Everything is easy in hindsight. If I had not made all those mistakes, I would not have learned what not to do. Still, if I could go back and talk to my younger myself, I would have a few words to grow an internet business from scratch. I hope this can help someone else on the same path.
Get The Best Education Online
Firstly I would start with getting the right education online. That's easy to say when you have found a good mentor. It's much more difficult when you are being bombarded with information from different different sources. There's an overwhelming array of information on the internet. When you start looking for ways to earn from the internet, you will be bombarded even more with all the 'best' ways to build your internet business.
There are two trains of thought when it comes to making money. You can build content and rely on Google and other search engines to rank your business. This is very tentative. Suppose Google does not like you or your content. You're not going to rank in this case. This means no traffic. Even if you do rank your content on Google, things can always change. Google can change. Ultimately they do not want you making money from them, unless they are making money too! Google is a business and like all businesses their goal is to make money, not friends.
Do not Try On Google's Organic Listings
Use Google and create content. But do not rely on your blog to make you money. You can be disappointed over and over again, as I was. I'm not saying only to use paid advertising. Use your content too. Just do not rely on it. As for paid advertising, you need a product which sells first. You need to know your business model works. You need a good back-end of products and services which will keep paying you over and over for existing customers. This is something I did not understand when I started out.
Use Back End Products
Back end products are often the way to make money online. You may break even on your front end products, or even make a loss. However, if you have a good range of back-end products in your sales funnel, you can make money later on. When you have a profitable sales funnel like this one, you can afford to use paid advertising. But make sure you test and measure first with a small budget. Do not spend money you can not afford to lose in the first instance.
Test And Measure Advertising
Your advertising might fail. Expect it to at first. Only by testing and measuring can you reliably scale up your advertising campaign. And only when it is profitable should you do so. Once you have an advert which produces a good return on investment, you can scale up.
It's Up To You
Everyone likes the idea of owning their own business. But not everyone has the discipline to follow through with it and make it a success. You are always responsible for your results and no-one else! It can be easy to get distracted when working online. Avoid being a 'busy fool'. That is, avoiding the important to do the unnecessary. This is easy to fall into when you work for yourself.
Money Producing Activities
As an online marketer you are paid for results, not time spent. This means you need to make everything you do create forward momentum. Concentrate on money producing activities and do not spend time on things which do not move your business forwards.
Focus On One Thing At A Time
There's a tonne of activities you can do online. And then there's all the distractions too. Avoid looking at emails and social media. It will only distract you. Write a 'to do' list before opening your laptop and prioritize them in order of importance. Avoid jumping from one course to another online. I did this for some time. Before I cold make progress in one direction, I had found another 'system' and set off on a tangent. Find something which works for you and keep going.
It's Not Easy
Remember an internet business is not easy. Like any business you need to work hard and consistently for a long period of time before you see results. If you're not prepared to do this have a long think about whether this is for you. I expected faster results in most of the systems I tried online. I failed over and over again until I found something which worked. Do not give up too easily because those who stick it out can make a lifestyle business that means never having to work for anyone else again! This is worth fighting through all the difficult times for!
Tough Times Are Ahead
There will be tough times. You will struggle and want to quit. Do not give up too easily. When you feel like this take some time out and charge up. One good thing about an internet business is that it can be very forgiving. You can always start again. Keep learning and developing yourself and looking into your actions and results. Do not keep doing something if it is not working. Keep trying new things and ever you will progress. Remember to keep investing in your knowledge. Your actions always come from this knowledge. Invest in joining a community who you can go to when things get tough. It's much wiser than trying to do everything by yourself. Remember, you are the glass ceiling of your business. Your knowledge, of lack of it, will either help your business grow, or limit it. Never stop developing yourself and your knowledge of what you are doing.