In some ways running an online business is no different to any other business: You sell products or services, you make money. But there are a number of traps the new online marketer, in particular, is prone to fall into.
So what do you need to look out for? Here’s the worst offending mistakes in online business.
Putting All Your Eggs In One Basket
Don’t ever rely on one source of income, or one source of traffic to drive that revenue.
A few years back you could have built a successful business by driving free traffic from a Facebook FanPage direct to your website, sales page, Amazon or pretty much any online marketplace.
Many people did just this, and made a lot of money.
And a couple of years later Facebook changed their algorithm. You now have to pay, a lot, if you want more than 5% of your audience to see what you post on your page.
If you built a business relying solely on free traffic from Facebook, that business was instantly in serious trouble.
That doesn’t mean you can’t make money with Facebook traffic – you still can, but it’s a different, and less profitable, model now.
Social media is powerful, and you should certainly make use of it, but don’t make one channel the foundation of your business.
The core of your business is YOUR website and YOUR mailing list.
Everything else is beyond your control and so you should never rely on it too heavily.
All social media channels evolve – Facebook is a business, after all – they’re in it to make money too! Google algorithms change with the wind. Other media outlets grow, change or simply disappear.
Don’t ever get stuck with one source of anything or you’ll always be at the mercy of a market you don’t control.
Diversify and you can move with the markets, fully in control of your own online business.
Being A Flitterbug
When starting an online business many people witch from one thing to another, and another, changing tack every month, or every week.
The problem with this is that you never get any traction.
You can get results quickly online, but you have to give it enough time.
Whether it’s on social media or your own blog, it takes time to build an audience and gain their trust. You need to put in some effort, consistently, for enough time to build some momentum.
This week you’re blogging, next week you’re making videos. Last month you were looking for freelance work and trying to make money with Facebook ads.
Next month you’ll be back looking for a job because nothing online seems to work!
It’s not that nothing works – the problem is that you didn’t give it time.
You may eventually build all of these things into your online business, but each one of them takes time. Each requires focused attention and consistent action for long enough to start getting results.
The answer, if it’s not clear already: Stick with things long enough to get some results. Look at the feedback and adjust from there.
Playing Too Small
Online business is worth Billions, and you only need a small slice of that pie to be financially free – but that doesn’t mean you can play small.
Play a small game and you’ll always go hungry!
Writing one or two blog posts. Uploading one or two videos. Sending one or two prospecting emails. None of these are enough to get results. You need to be playing a much bigger game.
You may not think you’re going to change the world, but that’s the level you need to be thinking at.
How could your work positively impact the lives of thousands, or millions, of people?
You might just be writing $10 blog posts right now, but what’s the endgame? If you think you’re doing that for the rest of your life you’ll probably struggle for motivation.
You need to think bigger.
Will you be writing for $50 or $500 a post?
Will you be writing for your own website with 10,000 subscribers?
Will you be writing copy that sells and charging $50,000 a time?
When the goal is big enough it draws you in and you’ll be motivated to take the massive action required to reach it.
Play the small game and you’ll be forever mired in mediocrity.
Avoiding Mistakes in Online Business – in a nutshell
Think bigger – chances are you’re setting your sights too low. Set bigger goals. You may not reach them, but you’ll get much further than you would by aiming lower.
Stick with it – don’t flit around – if you have a good idea, stay with it long enough to get some results before moving on to the next big thing.
But don’t get stuck – remember to diversify. Think transferable skills, several sources of traffic and multiple streams of income.
Now go build something!
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