Michelle is an entrepreneur and blogger that runs the personal finance and lifestyle blog, Making Sense of Cents. Since 2011, she’s been using her background in finance to write great content and grow her blog business to over $70,000 in revenue per month. Here's her business advice for new entrepreneurs who want to start a business and become gainfully self-employed:
Online sites like Etsy and ArtFire are platforms that make it extremely easy for crafters who can produce a steady supply of quality handmade items, like crocheted blankets or unique painted glassware. Startup costs are extremely low if you purchase your materials in bulk from a craft supplier, and if you can turn around orders quickly, you'll be making a profit in no time at all. It's even possible to turn your store into a full-time gig.

A digital marketer tries the best to boost the search engine optimization. Unbounce can help you to achieve the end result. It covers all the aspects that you need to do with landing page optimization. The strategies are easy to follow and actionable. You will get the details for easy implementation. This blog posts cover product marketing, Pay Per Click, Campaign strategy and much more under one roof.


Top Rank Marketing – Listed 6 out of 20 times, is an authoritative source and has always ranked as one of the best marketing blogs because it has been ahead of the curve and a mainstay for years. Some of their latest posts are about: (i) How B2B Brands are Getting Creative on Twitter with 280 Characters, (ii) Do You Really Need Another Blog Post? Why Content Marketing Needs More Flexibility, and (iii) Report: What Marketers Need to Know About the ‘State of Video Marketing’.
As the name of this business hints, this blog is all about the customer and their experience with your brand. If you want tips and advice on improving customer engagement, email marketing, and smart copywriting, then Customer.io needs to land on your Feedly. They do things a little differently than many of the blogs on this list, with shorter articles that provide snippets of value for you to put into action straight away.

If you hate the idea of writing you can always outsource that work to somebody else. But writing great content for an affiliate site really isn't that difficult. It just takes a bit of practice, and once you see those first commission checks you'll be up writing articles for your site before work, during your lunch break, and when you should be sound asleep in bed. Successful affiliate marketers can be real gluttons for punishment.
Start by taking other courses you’re interested in: Not only is this important competitor and opportunity analysis, but it also gives you an idea of how a course could or should look and feel. What’s the pacing like? Is it via email, video, in-person chats? Once you understand how you want your course to look, it’s time to decide what it should include. Those same courses are a great starting place. How can you make your course better or more interesting? Do you have experience others don’t?
If you are a professional photographer or have a real flair for photography, then selling your images on other sites could be an idea. This could be done alongside your own photography site, as it is a good way to help get your work viewed by a wider audience. There are numerous stock image websites to contribute to, but choosing a popular high-end site like Shutterstock should ensure your photographs make you some money.

Seth Godin – Listed 6 out of 20 times, Seth Godin is the best-selling author and marketing expert who writes on marketing, leadership, change, and spreading new ideas. His blog features short, highly digestible posts, frequently diving into marketing life lessons that would benefit marketers of any age or skill level. He takes a very different approach than the rest of the field and the only way to find out what that approach is is by just visiting his site.


Online marketing can be risky yet it's worth your time and investments in order to make your business a success. Whether you own a small business or a large corporate project, you shouldn't ignore using online digital marketing. Creating a perfect mix of offline and online marketing techniques will multiply the chances that your brand becomes more noticeable and profitable. Are there any other online marketing tips that are worth a mention? Spease speak up in comments.
This is quite different from e–library, all you need to do is to start a book and magazine club that attracts people of similar interest. If you are creative, you can attract enough members and the money you make from such business is tied to the number of members that are registered in your book club. Membership fees and registering fees et al. One good thing about online magazine and book club is that you can admit members from any part of the world as long as they are ready to keep to the ground rules.
Do you have plenty of travel hacking tips? Know enough to teach people how to do digital marketing? Whatever that niche may be, as long as you have the skills and a strong desire to learn continually, then you can sell these solutions in the form of an information product. Informational products are one of the largest online business markets out there.
Reed McManigle: Historically tech transfer and entrepreneurship was seen as a distraction for a successful academic career. Strong publications and a history of successfully pursuing grant funding for research are the key metrics for advancement in an academic career. CMU has had a much more entrepreneurial history and culture than many other universities, but even here it has taken decades, multiple success stories, and long-term investment in a tech transfer and entrepreneurial support ecosystem to get to the point we are today (supported in large part by our outstanding foundation community).

“Ask more questions, always. Assess whether “the one method” people are telling you is the only way to go, even makes sense for you and your topic or audience. I’ve found more engaged audience members and more sales waiting on the other side of ignoring traditional advice and focusing on key questions about what my audience needs than through re-creating systems that others have used. Ask more questions, always. Does it apply to you? How can you use it without the elements of it that you don’t like? What would utterly surprise your audience at this point? If you’re asking yourself “Should I do webinars or a 10-day challenge to promote my course?”, ask instead, “In a world where webinars/challenges don’t exist, how would I ideally help people and share my product with them?” – Regina Anaejionu
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.
Unfortunately, not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur. Or at least, not by nature. To run a good business you have to be able to assume the proper role. If that means doing things and acting in ways that don’t come naturally, then so be it. Otherwise, you will risk failing like that 75 percent. Here are eight crucial points the pros agree are prerequisites to becoming a successful entrepreneur.

Reed McManigle: Almost anything that is non-software based, such as medical devices/biotech, energy, chemistry, materials science, is harder to commercialize. The challenges are that these technologies are generally far from being market-ready, or even market-testable, when they are no longer eligible for the basic research-oriented federal funding on which they were based. While these types of technologies have the potential for huge impacts and upsides, they require significant amounts of time and money to reduce technical and market risk.

Once you’ve had children, many parents find themselves caught in the trap of needing to work but wanting to stay home with their kids. Creating your own parenting blog can not only be a way to make some money, but it can also help you connect with other parents and make sense of those crazy sleepless early parenting years (it does get easier don’t worry!)
As the name of this business hints, this blog is all about the customer and their experience with your brand. If you want tips and advice on improving customer engagement, email marketing, and smart copywriting, then Customer.io needs to land on your Feedly. They do things a little differently than many of the blogs on this list, with shorter articles that provide snippets of value for you to put into action straight away.
MarketingProfs – Listed 6 out of 20 times. Their content ranges from marketing strategy to best practices across a variety of formats including podcasts, articles, and tutorials. Recent publications include: (i) Learn From Google: The Five Traits of Successful Teams at Google, (ii) The Characteristics of Highly Shared Infographics, (iii) Influencers’ Top Social Networks for 2018.

MemberPress is a feature-rich plugin that will enable you to turn your WordPress blog into a fully functional membership site. Depending on how you want to run your membership site, you could have a mixture of free and premium membership plans. Premium plans could include no adverts, free downloads, access to extra content, membership forums, and much more. However, it is important to remember that if people are going to pay to view your content then it must be high quality. Otherwise, your members won’t renew their subscriptions when the time comes.
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.

What’s more, Patel is currently in the midst of an acquisition spree. Just months after he bought, rebranded and relaunched the Ubersuggest SEO tool on his own domain, he repeated the trick with the Kissmetrics blog, which, until earlier this summer, was one of the most authoritative marketing publications on the web. Even Patel’s post about his Kissmetrics purchase – which, interestingly, excluded the Kissmetrics analytics tool – makes for a captivating read.
"Falling blindly in love with an idea. Entrepreneurship needs passion, but love can be blinding. Many entrepreneurs believe in their idea so much that they fail to validate it. They tend to dismiss negative feedback on their products or neglect collecting some. And they end up missing product/market fit. Overcoming that requires taking some distance with the idea and applying intellectual honesty. My advice is to talk to potential customers or users from day 1 and for every day after that: never stop collecting feedback. We’re now 25 people on the team at Scoop.it, but I still answer support tickets and take sales calls because there’s nothing as real and valuable than a direct conversation with a customer."

The quote above was taken from a Search Engine Watch article by Raehsler titled 5 AdWords Optimization Checkpoints You May Be Missing. Negative keywords help ensure your message only appears to interested audiences, and this added level of control can increase click-through rate and decrease average cost-per-click. For example, if your company sells wall calendars, your negative keywords could be “Mayan” and “do it yourself.” This would keep your ads from appearing to anyone searching for “Mayan calendars” or “do it yourself calendars.”


Learn then selling guidelines. Each marketplace has guidelines that define what you can and cannot sell. State and federal laws also impact what items are prohibited. In general, you cannot sell alcohol, weapons, service contracts, animals or event tickets. Also, while not always prohibited, you may find restrictions on how you can sell items in some categories, such as art, gift cards and coupons.[27] eBay, Craigslist and Amazon publish these guidelines on their websites.
Marketing Land covers all the aspects of digital marketing. If you are completely unaware of the industry trends and practices, then this blog can help you in a great way. You will find everything under one roof that includes SEO trends, mobile SEO, social media, analytics, and much more. Marketing Land is popular among the new bloggers for its powerful and provoking contents. You can follow the strategies to refine your SEO, mobile marketing, or SEM. There is something for all the bloggers.
Kayla Itsines is probably one of the best success stories of this industry. She’s built a whole Kayla Fitness empire and grown her services from simply writing personal training plans to selling official fitness apps and books. You can jumpstart your career by offering free taster video classes and personal tips on your website and harvesting social media sites like Instagram and Facebook to promote your services.
Amy Schmittauer (now Amy Landino) is a globally-recognized YouTuber, speaker, author, podcaster, and marketing consultant. You’ll find her at YouTube channel formerly Savvy Sexy Social, now Amy Landino where she teaches others how to leverage video storytelling and shares her collection of strategies and tactics to help you create video that gets the attention you deserve.

There are loads of people out there who are looking for graphic artists to contract their graphics jobs to. If you are a graphic designer, then you can take your services online. You just have to be proactive and aggressive in marketing your services. One good thing about offering graphics services online is that you can sign a long term business deal with just one clients especially if you are good at what you do.


Fast growth usually ends badly for most businesses. Fast growth may not be manageable without the right people. Build for the future. Target small areas where you can avoid big encounters that are able to take you out of business in just a few minutes. Remember to research those ideas, make sure that the idea is feasible, and try to find a niche product with low competition and high demand, preferable something you are already familiar with. Then start implementing the idea by starting small and continue with slow and stable growth. Long term earnings are always greater than short term earnings.
If before now you are discouraged about starting your own Bible school because of the cost of renting facility and acquiring furniture et al, then you don’t need to be discouraged anymore because with the internet, you will spend far less starting an online Bible School compared to what you will spend when setting up a brick and mortar Bible School.
Etsy: While Etsy's popularity has declined recently, it's still a great resource for selling handmade items online. No need for complex ecommerce sites or merchant accounts or any sort of automation. The company takes a commission of every sale and charges a small listing fee per item. But many still use Etsy as their primary source of income. The best part is that you can also sell digital products on here such as poster designs. 
Whether it’s by editing metadata tags, regularly updating the company blog, or searching for smart keywords to rank highly on, a good SEO consultant can drastically change how a company’s website appears to search engine users—and just a few positions on Google can make a huge difference in traffic numbers. In short, you could have a big impact on a business’s bottom line, which means this online business idea is in high demand.
If you live in a country that attracts thousands of visitors / tourists, then you can look towards starting your online hotel booking business. All you need to do is to enter into partnership with hotels around you so that when people book their hotels from your website, they will pay you commission based on the agreement you have with the management of the hotel.
“A great brand starts with understanding who you are and what you stand for, understanding your marketplace, and understanding your positioning. What is the perception that you need to create in order to appeal to your target audience? The intersection of credibility, differentiation and uniqueness, and relevance is where you want to best position your brand.” – Re Perez
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. ”
Content Marketing Institute is your one stop shop for all things content marketing! Whether you’re a beginner or an expert, write for B2B or B2C, you’re bound to learn something new here. Some of the things we love most about CMI’s blog are their extensive case studies and statistics (the most cited in the industry!). Another cool feature is the ability to search for content by industry, so you’ll always find something that matters to you.
Normally you’ll be asked to test a few websites by visiting them and to document and record your reactions and thoughts as you go through it. It’s really easy to get set up making extra money online by testing websites. All you need to do is sign up to the following services: UserTesting.com, Userlytics, TryMyUI, Userfeel, TestingTime (UK only), or Side Income Jobs.

As a rule, local businesses have a number of happy and satisfied customers. For some reason, they forget to remind happy clients to give their honest reviews about the offers they purchased. As a rule, those are the angriest customers that leave reviews about their experience in dealing with a brand. In order to chive a balance of positive and negative reviews about your business, push for the customers to leave their honest feedback. This will help your brand to rank higher in the popular search engines. This is one of the best digital marketing ideas that really work.
2. InboxDollars – InboxDollars is similar to Swagbucks, since you’re going to be taking surveys, shopping, etc., so if you want to maximize your return, sign up with both websites. They also offer a search engine that pays you (like Swagbucks) and you get $5 just for signing up.  I won’t continue to list survey sites one after another down the list, but if you want to get paid to take surveys, also check out GlobalTestMarket, E-Poll Surveys and Survey Club.
You know those top-down cooking or craft videos you just can’t seem to get away from these days? There are people out there making a living from them. 78% of B2C companies depend on user-generated content, like those videos, for their marketing campaigns. You can sign up as a creator on a site like Darby Smart and potentially work with brands like Nordstrom, Mattel, and BarkBox. Or, learn how to master PPC advertising and you can use the content to build your YouTube following and monetize through ads and views.
If you have expertise or a passion or interest for a subject, you're ready to start making money with a blog. With a service like Blogger (www.blogger.com), you can start up your blog totally free. You can also create your own site and secure your own hosting for a low price, which is generally the route I recommend, as many free blogging sites have restrictions on what you can say or do, including making money or advertising.
However, if you're looking for realistic ways you can start earning money online now, then it really truly does boil down to seven paths you can take towards profit. Some will provide you with immediate results, helping you to address your basic monthly necessities such as rent, utilities and groceries, while others have the potential to transform your life by revolutionizing your finances in the long term.

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.


MarketingProfs – Listed 6 out of 20 times. Their content ranges from marketing strategy to best practices across a variety of formats including podcasts, articles, and tutorials. Recent publications include: (i) Learn From Google: The Five Traits of Successful Teams at Google, (ii) The Characteristics of Highly Shared Infographics, (iii) Influencers’ Top Social Networks for 2018.
Unfortunately, not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur. Or at least, not by nature. To run a good business you have to be able to assume the proper role. If that means doing things and acting in ways that don’t come naturally, then so be it. Otherwise, you will risk failing like that 75 percent. Here are eight crucial points the pros agree are prerequisites to becoming a successful entrepreneur.

Do you like finding interesting ways to decorate and want to share those ideas with others? Do you sift through magazines, clipping images, sorting them into make-believe rooms in your scrapbook wanting desperately to see these rooms for real? Become an interior design consultant and have people send you pictures, ideas, and dimensions to their rooms for you to decorate digitally for them. You can use the likes of a VR tool to pick furniture from real stores and choose a color scheme that suits the owner. The sky’s the limit with this role and creativity is in full flow.
As many people know all too well, a job can easily turn into the focal point of your daily life. Instead of being a way to support your lifestyle, your work dominates your time. And when that happens, the time you have to dedicate to your loved ones becomes scarce. Combating this is precisely what some have in mind when they decide to take the leap and start their own business.
Check if you need a model release. Photos of people can only be sold for commercial use if they've signed a 'model release' that gives you permission to use their image (children need a parent/guardian to sign). Without a release, these photos can still be sold for editorial use, as long as they were taken in a public place – eg, if you submitted a 'breaking news' shot with people in the background. If there's any doubt, always ask permission.
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