Darkhorse Solutions

The number one way to make money online is… Dropshipping? Amazon FBA services? Affiliate marketing? Freelancing? Blogging? Selling photos? Hosting ads?

Ok, yes! But…

There are so many ways to make money online, which one is the best for me? Before you get overwhelmed in all the possibilities, the best advice, regardless of your journey is to start with a business plan.

We can help with this! But if you’d like to learn more, keep reading.

The truth is there are no “free” ways to make money. All ventures require some investment – in some cases money – but in all cases, time. These are valuable resources. Consider you’ve been working an office job for a few years and you have a salary of $30 per hour. You now want to start a side hustle. If you spend 3 hours on this hustle, you’ve spent around $90 in time resources. That’s in addition to the costs of starting an Amazon FBA business (for example), which costs around $2000 upfront. A business plan can help you manage these resources so that you do the right work and invest the right resources to get paid back. A business plan helps you lower your costs and maximize your profits.

When making money online, the fundamentals of business supply and demand are important. But you need to consider the trends that stem from innovation and digitalization. In this now digital world, two things are certain:

  1. We EXPECT MORE with much less effort; and
  2. We all have something to SHARE

If you’d like us to help you setup a business plan or send you a template, let us know.

How can I be more digital? Which technology should I use?

The rapid pace of digital technology is transforming our lives every day. The same applies to our businesses. Whether you own a restaurant, offer services, consult, coach, or run a non-profit organization (NPO), digital technology can be used for marketing, advertising, customer engagement, creating platforms, sharing ideas and much more. While the challenge is often – how to make money online – the transformation starts with your mindset and your business plan.

Digital transformation is not about being more digital or using more technology but rather how can you create value by using specific technology. Digital advancements are led by individuals and businesses with a vision to disrupt the existing status quo. Innovation requires that we start thinking outside the box and discover new ways to make life easier or offer something brand new. So to break it down, here are four steps to follow:

  1. Expectation: Find a specific expectation. What can you focus on? You may have heard this as “finding a niche”.
  2. Research: What products in the market address this expectation – apps, websites, videos?
  3. Innovate: Can you make a useful solution – solutions that connect supply and demand?
  4. Share: Share your solution idea with your friends. Their feedback is important – would they pay for it?

Millions of people make social media and blog posts daily, talking about an infinite range of topics – but what matters in your business is how to monetize your digital efforts. This is where the strategic portion of business transformation comes in. Visit our page to learn more about Our Services and how we can help you create a strategy that makes sense, brings value and works for you! So your next question should be…

How can I make money online as a small business?

Well, you started the business with a product or service, right? You found a good niche. You have a few customers or at least interested people. You’ll need to ask yourself if your future goals are to:
a) sell more of the existing product/service;
b) sell a digital experience of the product/service;
c) sell something completely brand new.

It’s going to be different for each situation, but here are four methods to employ digital tools. Beware! Following some of these methods will consume extra cost and time with minimal return. So having a strategy and execution plan is extremely important to get the money rolling in without spending too much.

  • Ads are a simple and quick way to expand your market reach or get paid from bigger businesses who compete for ad air time. Set up a website for your own company and host relevant ads on some of the pages. Or find social media marketers and influencers to advertise for you – the more views each ad gets, all parties get more business, win-win! You will need to create focused and effective ad campaigns so that you reach the right target audience.
  • Data analysis is an underrated game changer for many small businesses. Using analytics platforms like Google Analytics or Microsoft Power BI together with Google Ads or Facebook Ads campaign data helps you focus your products, advertisements and clientele to bring in the most customer conversions instead of wasting resources on a market space that doesn’t pay.
  • E-commerce brings your physical products into the digital world, showing them to millions of people instead of thousands. Create stores on platforms like Shopify, Etsy, Amazon or eBay to reach the global market. Facebook Marketplace is an essentially free way to sell locally for products that are costly to ship. Beware of costs associated with inventory and logistics – it’s important to choose where to play so that you make profit.
  • Apps are a more holistic way to transform your business from phone calls and walk-ins to a digital experience. Since apps are available 24/7, it doesn’t matter what your business hours are. You can choose how to interact with your customers and make the customer experience more convenient.

Remember, not all of these methods will work for every situation. For example a skilled tradesperson like a plumber or repair mechanic may get much more business through ads but not have enough capacity to handle all the visits. In this case, an app might help more by triaging the simpler issues and managing those through video assistance, while the in-person visits can be reserved for more serious or specialized issues. In the same breath, combining some digital methods can bring even more value. For example, an e-commerce store can use cookies to track which products customers view the most. If customers continue to view a product, but don’t buy, this alerts the seller that they will need to change the strategy, product, price or ad.

If you do decide to embark on your digital journey through these methods, they will open up the market for you if done right but could easily burn your wallet or time without a plan. We specialize in creating a transformation strategy and execution plan so that you can confidently use digital technology to create value and speed up your journey to make money online!

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