Sunday, 20 May 2012

How to chose which online business model will work for you

This is the year that you plan to really succeed in your online business. This year you are determined to make it a full time income.  In order to build a successful online business, you need to first identify the primary online business model you want to follow.

How to Pick Your Online Business Model

With so many online business models to choose from, it’s a challenge to pick just one to start with.
Try looking first at what appeals to you straight away.
  • What stands out?
  • Then think about whether you already have the skills or whether you will need to learn them.
  •  Is there anyone you can easily outsource to if you don’t have the skills yourself?
  •  How much will it cost to implement this business model?
  • Do you have the funds?
Once you’ve answered these questions, just pick a business model and run with it.
There are millions of business models to chose from, and you may already have one in mind or have one  that you have committed to. If not (or if you have decided you need to change your focus) here are 7 of the most popular online business models.
1. AdSense Site
AdSense sites are very popular with people that want a business model that is relatively simple and easy to implement. These sites usually consist of a blog or other type of website with many pages of content that is added to consistently. In order to be successful with an AdSense site, it’s important to rank well in the search engines for many long-tail keywords and to drive a lot of traffic to the site. These sites were extremely popular in the early days of the internet.  With the advent of Google Panda and Google Penguin, then these sites are much harder to make profitable.. Think carefully if you are looking to chose this business model, and whilst it’s impossible to future proof your site, you will need to have an exit strategy in place and know what both success and failure look like.
2. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketers sell other people’s products and then take a commission on the sale. Business models for affiliate marketers might consist of an ecommerce site, mini-sites on a small niche, one-page sites for a specific product. You can even sell affiliate products on Facebook pages and by using YouTube to drive traffic to an affiliate offer. The most common method affiliate marketers use is building a list so they can sell other products to the list recipients over and over.
If you are based in the EU this has just become really tough. The EU Cookie Law means that you have to obtain consent prior to downloading your cookies. Affiliate marketing just got that bit harder.
3. Infoproducts
Many bloggers have made their fortunes creating and selling their own digital infoproducts. These might include writing ebooks and guides, creating software, designing graphics, shooting informational videos and delivering ecourses. Most infoproduct sellers expand their income by recruiting affiliates to help.
4. Ecommerce Sites
An ecommerce site is an online store where you sell either your own products, drop-ship products from other vendors, or sell products as an affiliate. They can be a little more difficult to rank in search engines due to the lack of consistent, fresh content. However, good keyword research, SEO, and an active blog can in some instances make up for that. Your ability to drive traffic to the site will be a key part in building a successful ecommerce site.
5. Provide Services
One of the quickest ways to make money online is to offer your services through freelance sites and your blog. You can write articles and ebooks, design graphics, sell your programming skills, or charge for virtual assistant services. You are limited by the amount of hours that you can physically work. If you have a great deal of experience in one area, you can also sell coaching services which leads nicely into…
6. Membership Sites
A membership site requires customers to sign up for a recurring payment in exchange for regularly provided content. Membership sites can be ongoing or a specified length of time. They might involve regular newsletters, your own coaching services etc. It’s certainly attractive to know you’ll earn a regular income each month. The downside is these sites take a lot of energy to maintain. For my clients I always insist they share the workload with someone. A membership site being run by just one person will have it’s growth limited – there is only so much one person can do.
7. Flipping Sites
Some marketers love the process of building sites, so they just focus on buying or building sites, then selling them. There are auction sites that specialise in this type of model.

While you may need to do some more research to get a good grasp of the details and understand what’s involved in each model, you need to make a decision sooner rather than later. You’ll never make any money online if you don’t just dive in and get moving. So pick an online business model that appeals to you, put the blinders on and move ahead.

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