Successful and Profitable Online Business Tips

By: Ammar Ahmed

1. Know your target market

I know you’ve all heard this many times over, but believe me, if you have taken the time to research your target market and find out what their exact needs are then you have already taken the first step towards success.

For example, if you were to start selling a new, more effective brand of dishwasher detergent, you would need to make sure that before you waste all your well-earned money into marketing and advertising, that you know what exactly is your target market looking for. Are their concerns related to the pricing? Or is the brand that interests them? Or do they prefer a liquid detergent as compared to powder or tablet form?

I’m hoping that you’re starting to see the picture. And that is why the big companies spend so much money on ‘market research’. This information alone saves them millions of dollars and promises a substantial gross profit margin. Now a normal person, such as ourselves, do not have that type of money to spend on research but there are other tools that we can use to find out what our target market is searching for.

WordTracker is a proven and an indispensable tool that you can use to find out what exact keywords, your target market is searching for most on the search engines. You can visit it by going here: “" and once there will be given a choice of whether to use their free trial service or their paid services but either way, you will get a very interesting idea about what your niche market is really looking for. WordTracker shows you how many people searched for your keyword, your online competition (number of other websites with similar products/services), the rating of how good the keyword is and it also compiles for you a list of other similar keywords that people have also searched. It truly can give you an edge over the competition.

2. Set Goals and Plan out your Strategy

The second most important step for you to be successful in either online or offline business, is to sit down and over a cup of coffee carefully plan out and structure your ideas before jumping headlong without a direction. At this point some of you must be thinking, “Yes Ammar, I already know my goals and its pointless to plan each detail out as they’re all in my head".

If anyone of you has not read “Think and Grow Rich" by Napolean Hill, then I would recommend it now. As it is one of the most powerful books written on the subject of success. And one of its most important ideas revolves around the notion of planning and writing down what are you exact long-term and short-term goals are and what steps you are going to take to reach them. This is one of the major ways by which you can keep motivated, especially during those ‘dull days’.

The best and the only way to plan, is to sit down with a piece of paper and pen and write down your exact short-term (attainable and realistic) goals, the exact amount of money that you would like to receive, the exact methods that you will utilize to reach this amount and the exact date by which you want to achieve this goal. Be it extra income, money for a new car, purchasing of clothes, items that you’ve wanted etc. Write it all down in a paragraph form or a couple of sentences so that it forms a strong statement about your desires and your actions.

You should read this statement aloud, every day before going to bed and once when you wake up, in order to remind yourself and your subconscious mind about the importance of your goal and the things you need to implement that day to get closer to that goal.

The old adage still stands true to this day, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail". Plus, having well thought out plans and ideas will save you a lot of time and money in the future and if ever you do need to borrow money, you will be able to acquire this funding more easily as you would have well, written-out plans about the steps that you would be taking.

3. Decide on a budget

The first question you need to ask yourself, is “do I have enough money to cover my starting expenditures or will I need to borrow money from the bank or friends?"

My advice to you would be to stay away from Bank loans and lines of credit as much as possible because reimbursing them can very soon become a nightmare and to convince them to give you a loan would require you to show them a detailed plan of your future actions, and I mean detailed.

So therefore, if you need the money, your first source should be your relatives, friends as they would be pretty happy to give you money to get you started on your business.

But I’m pretty sure that you have more than enough capital to start up with your business online as that’s the beauty about the internet; Your initial start-up costs are extremely low.

Most people start out with a budget of less then $100. Registering your domain name and finding a good hosting company should cost you about $50, and that’s it, You’re READY! A good place to visit for hosting and registering is as they have plans that can get you set up for less then $30.

4) Design and Build Your Website

Ah, now comes the step where the majority of the people groan and moan and even consider giving up BEFORE they’ve even begun! The first thing that you need to know is, you DO NOT need a graphics-laden, picture perfect site to be successful online.

In fact, people should be concentrating more on their sales copy as opposed to the “fanciness" of their website. The people who will be visiting your website, are not looking for fancy graphics with dazzling logos and navigation but instead information on how your product/service can benefit them.

Visit this site “" and read the story about an ordinary guy from Oregon, who is raking in $32,876 A DAY, using a site that he even admits is ugly! This should convince you that sales are not made on high-performance sites but sites that work.

For those of you who are new to the internet and have no clue about how to create a website, don’t worry! There are many courses being sold on how to make good websites and all you will really need are the basics.

The two best programs to make your websites on, are Microsoft Frontpage and Macromedia Dreamweaver (you can download a free trial from their respective sites). For people who are new to making websites, Frontpage is very similar to Microsoft Word and due to its user-friendliness everybody can use it. Plus, there are just so many website designers out there who would be willing to make a site for you for a very reasonable price.

But you should keep in mind that by building your own website, you are in complete control of any testing, tweaking or changes that might need to done and you won’t always have to pay a website designer to do it for you. So get your feet wet and make your first site…

Some good web-building resources are:

  • WebDeveloper
  • WebMonkey

In order for your site to be successful, you need to ensure that the it works and that all the elements of an easy navigation are present. This means, that you should have a navigational bar which contains all your important links, such as:

  • An order page,
  • a FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) page,
  • an about us page,
  • a contact us page
  • and a testimonials page (very essential!)

Note: You should make sure that you do not have any more than six-eight links on your navigational bar as this would just lead to confusing a potential buyer.

You also need to make sure that you have an Opt-in offer so as to collect the email addresses’ of your visitors. It is to these people that you can afterward send promotional emails without worry of Spam. But you have to give your visitors a persuasive reason for giving you their email addresses such as a targeted newsletter, free information or informational products (such as an e-book that is related to your target market) or perhaps even a contest.

5.) Plan your Salescopy

You might be asking yourself, “why would I possibly need salescopy?". The answer is very simple, because salescopy acts as your personal contact with the majority of the people who visit your site. It acts as your own, personal salesman who keeps pitching 24/7.

On the internet, you have to create relationships with your customers as soon as possible. And in order to do that, you need to ensure that you present yourself as a credible business owner with a very useful product to sell for your target market. Without salescopy, this would not be possible and you would be giving up atleast 90% of your profits.

I could go on for longer about the importance of salescopy, but I’ll spare you the details and leave you with one thought: Your Site Needs Salescopy, whether you are selling one product or ten…

There has been a long debated question on the net of whether you need ‘long copy’ (6-10 pages) or ‘short copy’ (1-6 pages). And my opinion is that ‘long copy’ wins hands down. Why?

  • Long Copy Sells
  • Enables you to prove your credibility
  • The more clicks you ask your visitors to go through, the more you risk losing them
  • Unless you are an established website, such as , you will need ‘long copy’ to persuade and lead your visitors from the beginning to the order page by presenting them with specific facts/benefits at specific places on the copy.

There are many aspects to creating a good salescopy, but you have to keep one thing in mind, your salescopy is the major appeal for your visitors and it will determine if you make the sale or not.

But do remember this crucial piece of information, anyone and I mean anyone and everyone can write out salescopy and great salescopy at that. I personally don’t like writing, but hey, I’m doing it aint I ;) And writing on the internet, is much different then writing out a school or master’s paper. It’s much more relaxed and there’s an actual science behind it. For more information on how to write very effective salescopy that can “increase your sales by 400% (and more)", visit this site: “".

6.) Submitting your site to the search engines

Why should the aspiring entrepreneur submit his site to the search engines? Traffic, Traffic and more Traffic. Every body knows that in order to make sales and start receiving a nice paycheck every month, you need to have a consistent flow of traffic to your site every day of the week.

Statistics have repeatedly shown that anywhere from 20% to 80% of your visitors will find your site, using the search engines.

Search engines should not prove to be the only source of advertising for your site but it would be a very good place to start. The two major search engines that you should focus on are: Google and Overture.

There is a lot of information concerning submission of sites to the search engines, but in a nutshell, here are the few things by which your site is ranked in the listings.

  • Link Popularity: Determined by the quality and quantity of sites linking to yours. You can check out your own link popularity by going to a site like . You can increase your popularity by firstly making your site as informative and engaging as possible and secondly by contacting other sites that are also targeting your target market and requesting a link (or perhaps link-swap or affiliate program).
  • Link Relevancy: This takes into account the sites that are linking to yours. Are these sites relevant to yours (meaning are they offering the same or similar products/services) and does the site linking to yours contain the keywords that people are using to access your site
  • Keywords and phrases: Keywords and phrases make up a very important aspect of your site ranking. The one thing you have to keep in mind is that are you ‘targeting the same keywords’ that your target market is searching for. And you should go for multiple, targeted keywords rather then the highly competitive ones. A very good and effective tool to use, to find out what keywords your target market is searching for, is again, WordTracker. Copy and paste the link: “" to visit the page and try out either their free trial or their advanced search on major search engines at a minimal cost.

These are a few of the many tips that will ensure that you can get a high search ranking. In order to find out the most effective and up-to-date techniques for submitting your site to the search engines and effectively learning how to grow your business on the internet, visit this page “" and find out the exact ways by which this normal guy has been earning $7.6 million dollars from his online business. I personally recommend you to check out his site if you’re really interested in earning an income from your internet business.

7.) Ways to get free, cheap and effective advertising for your site

There are many ways to get cheap but very effective advertising for your site and some of these include:

  • Requesting links from relevant sites: This happens to be the easiest and most lucrative ways to drive tons of traffic to your site, provided that the sites you contact are high traffic ones. Getting links from other relevant websites, goes lengths to build your credibility with your target market and also enhances your chances of moving up in the search engine rankings.
  • Giving away Free Advertising and Expert Content: Even though at first, this seems to most people as a wasted attempt. Do not underestimate it, as it gives your readers a reason to trust you and put their faith in you. We all know that once your customers or visitors trust your opinions and realize that you are knowledgeable about your target market, they would be much more at ease to purchase from you and would not need to be continually convinced.

    Don’t get scared away by the writing aspect of the article/newsletter as it is much easier than you think. All you need to do is write about that which you are already familiar with. If, for example, you are a mechanic you can write a short article on the best ways to protect cars during the winter. I’m sure your target market would be most interested in learning information like that. There is also no need to write long essays; simple tips, tricks and benefits for your target market is sufficient. Remember, DON’T SELL… INFORM. The people reading your article will be more inviting to any products/services that you might have to sell once they see that you are not just a salesperson.

    You can post your articles on some of these sites which get a whole lot of exposure by a multitude of people:

  • ‘Viral Market’ Yourself: This can be a huge way to increase your site’s visibility and image. Viral marketing is more well-known as word-of-mouth advertising and is being used by , , MSN etc. Chat groups such as Msn Messenger has grown exponentially by using mainly viral marketing. If your opt-in subscribers and clients pass on a good word about how good or beneficial your service/product was for them to their friends or family members and then these friends pass the message on to their friends and friends members….You see the cycle. And this can turn into huge, loyal and referring, repeat buyers for your business.

8.) Growing and Using Opt-in E-mail Marketing

E-mail has now become such a big part of our lives that overlooking this medium of advertising and marketing would surely affect your business in the long run. Email marketing can be tricky and you have to ensure that the people that you send your promotional email to are opt-in subscribers for your newsletter or service.

The numerous advantages of e-mail marketing include:

  • It can save you hundreds of dollars on costly advertising as unlike conventional mediums of marketing, with e-mail marketing you can see the results of your promotional material within hours.
  • You are, in essence, sending your subscribers and clients information that they have requested and therefore they will be very responsive to your claims
  • You have the ability to develop a relationship with your subscribers and clients. Be consistently e-mailing your subscribers, you will give them a chance to trust you and acknowledge your knowledge of your target market and therefore the next time you send them an offer, they will definitely take a second look at what you have to offer
  • Plus, E-mail marketing is completely free, especially if you are e-mailing your newsletter subscribers or your service clients. And most importantly, it WORKS!

9.) Remain Consistent!

Do you know the one reason why 80% of the home-bases businesses that people start up, both offline and online don’t see success. Yeah, you’ve guessed it, it’s CONSISTENCY. All over the world, people are trying to find the secrets to becoming rich and going in for quick retirement, but they always forget the basic essentials. I have too, many times over. And it takes practice and confidence but you have to remain consistent. So many people have given up, just a few steps from success. Remember, failure is just temporary and before striking gold, you might have to bear some temporary failures. But these should be regarded as tests and an opportunity to learn from.

There is a simple, yet very powerful saying that defines the mindset of a born winner. Print it out, Place it somewhere visible and Repeat it Everyday…

“A quitter never wins – and a winner never quits"

Someone once told me that there is nothing beautiful about success, it is just unabashed commitment and the willpower to remain consistent day after day, till you have achieved your goal.

10.) Test your ideas, again and again and again….

Ever wanted to know the real truth behind all those millionaires and big businesses? Well, the heading says it all. Sounds simple, I agree, but if you keep an accurate record of all your advertising material, marketing methods, number of visitors, number of visitors turning into customers etc you will be able to immediately correct any and all flaws and spend your marketing capital into only those methods that actually work.

Things that you should definitely consider testing on your site are:

  • Your offer
  • Your headline
  • Your price
  • Your site outline

Don’t neglect testing these things as a good headline can improve your site’s visibility by 750% or more! And you can do the math on how many of those would become customers 

Other things that should be tested are:

  • Your Email Promotions
  • The User-friendliness of your site
  • Salescopy changes
  • Changes in the ordering process
  • Effect of Pop-ups and banners/text links

I hope that these tips can act as a starting point for anyone wanting to start their own home-based business, either part-time or full-time and proves to be a beneficial tool for those of you who are already involved in running their own businesses.

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