There has been a slight shift in the universe and you are not even certain when it happened. After focusing on something you have loved for quite a while, things are moving in a direction that reveals you could actually turn your hobby into a profession. What do they say, “Get paid for doing something you love and you will never work a day in your life?” It could be time to turn your passion into a profitable pursuit.
When you pair your passion with sound business practices, your interest can become a sustainable money-making opportunity. Whether you are looking for a side gig or a new profession, making your vision a reality is closer than you think. Taking that leap of faith is not as risky as it sounds when you have a series of safety nets and support around you.
Here are four steps to get you started making money online.
Making money with something you’re passionate about doesn’t have to be an all or nothing proposition. By keeping your day job, you can ease into the possibilities and verify there is substantial customer interest in your business idea. Understanding the specifics of how and why your product is marketable is an important factor in determining how to best reach the audience you're seeking.
Map out a profile of your target customer and ask yourself these startup questions:
Once you've answered these questions, you can start building your business strategy.
Seek ideas and opinions of people you trust. Tell friends and family about your business idea – what are their thoughts? Look for mentors around you with business experience to help guide you. Once you feel good about the direction you are headed, consider starting your online business as a side gig to make sure your business idea is taking shape and building momentum toward a positive, profitable experience.
When you’re ready to make things more official, register your business and business name with the proper local, state and federal organizations. The U.S. Small Business Administration provides great guidance. Get ready to reach out to customers and potential buyers by taking your business online. Choosing a website domain name that matches your business will help more followers and customers find you.
Next, build a website that reflects your passion and will also help you market your business and create awareness about your new brand. A website means your new company has arrived and instantly puts you in the same business arena as your largest competitors. Today, a storefront location is rarely necessary. People from around your town and around the world can visit your site to learn more about who you are, what you do and why they should become a customer of your business and brand.
We all access social media on a daily basis, right? Use those skills to create social media accounts for your online business and build a loyal following of customers. Create posts with incentives to try your business and give them reasons to visit your website. Set up an eCommerce page on your website to make it easy for customers to make online purchases. As we’ve seen, especially lately, an online store means you’re always open and customers can make a purchase anytime – even in the middle of the night in their pajamas.
You might be just one person, but you can quickly gain credibility with a professional email account. This instantly gives your customer and vendor communications a professional look and feel and shows you mean business. SEO (search engine optimization) is an acronym you’re probably familiar with. This practice allows you to add keywords to your website content to help customers find your website through online search directories and is another effective strategy for building your business and making money online.
OK, you’ve got things in motion – don’t stop now! Look for ways to get and keep new customers. Offer online discounts and encourage happy customers to write positive reviews – people trust these more than advertising. Always practice controlled growth and don’t get ahead of yourself. Work with a local business accountant to plan a financial strategy and stick to it. It's important to always try to find new ways to serve your customers. Doing so will keep your business relevant.
The business world (and economy) can be unforgiving, so develop a resilient mindset and don’t lose your focus and drive. Stay humble, stay kind, stay motivated, never stop learning and chart a course you can be proud of. Remember to ask for help, every step of the way – no one truly goes it alone.
You should focus on building a team that you trust to offer advice and guidance. Find your own way but include others on your journey when possible. It’s more fun – and productive – to do things together.
When taking on your new venture, do as much as or little as you want. You control your destiny and you write your own rules. Make sure you are enjoying the ride and never let money become more important than your passion.
You’ve always been passionate about your interests – now there could be a way to make a living pursuing them. Building an online space for customers to find you is the first step in this exciting journey. Register.com has years of online experience and is ready to come along for the ride. Let’s do this together.