The national unemployment numbers are very well known by now to most of us. Often times there are hundreds of people applying for one full-time job. It’s very frustrating to send out hundreds of resumes and not get more than a handful of interviews.
But don’t worry. You can launch your own business these days easier than ever before. The Internet is an incredible resource for entrepreneurs, and thousands of new businesses are launched daily. Naturally, you won’t be able to replace your full-time income right away, but making a part-time income is easier than you think. And once you get rolling, who knows where it can lead?
You can be one of today’s new online businesses by following these simple steps:
1. Figure Out Your Niche and What You Are Selling
What is the product or service that you are selling? There are many ideas out there that you can do locally and online, including:
- Buying and Selling Antiques: You can start out doing this in your home, and sell online with eBay.
- Baking: There are many stories of people who started a booming business by baking at home and then branching out online and selling.
- Computer Specialist: Software programming, writing, accounting and payroll, graphic design and more.
- Interior Decorator: Many people are clueless how to remodel their house after they buy it.
- Photographer: All sorts of people need a good photographer for family reunions, weddings, graduation photos and so on.
- Medical Transcriptionist: Doctors offices outsource a lot of the paperwork that needs to be completed by government regulations.
2. Buy a Domain Name and a Hosting Account
Your domain name is your website address (www.mysite.com), and the hosting account is the online space where your website information resides. Godaddy.com is a very popular website to both register your domain name and host your Website. The domain name costs just $8.95 per year, and a simple hosting plan will run you $10-15 per month.
3. Build Your Website
This is where it gets really cool! These days, putting up an attractive and functional website is a breeze. There are many online companies that help you build your own site, even if you have no technical knowledge at all. One really good one is Yola.com, another is Intuit.com. For about $10 per month, you can launch your own site in an hour or two. Start off with a home page that explains your product, rates, about yourself, delivery, and you should be good to go.
4. Market Yourself!
Depending on your niche, this can be done in a few different ways. If you are starting out locally, you might just start out with friends and family. You also can go to local related businesses and promote your product or service. You can join the local Chamber of Commerce and network at their meetings.
As far as marketing online, let’s assume you do not have any cash to spend on Google ads and the like, as is the case with most new businesses. One surprisingly effective way is just cold emailing businesses. If you’re a graphic designer, put together a very short email. It should say, this is who I am and what I do, here are links to my samples, contact me.Then you send out your email to businesses that use graphic designers, or hire freelance graphic designers.
You would be surprised, but this will probably land you some work or some sales in the first month. You will need to email a few hundred companies probably, but it is quite effective! And if you do a good job for someone, that first little job can lead to a lot more jobs.
Yes, it really is this easy now to launch your own online business! With some hard work and a marketable skill or product to market, it is possible to replace your full-time income within a 12-24 months. Give it a try!