It wasn’t long ago that the concept of making money online was totally alien to me.
I knew people were making money selling physical products, (which didn’t appeal at the time).
But I didn’t know just how many regular people made money online – or how they did it.
It definitely didn’t think real people made money from having a blog either.
A minority perhaps, or famous people, but not just average people.
However, that’s the reality out there in the world, a majority of people have no idea what making money online entails and most don’t want to know either!
But when you do realise that people make legitimate money online and understand how they do it…
It’s like entering a bizarre new world, that you never knew existed.
A majority every-day people, appear to have little idea how many people are making money online, or how they do it.
Many people would brush off the idea of working online as…. too technical and just not possible for them.
When actually, you can make a start online with very little technical knowledge at all.
Even though I had didn’t realise how many people made money online – when I did first learning about it, I still assumed it would be easy.
Well, I found out it’s NOT that easy and it’s rarely quick.
But the good news is, that pretty much anyone with an internet connection can build a sustainable income over time, if they’re prepared to do the work.
However, it’s only when I started to read about passive income, that I really got excited about the prospect of working online.
What Is Passive Income About?
Passive income is the idea that you could have money coming in regularly autopilot, with little work involved to maintain it.
The thing about passive income is, it actually takes a huge amount of work to actually get to that stage generally.
However, once you start to see the potential, it’s very easy to get hooked on that and want to find new passive income streams!
Unfortunately, most people will give up before they ever do.
How Can You Get Started Online?
The absolute essential thing you must have before you can get started, is your own website or blog, (I will use the word blog/website interchangeably!).
You need to learn how to set up your own website and fill it with useful content if you want to be able to build any kind of income from it.
— but don’t panic if you’re not technical, I’m not either!
I personally had zero experience setting up a website when I got started and the idea was pretty daunting.
Thankfully, it’s now really easy to set up a website, with no technical knowledge required.
…Hang on in there and I will show you how.
What Will Your Blog/Website Be About?
Before you get started at all, you’ll want to have a bit of a think about what you want your blog or website to be about.
That is, what niche you’re going to be in. This will just be an area of interest that you will focus on.
You should bear in mind from the get-go, that there are areas that people go into, that tend to make money time and time again.
While the money-making niches are competitive, they’re competitive for a good reason and so, you may want to strongly consider this before you make a choice!
So what are they? Take a look below at some of the areas that are most commonly profitable.
Remember, there are so many niches and sub-niches within these broad areas to explore:
- Health/fitness/wellness: This could include; particular diets, niches based on aspects of nutrition, aspects of psychological well being. This is a massive umbrella, but there are many successful bloggers under this sphere.
- Making/Saving money: This could include; frugal living, saving money, personal finance, making money online, making money from home and so on.
- Foodie blogs: which can be difficult to make money from if you’re not careful, as people can be looking for information rather than to make a purchase! That being said, there are many people who have made a success within this space.
- Beauty/fashion/make-up related – you’ll find a lot of these bloggers on YouTube and Instagram. It’s not something I know much at all about personally, but I know of people who have done very well.
- Certain special interests/passions with a large audience – niches based on certain pets/breed of dog etc – or things like doomsday prepping/survival skills!
- Travel – so many different niches you could go into under the umbrella of travel. Travelling on a budget, travel around a particular area/country in the world, travelling in an RV… you get the idea.
Then there are just those lucky bloggers who seem to base their sites on a whole bunch of disjointed things and still make it a success!
For people brand new online, you’d be advised to narrow down a broad niche to something more specific.
This will give you more of a chance to stand out and become an authority in that niche.
I’ll link you to some useful posts that may help.
A lot of people get stuck at this stage and as tempting as that may be, try and just go with something that feels right and don’t overthink it.
For a majority, your first niche will be a learning curve and it’s unlikely to be your last!
Free Website Vs Paid
While you can get started with a free website; I do not recommend this in the long term!
- You will not actually own any of the content you put out there – whatever blog provider you go with are within their rights to shut you down at any time and you will lose everything!
- You are far more restricted by things such as customising the design, how your site functions and even advertising – while you may not be bothered initially, it will be an issue later.
- If you are serious about building an online business long term, you will absolutely want to move on and own your own website and if you’ve already put in tonnes of work on your free site, this can be a real headache.
- Your domain name will also be an extension of whatever blogging site you go with e.g. http://ragstoniches.wordpress.com
You Should Get A Domain That You Own!
Having a domain that you own just means that you’ll be buying your own domain name from what is available out there that you’ll pay for and you’ll pay to host your site and the hosting provider of your choice.
Doing both of those things need not be expensive at all and is a smart move that you’ll be grateful for down the line.
- You will own all of the content on your own domain.
- Your domain name will look much more professional.
- You can earn money from your website in a huge host of ways, without being restricted.
- You can create your own website specific email, (which also looks professional).
- You have complete freedom over the design of your site and freedom to make it look however you choose.
Buying A Domain Name – It’s Simple.
I used to always buy all my domain names with Namecheap, now I tend to stick with WA, (see below for details).
The best thing about Namecheap in my opinion, is reliability.
Often you can pick up what seem to be cheap domain names, but the price will skyrocket the next year.
With Namecheap, the price you pay today will be vastly similar, if not the same, to the price you pay the following years.
It’s also really easy to purchase your domain name – if you want instructions of exactly how to do it, you can see this post.
Alternatively, you can pick up domain names now within Wealthy Affiliate, (see paragraph below) which makes it super easy if you’re a member.
There are two ways you can go with this, the simple way – which will include training and various other benefits, or the harder way and go it alone.
I have a majority of my sites hosted over at Wealthy Affiliate – a large membership site, where you can learn everything you need to get started online.
The hosting costs are included in the membership fee.
You can host 20 domains that you own at Wealthy Affiiliate and also have 20 free siterubix websites.
You can also now purchase domain names right on site, so it’s very simple for those who are brand new online and want some guidance.
In addition to the included hosting & websites:
- They have ever expanding and evolving step by step training showing you how you can make money online.
- You’ve no need to install WordPress, it’s already there.
- 1000’s of free WordPress themes to choose from.
- Essential plugins, already installed. Which makes it very newbie friendly.
- A massive online community, including live chat and multiple classrooms.
- Live video training each week – plus a training library of all past training.
- Hundreds of training created by members & ongoing updated training courses.
To get a feel for whether making money is online is right for you, you can sign up for their free membership option.
Included within your free membership is: two free WordPress websites and 10 part training course, so you can see if it’s a good fit for you.
You also have full access to the premium membership for a full 7 days and you don’t need to provide any payment information to access that.
If you don’t choose to upgrade to premium within the first 7 days, you can still just keep your free membership and websites.
It’s a no-brainer to check out their free membership, do the free training and see how you go – it’s the best online community for getting started.
I’m also a long term member there, it’s where I started myself- so, you can contact me at any time over there.
As I mentioned earlier, hosting is fully included within the Wealthy Affiliate membership.
But if you’re not up for joining a membership program yet and you just want just go it alone, there are a variety of hosting options available.
Some related posts that can help you get started:
I highly recommend that whatever hosting you go with, you also set up WordPress.
Setting up WordPress itself is really pretty straightforward and just takes some trial and error to get used to.
There are tonnes of tutorials on YouTube if you get stuck, so just take a look on there and you will be able to resolve your problems.
You could also access these free videos at WP beginner – which provide some excellent information.
How Do You Make Money?
Once you start building your website, adding regular content and generating traffic over time, there are a tonne of different ways you may make money from your website.
The primary way that I recommend for newbies to focus on, is affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing is a good place to start, because you do not have to deal with shipping/returns, or even customer service.
To put it simply, as an affiliate marketer, you are the middleman between product and consumer.
Lets say your website is fitness related and you’re an affiliate with AMAZON…
If you add affiliate links within your posts on your site to some related products on Amazon, you get a commission if someone clicks through from your site and buys something.
It’s a lot more simple than it may initially sound.
Here are some useful posts on affiliate marketing:
But affiliate marketing is just the beginning.
Once you are bringing in enough traffic, you can also earn money from your website in a variety of ways – including but not limited to:
- Placing Ads on your site – variety of Ad networks available.
- Sponsored posts.
- YouTube, (if you post videos with a google adsense account linked, or other ad network).
- Selling your own products.
- Email marketing.
- Selling Ad space.
- Selling services.
- Start a membership site/program.
- Offer your services freelancing – to create content on other websites, for example.
- Start creating ebooks, once you already have an interested audience!
- Create live training or host webinars selling products.
As you can see, there is a large scope of possibility and it all starts very simply.
The Most Important Part? Starting At All!
Unfortunately, most people do not even get started. They think about it, but just can’t bring themselves to take action.
Then out of the ones that do start, a majority tend to give up within a few months, because they lack the motivation to keep going after the initial excitement of it wears off.
The key is perseverance and consistency. That’s true of completing any goal or challenge, you need to stick at it and stay driven.
I’ve made lots of mistakes and will continue to do so, I’ve come across stumbling blocks and complete blocks in my knowledge which halted me along the way.
We will all come across things that we need to conquer, that are outside of our comfort zone and it won’t always feel good!
But every – single – “mistake,” is just a lesson learnt, another step closer to making things work out for you.
So, if you’re worried about starting your own business because you’re not sure you have the best idea, or you’re worried about setting up a website, or worried that you’re not technical enough – DON’T BE!
By doing nothing, you can’t learn, you can’t move forward.
Even if it may be a slow road, there is so much you can gradually learn, if you just take it step-by-step, one day at a time and realise that every new day, is a day closer to reaching your goal.
For example, I’m really the last person in the world that I thought would start learning about SEO, (search engine optimisation!).
Related post: What is SEO content?
Actually, I had no idea what SEO stood for when I started, so if you’re scratching your head – that’s OK!
Everything you do learn provides you with transferable skills, that you can use down the road, to branch off into other areas if you choose.
The worst thing you can do is nothing. If you at least give it a go, you’ll never be left wondering what might have been if you had just gotten started.
So, get started today and make it happen! 🙂
All the best,