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:

According to the U.S. Commerce Department, consumers spent $453.46 billion on the web for retail purchases in 2017, a 16.0% increase compared with $390.99 billion in 2016. That’s the highest growth rate since 2011, when online sales grew 17.5% over 2010. Forrester predicts that online sales will account for 17% of all US retail sales by 2022. And digital advertising is also growing strongly; According to Strategy Analytics, in 2017 digital advertising was up 12%, accounting for approximately 38% of overall spending on advertising, or $207.44 billion.
If you're at all scarcity-minded, it's important to understand how much abundance exists today. Considering that virtually every brick-and-mortar store has made the transition to an online business, there's certainly no shortage of competition. But there's also plenty of so-called blue ocean. While most might make it out to seem like Amazon is the only company reaping the benefits of the ecommerce boom here, the growth is widespread and across every single sector in business.
It’s not easy to convert a prospect into a customer. It is, however, relatively easy to convert your prospects into list subscribers. For many businesses, the email list – which prospects land on by volunteering their contact info in exchange for content – is the best asset they have. By sending a single email, you could make thousands of dollars in one day.
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.
You’ve probably heard that, when it comes to search engine optimization (SEO), content is still king. And one of the best ways to keep your site relevant for search engines is to consistently and frequently publish high-quality web content. In other words, keyword stuffing is out, and creating compelling content that people are eager to promote is in.
Nathan is host of the fastest growing business podcast The Top Entrepreneurs, and CEO of Send Later, a company he recently acquired after failing to acquire Success Magazine for $5m. He founded the social giveaway SaaS startup, Heyo and is an experienced online educator at CreativeLive where he teaches Facebook Marketing for Small Business Owners. Here's his business advice for first-time entrepreneurs who want to start a business of their own:
If your company is business-to-business (B2B), your digital marketing efforts are likely to be centered around online lead generation, with the end goal being for someone to speak to a salesperson. For that reason, the role of your marketing strategy is to attract and convert the highest quality leads for your salespeople via your website and supporting digital channels.
Here’s the low-down: some internet domain names are more popular, sought-after, and valuable than others. Successful internet domain name flippers buy high-value domains for cheap at online auctions after lots of forethought and research, then sell to the biggest bidder for a nice profit. For example, www.hotels.com was sold for $11 million in 2001.

Converting files can be done manually or using file conversion software. Usually, you need to convert word, excel or powerpoint files to a PDF format. In the case of books, files are typically converted with a text editor program to an epub or kindle format – used for e-books. Some examples of file conversion software are NCH FIle Conversion Software and Zamzar.


"The most painful mistake I see inexperienced entrepreneurs make is copying or doing the same things that successful entrepreneurs have done, expecting similar results. What first-time entrepreneurs don't realize is that the world is not a vacuum and there's more going on behind the scenes than it appears. There's much more effort that has gone into creating the success they see on the surface, and there's no guarantee that a particular tactic or strategy will be successful for everyone."

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.
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!)
One approach that has worked well for me over the years is to pinpoint the best minds in the industry and follow their every move. Listen to their podcasts, read their blogs, watch their YouTube videos, and keep up to date with their social posts. The key is to find a small group of trusted thought leaders who are renowned for breaking news, challenging the status quo, and turning up day after day with great content.
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.
Now, those aren't my thing, but I did realize I could use it for just about anything in my systems noted above. For example, I gave myself the challenge of 100 days of learning a new skill and spent 100 days learning a programming language. It was well out of my comfort zone, but by the time the 100 days were up, I knew something new that I could put on the skills list of my resume. Try 100 days of reading more or being thoughtful to others.
Copyblogger – Listed 9 out of 20 times, talks about content marketing and copywriting. This is one of the best digital marketing blogs for anyone who wishes to build a thoroughly content marketing strategy. Some recently published popular articles are about: (i) Killer Resources for Freelancers … and an Option for Those Who Don’t Want to Go It Alone, (ii) The Wise Content Marketer’s Guide to Sensible SEO, and (iii) The Simple 3-Step Process for Creating a Winning Content Marketing Strategy

There are loads of stuffs you can line online; it could be obtaining a technical skills and a diploma or it could be obtaining a Degree or an MBA et al. If you passionate about impacting knowledge, all you need to do is to secure the required license, permits and accreditation from the government of your country and you can successfully start your own degree / diploma awarding online school.
The quote above comes from his article, 11 Terrific Twitter Profile Designs for Inspiration, where he emphasizes the importance of standing out. He states that “we work, play and create in a digital ecosystem that defines you by your image online,” so brands need to carefully craft what they are on their online platforms and leverage the online real estate. For example, a brand or professional can utilize a Twitter profile to announce a new product, highlight a hashtag, promote a webinar or market a new look.
Multi-vendor marketplaces, like ThemeForest, can be very successful. Chose a niche and create a vendor website for it. Your marketplace could be anything, from a platform for local artists to sell their work on, to an online digital product store. Once set up, invite people in that industry to sell their products on your site. You take a percentage of their profits when items sell.
Writing an eBook and selling it on your blog can be a great money maker. Your eBook should be directly relevant to your blog’s content so you can sell your book to your existing audience. Creating a recipe eBook for a food blog or an eBook full of training plans to complement your fitness site are just a couple of examples that have the potential to sell.

Speaking of the internet, maybe you’re not a social media expert… but you are a pro at SEO, or search engine optimization. If you’ve got loads of skill and experience in getting websites to rank highly on Google (as well as Bing) and understand how to turn searchers into customers, then there are plenty of companies willing to pay handsomely for your help.
5. Fiverr – Fiverr is a great place to make a few bucks or spend a few bucks if you need some of the services people offer. Basically, everything is $5. You either pay $5 or charge $5. They call them “gigs.” You can offer your services however you choose. If you sell art and you’re fine selling pieces for $5 each, that’s a gig. If you’re a graphic designer and you want to offer your services for $10/hour, simply offer a 30 minute gig. If they need two hours of graphic design, they pay you $20, or $10/hour by buying four gigs.
The quote above comes from his article, 11 Terrific Twitter Profile Designs for Inspiration, where he emphasizes the importance of standing out. He states that “we work, play and create in a digital ecosystem that defines you by your image online,” so brands need to carefully craft what they are on their online platforms and leverage the online real estate. For example, a brand or professional can utilize a Twitter profile to announce a new product, highlight a hashtag, promote a webinar or market a new look.

What does that mean for you? It means Nielsen will pay you $50 a year to keep their app on your favorite internet browsing device. The app itself collects statistics on your internet usage anonymously, so you never have to worry about any data being linked to you. And the best part is, the app takes up barely any space and doesn’t slow down your phone or tablet at all!
You'll also need ecommerce software, fulfillment software, worry about warehousing, customer service and refunds. But that's not all. You'll also need traffic. Think search engine optimization, Facebook ads, and other social media campaigns. It is hard work, especially on your own. You could opt for Amazon's platform, which might be the easier route. But, then again, at the end of the day, this is a serious business, which could produce significant profits. So you're either all in or you're not. 
What’s the point of even having a website if it doesn’t look nice on every device? 61% of users are unlikely to return to a mobile site they had trouble accessing. If your site is not responsive, those potential customers will find another business. More and more people are making purchases through mobile devices so make sure that your website is mobile friendly.
So how do you get others to link back to your Website and Blogposts? There are lots of ways, but one of the most widely used by professional Internet marketers is known as guest blogging. Guest blogging is exactly what it sounds like, you work with another Blog in your niche (preferably one with a large following) and offer to write a Blog post for them that their (and your) audience will value. It is commonplace in guest blogging that the author will be able to get a link back to their own site, either at the beginning or end of the article, and can sometimes link to their Blog posts within the article itself, where the information is relevant. In many instances, the other Blogger will also reciprocate and guest blog on your Site, which is a Win-Win, because you now get quality content from a recognized blogger.
The quote above comes from a blog article on How to Create Content to Attract Your Target Market. Porterfield says that once you know your target market well enough, creating content for them becomes surprisingly easy. This holds true whether that piece of content is a social media post, video, image or blog post. The key to great content is consistency, because it’s one of the primary ways a brand earns trust and respect. Porterfield also recommends diversifying your content (blog posts, series of images, podcast) and opening the conversation with your customers. She says you can start the conversation by identifying a commonly asked question and writing a post about it, or reviewing your three most popular social media posts in the last 6 months and finding the common thread to elaborate on.
Putting up a website in the internet is step one of the tough road to successful internet marketing. Step one doesn’t give you everything – it’s just the foundation. After you’ve created and established an online presence, you have to make sure to follow up with other online business needs. Such as, as earlier stated, a blog (ahem!), Social network integration (ahem ahem!), and yours truly, SEO (ahem ahem ahem!). My advanced package answers all of those needs by the way. Just in case you’re interested. Just saying.
Create a killer course experience: With your course validated and in the works, you need to figure out how people will take it. Most course creators choose to host their courses from their own websites. This way, they get all the value of bringing customers back to their site on a regular basis. I host my own courses from a subdomain on my own site so I can easily add more. The course experience is incredibly important as well. And after trying most of the solutions, I highly recommend Teachable—an online platform designed specifically for courses.
If you’re looking for a creative online business idea, look no further. Do you enjoy taking photos, whether be of yourself or others, or just enjoy being behind the lens in general? Instagram is a great way to start an online business. If you’re savvy on social media, you’ve surely seen the “influencer” craze on Instagram. It is quickly becoming more than just a platform to check in on your friends’ updates.
As an auctioneer you are engaged in selling products by offering them up for bids, taking bids, and then selling the item to the highest bidder. The best known online auction website is eBay. As a seller, you will need to create a listing based on the site requirements, which will stay up on the platform for a certain time unless you decide to close it earlier. There can also be fees associated with listing and selling items, which will depend on the type of seller account you opt for.
Is there a product or service that you are particularly enthusiastic about? If you are, you may be able to develop a website that is built around selling it. You don’t have to be the actual provider of the product or service either. There are many businesses that offer these products and will allow you to sell them on an affiliate basis. For example, you may be able to sell a product on your website for a commission of 20% or 30% of the sale price.
Offering specific online SEO services is also another online freelancer role that businesses are crying out for. If you know how to improve a website’s SEO by doing keyword research, creating content that can rank in search engines, adding metadata/schema to posts and pages, and building backlinks to a domain, to name a few tasks, then this could be a great line of work for you.
Not only is it important to update your content, but if your website looks like it’s from the 1990s it’s time for a total makeover. Website design is constantly evolving, so it’s important to keep up with the current trends so that you can compete in your market. Old website design can give out spammy vibes to customers who will quickly leave your site and move on to one that is more aesthetically appealing.
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.

If you have a propensity for writing and you can slay with your prose, consider writing an ebook. While the market has certainly become saturated as of late, books that help teach people about a technical topic still sell extremely well. This is a great source of passive income but does require a large amount of effort at the outset before any money is generated.
Tony is an entrepreneur, best-selling author, philanthropist and the nation’s #1 life and business strategist. A recognized authority on the psychology of leadership, negotiations and organizational turnaround, he has served as an advisor to leaders around the world for more than 38 years. He's also the author of five internationally bestselling books, including the recent New York Times #1 best-seller MONEY: Master The Game. Tony has empowered more than 50 million people from 100 countries through his audio, video and life training programs. Here's his business advice for aspiring entrepreneurs who want to start a business:
Retain some control. If you upload photos of yourself, or friends/family with consent, it's worth going for the 'rights managed' licence option – otherwise you'll have little to no control over how your images are used (eg, you could star in an ad for haemorrhoid cream). See Alamy's page on understanding stock image licensing for more on the different types of licences.
It doesn’t pay much, but if you’re a healthy person and want to make a bit of extra money online, the AchieveMint app will reward you for doing things like walking, tracking your food, or taking health surveys. AchieveMint works by connecting to fitness apps you might already be using like Fitbit, RunKeeper, Healthkit, and MyFitnessPal and then giving you points for certain actions. For every 10,000 points, you earn $10 with no limit on your earnings.
Throughout your customer journey, there are bound to be moments when timely intervention on your part makes the difference between a sale and a “let me think about it.” Make sure that your marketing supports sales in finding these moments – whether it means sending automated follow-up emails to prospects that leave the road or designing new offers.
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.
These mega-sites make it easy to set up shop so customers can browse your products, and there's no need to build your own website. Also, you’ll find a built-in search feature so that interested buyers can easily find your online storefront. Plus, you get to use the site's shopping cart. In short, you avoid a lot of the expense and hassle of setting up an independent e-commerce website. 

They don’t want a boss: Entrepreneurs often struggle with having a boss. They often feel suffocated, restricted and held back. Some entrepreneurs may feel that they have a more effective way of doing things. Others may dislike the lack of creative freedom. Ultimately, they become attracted to entrepreneurship to succeed on their own terms. Being the boss can be more fulfilling than having one. Check out 10 Obvious Signs You Should Be Working for Yourself.
What is entrepreneurship’s appeal? With over 400 million entrepreneurs, entrepreneurship has an international appeal. Every entrepreneur has their own ‘why’ that drove them to dive into being their own boss. Whether entrepreneurs need more freedom or to make the world a better place, they all take control of their life by living life on their own terms. Here are a few of the reasons why people become entrepreneurs:
Online business ideas are endless and all-inclusive. Most office-based jobs can now be done online through freelancing or remote working. The beauty of technology means that profitable online businesses will keep growing and growing, making the world a truly global marketplace. If you are considering moving away from the traditional career path and want to start your own business, read through our list of business ideas a few times and contemplate the many ways you can start a successful online business today.
According to the U.S. Commerce Department, consumers spent $453.46 billion on the web for retail purchases in 2017, a 16.0% increase compared with $390.99 billion in 2016. That’s the highest growth rate since 2011, when online sales grew 17.5% over 2010. Forrester predicts that online sales will account for 17% of all US retail sales by 2022. And digital advertising is also growing strongly; According to Strategy Analytics, in 2017 digital advertising was up 12%, accounting for approximately 38% of overall spending on advertising, or $207.44 billion.
When typing something out you can go to the next line by pressing the “enter” key. This is called a line break. However, in some applications pressing the enter key will produce a double space for a paragraph break, or sometimes will act as a submit button actually submitting your comment rather than inserting a line break (like in FaceBook). In these cases, you can force a single line break by holding “shift” and then pressing “enter”.

As you start regularly putting out content, you’ll hopefully start to build a bit of an audience. But to start seeing real money from YouTube you need to market your videos elsewhere. Share your channel on Twitter and Facebook. Distribute videos anywhere else you can think of. Also, interact with comments and build a community around the videos you’re making so people will share it with their friends.
"The most painful mistake I see entrepreneurs make is launching before learning. For example, you may decide you want to launch a marketing consulting company, so you hastily make a website, content and reach out to people, but you haven’t yet figured out who your target clientele is. What people actually need help with or what you're specifically good at. So no one bites."
×