I’ve been receiving a lot of questions regarding how to get started with an online business.
In this post, I want to help you clarify the questions you might have about getting started with your online business.
No matter if you are in the hamster wheel and planning your escape or just quit your 9 to 5.
There are some steps you have to take before you get started with your online business.
While this post is an overview of the steps you should take before you even get started.
The 2 books I mentioned above will dive into the topic of creating a business online.
TABLE OF CONTENT
- Target audience
- Your unique selling point
- Rough plan
- Your goals
- Product ideas
First off you have to know what you are passionate about.
You need sort of an idea of what you would love to do.
In case you are in the “figuring it out” phase and only know what you don’t want I want you to remember that it’s the first step.
The more you know what you don’t want – the closer you get to what truly sets your soul on fire!
Start with a list writing down everything you want and love in your life.
Getting in touch with your inner self through meditation can be very helpful as well.
If you want to learn more about meditation check out the free meditation beginners’ guide here.
Once you figured out your passion it’s time to know the purpose behind your business and to turn your passion into your business idea.
I’m passionate about personal development and online marketing.
One of the major driving forces for me personally is freedom. The freedom to be able to choose when, where, how and with whom I work together.
My goal is to help women who value freedom as well, finding their sweet spots and to show them how they can make a living with their passion from anywhere in the world.
They can be full-time moms or world travelers with the urge to break free of their rigid 9 to 5 and fulfill themselves with their passion.
2. TARGET AUDIENCE (WHO DO YOU WANT TO HELP)
Once you figured your purpose, passion and the business idea the next step is to know who it is for.
Who do you want to help?
Is it a he or a she? How old is the person? Where and how does he/she live? What are his/her values and dreams?
How can you help this person with your passion?
I touched on my example above but it can be anything.
You might be excellent in the kitchen and passionate about experimenting with easy, healthy recipes.
One of the bloggers I love to follow is Maria from Morerawfood.
She is on a raw vegan diet and turned her passion into her online business.
She sells healthy recipe books and an online course helping others change their diet and live a healthier life.
Another blogger I love to follow is Jenna Kutcher.
She started as a wedding photographer and turned her 300$ craigslist camera into a 7 figure online business.
She is mostly known for her Instagram tips and strategies helping other photographers succeed online.
My favorite knitted socks and headbands are from LiMarann. She loves to knit and to use high-quality wool for her products.
She turned her hobby into a business and offers hand knitted socks and headbands made in Germany.
You see there are plenty of ways how you can start an online business.
Once you nailed down your passion, purpose, business idea and target audience the next step is benchmarking.
3. BENCHMARKING (IS THERE A MARKET FOR YOUR IDEA)
In this step, it’s time to find out if there is a market for your idea.
Your idea might be amazing but if there is no one interested in it you can’t turn it into a business.
Therefore it’s important to check out other people in your niche.
Who would your competitors in the same market place be?
What are they offering?
Who are they targeting?
Use google and start researching.
Make a list with all your potential competitors and write down who they are, what they do, what they are offering and who they are targeting.
If you can’t find anyone in the same niche it might be a sign that there is no market for your idea. It might work but probably will be very hard to monetize.
This would mean that you can go back to point 1 and start from the beginning with another idea.
4. YOUR UNIQUE SELLING POINT (WHAT CAN YOU OFFER DIFFERENTLY)
Let’s say you have your passion, purpose, business idea, target audience and found some competitors online.
Now you can ask yourself what you can do differently to them.
What will your unique selling point be?
You don’t have to invent the wheel again.
It’s nothing wrong if you have an idea that thousands of other people had before you.
But you need to be a bit different from them.
You can’t just offer the same thing. It won’t work.
You have to pour in your personality and work out your unique selling point.
Why should your target audience listen to you?
How are you offering your help differently to your competitors?
Having a unique selling point not only separates you from your competitors but turn your competitors into potential partners.
Because you aren’t competing against them but sharing something similar in your unique way.
5. ROUGH PLAN (HOW MUCH TIME CAN YOU INVEST)
Next step is to make a rough, down-to-earth plan for your future online business.
How much time can you work on your online business per day and per week?
When would you love to put in the hours?
As an online business owner, you can work whenever and wherever you want to.
However, you need a plan and know when you are going to work and be consistent with your work otherwise it’ll be just a hobby.
6. YOUR GOALS (WHAT’S YOUR FIRST YEAR BUSINESS GOAL)
Besides the rough plan knowing when, where and how much you are going to work on your online business it’s time to set goals for yourself.
I’ve already written quite a few articles on goal setting.
It’s not so much different to set business goals as to set personal goals.
The key here is to have a future vision for your business.
Where do you see yourself and your business 1, 3 and 5 years from now?
What do you want to reach with your online business?
Creating money is too vague! You need more specific goals than that.
Download the free smart goal setting sheet and start setting goals for your online business.
As with any goal setting, you start with your big goals first and then break those down into tiny little action steps.
You set yourself a goal 1 year from now and start working backward.
Your goal is to make 300$ / months from your online business 1 year from now than which steps do you have to take to get there.
Taking little action steps every day is the key to success. Do not underestimate the power of tiny steps each day!
7. IDEAS HOW YOU OFFER YOUR SERVICE
By now we nailed down most of the critical questions you need to ask yourself before you get started.
The next step is to think about the ways you are going to offer your service to your audience.
Are you planning to offer physical products or digital products?
What kind of products are you going to offer?
Courses, books, workbooks, coaching sessions etc.?
Brainstorm your ideas and jot down your thought in your business journal.
8. WHICH PLATFORMS ARE YOU GOING TO USE
For Jenna Kutcher, it’s Instagram and Facebook. That’s where she gets most of her dm’s.
For Maria from morerawfood, it’s youtube and Instagram.
For LiMariann it’s Facebook and for me mainly it’s Pinterest because that’s where my creative people hang around.
You don’t have to be on all platforms at once.
In fact, it’s impossible to juggle all the platforms by yourself when you are just starting out.
Focus on 1 platform at a time, master it and then move on to a second platform so you won’t have all your eggs in one basket.
If you want to know how to use Pinterest to grow your blog traffic and following get started with the free 5-day eCourse on Pinterest.
All tools I recommend and mention in this post at a glance:
- Dotcom Secrets is the book you need to read to learn about the basics of online business.
- Expert Secrets is the book where you can learn how to be an expert in your niche.
Want to learn how to start a successful blog?
Check out the post free 4-Day eCourse How to start a blog.
You might be also interested in the 10 things you should do before you launch your blog.