Will 2018 be the year you will finally create a profitable online business?
You’ve thought about it every year. You’ve gone over countless online business ideas in your head and imagined what your life would be like if you could quit your job and generate money on the internet.
You could travel the world with ease, create a comfortable lifestyle for yourself and your family, and achieve financial freedom. You could finally escape the constraints of the 9-5 lifestyle and own your time completely.
But then, what happens? Usually, you spend some time considering the ideas but ultimately resort back to your comfort zone.
The steady income of your secure job, the ease of having somebody else tell you what to do every day (instead of trying to figure it out from scratch), and the consistent schedule.
You tell yourself, “You know what? This year is a little too crazy. I’ll start that online business next year!”
But “next year” never comes.
I’m here to tell you that 2018 is the year you should start your online business. There’s more opportunity than ever, and you should take the advantage!
To help you get started, I’m going to lay out 27 online business ideas. Read through them, see which you connect with, and start doing your research. Then get started with one, it’s that simple!
1. Start a Blog and Monetize it
I talk a lot about how to start a blog on this website, and for good reason. In 2018, it’s easier to start a blog than ever before, and your blog can also be a big potential source of income (if you know how to monetize it).
Keep in mind that you don’t just start a blog and expect the money to roll in. You need to create content consistently, and it also needs to be content that educates, informs, or entertains people. In other words, it needs to capture their interest in some way.
What’s more, you need to sell something through the blog. This can be ad space, products, digital products, sponsored posts, coaching, ebooks, etc.
But if you’re willing to put in the work and you’re in it for the long haul, blogging can be extremely profitable (some bloggers make $50k per month or more).
Here are some resources to help you get started with your first blog:
- How to Customize WordPress Blog
- How to Install WordPress Blog on Bluehost
- How to Increase Blog Traffic
2. Get Started With Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is basically the process of earning a commission by promoting somebody else’s product.
There are two main ways most people do affiliate marketing:
- Information products. You promote products like ebooks, membership sites, video series, etc. This type of affiliate marketing can earn you up to 50% or more in commission, has relatively low barriers to entry, and it’s easy to find products to promote.
- Amazon partners. Many affiliate marketers have success with Amazon. There are literally millions of products to choose from, and it can be quite profitable. For more information, you can check out the Amazon Associates Program.
Quick side note: Before you start affiliate marketing, it helps to have at least a basic knowledge of SEO and copywriting (more on each of these later).
That being said, you can read a few copywriting books and look through the beginners guide to SEO from SEO Moz to help you get started.
3. Set Up an E-commerce Site
One of the best ways to earn online income is through setting up an e-commerce store. Here’s the plus side: if you try to go the route of affiliate marketing, the best affiliate marketers are focused on 3 main niches; dating, weight loss, and making money online. You would have to compete with the best of the best, and it’s not easy.
With the e-commerce route, in many markets, you’ll be competing against old-school business people who may or may not have any internet marketing experience. Many of them have glitchy, out-of-date websites, which leaves you a lot of room for improvement, and you can capitalize on their shortcomings.
It’s still not easy by any means. It requires hard work, and you need to stand out amongst the hundreds of thousands of ecommerce websites and online stores. But by filling a unique niche and executing the right marketing techniques, you can make your ecommerce store a profitable success.
Here are some tips to help you get started with your ecommerce store:
- Find a profitable market. Brainstorm some ideas, do keyword research, and try to get as specific as possible. For example, there is probably a lot of competition for selling surfboards. But if you narrow it down to surfboard racks, you may have a better chance of standing out in the market.
- Ask yourself, “Is the product expensive?” There are costs associated with manufacturing, distribution, reselling, etc. If your product isn’t expensive (at least $50 or more), there may be no profit left by the time you sell the product.
- Ask yourself, “Is the product in a growth market?” If your market has already passed its peak (i.e. the VCR market) and is on the down slope, you probably don’t want to get involved. Instead, you want to get into an industry that’s on the upswing – that’s where you’ll have the most profit and growth potential.
- Consider building a Shopify store. Shopify is a system built for ecommerce. With some basic web knowledge, you can set up a good-looking store very quickly, with a low-cost investment and with no coding needed. Shopify has a 30-day free trial too, so you can get started without spending a dime.
Here are some additional resources for creating a successful online store:
- How to launch online store
- The Tropical MBA Podcast by Dan Andrews and Ian Schoen