Making Money OnlineWould you like to increase your income? Are you looking to expand your clientele base? Thousands of small businesses have been, and are still turning to the Internet to build their companies. True, there have been many dot com failures over the years. However, many of these companies share common marketing and management mistakes. In this article we cover why so many online stores fail and how to avoid such failures, and more important, how you can make money online.
Avoiding the dot com scare
In the late 90's, investors were in a frenzy, investing in dot com businesses. It seemed as if dot com businesses were they wave of the future. However, upon entering the 21st century, investors began pulling out. The profits that they were hoping to receive from their investments did not come. Even big dot com businesses such as Yahoo! began struggling in 2000. To show two of the downfalls of these dot coms, we will use the example of Yahoo.
According to the May 21, 2001 cover story of Business Week, Yahoo’s problems began with poor management decisions. As Ben Elgin worded it in the article, "it [was] the arrogance of success. The Three Amigos [Yang, Koogle, and Mallett] felt invincible and had little incentive to seek talent or advice from outside their brain trust." This leads us to mistake #1 made by so many dot com businesses:
- Overconfidence and
- Over looking outside advice
Online marketing assistance, custom professional web site design, and much more. These services, along with a will to make it to the top help businesses like yours to grow and succeed online.
Business Week continues by saying that another of Yahoo’s mistakes, was refusing a merger with eBay. Which according to Elgin, would have been Yahoo’s "second chance." They were too unwilling to look to other companies to help create revenue for themselves. This is mistake #2 made by many dot coms. They do not rely on the many free online services available to create extra revenue.
Unwillingness to rely on other online businesses to make you money is another downfall of those seeking to make a profit online. Too many times, online businesses want to "make it on their own." This is a fallacy that could keep you from tens of thousands of dollars. There are several methods to employ other businesses in your aid, at no cost to your company. Three of these that offer you free marketing or a nice side income are: Google AdSense, Banner ad programs, and Affiliate programs.
Besides these two pitfalls, there are also the usual dangers that all businesses face. Budgeting, managing, offline advertising, customer service etc. have also resulted in the crumble of many online stores, as many of these businesses do not think that normal business practices apply to online sales. Now that we have discussed some of the stumbling blocks of integrating your business online, let’s discuss how you can make more money.
First, a dot com business like any other business needs a stable business structure and strategy. Many businesses going online start up thinking that the Internet automatically makes money for them. This is a fallacy that you cannot fall into. Just as any other business, Internet businesses require time and dedication. In some respects, this is easier if you are an already well established small business. Establishing a strong infrastructure is very important to your company. An organization useful in finding up-to-date business structure information is the SBA (Small Business Association).
Once you have a stable business structure, integrating your company online is much easier. Although selling products online is a major goal of most businesses looking to the Internet for profit, there are also many other online money making methods. Some of these are:
- Google AdSense
- Affiliate programs
- Banner ad programs
So, what is Google AdSense? It is a mutually benefitting offer provided by Google. As Google continues to grow, they are looking to reach more and more people. They are now turning to online businesses to help in this effort. Google offers certain incentives for you to place their ads on your site. Each time that one of your visitors clicks on a Google ad while on your site, you earn money. As marketers everywhere have begun using this great feature, they have found many secrets to receiving more clicks. This relates to more money! One of the tricks to making money with Google AdSense is to direct more traffic to your site. This can be done well through Affiliate Programs and Banner Ad Programs.
Affiliate programs can help you to make money from other companies, as well as direct more customers to your site. Affiliate programs can not only be beneficial to join, but also to create for your own online store. So, how do they work? To be short, if you join an affiliate program, you will generally post your affiliate’s banner on your site, and send out information in your newsletters about their great services. Each time someone clicks on the banner on your site or link from your newsletter and buys a product, you make money.
Although there are thousands of affiliate programs on the Internet today, only a small percentage of them are of worth to you. It is important to find the best affiliate programs available. There are many websites with searchable directories, filled with affiliate programs of all sorts. However, you don’t usually find enough information about the programs from these sites. The key to having success with these programs is to send out as much information about, and as many links for the product/s or service/s offered by your affiliate as possible. Banners, newsletters, and other marketing should always include links to your affiliate.
Now, to create a successful affiliate program, you need to know that it must be worthwhile to those who will sign up. The competition is intense, and other online merchants want to join the best programs. For example, the program for JMSB Web Solutions offers a 10% sales commission on their services. For services that range from $100 to $500, affiliates stand to make $10 - $50 per sale, and just for placing banners and links for their customers to see. To receive the great marketing that having an affiliate program offers, you need to be a little generous without breaking bank.
Banner ad programs are another great way to receive free online marketing. Although online visitors are not quite as apt to click on banners as they once were, banner ad programs can still drive traffic to your site. In a banner ad program, you work through a company that places your banner on other sites, while they place banners from those other sites on your website. There are many of these programs, and some are better than others. It is important to know what you are looking for, because you may not want certain banners posted on your site. Search these programs’ rules and procedures well.
As you can see, there are many ways to increase your revenue through an online store. It is important to remember that you are not only online to sell products, but to take advantage of the exchange of information and services available on the Internet.
As a recap:
- Avoid thinking that you don’t need outside advice and
- Avoid thinking that you can do everything on your own
- Take advantage of other companies online expertise
- Look into Google AdSense for your business
- Find an affiliate program or two to make you extra income
- See if starting an affiliate program for yourself is right for you
- Learn more about banner ad programs