This article aims at people who want to start making money online with a small startup budget. Although some say a limited budget will tie your hands and legs when it comes to business, you’ve got to put some efforts to breakthrough these limitations. Let’s cut to the chase and get on to our guide of making money online.

 

1. Research

Research is essential when you have no idea on what to sell online. The fact is, even you have an idea, it might not work out if the product is not popular, outdated and not in demand.

Doing your research in both online and offline will increase your chance of success.

Ask for product and service feedback from your friends, and also outside of your friends and family circle. Take those input as your inspiration to fetch you some ideas to determine market demand on the product or service that you want to sell online.

A questionnaire survey is usually good enough to get some basic insights. If you need more in-depth opinions, considering holding a focus group discussion.

Once you have done your research and know what you want to sell online, you are ready to get on to the next step.

 

2. Get a Website

For the obvious reason, you must have a website to make money online. By having your own website you will be building your own brand’s digital footprint, and a place for your business to call home.

You should start off by getting a domain and hosting plan, or if you are planning to hire a web designer or a design firm, you can leave the work to them as some web design plans come with domain and hosting.

Make sure to opt for a Content Management System so that you can easily add, edit and remove content from your website in the future.

Besides, if you wish to sell online directly you might as well build a eCommerce website so that you can receive order and payment through your website, which is a viable approach for online business these days.

 

3. Study your competitors and customers

‘If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.’ ―a quote from the famous Chinese War Leader, Sun Tzu.

To apply this quote on your own business, the ‘enemy’ is your competitors. Look up for your competitors and your potential customers online. If you are selling woman’s handbags, search for ‘woman’s fashions, woman’s accessories etc.’. Find websites that sell similar products or products that complement with yours.

Use Google Keywords Planner to grab more similar keywords idea that you can find your competitors, or use SimilarWeb to compare your website against your competitors’.

 

4. Plan for sales & marketing

Once you’ve got your website set-up and products ready, it’s time to start selling your product and work on your marketing strategy.

Set your target on how many units to be sold, how many users sign up or how much revenue you want to earn in your first year, and start working hard for it.

To reach your target, you need to leverage on internet marketing avenues. Start with free channels such as social media marketing and slowly work on your way to paid advertising.

Promote your business in as many social network sites as possible and focus on the one that works best for your industry, such as Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Reddit and so on.

Some of these social channels also offer paid advertising like Facebook Ads, which you can deploy to gain more awareness and visits to your website.

On top of that, Google AdWords is also one of the most effective and cost-efficient way of online marketing if managed by a good digital marketing agency, instead of poking around yourself.

If you are collecting emails from your website opt-in form, that is even better as you can then take advantage of this database to do some email blasting through email marketing web app, which is just like offline way of ‘direct mail’ method.

 

5. Strive

Be passionate about what you are doing, do as much as you can and never give up. Keep up with this mentality and for sure you will be making some good money online.

Read blogs with entrepreneurship topics, online business and marketing to keep yourself updated with the latest strategies and stay motivated.

Feel free to consult us if you need help in starting your own online business.

 

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Sanz Teoh

Sanz Teoh

Sanz Teoh is the founder and CEO of Jumix. With more than 10 years of experience in digital marketing, he has helped countless of businesses on their branding, digital marketing and web designing needs.