Starting an online business - Where to begin


I was wondering if you guys knew your stuff about online business and can help me.

I want to start an online business to make some extra cash. The business should be quite a small venture, as I need to run it in my spare time (I work full time). I hope it will teach me something about online business which will allow me to move onto bigger projects in the future. Obviously if the project is small in scope it won’t earn me loads of money, but that’s OK to begin with.

As I see it, these are the main business prospects online:

  1. Ecommerce (physical products): Selling any physical products online. Books, TVs, shoes… The list is almost endless. The opportunities to make money seem unlimited if you get it right, but I think this will require too much capital for me at the moment. Also, comparatively high risk.

  2. Ecommerce (digital goods): Selling downloads: Software, music, EBooks. Depending what product you want to sell can either be easy and cheap to setup (reselling ‘Become an online millionaire’ type ebooks) or quite expensive (selling mainstream music). Can be anything from very profitable to a small earner. Am considering selling (high quality) niche ebooks, but don’t know where to begin.

  3. Affiliate marketing / advertising: Blogs / sites which make cash through affiliate sales. Very quick and easy to setup, very hard to get your site noticed and make it profitable. Don’t think there’s all that much cash to be made here, as you’re essentially just skimming off the top.

  4. Software as a service: Create your own online software product, like Basecamp. If you can code yourself (I can) very cheap, but very time consuming to set up. Also very hard to create a unique product which fulfils a need people have. Potential to make a reasonable sum of money here.

Basically I don’t know where to begin, and am looking for advice.

What about you guys, what is your story?
Where did you start out?
What experiences have you had with the business types I have described? Have I missed any business types out?
Do any of you actually make any decent money online or is it all talk?


Pick any one you like but make sure that don’t take money as your primary objective. If you are working on something that doesn’t interests you then its likely that you will fail.

Research well before picking up something.

Good luck.

I would find a good domain name that consist of keywords and then promote it by writing articles and writing in your blog every day

You can visit this blog Making Money Online for tons of excellent info that you will need to start your online business.

We are just moving online with our <snip>Link removed</snip>. Started by making out a plan on how to get there. Create a report on what you want to get out of it. (sales, information)

Choose a niche that you think best suite your business. This will help you target all possible customers for your online business.

I would like to co-sign this.

You gain a big advantage from finding and exploiting niche markets.

I’d vote for Ecommerce business. You can setup an online store & display many good products online. Ecommerce business is getting very popular day by day. However, keep in mind that the hosting solution that you choose for your online shop must be good so that your store is accessible to your potential customers online. I read a good blog on this topic…

Whatever you sell online books, cameras,software, SAS, i would like to say that one thing is sure that you have to come up with some innovative ideas to sell online. it must be different in eyes of visitor, i think that is what requirement is

Good Luck

I like Affiliate marketing I am not doing a lot of money but it is enough and it is Free

By finding the right niche for your website you are now ensured in finding the right customers.

Go for SaaS and affiliate marketing.

Creating something is not too difficult. It’s the marketing part where most businesses fail. So I suggest you lay out your plan to market your project to the world before you start.

As for your last question, trust me it’s not all talk. :wink:

First you must know what are your capabilities and focus on that first then try a business that suit your ability a business that will not bore you, what I try to tell you is a business that you really like then explore the net on possibilities on that business to go up in the future, explore your competitors, what they do and what they sell then start building your own…

what’s your day job? There are plenty of ways that you can make money online as I have made $10,000+ in last year.

Well I mean to start in general you need to find a niche that you like and have a commercial value. (e.g. dogs training, electronics games etc) and Then you can start a blog, writing about the subject. Learn how to drive targeted traffic to it and find some affiliate programs to promote along the way…

It’s not hard but it involves some work before you see results.

i prefer begin with affiliate marketing, you can start with allan gardyne website at associateprograms dot com and subscribe to his newsletter…good luck

I would recommend you start off by designing small niche sites with low cost hosting. I would then use adsense on half and CPA with the others. Make sure to do good keyword search and find a niche with little competition. You can easily make $10 per day per site. If you have 20 sites, that’s $200.00 per day. Not to shabby!

Affiliate marketing still become the easier way to make money online.

actually i didnt start the online business, but im thing of it so i was interested when i saw the post “Starting an online business - Where to begin”. i liked your attitude to the business. I`m sure you would have success, good luck:)

Since u can code I would suggest u setup a blog about software and ebooks on different software. It’s better if u choose a niche which interests u so u’ll remain interested for a long period of time.

I wud recommend affiliate marketing. Keep the ratio of promotional posts and informational posts 1:1 , try and update the blog daily and in a month or two u’ll have money coming in.

I made a few hundred $$$ thru a post on jupiter jack. Put the post up in april last year and was asked by an affiliate network to register with them and replace the links in august last year. Got the first check a couple of months later. Bought a few domains last month.

U cud take a look at regnow dot com. I learnt about the website last month. They offer paid software thru internet. Dell’s affiliate program is handled by commission junction.

If u can create themes and templates u can design them and then sign up with a website like themeforest as a seller.