Build an Online Business from Scratch!
Build an Online Business From Scratch!
Hey and welcome back for another YOL blog. Today we are diving into building an online business from scratch! I am super fresh on this subject because this is what I’ve been doing for the previous 10-months while working my normal full-time job. While I don’t have years of experience on this subject, I have learned a lot and am starting to understand the processes better.
In today’s digital day and age building something online, whether a side hustle or full-fledged business while working a normal day job is common. Increasing your earning power and potential passive income streams can help build more wealth and freedom in your life.
Today you will learn about launching an online business from my own experience. Things I will go over will be anything from what it takes, software to use, why you’d do it, and more.
Some of the links included in this post may be affiliate links. I may earn a small commission on a sale (at no further cost to you). Everything I recommend in this post; I have used myself and am promoting it myself. I will never promote products or services that I have not used or believe in (live many people online these days).
Well let’s get right into it! Building an online business from scratch takes time, dedication, hard work, early, mornings, late nights, confusion, money, headaches, thinking, idea creation, and more… Are you still wanting to launch that website? While many people online portray you can make millions on YouTube in less than a year etc., my experience has been far from that. Things that you wouldn’t think about end up sucking down your time and days in an instant.
While a small monthly or yearly website subscription might not seem like a huge investment (which it isn’t) this is barely the tip of the iceberg when it comes to creating a sustainable, profitable online business.
Be sure to check us out on social @YourOptimalLifestyle for more great tips!
Whose it for? Well, the question you may be wondering, who is building an online business for? Well in my case I wanted to create something of my own. I was tired of listening to “the man” and not having any say in the process of things. The feeling of freedom and unlimited earning potential always inspires me to keep going. If you are looking to build something that is truly your own, an online business can be the answer. Having an impact on others for a positive cause is also a huge why of going into business for me.
What is business? While it can be a million different things, the primary reason of a business is to profit (or earn money).
In today’s digital age a website builder is 100% a must. I personally gravitated towards Wix because of it’s simplicity and high reviews. They have a simple editor which basically takes care of the template and everything else for you (basic), and a more in-depth editor which allows great customizability. I started with the basic editor and then eventually switched to the more powerful one, which is amazing. You don’t need to know code as basically everything is drag and drop!
Other popular website builders would be Squarespace or Wordpress. Just as a side note, I am currently building a Wordpess site for another website I’m building and have been very disappointed with it. I heard it was what everybody uses, so I wanted to try it for myself. Maybe if you are an actual web designer it might be great, but I have not been impressed by it at all since I purchased it. The website looks way too basic and is not nearly as customizable as my Wix one.
A blog is an online place where you come to read relevant information on different things, like the one you are reading now! Blogging is a great way to build authority and position yourself as an expert to your readers. You build trust with others online if you provide good content that’s valuable. I decided when I launched Your Optimal Lifestyle to commit to blogging weekly. This has been one thing that I have done consistently for 46 weeks straight now. I am committed to writing each week to not only enhance my writing and voice, but to build more awareness with my brand.
Although, I haven’t seemed to gain huge traction (yet) while blogging, I am happy to constantly learn and grow from the process while being able to have a positive impact on others. Blogging can also be a great place to earn money from affiliate marketing. This is where you an affiliate for a business or brand such as Amazon. Any links that you post for your followers to get would be an affiliate link, thus earning you a commission on each sale. If you are already writing and speaking about certain products or services, why not earn money from sales?
E-mail marketing is critical to your online business. Your e-mail list is the only list in which you actually own. This means the e-mails you have within your system are yours. E-mail marketing is also extremely valuable as your prospects are usually more willing to buy than random people online. While I have not yet launched a e-mail marketing campaign I have dabbled with them quite a bit. I started with Mailchimp which is free for up to the first 2000 email subscribers.
This is the platform more people recommend starting out with. While I have had a far different experience with Mailchimp. It was attractive because it was free, but honestly it is extremely confusing to use. The layouts are terrible and doing something simple like creating an incentive e-mail to give away a freebie takes about 10 times longer than it should.
I initially thought all e-mail marketing was confusing and hard to use. To my surprise it was just Mailchimp. I since switched to ConvertKit and let me tell you, it is extremely simple! I am somewhat sad I didn’t switch way earlier because ConvertKit makes everything so simple and easy to use. The platform is great, and you can also build opt-in forms and landing pages to collect e-mails. They also offer a free version (which I’m currently using) which can hold up to 1000 subscribers.
While I’m not a huge fan of social media myself, as it sucks people’s days away in a flash and in fact disconnects more people, I do use it for business. Prior to that I was off all social media platforms for years. Being disconnected from the noise was amazing and I did not miss it whatsoever. The fact that you can reach billions of people around the world (for free) cannot be understated. The algorithm seems to keep changing, and I am no social media guru. But it goes without saying that if you want to generate more traffic to your websites or create more leads, social media can be powerful.
I started with YouTube only, then added Facebook, and now am on Instagram as well. The main point you want to take away from social media is that you don’t need (or want) to be on every platform. Figure out the platforms that your target audience “hangs out” on and choose those. If you are on 7 different platforms the content you are likely to put it will be super diluted and bad. Sticking to 2-3 platforms can help you with engagement and staying consistent.
While I’m not going to cover everything and anything about starting an online business from scratch in this post (as there is just too much info) I wanted to get into basics. When launching a business there are many things that you might not think about. For me it was, software, like an antivirus, accounting software like Wave, or project management software like Asana.
The internet is literally a black hole of information and if you search too long you will often be left confused and unable to decide on what to do. That’s why if I do research on something, I will usually watch a few videos, read a couple of posts and then decide to try something out for myself. The truth is, you may have a different experience than another person. This is why the trial and error portion of your business is critical. Otherwise, you will continue to read, research, and think (forever) without taking any sort of further action.
I hope this post helped clear up some of the basics to launch your business. It can be challenging for you, but ultimately if you want to have something of your own, this can be a great path to be on.
We also post weekly YouTube videos every Thursday if you’re more into watching videos! If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask in the comments section below or by sending us an email.
Until next time, build something that matters.
Chris M Wilson
Your Optimal Lifestyle