Are you looking for how to start a business online where you can earn a living? Or one that can make you an extra income? Not to worry. There are endless online business ideas that you can choose from.
This article will explore all you need to know on how to start a business online.
Some of these business ideas, can give you a steady flow of income if you are consistent and run it like a business. So, you have to put in your best to make it work.
What is an online business?
It is any business that involves buying, selling, and advertising a product or service, via the internet, and revenue is generated. A website is usually the means of interaction between the clients, customers, and the business.
It’s that business that you operate using an internet-compatible device to earn money. It is conducted entirely online.
Tools like social media marketing, SEO, paid ads and content marketing amongst others, helps the business maximize revenue.
Top 7 Profitable Online Businesses You Can Start
Starting a business online is quite easy if you play your card well. Most of them require little or no capital yet yield a lot of income.
Below are some of the best online businesses to start in 2021:
1. Affiliate marketing
It’s a profession, that specializes in marketing and sales. They receive a commission for selling the products of other companies. The best niche to make the most profit is finance, relationship, health, and fitness.
2. Freelance writing
This for me tops the list of online businesses that anyone can start. The internet provides lots of services that you can offer as a freelancer.
Content marketing has made the demand for online writers popular. Lots of businesses need someone to help with their email newsletters, blogs, and other marketing stuff.
For starters, set up a profile on established popular freelance platforms and start building your portfolio.
3. Web designing
If you are good at designing websites, then you have a broad client base waiting for you. It includes both entrepreneurs and website developers, many of which can only build but not design websites.
4. Sales of Information products
It is the process of writing and publishing, or the creation of products like ebooks, webinars, online courses, etc. It’s the next most profitable online business.
Unlike Affiliate Marketing, this will pay you handsomely depending on your product and your marketing strategies. Be sure that you have hungry buyers. They are usually sold via the internet on platforms like Amazon and earning royalty from the sales of the book. By so doing, the writer or creator earns money online.
The process of building a blog and generating content on a particular chosen niche is called blogging. You need to invest a little cash for a web hosting account and domain. Then install WordPress on it. You are good to go!
To run a successful blog, you need some skills in places like SEO, content creation, and promotion.
Through the blog website, you can make money from content monetization, advertising using Google AdSense and Affiliate programs.
However, choose a niche that has the potential to be successful. Search for niche blogs on Facebook pages and group sections. Over 70% of the niches in blogging, fall under any of these categories:
They are popular because they meet the very basic needs of man. Patience is indeed a virtue you must have as a blogger. You need to be consistent also to operate a successful blog.
You can market and advertise a product to find customers. Then take advantage of actively established marketplaces with customer bases like Amazon, eBay, and Etsy.
7. SEO Consultancy
An experienced SEO professional can offer specialized services. Using WordPress hosting, you can provide advice to a selected group of businesses to help them rank higher on SERP.
Why start a business online?
1. It’s easy for anyone to start an online business because of the freedom to operate your business from anywhere in the world. This is one of the most interesting things about online business.
It affords you the liberty to carry out your trade with just laptops, tablets, modern technology, business apps, internet connection, to mention but a few.
It offers you limitless freedom. You are not tied to a particular space or location. You might as well be sipping your favorite coffee, while connected to the internet and running your online business. You only need to set your schedules and work as hard as you should. Amazing!
2. You should start an online business because you can penetrate the global market. You can run your business without geographical restrictions.
An online business owner can target any location in the world from anywhere. Put on your laptop and your WiFi, then it’s business all the way.
3. If you have ever been out of a job as a result of retrenchment or sack, you know what it feels like to not have job security.
The pain that comes with each new day, knowing that you don’t have a means of paying the bills. When you own an online business, you are your boss. No one can lay you off. You are in control of things and you enjoy job security.
4. You can automate some tasks that your online business requires. What we mean is that you can use soft wares, plugins, tools, etc. to carry out some functions while doing other things. You can schedule some things that you need to be done and automatically send in bulk your social media posts.
Being available or hiring an employee is not always a necessity since you can automate and have some of the tasks done.
5. There’s a satisfaction that comes when you know that you have achieved something. It’s natural. One of the sweetest feelings in the world is creating something that you are proud of.
When you start and operate a successful online business, you will be proud of yourself that you could imagine, birth, and sustain a business that is touching lives one way or the other.
6. If you love working from home as I do, then you don’t have any business being an employee or running a brick-and-mortar business. How I hate the traffic! The lost time on transit can never be regained.
Only online business gives you the pleasure of being indoors and achieving the same or more results than one who has to leave their home to attend to a business.
Challenges of online business
The benefits of starting an internet-based business are too numerous to mention. But notwithstanding, it comes with some challenges. We have outlined below some of the setbacks that an online business owner may face.
Online business owners, have to keep up with steady competition in services, prices, and products.
Online space may have become saturated, but you stand out by having a defined organization’s ethics plan. You must distinguish yourself from your competitors, for your online business to survive the threats that it will face.
You can achieve this by concentrating on smaller demographics and providing a unique service or product. It will make it easier for you to succeed.
Every online business needs a level of security to thrive. It needs policies and procedures to establish solid cybersecurity against cyber attacks. A cybersecurity framework that will protect data and keep it safe. It will empower the company staff to easily implement those policies and fight cyberattacks when the need arises.
Your online business must also have an incident response plan that will establish what to do in case of cyberattacks.
3. Making sales
Driving traffic and making sales can be difficult but it’s achievable. It seems like a- brainer but hey! It’s not as simple it sounds.
To drive sales, you need to have the right product and the right price. Let your customers feel positive about your product.
4. Customer experience
Your customers are especially necessary to be considered when starting an online business. But unfortunately, pricing and customer segmentation which are two important customer experiences are most overlooked.
Customers expect to get the same or even a better service online than face to face. Consistent and profitable pricing is a necessity for a successful online business.
Also, website functionalities play a vital role in conversion and an enjoyable customer experience.
5. Refund/Return policy
If you want your business to stand out amidst the competition, customers satisfaction should be a priority.
When you have a good refund and return policy, you have a greater advantage over your competitors. This may be difficult, but people will trust you more when they know that they can return a product or even get a refund. Be transparent in your business dealings.
Let whatever you are selling be the same as what is advertised. Don’t be too strict in your return policy. It should be smooth, fast, and easy for your customers.
How to start an online business
8 Step by Step Guide to Starting a Business Online
The internet offers a whole lot of opportunities to start up an online business. Although it is accessible, cost-effective, flexible, and easy to establish, it still requires a little start-up capital for minor necessities.
You can take the following simple steps to start a successful online business.
Step 1: Find a problem-solving niche
The first step in starting an online business is to find a niche. You need to choose what to sell or the services to offer. You can make that decision by choosing what you have a passion for. Then find out if there’s a hungry market for it.
Step 2: Do thorough research on your chosen niche
Know your target audience and their core needs. Be sure to understand what they need. Don’t assume to know.
Step 3: Choose a business name
It’s also very necessary. Pick a name that best describes your business. Your business name should tell your business story. So, before starting an online business, research and choose a brandable name.
Let your customers know what you sell or the service you offer from just your business name.
Step 4: Write a business plan
Every successful business has a plan. It’s a document that shows what your business is all about. Your competitors, strength, cash flow, profit, and loss, marketing strategies, etc.
When investors show interest in your business, you must provide one. It’s an indication that your business has a future.
Step 5: Build a user-friendly website
Help your customers to freely navigate your website. The efficiency of your website must be put into consideration. Is your website layout smooth to navigate?
This is as important as a physical space is in a traditional business.
It is your business location and where your customers visit to buy what you are selling. It should be comfortable for them to move around without stress. Also, make it easy for them to leave a review.
Step 6: Build a brand
This step ranges from building an amazing user-friendly website to creating a killer logo, social media handles, engaging in Public Relations, and other marketing activities.
Step 7: Develop marketing strategies
You need to find your customers. With simple traffic driving methods, you can get more visitors to Use search engines to drive customers to your website. It helps your website rank high on SERP. Follow up with clients, customers, and subscribers with email.
Step 8: Learn online business laws
Starting an online business or starting a business online goes beyond choosing a name and what to sell. Before starting an online business, you must understand online business laws to avoid running into legal issues.
Overcome the landmines that may want to crash your business before it gains ground.
Understand drafting, brand name considerations, and transportation impediments. It will help your business succeed and stand the test of time.
If you aspire to enjoy your life while you work and earn money at the same time, then starting a business online is definitely for you. Find a niche that you have a passion for.
Also, ensure that it’s profitable and get to work. Join the large number of people who have decided to seize the opportunity that the internet provides for making huge money.
Start an online business today. Decide to turn it into a profitable business by putting in your time and necessary tools. You will forever be grateful that you did.
This article provides a guide on how to start a business online in 2021.
Simply follow the guideline above and leverage on the internet to make the most of your online business.
Which of these online businesses do you intend to startup? Do share with me in the comment section. Can’t wait to hear them!