"I recommend that first-time entrepreneurs take this as a real wake up call to avoid making excuses for not getting meaningful product validation before spending resources on development. You need at least 95% confidence that the thing you're working on will be predisposed to some initial success. There are too many other factors out there working against you when you're first starting out and are tight on resources that make the road of entrepreneurship hard enough as-is. Don't make it more difficult for yourself by building a bunch of features no one really wants to pay for."
Modern technology has enabled entrepreneurs to do their work from almost anywhere. In fact, many companies operate in a wholly digital environment, lowering overhead costs and offering freedom to entrepreneurs who want to conduct business on the move. Creating an online business is simply a matter of focusing on your strengths and expanding your network. Here are 12 great online business ideas to get you started.
It’s right to be suspicious of free money. The way cash back sites like Ebates work is that they act as an affiliate for online merchants. When you buy a product from the merchant through Ebates, Ebates gets a commission. The trick is that cash back sites then give you a part of the commission they earn as cash back. That way it’s a win-win-win – the merchant gets a sale, Ebates gets paid, and you spend less cash on something that you were going to buy anyway.
SEO, SEO copywriting, CMS management and Social Media management is no joke, and those are just SOME parts of internet marketing. It will cost you, but it’s gonna be worth every penny you spend. Just make sure that the one doing these services for you is a trusted authority and service provider. There are lots of cheap cheats out there who will suck your wallet dry. Don’t even think of getting cheap with your SEO.

If you enjoy helping people but don’t want to be stuck in a call center or office all day, become a remote customer service agent and help people from the comfort of your own home. Choose between helping people via chat, email, phone, video, or other ways and save the day for people every day. This may not make you your first million, but it feels great to help people.
"To prevent disasters like this, I recommend taking a 50% upfront payment before you even start, then taking the final 50% before any final files are provided. Any client not willing to work this way is unlikely to ever pay and should be avoided. I also strongly advise freelancers to have a written freelance contract, signed by the client, detailing what’s been agreed upon and what will happen in various different circumstances. This will give you ammo should your client be unreasonable, and will also add a level of professionalism and credibility to your service."
22. Get Positive Reviews – What people say in reviews matters to consumers. In fact, one study determined that 79% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they trust a personal recommendation. And as these reviews are visible in search results, having positive reviews with high rankings can help persuade interested consumers to give your business a chance.
Figuring out how to choose the best wording to get a sale has been a part of marketing for as long as marketing’s existed. But digital marketing has introduced a number of new channels and contexts for marketers to figure out. CopyHackers provides research-backed advice on how to write in a way that gets conversions across the wide world of the web.
Every day, there is a huge fluctuation in FX markets. If you have a combination of technical and fundamental analytical skills and some cash flow, you can become an online currency trader. Places like www.forexfactory.com are great for learning the basics. Remember, this is leveraged cash, so if you make the right decisions, you have a chance to profit big! At the same time, the risks can be high if you don’t have a money management strategy in place.
If managing a blog seems a bit overwhelming but you still desire to indulge your writing passion, you can write for other sites or blogs like PayPerPost, Textbroker, or Helium. Also, writing an interesting e-book may also be an option for you as well. E-books do not have any printing or shipping fees, which makes them a viable investment. If you’re someone who possesses strong language skills, you could potentially become an expert copy editor that webmasters will gladly pay to read and edit articles and also correct any overlooked grammatical errors concerning web copy.
Here your task is to give recommendations on how a client can get more traffic and leads for their website. SEO consultants need to know various methods of optimising website content, including being able to do keyword research to determine which words would be optimal to use in titles, headlines, descriptions, articles or any other text that appears on your website.
Jason helps entrepreneurs connect with influencers and experts to rapidly grow their business together at TheStoryTellerMarketer. He also co-hosts the Content Promotion Summit and teaches other entrepreneurs how to get more out of the content they create every day. Here's what Jason has to share with aspiring entrepreneurs who need some business advice before they start a business:
Analytics software exists to tell you how users find your site and what they do once they get there. By combing through the data, you can figure out which content resonates most with your users. Focusing on what really works can save time – but it means ensuring that marketing pros get weekly analytics updates and reports that help them turn insights into action.
Consider selling in lots. A lot is a collection of similar items that is sold in a group. For example, if you have a collection of books, magazines or similar pieces of jewelry, consider selling them all at once in a lot. You many not make as much money as you would have if you sold each item separately. However, the items will likely sell more quickly in a lot than they would individually.[29]

Proz.com is a site where you can get paid to translate all kinds of documents, including files and even conversations. The site provides you with an opportunity to list your services as a translator. They offer opportunities in Spanish, German, Italian, Chinese, Arabic, Japanese and other languages, and specialize in legal, medical, technical and other fields. 

You might have some established persons in your network, share your plans with them and seek guidance. They would be more than happy to help you solve problems that are intrinsic to your business, suggest changes that can help you reduce overheads, and even guide you on things that can help you in scaling up your marketing efforts and sales. There is nothing like learning from someone who has firsthand experience at what you are about to do or have begun doing. Seek advice from successful entrepreneurs, do your research, check case studies and base your decision on the vital knowledge that you gain out it.
Working hard is important, and you might not have the chance to rest every day when you first start out, but it is important to know when you are overworked. Many people who buy from youth businesses do so because of the youthful component of what they do, a component built on energy and a fascination with everything they are learning. That energy and fascination can burn out very quickly if you are not well rested and ready to go. This is not to say that you should slack off, but that you should know when you are at a limit and celebrate progress when it occurs.
Startup costs: Freelance writing is another of those service-based businesses with very low start-up costs. There are tons of places online where you can find clients for free. At worst you can sign up for an Upwork account for $10 per month, just don't plan on staying there forever. The most lucrative writing projects are rarely found on platforms like Upwork.

To test these websites, you’ll be asked to visit the site in question and record your reactions and thoughts as you go through it. To get started making extra money online by testing websites, sign up for some of the most popular services like UserTesting.com, Userlytics, TryMyUI, Userfeel, TestingTime (for people outside the U.S), or Side Income Jobs.
What’s the entrepreneur meaning for Nicole Faith, Founder of 10 Carat Creations? Here’s how she breaks it down, “Being an entrepreneur means having a plan and vision but still succeeding or trying to succeed when the plan falls apart and you’re left with only your vision. It also means knowing when to give up, especially if your idea isn’t working due to forces outside of yourself.”
This is one of the best Internet marketing tips we've ever come across, and we will even tell you where we found it. It came from an eBook that we read by Brian Clark, CEO of Copyblogger.com. In this book, he reveals a detail about SEO that everyone in the Internet marketing arena should focus on - "What happens off the page is much more important to SEO than what happens on the page."
"The way we’ve gotten around that is to always work with somebody on a project before we start handing over significant equity stakes or large sums of money. If the trial project goes well, then talk about expanding the scope of the relationship. Sam Altman from Y-Combinator once said something to the equivalent of 'a bad hire in the first few employees can be detrimental to a startup.' I've really taken that to heart in my business."

Next, you’ll need the right tools. You can be as complicated or simple as you want depending on your comfort with audio equipment, but at the minimum you’ll want a microphone and software for recording your voice. Companies like Behringer, Blue, Focusrite, and others sell studio-quality plug-and-play podcast setups that can get you recording today.
Another online service that is close related to translator services is transcription services. If you are good at transcribing, then you can help several public speakers, preachers and teachers et al write their books by simply transcribing their video or audio teachings. You can as well source for transcription jobs from online platforms such as freelancer.com, elance.com and oDesk.com.
The team at ahrefs have done a great job of modernizing SEO. Their blog tinkers on the edge between old and new school search engine tactics, from keywords to link building and beyond. One of the strongest characteristics of this blog, and why it has made the list, is the data-driven nature of its content that is backed up by an engine of up-to-date SEO metrics.
Great article and I don’t think there’s too much that you have covered in this informative article about optimizing your site with proper SEO and numerous other ways to popularize your site and increase long term traffic. I myself have used many of the ways including PPC and Blogs but wasn’t really aware of how much I haven’t done to increase my web traffic. One thing I would add is that if you don’t have the knowledge to SEO properly, it is well worth the investment to pay someone who does. Again, great article and helpful advice.
Editing is a process of modifying existing texts. As an editor, you will perform tasks such as correction, condensation and reorganisation of text. At the same time, you need to ensure that the original idea is not lost but instead comes across in a more clear way once the text is edited. Editing, therefore, requires a lot of collaboration with the original author or a document. Editing is mainly used in fields such as literature, film, video but also in creative industries such as public relations, marketing and advertising. Some useful editing tools available online are StyleWriter, Intelligent Editing and Serenity Software.
The cornerstone of your affiliate business is about setting up a website that's focused on a specific niche. You research low competition keywords for that niche, with the aim of ranking on page one of Google for those keywords. People visiting your site then click on a referral link, and if they make a purchase at the destination store, then you get paid a commission. That's why some people call it “referral marketing”.

Mobile applications are more popular than ever, and people are willing to pay good money for ways to manage their lives from their smartphones. If you have a great idea and happen to know coding, you can run with it and create your app yourself. If you just have an idea and don't know the ins and outs of how to turn it into a reality, there are plenty of software developers looking to collaborate with people on app creation.

Everyone’s had a friend ask to borrow money before. The internet makes it possible to turn your peer-to-peer lending into easy online money. Peer-to-Peer (or P2P) lending is a great way to generate interest on the cash you have on hand. The interest you earn will be really high, even more than an online savings account! That makes this one of the most legit ways to make money online.

As long as there is still the written word, there will always be editors. Freelance editing and proofreading not only pays a decent hourly wage, it also gives you the chance to read about potentially interesting topics too. What's more, pursuing freelance writing & editing as a business idea can afford you a lifestyle that lets you travel the world as a digital nomad. You can find lots of job postings from companies and individuals in need of writing, proofreading, and editing services on Contena, which makes this a high-demand opportunity to make money online.


Dropshipping is the easiest option to start an ecommerce business without having to buy any products in advance. Sell a variety of products to customers across the world, while setting your own process, building and promoting your own brand, all without needing to invest in warehousing or manufacturing costs. You don’t need to pay for inventory until it’s sold to an actual customer. Check out our guide to mastering dropshipping to learn more about this great business opportunity.
This means that you need to have your ears turned toward those who have your best interest in mind. A good mentor can offer encouragement where needed — or chiding, if required — and guidance on any number of subjects, all without trying to run the business themselves. And while someone more senior can offer good advice, they're not the only voice you should seek: Peers and others at the same stage of business as you, for instance, may have a closer perspective on how things are currently operating, or what new technologies or methodologies are worth your time.
For example, Amazon affiliates can potentially rake in obscene amounts of commission dollars if they work at it. Simply sign up as an affiliate to sell a company’s products using your special referral link, and you can get a commission for each product sold without lifting a finger. Commission ranges from product to product and also goes up in stages according to how many products sales your clicks generate. The top commission tier is 8%. That adds up to some serious amounts of cash each month if you’re promoting products with that high rate of commission ( Home & Garden is one such product area with high commissions).
Shopify is a great example of the freemium model. By offering some applications for free, they get exposure for their whole business. Since the company was founded in 2004, they have acquired 30,000 customers, including Pixar and the Foo Fighters. Their revolutionary “build-a-business” competitions in the past have produced over $70,000,000 in revenue for over 14,000 entrants.
"I advise entrepreneurs who struggle with this problem to first get their tasks organized and written down. I like Asana for this. The tasks that they find themselves adding repeatedly are tasks that they should think about delegating. At the end of the month you need to send out invoices, add numbers to your analytics spreadsheet, etc. Find someone else to do that. The hours you save by outsourcing these types of tasks will help you focus on the things that only you can do--like plan the strategy and direction of the business."
In this qualitative type of research, the aim is to find out people’s opinions, perceptions, beliefs and attitudes regarding various topics eg., products, services, concepts, trends, advertisements or ideas. To perform this kind of research, focus groups often use software such as Focusgroup, Liveminds or iTracks. The results are reported in this focus group report.

If you have previous experience as a computer programmer or have skills in this field, then there is plenty of work you can pick up as a freelancer. If lack of confidence is holding you back, then Free Code Camp is an excellent way to get your foot in the coding door. This organization provides free courses where you will build real-life apps and programs, giving you experience and plenty to add to your CV.


15. Optimize Your Website for Local Search – If your law practice only handles cases in Albuquerque, New Mexico, then it doesn’t do much good to get it seen by consumers searching for legal consultations in Crawford County, New Hampshire. Make sure your business website includes local information, like a phone number, address, and geo-targeted keywords so that local consumers call you.

Has anyone ever told you you have a voice for radio? Are you great at creating original characters with just your voice? There are tons of people looking to pay for quality voice overs for their corporate videos, animation series, or educational videos. Check out Fiverr and UpWork or create a profile on a specialized site like Voices.com or The Voice Realm to get started making money online doing voice overs.
Likes, shares, and social media engagement have become ways for companies to expand into the online business world and gain followers who later on can be converted into customers. As a basic example, say you come across a post for a business in your local area. Initially, you might give it a like and then later remember, hey, I’ve been meaning to check this place out. Or maybe you give a company page a like and then later make a purchase from them.

So go make a blog of your own! And of course, you will also need a good writer for it. My advice is that you pick one good writer from your company to write for you. Of course, pay him or her is due. Writing is no easy task but it’s rewards in the internet is endless nowadays. Just look at the SEO copywriters out there (cough*, yours truly). Of course, don’t forget to check out the freely available blog tips around the net to improve your blog in the direction you want it to go.
Mark Schaeffer’s Grow blog has been providing useful information on digital marketing and technology for years, occasionally venturing into controversial territory (most notably with the widely discussed content shock post a few years back). The blog includes a mix of general marketing advice and thought leadership pieces that analyze what’s happening now in digital marketing and what’s to come.
Writing copy for websites is another great freelancing option for those who have a way with words. Copywriting can involve writing the text for websites, press releases, promotional offline materials including leaflets and brochures, and any other professional text for businesses. While writing blog posts is well paid it won’t make you as much money as writing copy for sales pages. However, clients can be more fussy, as they want the highest quality writing for the forefront of their website or advertising campaigns. Many freelance writers offer both copywriting and blog writing amongst their services. This can be a good way to juggle regular but lower paid clients (blogging) with the higher paid but ad-hoc project based copy work.
The quote above comes from the article and podcast, Brands Not Using Social Media Create Communication Language Barriers with Customers. Moore says that the mission of online and digital marketers is to find out where your target marketing is spending time and “speak to them, communicate with them and most importantly serve them where, when and how they choose.” Not using social media means not serving your target market online, and it sends the message that your brand doesn’t have enough time for their customers to meet them where they are.

This is a great way to make extra cash if you’re always plugged in to the events around your city. It’s also a great way to deal with wanting to go to an event, but not being sure you’ll be able to make it. You can just buy the tickets, and if your plans don’t work out, sell them on StubHub for a profit! Keep in mind that StubHub takes a 15% commission on all sales, so make sure your prices are set where you want them to be!
Of course we have to include our very own ROI Factor Blog. We take pride in our work, and we enjoy discussing a number of different topics that shape the industry in which we operate. Our digital marketing blog prompts a number of different conversations from digital trends, to marketing innovation and best practices. We balance the scale between the importance of technical and results-driven marketing, and creative campaigns, and work to highlight everything in between through our bi-weekly posts. From strategy, design, and marketing, to website and mobile app development, you can find it all here at BFM. Digital marketing blogs are a great way to stay on top of what is going on in this rapidly-changing industry. Are there any digital marketing blogs that you love that we missed on our list? Comment below or tweet us @BFMweb.
No matter whether you cater to B2B or B2C, one thing is a fact: Your prospects go online when they have problems to solve. Don’t be afraid to help them solve those problems ... in fact, get in the habit of providing significant value to prospects before making a cent. This builds the trust you need to position your business for later sales, especially if you have tough competition.
Affiliate marketing is where a person promotes a product that another merchant sells. Using advertising, social media, blogging and more, an affiliate marketer can attract customers to their landing page. When customers click a link to buy the product they will then be brought to the merchant’s store to buy the product. As an internet business idea, this is great for another no matter their previous experience.

The number of websites and blogs operating online demand a constant stream of high-quality, beautiful photographs that can help businesses attract and convert more customers. If you are a photographer who likes to try new things, supplying professional photos to businesses in this capacity can be a the most popular business idea for you. You can scale easily by setting up a stock photo library. This is a great business idea as it targets virtually every industry regardless of a company’s size. Check out sites like SmugMug, Photoshelter and iStockPhoto for more information.
Obviously you would pursue standard marketing techniques like internet marketing, search engine optimization, posters, banners, fliers, etc. depending upon the nature of your business; but all of these marketing techniques have a turnaround time and fairly lower success rate for businesses which are not quite popular. Thus, the people in your vicinity and personal network will be vital for getting that initial revenue. You will be surprised to know that happy clients get you more clients! Most of the successful entrepreneurs have reported that about 50% of the clientele came from the initial clients they had successfully served.
If you offer freelance services or have a physical services business, then creating a blog is a must. On your blog, you can write about the services you offer and how they will benefit your clients. Importantly you can add a ‘Services’ page, outlining the services you provide, what they include, and any other important information potential clients may need. This is an effective way to promote your services, generate leads, and increase your revenue.
Mike Kim, co-founder and COO of KPOP Foods, shares what the entrepreneur meaning is really all about. He shares, “Entrepreneurship is not for the faint hearted. I am a US Army veteran. I have been in combat and I have endured many difficult situations. However, I can honestly say starting a company has been just as challenging, albeit in different ways. While no one’s life may be in imminent danger, the battles you face on your entrepreneurial journey can last years with no repose. Creating a successful business requires massive amounts of action, perseverance, and conviction. If you understand this and choose to proceed, you’ll find the experience rich in rewards. ”
Entrepreneurship is a challenging but rewarding path to take and you have highlighted some great tips here. I agree with your point that to be a successful entrepreneur you need to work smarter, not harder. I believe that working smarter is all about hiring the right team and delegating responsibility. Think about it this way. Today’s entrepreneurs are working with the ‘Millennial’ generation, those born after 1980 and before 2000. These people are digital natives who have very different ideas around what they look for in their leaders, compared to the ‘Baby Boomers’ generation. For example,‘Millennials’ look for their leaders to be strategic thinkers, inspirational and have strong interpersonal skills. Millennial’s will make up 50% of the global workforce by 2020, so entrepreneurs really need to tap into their younger employees and involve them in company decisions.
"Instead of praying an audience (or customers) will find you, get in front of people in your space. Start a blog, podcast or create video content. Take advantage of social media. Attend in-person events. One way to make "putting yourself out there" easier is by making an effort to help others. (Sounds counterintuitive, I know!) On the individual level, maybe it's by making an introduction. For a larger audience, perhaps it's by writing an actionable blog post. However, by being helpful you'll make a lasting impression."
While some might think that starting a blog is an arduous effort, when you understand the precise steps you need to take, it becomes far easier. It all starts in the decision of choosing a profitable niche and picking the right domain name. From there, you need to build your offers. You can easily sell things like mini-email courses, trainings and ebooks.
Out of all the online marketing tips we could possibly give you, remarketing is one of the most important. This tactic targets potential customers who have visited your site but maybe didn’t make a purchase. With remarketing, your ads will appear on other sites that those potential customers visit making it so your brand name is in front of their eyes even though they’re not on your website. Thus reminding them of your products and services over and over again, which encourages them to return to your site and make the purchase they didn’t make earlier
Rest and relaxation are vital and are a necessity to ensure success. One of the reasons you are creating an online business is to enjoy the benefits that it has to offer, such as flexibility and enjoyment. So make sure you take at least one day a week where you don’t do anything work-related. You can them come back to work on Monday morning completely refreshed and will see things from a clear perspective. Working too hard will not benefit you or your brand.
A good entrepreneur will also be focused on learning and growing, both from a personal and professional standpoint. This means getting the latest certifications if needed, taking classes to improve communication skills, or subscribing to industry publications that provide vital information for future decisions. Actively and purposefully working towards improvement, and evolving their efforts, is a common theme for successful entrepreneurs.
A site called User Testing will actually pay you a fee to evaluate websites. It typically pays you $10 for each video that you review – which typically takes about 20 minutes. If the work is there, and you are particularly good at it, you could earn up to $30 per hour. That’s a pretty solid pay rate for a work-at-home job. You wouldn’t have to work a whole lot of hours to generate a decent part-time monthly income.

Whether you have a website or are still dreaming up ideas for a blog, you can also look into affiliate marketing. With affiliate marketing, you partner with brands and businesses within the content of your website. If you mention a product or service, you link to that produce or service using a unique affiliate code you received when you signed up for that particular affiliate program. From there, you’ll make money any time someone buys a product or service through your link.
To be successful in business you need to be organized. Organization will help you complete tasks and stay on top of things to be done. A good way to do this is to create a to-do list each day. As you complete each item, check it off your list. This will ensure that you're not forgetting anything and you're completing all the tasks that are essential to the survival of your business.

Whether you stick with the above blogs, or go on a following spree, start building a portfolio of go-to RSS feeds or a Twitter list of your own favorite marketing resources. Blogs are one of the easiest ways to stay updated on the industry and learn consistently, and there’s no excuse for not keeping up with any – especially now that you know who to start with.
Carnegie Mellon has one of the most successful technology transfer records in the country and invests heavily in helping its students and faculty bring research to the marketplace. Through vehicles like the Center for Technology Transfer and Enterprise Creation and Project Olympus, an on-campus incubator, CMU is helping students blaze the notoriously treacherous path from thrilling research and bright idea to marketable product.
Your marketing strategy will never be successful if you do not have a clearly defined audience. Before you spend a dime on marketing, figure out your target market first. There’s no need to pay top dollar to hire a fancy market research firm. If you know your product, you should be able to figure out your market yourself. For example, who will be most interested in your product? Men or women? What is their age group? What are your customer’s interests? What is their likely financial situation?
19. eBay – Of course you can’t read an article about making money online that doesn’t mention eBay. You can start an eBay store and get serious about it or you can just sell some stuff to declutter your home. Either way, I’ve made my fair share from selling on eBay and it’s still a popular way to earn money. If you decide to start an actual eBay store, you’ll want to find a drop-ship business like Doba that will store and ship items straight to your customers so you don’t have to deal with an inventory.

Owning a “real” business means you need to think about bank loans or financing, leases, maintaining inventory, business insurance, finding staff, training staff, etc. You then need to factor in finding a prime location for your business. If you don't have enough footfall then you can expect to be shutting up shop in as little as a few months. In fact, 50% of small brick-and-mortar businesses fail within their first 3 years.
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