Have you been dreaming about how you can get your piece of the internet pie? Do you want to setup your business online, but not sure about what you need to do, or how to even get started?
In this post, I will share with you how you can setup your business online, for less than $100. If you are serious about generating a consistent profit, you will have to invest in a few tools.
You’ll also have to learn how to integrate these tools, so they become a part of your business’s infrastructure.
But before we dive in, here are a few interesting facts:
- By 2017, there will be more internet traffic than all prior internet years combined.
- 40% of global internet users, or more than 1 billion people, have bought products or goods online.
- 40% of shoppers consult 3 or more channels, often in the process of shopping, before making a purchase; that’s a massive increase from 10% in 2002, and it goes to show the increasing importance of having an online presence in as many places as possible.
- Search engines are the starting point for mobile research, with an estimated 48% of mobile internet users starting their search on search engines.
- 2.9 billion Google searches are made every day
If you are reading this post, it’s clear you recognize the value in getting your business online way sooner, rather than later.
What You Need to Setup Your Business Online
Blog Website, Domain Name & Hosting
Why do you need a blog site? The simple answer is – to establish your online presence, and build credibility in the marketplace. People do business with those they know, like and trust. Your blog is a way for people to “check you out” and decide whether or not they want to do business with you.
You also need a blog site to be able to market yourself. It’s a very effective way to get found in the search engines, by people who are searching for exactly what you offer.
WordPress.org is the platform I recommend. It’s very flexible, and you’ll be able to create your vision, and sell whatever you want.
HostGator is the hosting service I recommend.
It is where you will house your blog site, and is really the only thing online, you have complete control of. HostGator has been my trusted, and reliable web host provider for a very long time. Plans start for less than $5 per month.
You can also purchase your domain/website name there. But, in my opinion, Godaddy has better deals and pricing.
Average Cost: $15-$25 for domain name purchase and web hosting.
(Disclosure: I am an affiliate of HostGator and if you choose to purchase hosting using my referral link, I will earn a commission – at no additional cost to you. You can save 25% when you use discount code: twashington upon checkout)
Email and Autoresponder Service
Why do you need email service? This by far, is the most efficient way to build your list of subscribers, and grow your customer base. It can also be a highly effective way to create better relationships, and automate your marketing to increase sales.
Business is all about people. Business online is about you being able to connect, engage, communicate, educate and sell to the people. Having an email autoresponder in place simplifies the entire process for you.
There is of course, more details involved when it come to how you actually grow your business with email marketing. It is however, a vital tool to integrate when you setup your business online.
MailChimp and Aweber are the two services I recommend. MailChimp is free to get started, but requires an upgrade to access the autoresponder. It’s easy to use for a beginner, but it will require you to manually send out emails without the autoresponder feature.
With Aweber, you can get a 30 day free trial, and access a ton of helpful resources, and training on the service itself, and on email marketing.
Average cost: $10-$50 for approximately 0-5000 subscribers.
Lead Capture System
Why do you need a lead capture system? Well, the name alone speaks for itself. You need it to get people to sign up to your email list. Having a lead capture system in place makes lead generation easier.
When people land on your lead capture page, and fill in their email to get on your list, or receive whatever free offer you have for them, they automatically get placed on your email list.
Once they are on that list, and you have your autoresponder setup with a series of emails (or at least a welcome message), they will begin receiving email messages from you instantaneously.
There are literally tons of lead capture programs out there. Instapage is a great one for those on a budget, and don’t have much tech skill. You can create highly converting, beautiful pages. Landing Page Monkey is another affordable one as well.
It also integrates with MailChimp. The only reason I no longer use Instapage, is because the marketing platform I use includes a lead capture system. After you build your capture page, you can focus on getting people to sign up!
My favorite strategy to get free leads for my business is to create a simple ebook and give it away, in exchange for contact details.
Average Cost: $25-$200+ per month
Why do you need payment processing? This is a no brainer. You need it to collect payment! Now, there are a lot of services out her to process your payments. I won’t even begin to pretend like I’m an expert in this arena.
But, a little Google Search will help you select the best option for your business.
I like to keep things simple, and keep my costs as low as possible. I’ve been using PayPal to process my sales (for a small fee) and other business transactions, for many years.
Some of the benefits I appreciate as a member, is being able transfer money back and forth between PayPal, and my bank account. Access to the PayPal debit card (with a business account), and it’s also nice earning cashback on purchases.
I’m also able to easily integrate PayPal on my websites and in email to offer my products, and services for a fee.
Here is a Payment Gateway Comparison Chart to help you choose one that matches your needs.
Average cost: Free (with transaction fees) – $1500 monthly
How to Setup Your Business Online
Once you have purchased all the tools I shared with you, I would suggest you setup your email first, followed by your lead capture page.
The reason is, your blog will take time for you to get up and running, unless you get your blog done for you. Your email and lead capture page, can be done in a day or two…if this is new to you.
That way, you can start building your email list, and start getting leads soon, rather than later. Next, you can begin to integrate your payment processing if you already have something to sell.
At this point, you can begin marketing your list offer on social media, or to your current email list.
Now, if all of this information still has you scratching your head, and this all seems too much for you, there is another option that I recommend.
I mentioned earlier, about the system that I use. Not only does it include a lead capture system, but a blog platform. You get an automated autoresponder and training to help you get leads, and make more money in your business…using the internet.
Whether you are a Network Marketer, Internet Marketer, or a Service Based entrepreneur…the same process is required to setup your business online.
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