Do you know anything about making money online? I mean anything that is tested and proven, not just seen elsewhere. I’ve heard and read hundreds of myths about making money online. A lot of people, especially newbies, read them, take them as granted and let them ruin their online business – by either not starting it or by walking the wrong way and sticking to it no matter how long it doesn’t work.
Well, I’m working online since eight years and I have tested a lot of things. I know for sure that the following 10 claims are very, very wrong. If you’ve been exposed to them or worse – you believe in them – now is the time to realize how wrong they are.
1. You need loads of traffic.
If your site(s) receive a lot of traffic this can really make it easy to monetize through advertising. But quality is more important than quantity. Sites with less but quality visitors can achieve much higher profits by selling own or affiliate products than the pennies one file-hosting site earns from advertising for example. I have a small site with around 1,000 visitors monthly which earns a lot more than a site with 5,000 unique visitors monthly.
2. You can achieve good results submitting your site to thousands of directories.
Directories don’t bring traffic and have no meaningful effect on your search engine rankings. Almost all the site directories are worthless and submitting to them is loss of time and/or money. There are some directories like DMOZ and some niche directories which can bring some benefit if you get listed. But don’t spend too much time even on them – using the directories as promotional method can never make your business.
3. Your products must have the lowest prices.
In fact it’s quite the opposite. If your products are very cheap it’s almost sure you are not going to make much money. First, your products will be perceived as low quality and will attract mostly low quality visitors, trouble-makers and so on. Second, you will need to sell a lot of these products to make profits with thin profit margins. This will not let you use paid advertising tools like PPC for example. And finally, if you are selling products at low prices, other sellers will quickly do the same and reduce your sales. Playing the pricing game isn’t the way to succeed.
Set reasonable prices for your products. You can have quality service, good site, SEO, creativity, advertising, packaging, promotions and so many more advantages instead of low prices.
4. You need top search engine rankings to succeed online.
I love getting search engine visitors. In fact many of my sites rely heavily on search engines traffic. But this is not the only method to succeed online. You can make lots of money online without getting a single search engine visitor. There are so many other free and non-free options to generate traffic: social networks, advertising, PPC, affiliates, referring sites, guest posting on blogs, niche directories, RSS aggregators and many more. In some industries (for example web design) getting top search engine rankings will cost money and efforts that may be out of the reach of an individual. On the other hand, everyone can make a Facebook fan page and promote it, especially with some creativity!
5. You need to have money in order to make money.
For sure! At least $10 for a domain name (although some make money even without a domain name). But that’s all that you really need. Don’t get me wrong, investing money in your web business can help a lot and can speed up the things very much. You can buy advertising, get software developed, get professional design, pay for content, buy links and so on.
But you don’t have to. I have started most of my sites without investment other than domain and hosting. Later I have invested money in some of the sites and kept developing other without investing money. Both ways work and have their advantages and disadvantages.
6. You can build a site, then forget about it and just enjoy the income
With very few exceptions this is simply not true. Web business is just like any other business and requires work. Of course static content sites or software services can run relatively on their own. But some kind of support is always required. And there is a lot of hard work while you get to the moment of making money. Don’t expect that you will throw some site online and the money will start flowing and never stop even if you don’t lift a finger.
7. At any cost avoid the “make money online” niche
People who write about make money online love advising their “students” against doing the same. They will explain you how you will be competing with the best, how the market is over saturated and how you just won’t succeed. I’m not sure why they do it – most probably they want to avoid competition.
Make money online is a huge niche and there is an enormous number of people who are interested in it. While there is also huge amount of supply, there is still a lot of money to be made in it, and there will always be. You shouldn’t be afraid of the huge competition – it only means that the market is huge.
While I make more money in other niches, “make money online” is the one that brings very large profits from a single customer.
8. Relying on online income is very risky.
And how is relying on offline income less riskier? Is working for a boss who can say “you are fired” tomorrow less risky? Or having a small store on the street where a powerful brand can open a new store tomorrow is not risky?
At least online you can have multiple sites and enjoy multiple sources of income. And if a site or even all your sites somehow lose their income you can always try new ones armed with the knowledge and experience of the first ones. And you can do this with almost no money, too.
9. The only people who make money online are those who teach others how to make money online.
That’s the opposite of myth 7. It’s not true. There are millions of small niches where you can create and expand your online business. People make money with sites about curing headache, making pots or returning ex-girlfriend. “Make money online” is only one of the millions. You can try your chances with it, but you can also make money online without ever mentioning the words “money” or “online” in your sites, even once.
10. Affiliate marketing is the best way to make money online
Just like offline, there are many methods to make money online. Affiliate marketing is good, but it’s only one of them. You can make money selling only your own products for example. You can create software (if you are not a programmer you can hire someone to program it), you can sell designs, information products, music, everything.