Internet use, for most of us, is limited to social media updates, movies and songs downloads, streaming videos, online gaming, online shopping, internet banking, sending emails, airlines reservation, hotel booking, payment of bills or just plain surfing for contents and images on topics for personal leisure or research. Even though these look like mundane activities, the truth is many of us cannot live without internet even for a single day. Our whole life seems to revolve around it so much so that even looking up for a word in the dictionary or thesaurus is done on the internet. There are people who advocate against the excessive use of internet citing detrimental effects on our cognitive abilities, lack of face-to-face communication, physical inactivity, lack of creativity, waste of time, disrupted privacy, etc. but the fact is, the last two decades have witnessed an explosion of internet users worldwide. More and more people are using internet for various things and with such a universal access to information and interactive mechanism, it is no wonder that many of us are addicted to it.
Ever thought of monetising your online activities?
But before that, the more pertinent question would be “Is it true that people can make money through their activities on the internet?” I always used to wonder how people monetised their online activities. I have gone through numerous websites and blogs on “how to make money online” and the number of articles available on it is mind-boggling and enough to confound anybody who’s looking for ways to earn money online. On the flip side, just as there are various websites on “how to start your own online business”, there are also many online scammers who are looking at ways to dupe the wide-eyed, gullible people through fraudulent claims and get-rich-quick claims. But the truth be told: “We can really make a living and earn good income through the internet.” In fact, there are millions of people who are successful online entrepreneurs, working full time from home without the usual 9-5 office routine, independent from bosses and being their own boss!
Is our internet use wasteful?
With time, our social media activities and internet downloads for movies and songs become routine and tad boring. Without denying the immense power of the internet on our collective lives, an honest assessment reveals that most of our online activities are more wasteful than being actually beneficial. We spend our (or our parents’) hard-earned money on activities that we could easily do without. So, should we not harness the huge potential that lies before us to make money through the internet? Remember, this is an opportunity that is equitable everywhere on the globe without the impediments of infrastructure, language, finance, and knowledge. Technology has removed all kinds of barriers and provides a level-playing field for all of us. So, armed with just a computer, a good internet connection, and your enterprising spirit, you can change your life for the better. The beautiful thing is, any knowledge, interest or expertise could be monetised easily through various means through the internet. How wonderful it will be to earn a living through our hobbies and doing things we really love sitting in our homes than being shackled to the grind of a 9-5 office routine!
Professional internet marketers
Internet marketing, also called online marketing, in the broad sense of the term, refers to marketing and advertising efforts to drive direct sales via electronic commerce platforms, in addition to sales leads from websites or blogs and emails through the internet. It is the process of promoting a brand, a product line or a service through the web. Professional internet marketers are experts in advertising products, services, events, and brands on the internet. For this, different advertising methods are employed – search engine optimisation (SEO), search engine marketing, banner ads, and email marketing. These professionals are hired to monitor online competitors in business, compile marketing data and conduct webinars.
Home-based internet marketers
While there are professionals in internet marketing with specialised set skills and degrees, today’s internet technology allows us to start our own online business from home. With the kind of technology we have today, we can easily run a successful online business with little cost. The idea is to focus on our strengths and build a client roster through online. Anyone can launch an online business from their home. With modern technologies, where and how a person chooses to work becomes immaterial. Technology enables people to maintain online business presence anywhere, anytime, and from virtually any device.
Work from home
If one is motivated and creative, working from home is easy. Working from home is not only fun but it can also push your productivity limits higher and enables you to be your own boss. Some of the home-based online business ideas include Social Media Consultants, SEO Consultants, Copy Writing, Web Designing, Affiliate Marketing.
Of these Affiliate Marketing is the most popular and perhaps, the easiest. Affiliate marketing involves no product creation. All you have to do is link the buyer and seller, and when a sale is made you get a commission for your efforts.
Skills needed for Affiliate Marketing
Attitude is all that is needed to be successful in affiliate marketing. People from all walks of life and from any age-group can become successful marketers. There is no particular skill set needed for starting affiliate marketing and also, you do not need a lot of technical know-how to be successful. The most beautiful thing about affiliate marketing is most of the skills are acquired along the way and there is a constant refinement of the skills. With sincere effort, having a successful career is affiliate marketing is highly achievable even though things might look daunting and slightly overwhelming in the beginning. However, there are still some skills needed, such as:
- A basic understanding of the internet – Affiliate marketing is done on the internet an as such, a basic knowledge of how it functions is needed. Get acquainted with terms like servers, data packets, traffic, IP address, Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP), Domain Name System (DNS), File Transfer Protocol (FTP) Peer-to-Peer (P2P) file sharing, search engine, etc.
- Knowing how Google and other search engines like Yahoo or Bing work – Affiliate marketing will be all about driving traffic to your website/blog. Traffic comes when your website gets ranked higher up in search engines. Knowing how search engines work is important since you will be doing search engine optimisation (SEO) for your site. Familiarise yourself with the most common SEO practices.
- Some knowledge of HTML and image creation will be a bonus – A basic knowledge of image manipulation using different tools and a little knowledge of HTML (programming language of web pages) would be an added bonus. However, you do not really need to know a lot; a basic knowledge is enough.
- Domain and hosting – For an affiliate marketer, a little knowledge of what a domain name is and how a website is hosted is needed.
- Communication skills – One need not be a good writer to be successful in internet marketing. All marketing requires good communication skills and affiliate marketing is no different. You need to be a good communicator.
- A basic knowledge of spreadsheets – A basic knowledge of Excel would be an added bonus for data analysis.
Online business requires training
Like most enterprises, internet business requires training. In fact, it requires a thorough training to have a better competitive advantage from all others who, like us, are trying to cut the ice in the still-hugely unexplored potential of online business. The “business model” might look relatively simple but the truth is, there are short-cuts to success. Online business, like all other businesses too follows the same progress curve – the start-up, the construction phase, the struggles, the self-doubts, the diminishing enthusiasm, negative reviews and feedback, lack of encouragement or role model, the lack of constant guide and support, the mistakes, consolidation of knowledge, and ultimately success. Yes, when we become successful, nothing could be more gratifying than that.
What kind of training is required?
The start for most internet businesses is a website. Yes, you need to have a website of your own. First up, you need to be trained to create your own website and drive traffic to it. Woah! How do I create my website without any knowledge of coding? Who is going to teach me? Will I have to undergo a course on website development? What about hosting and domain registration fees? Aren’t these costly? All these questions will crop up in your mind at the mention of the website. But the hard truth is, your website is where you will be doing your business by imparting knowledge to billions of internet users world. It will be your identity and you will be an authority on the subject of your choice for the thousands of internet searches every day. You will have to make your website visible on the first few entries of search pages to drive traffic to your site. The more the traffic, the better your potential for success online and better the chances for your business conversion.
With just a website, will my business grow?
One does not just create a website and money automatically flows in when people visit our website. There’s much work to be done in order that a website is monetised properly. Certain technical things, good communication skills (no, not writing skills), a good 24×7 technical support, mentors and experienced people in online business for guidance are required. With all these in place, one can start earning income within as early as six months. But is there such an avenue at all?! Read on.
Wealthy Affiliate – the home of affiliate marketing
Don’t you want a course that is scam-free for successful training on creating websites for business? A course that that is supported by an ever-helpful community of more than 100,000 online entrepreneurs? A course that not only teaches you to create a website but everything that is required for business – right from creating good content, driving traffic, search engine optimisation, website hosting and all technical stuff? At Wealthy Affiliate, it is a time-tested fact that people start creating their own websites within two weeks of starting the training. Why not give it a try? After all, there’s a Starter Membership which is completely FREE. One can easily move on to Premium Membership when one gets the hang of the whole thing. See? There’s no risk involved. Since the starter membership is free, there’s nothing to lose!
As a Starter Member, you get to join the wonderful Wealthy Affiliate community with members from different time-zones of the globe, take part in the first 10 lessons of two different courses on offer, can create and host 2 websites on the fantastic SiteRubix website building platform for free, have access to thousands of beautiful website themes, and remain a free member as along as you like.
To check out the Free Starter Membership
Starter Membership Vs Premium Membership
As said, the best thing about Wealthy Affiliate is the possibility to create 2 websites of your own for free under the Starter Membership with the basic foundation course of the first ten lessons of two different courses. Since there is no membership period, one can remain a free member as long as one likes. However, having said that, there are certainly various advantages of being under the Premium category. Just see the comparison below.
To read Premium Membership details…
Is online business a viable full-time career option?
It is very much a viable option and most successful online entrepreneurs start out as complete newbies. Being a newbie is not a limitation. On the contrary, it has been found that those who start as newbies are more enthusiastic, focused and receptive to training. Remember the famous Chinese proverb? A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Start your online business journey today!