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Internet business ideas: It is quite incredible the millions of individuals who are simply desperate to break away from the 9 to 5 grind. The commonly accepted alternative is to look for a business opportunity that turns you from an employee into a self-employed entrepreneur running your own business. There are a great many good reasons why this can be an intelligent move. Being your own boss means you can set your own hours. This can be very significant if you have small children, or simply want to spend more time at home. Working from home can also save valuable time, if the alternative is spending two to three hours every day commuting back and forth to your place of work.
And of course, working for yourself also gives you the opportunity to make a whole lot more money. This is a great time to explore some internet business ideas, create an alternate source of income to cushion the blow when retirement sneaks up on you. Put differently, being your own boss gives you that valuable commodity called freedom. It sets you free from the limitations of being someone else's paid employee, and in return makes you responsible for your own future. As a self-employed entrepreneur you are free to set your own hours, establish your own working lifestyle, choose what work to do, create your own products, drum up your own customers, and do what you need to do to keep your customers content.
And perhaps most importantly, when you are self-employed you are free to set your own prices and make as much or as little income as you are able. You will not have to answer to anyone other than yourself. The buck will stop with you as the saying goes.
**How to get started -- Two Alternatives** There are two obvious ways you can go about starting your own business. The first way is to quit your day job and launch full bore into your new business. We'll call this the "All or Nothing Approach". The second way is to continue on with your current employment and develop a business on the side, in your spare time.
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We'll call this the "Spare Time Approach". Depending on your point of view, taking the All or Nothing Approach can be either an act of bravery or just plain recklessness. Unless you are independently wealthy, planning and timing are very important with this approach. That's because once you leave your previous employment your source of income will be gone and you will have a limited amount of time to make your business work. It is "sink or swim". And you can sink pretty quickly without a source of income.
That simply means you should plan the changeover to self-employment very carefully. Every circumstance will be different. A colleague of mine was able to step from his job into a home business because he spent the last few months of his employment developing leads and contacts within his industry. When he finally went on his own he had customers waiting for his service. But to be honest, the majority of us are not so lucky. We do not have the quality leads or the specialized skills. Nor do most of us have the opportunity to use our present employment to build a launching pad of potential customers before we take off into the wild blue yonder of self-employment. A good number of us are usually starting from scratch with a few vague ideas, a questionable set of yet-to-be-defined skills, and severely limited income.
So our venture into self-employment had better take off within a few months or we're likely to crash and burn. That is the reason why the Spare Time Approach is best for most new self-employed entrepreneurs. The Spare Time Approach lets you test your ideas, develop your skills, and build your business slowly. If you are unsure about the products or services you intend to sell, the Spare Time Approach lets you try out different product lines and see how well they fit in with your overall objectives. Often new entrepreneurs find that their first ideas are not realistic, or there is no market for the services they want to provide. Or they find they cannot charge enough to make any money providing the products or services they have chosen.
**Choose your product carefully** Like all new entrepreneurs, whether you take the "all or nothing approach" or the "spare time approach" you should be very tight-fisted with your limited resources. That means do not invest any serious money in a product or business idea until you have checked it out thoroughly. The best way to "check it out" is to:
This applies whether you are looking at an online product such as an MLM or affiliate scheme, or a more traditional product or service aimed only at local customers. Case in point, an acquaintance of a friend produces Business Card Displays. The idea behind this product is that it provides new entrepreneurs the opportunity to set up an advertising service for local businesses. With this product, the entrepreneur creates a network of displays placed in high traffic retail outlets like grocery stores, hair salons, and bowling alleys.
Local advertisers can then place their business cards in any of the compartments in the displays across the network. If someone browsing one of the displays sees a service they are interested in, they just take a card for future reference. Certainly, it's not for everyone. But for someone willing to put in a few months of hard work at the foundation stage, it is a pretty easy way to create a business that will produce handsome earnings for years to come. And this manufacturer stands behind his product. He can show you examples of successful advertising networks where his displays are used. He will also provide testimonials and contact information from real people whom you can ask how well the product is working for them.
And to top it off, he uses the product himself in a network of over 40 displays, and can provide hands-on information about how it actually works in a real-life situations. This is pretty rare in the world of "business ideas". Many are run by "take the money and run" types who make wildly exaggerated claims about how profitable you can be. In a lot of the cases they have never in reality made the idea work for themselves. Any successful entrepreneur will tell you, your choice of products is crucial to your success or failure. Many products are simply bogus ideas with no hope of working. And many others are designed to produce maximum profits for their creators, and minimum profits for the people who sell them.
So no matter how hard you work, or how committed you are to being successful, if you choose the wrong product you will be operating with an albatross around your neck. A Successful Niche Should Match Your Skills and Knowledge
When the time comes to choose the precise niche that your business will fill, the best strategy is to make sure that you know what you’re doing with the product, so that you’ll feel much more comfortable in your niche and you’ll enjoy what you do. The mistake that a lot of people make is to pick something that they believe will make them the most money. The best successes are continually achieved by individuals who like their work. The first step that you can take for defining your own niche, is to make a list of all the things that you like to do best. This may possibly have to do with your current job, a job you used to have, a hobby you enjoy, an art form, a sport, or anything else that you happen to enjoy in life. This is the trick in coming up with successful internet business ideas or a business idea that will bear fruits. It is so simple yet a lot of people just don't get it.
When you do something that you enjoy, the money will follow. To make money, you need to give a service that people will reward for. Have the customer in mind and fill your time and energy with ways to help them. When you provide great service, the money will follow. Don't think about the money, it will come. I can teach anyone how to create a website and attract their customers. Actually it is very easy. Start by writing down your areas of interest, and then look at each parts of that list separately so that you can break it down into more focused sections. To help to inspire you in building your list, think about the following questions and get your mind stimulated.
Write down everything at first, not really thinking about whether or not it really has potential. The key to this step is simply to get the internet business ideas flowing and see what you come up with, getting it all down on paper. You never know; the idea you write down right now might not seem like much, but when you read it over later, it might stir much bigger thoughts.
• Would you like to be in this field every day as your job?
• Do you already have any skills or knowledge in that category?
• What type of person would be interested in the type of product that would come from that category?
• Would you enjoy working with your niche market target?
Once you’ve come up with your primary list of interests, use the above questions to go over it and narrow it down to those that have the highest chances of bringing you success. Give yourself a bit of time to mull over those topics that remain, and choose one of them that appeals to you the most. Use that topic and begin writing down all of the basic things that you would require to learn or obtain in order to achieve success within that category. Put all of these things into a logical order, and then break them down into smaller parts which are then arranged in their own logical orders. Once you’re done, you should have a much clearer idea of what you’ll be able to offer your prospective customers, and if you have the ability and motivation to work toward success in that specific category from your original list.
To help determine if your successes are likely, go over your current list and ask yourself the following questions:
• Do you have any special knowledge about this topic?
• Do you have any skills that are related to this topic?
• Are you able to come up with a product that would help or please people in some way within this topic?
• Is there anything that you can offer in this topic that is outstanding and not already present in today’s marketplace? Make sure that you’re always writing your ideas down. With all of the thinking and brainstorming you’ll be doing, you’ll be surprised how fleeting ideas are if you don’t get them down on paper.
Even if some of them look rather odd when you write them down, when you delve into them, they might have a lot more potential than you first thought. Once you have some substantial ideas in front of you, consider showing them to your friends and family. Listen carefully to their thoughts and opinions and let them inspire you for further ideas and details. You might be surprised at what the people around you might think of that may never have crossed your mind. If you have members of your family who are against the idea of you toying with internet business ideas or a home business, it might not be a good idea to seek their opinions. You know it is going to be all negative.
check out forums and seminars and like minded people for inspiration. Another great resource is the internet. Do some research around your topic and prospective product(s), finding websites of general interest and potential competition. This will give you some terrific business ideas about what’s out there and an understanding of what people are really looking for. It will help you to better polish your idea or develop a whole new one that you think is better.
Charles Friedo Frize CEO/Founder FrizeMedia
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