Surviving that first 12 months is probably the most difficult. You start off with great gusto, dollar signs in your eyes, hope in your heart and probably your credit card in your hand.
If you are one of the lucky ones, you may have received your first few dollars within the first three months, depending of course what you are selling and how high the demand is for your product.
Hopefully you didn't hand over too much of your hard earned cash to someone offering you the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, only to be disappointed. If you did, put it behind you, but remember the lesson you learned.
Focus is one of the most important things to have whilst you are building your online business, or any business for that matter. Don't try to do too much at once. Complete one project before tackling another.
Constantly updating your website is very important to keep your visitors coming back time and again. Your website is your storefront, and it needs restocking to keep the shoppers buying, whether you are selling goods, services or information.
While you are building your business keep a very tight hold on your credit card. Keep on track with your business plan (hopefully you did a business plan before you started!). Keep up to date with new products or information relevant to your website.
If you are running an affiliate website, be on the lookout for new ventures, especially those offering good percentage returns on sales. It is a very competitive market out there.
A couple of things to keep in mind if you are using affiliate programs to earn income:
1. If your products are sold using services such as Clickbank and 2Checkout, be aware that you need to sell enough products in a given month to receive your commission cheques (checks) regularly. Otherwise your hard earned money will be eroded in fees and you will end up with nothing to see for your efforts.
It is probably a good idea while building your online business to join affiliate programs that use the same service, thus ensuring you will reach their monthly payment limit.
2. Choosing products that are relative to the keywords of your website are more likely to achieve higher sales than unrelated products.
Link Exchange is a great way to achieve good search engine ranking and increase the visitors to your site. There are programs that will do most of the work for you, however, when starting off with a fairly tight budget, it is easy to do it yourself at no cost. The following steps will help you with this.
Search Google with your best keywords and check out the websites that come up. Ensure the site offers good quality products, is well designed and easy to navigate.
If they have a linking program, place a link on your site first, then send an email asking for a reciprocal link. When you are advised that your link has been installed, check to make sure it is the way you want it and displayed under the correct category.
Always be on the alert for new opportunities. There are some great ezines, newsletters and forums that you can gain invaluable information from.
Keep building your subscriber list, using proven methods such as writing articles on your field of expertise, advertising in other ezines etc.
Be on the lookout for new ideas. We are becoming so used to using a computer that we are inclined to forget the paper and pen.
Carry around a small notebook, preferably with pen attached, great ideas pop into your head at the most inopportune times when you are away from your computer (even if you own a laptop). That little book will become extremely important to you.
Most of all keep positive. There are so many places on the internet to get assistance and advice, so don't give up, keep striving for your goals.
Joan Maughan CEO of Summerset Global Marketing.
"Joan's previous experience in business has been in the accounting and secretarial fields. Deciding to setup a business from home led her to research fields of interest. As part of this research she discovered the many pitfalls, but also found that there are a lot of people wanting good honest, reliable products and advice".
Her website and newsletter provide this and the website is regularly updated with new and up-to-date information. http://www.joanmaughan.com
Copyright © 2005 Joan Maughan.