Can You Start an Online Business for Free?

icon budget sheet starting an online business for free

It’s an honest mistake based on all the online hype concerning starting your own business and getting rich. However, it is definitely a mistake to think online marketing is free! One of the biggest mistakes most beginners to online marketing make is assuming they can start for free — and rake in the profits without a financial investment.

The truth of the matter is that the opposite holds true. While setting up an online business requires a much lower investment than setting up a brick and mortar store — you’ll still need to spend money to get your business off the ground.

Notice the word ‘business’ in the term ‘online business?’ – That’s exactly what it is. It’s a business and you will need to spend money on it.

It doesn’t cost much to get started, and if you’re thinking of starting a business online with something free, you’re doomed from the start!

Invest in your own business and retain control over it

You’ll need to buy a domain. You’ll need to pay for hosting either monthly or yearly. That’s about all you actually need to start an affiliate marketing business online.  These are the basic but crucial fundamentals to setting up an online business.

If you try to skimp on costs here and build your web pages on someone else’s web property, you’ll be subject to their whims and fancies. You will never be in control of your own business with anything free.

How to lose control of your own business online?

One good example would be Squidoo, where thousands of marketers built Squidoo lenses for a while and one day woke up to see that their hard work had gone to waste once Squidoo changed.

In fact, there isn’t even a Squidoo website anymore? Think of all the business owners that were making money with Squidoo one day, and the next day it didn’t exist? Free is seldom free, folks.

Your Own Online Real Estate

If you’re serious about starting and operating your own financially successful business online, plan on making it your own business — not someone else’s.

Another place would be online marketers think they can get started is WordPress. com. Once they get there and all set up — they learn that they can’t sell affiliate products, can’t advertise, and can’t use essential free plugins for their website?

So they wound up wasting a lot of time and sweat only to be forced to learn how to transfer their website to a paid hosting service. Where they should have started to begin with?

How to get started without a website?

If you’re new to online marketing and funds are short, you may wish to provide services online and generate an income first before you start off on your online business.

There are freelance websites like and that will give any newbie a chance to make some money online. Yes, you will be trading hours for dollars but you’ll be saving up capital for your own business.

Don’t get addicted to the shiny object syndrome

As a newbie marketer you’ll probably wind up on a lot of email list, and that’s a good thing because it’s an easy way to pick up free information.  But it’s really easy to start buying stuff that you don’t need and actually go broke before you learn to make money online.

Make this your mantra: never buy any course, plugin, or software that you aren’t prepared to stop everything your doing and spend days or weeks learning how to use and implement it.

There are beginner marketers who buy and invest in products and services that are way too costly for them. In fact, it’s terribly easy to start buying “stuff” online that you think is going to help your business and get addicted to buying instead of working.

The truth is that nothing you buy will make you money! The actual implementation of many products can help you, but people get addicted to buying and never implementing?

Starting an Online Business On The Cheap

If you’re just starting online, you may not need to pay for an entire year of hosting all at once. You can choose the monthly option and it will be less of a burden on you.

I think this is a good idea if you have some extra time and are only toying with the idea of whether or not you want to own your own business. When you are only putting one toe in the water to test it out, you make no personal commitments, do you?

To be honest with you, very few successful marketers start like that, though. If you expect success you’ll need to go all in and commit to making your efforts pay off, whether it’s sooner or later!

If you want to own and operate your own successful business online, you will fare much better by jumping in with both feet. Make a decision to spend the $14 or so on a domain name, and pay for hosting, and someone to teach you how to make a go out of it.

More Expensive May Not Be Any Better

Another mistake is to assume that you need the most expensive tools to ensure your online success. One good example would be paying a hefty sum for services you don’t need as a beginner, or maybe ever?

Despite the fact that there are excellent services available that you think will somehow make you more successful, or just that someone else uses them: you don’t need them to build a profitable online business when you’re starting off.

Wait until you’re generating a substantial income online and it reaches a point where you need better tools to scale up. Then, you can go with the better and costlier options to take your business to the next level.

Any Legitimate Business Keeps Up With Expenses

Watch your expenses very closely and only spend on products that will take your business to greater heights and you are ready to stop everything until you learn to use them. Do not keep splurging on ‘Make Money Online’ guides and software that make bold and unsubstantiated promises.

Thousands of people have spent a ton of money on rehashed and untested products that were nothing more than hype and empty promises. This industry, unfortunately, is awash with such products and they’re the norm rather than the exception. Buyer beware is the rule here.

Track your online expenses like a hawk… and spend what you need to in order for your business to flourish. Wise spending is part of wise investing… and it is of paramount importance that you not be penny-wise and pound-foolish.

Like Warren Buffet said, “Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.” Watch both closely.

Success online involves wise use of money, time and resources from newbies and gurus alike! The wisest decision you will ever make as a beginner to online marketing is to get started today.

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