

online business must haves

Just bare in mind that I’ve rounded the prices and they do change. This is to give you an idea of your start up and monthly costs.

Domain name – $10/year
Hosting – $5/month
An autoresponder – $19/month
A pro theme (if you use WordPress) – $60
Or a page builder – $30 – $100/month
Tracking software – $10/month

So, you could get started for around $100.

Yep it’s quite cheap to get started!

Now there are a few other tools that I use on top of these – graphics software, stock images, video creation software and video hosting, but that’s about it.

Then once you’re up and running you’re going to need some business management tools and services, for example.

A finance/book keeping software
An accountant – the government is going to want a piece!

They can come later but you need to remember these, and they are additional expenses.

Now if you’ve a passion for the make money online niche, like I have then there are some “Done for you” options. I recommend WebCopyCat. Which runs in at about $40 a month plus autoresponder fees.

You’ll see a banner to WebCopyCat in the sidebar on your right.

I recommend it, I promote it and earn from it every month.

And then there are advertising expenses. Yes, sure you can get people (traffic) visiting your website/offer for free with social media, articles, a blog etc, but most pro marketers will pay for traffic. How much depends on your budget but you should be looking to spend $100 a month on quality traffic.

How to start an online business the pro way

I’ve pretty much laid out for you here what you need to do to build an online business. But there’s one crucial element I want to talk to you about now, and that’s coaching.

Every and I do mean every successful business owner has or has had a coach and mentor – including me!

And why?

Because a coach and mentor will give you direction, keep you focussed, keep you accountable and will brain storm and strategize with you to move you business forward and into the money.

online business coaching

Getting a coach and mentor is the fastest way to becoming successful and profitable.

Coaching can be, and let’s be honest here, expensive. But I like to break the rules and offer coaching and mentoring that isn’t!

You can see what coaching I offer here – I’m not expensive, honest!

How to start an online business – Summary

Start your business around your passion
Find or create a product that your niche will value and want
Get the must have’s and tools you need
Advertise you product/service to your niche
Get coaching

That’s how to start an online business.

So, please don’t start an online business for money that you might make. Start one that has passion at it core. Get a coach to guide you and work hard.

If you’d like more help or you’ve got questions please feel free to get in touch – I don’t bite, I want to help 🙂

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