It’s important to be skilled in at least one thing to start an online business, it can be team management, technical skills, marketing and sales, finance, communication, and negotiation. And I this post, I am sharing some of the practical skills that help to start, run and grow an online business.
Online business is a business that you can start, operate, manage, grow anytime, anywhere and on any device. But to start any type of online and offline business you must have three things that are Money, Knowledge, and Manpower (It can be you in the beginning.)
The best part of online business is that it’s very flexible to start and manage. You can do it in many ways.
- IF you don’t have a large amount of money to invest in people, then you can do it on your own.
- If you have the knowledge and money and also doing the job and want to earn more money or extra income then you can do it by hiring people.
- If you’re doing the job, but don’t have big money and advance knowledge then you can do it part-time on your own, while doing the job.
- If you’re housewife, have little money to invest but don’t have the knowledge then you can also run an online business from home.
- If you’re a college dropout then you can do online business instead of searching for jobs.
- If you’re doing college degree/or in any profession, then you can start an online business.
It means whatever is your knowledge/financial conditions you can start an online business.
But one thing that is very important to start an online business and earn a side income or if you want to make it big and even billion-dollar company then you need to do one thing, and that is LEARNING.
Yes, my dear friends, don’t ignore it. It’s the secret of success in business and any kind of profession. And you can develop your learning capacity day by day.
But then the question is what to learn?
- Do you have to read business and motivational books?
- Do you have to do online courses related to online business?
- Do you have to hire a mentor to guide you to start and grow your business?
- Do you want to attend leadership programs?
- Do you have to spend 2 hours on YouTube to watch motivational videos?
- Do you have to learn about news and trends?
and many more.
The above is also important in certain conditions, but not all the time. You have to focus on each learning source and method one by one according to the situations. You read and learn 10th class books/courses to get passed in the 10th class. You don’t read 12th class books. And it’s obvious.
Now it’s similar in the business. If you have to do earn money for basic needs, then you have to learn the ways that help to get this income soon.
Similarly, if you have completed your basic needs, then you have to learn to expand the business. That’s why it’s important to choose the learning topics, courses, books and all kinds of business study materials.
Many want to learn to start and grow an online business. Many want to learn to grow blogging, YouTube channel, eCommerce website, affiliate marketing, and many want to grow their income.
But what to learn? and how to learn? is the biggest question and problem faced by millions of people.
I think, along with learning to earn, it’s important to know how to learn and what to learn?
You saw that people lose interest in learning even after paying higher fees or by doing online courses. People are unable to grow their income and business. People are not able to grow in their profession and business.
There are many reasons but I think it is “What they learn? How do they learn and implement is the biggest reason?
While there are many good mentors and teachers. But still, only a few are growing. That’s good. But what about those, who are unable to start and grow.
Note: There is not fix path or predefined pattern to become rich or successful in offline or online business. You have to create your own path. And one path is through learning. The other path is through investing money. The third is through hiring people. 4th is creativity and invention. And there are many ways. So I am sharing my personal points of view and what I have learned so far from others and experiences.
So, to start an online business, to earn online, and to grow income while doing a job, you have to learn essential things and business ethics before and along with the work that will grow your business and income. And I am sure the following things or skills will definitely help you to start, manage and grow your income and business.
1. Research and Planning:
Research and planning are important part to start any kind of small and big business. You don’t need to make it perfect. You just need a rough map.
The two things that most important in this that you have to answer and define:
What is your product/services – who is the target customer – how you will make it different or look unique and why they will buy/hire you and how you will get paid.
In simple words, it means how you’re going to earn money and what you do for your target customers.
You can learn these by following as per your business category or type.
- Watch and learn case studies and make important notes.
- Analyze various online business models.
- Watch Reports/Media about the category in which you’re going to start your business.
- See and Learn what others are doing, in the same field.
- Also, learn about their profits and cost.
The main point is here, that you do enough research on the business that you want to start. At least learn for a month about the industry and traits.
You can learn these things by doing the following things:
- You can communicate with business consultants and experts.
- Communicate with the target customer or people who is going to buy or use your services/products.
- You can learn by working for the company for a few months or a year.
- You can learn by following the social media pages/blog/videos of that company that is a leader in your business category.
- You can find and do online courses related to business research/planning if you don’t know how to research and what to research.
- You can learn it by doing it.
- You can also do the online course in that business category, for example, if you’re thinking to start a food battery or solar business then you can learn about the technical expertise of that business.
- You can also learn from news/magazines and many other things about the various industry and current trends and future predictions.
But one thing is important to remember, when you will do research and plan, you will also get negative feedback or negativity on a certain point. You will get many people who have failed in the business, that you want to start. You will also get people who say to you that it’s not a profitable business. And it’s possible that you will give up on your idea. And that’s what happens with many people.
So how to handle it?
Don’t get an impact on yourself and your ideas negatively about the feedback that others provide. Instead, ask them what are the problems? And make notes, and plan how you will not get those problems or handle them.
There are many things to learn. But see those who get success. Watch those who are trying hard. Learn from those who are getting success. Don’t think about failures. Think about success and possibilities. And plan to win.
2. Customers behavior/habits and future interest:
The best thing to learn is to learn more about your customers. What are their goals and expectations? And how much they can pay? Once you know it, you can design and create better products and services that people are looking for online.
You also need to understand their habits. How they purchase/buy. What they do before buying. What they say after buying. And how they use the products. So, learning about customers will help to serve them with high quality.
Not only that you also have to identify their future interest. So that in future they will keep connected to you. For that, it’s important that you will keep updating your products/services/uses as per the industry demands and your customer’s interest.
3. Learn to communicate effectively:
Effective communication is the most important thing in business. Effective written, verbal and visual communication matter the most in the business. Your communication with customers makes them interested to return to your website/shop/business.
Communication skills are something that builds and grow your personal and professional network faster. If you are positive and use positive business vocabulary in conversation or discussion new ideas along with a smile then it will help to get attention and make people interested to do business with you.
So always learn, listen to the audience, customers, people, partners, team members and understand their intentions and goals and once they have done then communicate your point. Let other speaks and you listen. When others finished then start speaking till they don’t become your customers.
Domain and hosting are very important in your online business. You can say that it’s common and technical, I don’t have to learn about this.
But remember a few things about the domain and hosting when you think to start an online business.
1.) Your domain has to be unique and easy to spell and identify for your customers. It’s the name of your online business.
2.) Your website/applications need hosting, so it’s important that you will get backups, faster speed and easy to upgrade solutions.
So always think carefully and long term about the hosting, it’s because when you have more 100000+ customers or users then it can be difficult or risky to migrate to a new server and do experiments with the domain.
So, it’s always good that if you consider domain/hosting features based on the long term and bigger version. Not matter if the name looks uncommon. There are lots of names without logic. Names don’t matter, the work that you do matter the most.
5. Digital Marketing Skills:
Digital marketing skills and methods are most important to start, manage and grow the business. You have to learn one by one about following things to grow your online business:
1.) If you want to get customers from search engines to your website/applications, blog, and eCommerce store then you have to spend a minimum of 2 hours daily to learn about content writing, blogging, search engine optimization and technical parts of SEO. Organic traffic or direct customers from search engines is the most beneficial and less time-consuming method to get more customers.
2.) Not only that you also have to learn about Search Engine Advertising/PPC and Social Media Advertising to start and grow your business. If you have learned both SEO (Search Engine Marketing) and SEM (Search Engine Marketing), SMA (Social Media Advertising and Pay Per Click and Affiliate/Referral marketing then it will help you create a strategic digital marketing plan for your business. And when you have the knowledge, at least you can hire right digital marketers or you can build a good digital marketing team to grow and promote your business online.
3.) You also need to learn about Video Advertising, Content Marketing, and Email Marketing.
In simple terms, just learn about how you can market and advertise a business on following platforms and methods:
- Learn to get customers from the search engines.
- Learn to write engaging content and blog posts on your business website.
- Learn how you can use Video content and platforms to grow your online business.
- Learn to use social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Quora, Tik Tok to grow your business.
- And learn about all kinds of old and new paid advertising methods.
The best business plan is your marketing plan.
To learn all these things, It can take you 6 months to 1 year. But you can start learning one by one. And I don’t mean you start a business after learning everything that is written in this post.
For example, you can do all in one digital marketing course online in which you can learn all kinds of online marketing methods in a few hours. And while doing that course, you can use the learnings/lessons and tips into your current business.
You can also do the following online courses and methods to promote and grow your business.
1.) First, do the course about website building such as WordPress, Web Development.
As a result, create your business website and products.
2.) Now think to get customers. Now you can do the SEO course.
As a result, optimize the website and content for organic traffic.
3.) After that learn about social media marketing, and implement the lessons to grow the social presence of your business.
And try other lessons similarly. There are double benefits of learning and using the lessons at the same time in your business. One you will be able to get more customer and you will be able to identify what works best at minimum cost. So after that, you can plan and delegate the process to your team members.
In conclusion, I will say that learn all those marketing methods and skills that help you to actually get customers today, tomorrow and this week. Learning about online marketing before creating a product/service is more beneficial. So at least you know or you design the product/services that you can market confidently.
And also try long term methods that are less costly but gives you return for years, such as blogging and video content on YouTube.
6. Digital Content Creation Skills:
Digital marketing is nothing without digital content creation skills. Digital Marketing is about “how to use certain platforms” It’s like learning to use software such as Microsoft Word. But what you can create in Microsoft Word, is about digital content creation.
If you don’t know about writing a good and engaging blog post, then having a blog is not beneficial.
If you know you can teach on YouTube, but don’t learn how to create and mix facts, data, information, knowledge in the content and how to record, edit and produce then it’s not beneficial.
If you know that your images, infographics, and various other promotional graphics are important, but you don’t know how to create and design them, then it’s not beneficial.
So even you can skip learning digital marketing platforms or you can learn it free. But never skip learning about digital content creation.
Digital Marketing is just about platforms. But digital content creation is actually the main thing that works on the platforms you focus to promote your business. Anyone can learn within a few hours about how to use SEM, Blog, Social Media. But it takes time to create content. You can market or promote by yourself, but if you want to hire someone, then hire who can create content for you.
In simple words, you know about the road and where do you want to go. But if you don’t have a vehicle and method to go your destination, then knowing about road and target is nothing but a just a philosophy.
That’s why digital content creation is more important than digital marketing. And I am 200% sure that if you want to start, grow your income, business, customer base online then become a master in digital content creation as much as possible.
There are thousands of marketers, but there is less creator. You can beat any marketing strategy, team, and big company just with 1 blog post, 1 video, 1 social media post, and that’s the power of digital content creation.
Digital Content is Food. People care about Food or paying for food. Yes, it’s also important how and where to serve them.
So, you can’t say that without marketing skills, you can grow. But to market effectively, you have to focus on creating good and engaging content and also the content that will help you to make money.
7. Value of your time:
Don’t spend your time. Instead, learn to invest your time on the sources/tools/methods/skills that will help to grow your income. The time that you invest in learning, the time you invest in creating content, the time that you invest in building networks, the time that you invest in training your team, the time that you invest in learning about investments is the time or investment that will make you successful in life, career and business.
You have to learn where you’re spending and investing. It’s equally understandable as like money.
Spendings are important. But don’t think to earn money on spending.
Investment is most important, and always think to earn from your investment.
It means to learn to invest your time on those things that will give you the benefits and help you to achieve your business goal.
Everything is important in life, but most important is your goals and dreams. When you have to full fill family dreams and needs, you don’t think about everything, you just think the ways to do it.
For example, tell me:
Your goal is to become an expert in Programming, but you spend 2-3 hours daily watching movies. Might be watching movies can make you a good programmer? Instead of practicing the new syntax and logic.
Your goal is to get 1000 customers per month, but you’re spending your time watching a cricket match and video on your mobile.
Your goal is to become a successful entrepreneur but you’re spending your time in political debates and discussion with your friends.
Your family or parents or your situation needs 50,000 to 100000 rupees for construction work or to improve your living space and you are enjoying parties. That’s good. But it’s great and very important to achieve your needs so that you can focus on desires or changing the world.
No one can change the world, without changing themselves. You can be good or bad, the choice is yours.
My point is simple, you want to go the east, but you’re walking towards the north and care about all the things that happen in the north side. Instead of knowing about the east.
See what you need to watch to achieve your goals.
Learn what you need to read to achieve your goals.
Communicate what needs to communicate about the goals.
And focus on your goals and dreams, instead of watching others.
The life is too small to keep watching what others are doing, and life is too big and long if you want to do something that you’re capable of doing.t
When you have a business and career goals in that you have focus, then you have to execute them fast, you have to learn fast, you have to invest your time wisely and on productive things.
Entertainment, gossips, arguments, debates and lots of other data and information that is not important for you right now, is just a waste of time and nothing else. You can get to that later. The real answer for the world is your performance and results.
And if you avoid these things and learn to manage and value your time, then you will be able to achieve your business and career goals faster. And I am 200% sure and grantee it.
For example, if you value your time, you will achieve the business goal in 1 year that others are achieving in 4 years. And that’s what will make a difference in the success of your business.
And you have to learn to value your time so that you will be the person who does things in a day, that others spend a month to do the same work.
It’s all about timing and speed. When you’re in business, you’re not in your bed, you’re on the battlefield. If you don’t defeat others, they will defeat you.
8. Learn to collaborate effectively with the team:
You can’t do all the things. If you try to do it then it will take decades to achieve your goals. And that time there is no excitement and happiness for that. If you’re rich in the ’60s then it means it’s a retirement plan. You have to be rich between the ’30s to the ’50s so that you can achieve and enjoy your dreams and achievements. And help those that need you financially and mentally.
But the point here is that if you learn collaboration skills, you will become rich faster. It’s because now you’re taking the help of other people, experts, and team to manage, grow your business.
You can say that I can collaborate or everyone can collaborate, but it takes money to hire and build a team.
And that’s true.
But my friend, when you will get money, after a year, 2 years or 6 months?
So, when you will hire the first employee or team member to work with you in business?
I know you’re not sure.
But the question is how to learn to collaborate without anyone? And how to grow the business from 1 employee to 100000 employees?
If you want to know this secret then read the following lines carefully:
You’re the first employee of your business. First, learn to collaborate with yourself and if you do it effectively, I am 100% sure you will be able to build 10- or 100-people’s team within 1 year. You’re the biggest secret or success key and you’re also the wall in front of business growth. Now it’s your choice, what you will choose.
If you can control or collaborate with yourself then you can collaborate with 1000’s of people.
How to collaborate with yourself:
- Set work goals and guide your mind/body to complete them before the sunset.
- Appreciate and congratulate yourself when you get up at 4 am in the morning.
- Control your mind while at work, that you will not use social media and don’t watch how much you have earned, before completing daily goals.
- Guide your body when you tired. Give it good drinks/healthy foods/fruits.
- When it becomes negative, then communicate in front of the mirror and talk about past struggles and future possibilities.
- Guide yourself, to learn new and update your skills.
- Collaborate with yourself, when you want to take rest then take rest.
- When you want to work, then work no matter it’s night or day.
Don’t tell following things to your brain or communicate with yourself:
- Entertainment is important.
- Sleep is more important than getting up early in the morning.
- Gossip is important.
- Party is important.
- The cricket match is important.
- Politics is important.
- and many other unproductive things and habits.
Always guide, mentor yourself, it’s because you’re the creator of all the things that you’re getting and will get in life. If you think something is possible, it’s because you can do it. But then you have to stick yourself to do that. And if you believe you can do then you can do it.
So, once you learn to collaborate, support, mentor and guide yourself, you will be in the position within a few months to guide others and hire other people.
And in business collaboration is important.
9.Learn to use Information Technology:
You can use as much technology in your business to start, manage, market, grow and automate the business. It starts with keywords research, domain, hosting, website, search engine optimization, CRM, ERP, Advertising, social media marketing, content creation, and many other things.
And it takes you to AI, Robotics and many other automation technologies.
- If you know you can build business and educational apps then why you’re not doing.
- IF you know you can write or create books, online courses, and many other information products then you why you’re not learning and doing.
- If you know you can use video calling then why wasting time and petrol on visiting the place.
- If you know you can manage your business finance and transactions online, then why you’re doing it offline.
- If you know you can grow your business faster online, then why you’re not doing it.
- If you know you can teach people online through a blog, video channels, social media, and forums then why you’re not doing it.
- If you know that VPS, Dedicated servers cloud computing or hosting is faster then shared hosting and better to grow your business then why you’re not switching.
- If you know that doing blogging on a business website is good then why you’re not doing.
When you know there are lots of business and computer applications that you can use then why you’re not using them.
I know it takes money and time.
But there are also ways to use technology for free or in less costly methods in your business:
Following are the ways:
- You can use free cloud storage.
- You can use online banking
- You can use blogging
- You can use social media
- You can use YouTube
- You can use sales funnels
- You can use guest blogging
- You can use affiliate marketing.
- and many other things.
And once you will be able to get benefits from the free sources, you can choose paid or advanced technologies.
So first use the information technologies that are available and you can afford, then keep upgrading it after a certain point.
Please learn the following article:
I think, there is no business and industry that is not using information technology, online marketing, and many other tools/platforms to start, run, manage, grow the business.
Why not you can learn.
The strategic importance of cloud computing in business organizations
10. Learn to Use the Knowledge Faster
Lots of people are educated and have lots of knowledge. But not all are rich and successful in business and career in their own eyes.
Why? There may be many reasons.
But I think It’s also because of a lack of execution, entrepreneurship and leadership skills.
Millionaires and business tycoons did one thing differently, they implemented and executed their ideas and plans faster. They take the risk to fail. And you have to let go of the fear of failure.
In simple words, if you don’t go to the exam, due to fear of failure then how you will pass? Even you can fail, but at least you tried to pass or have a chance to pass.
And if gets failed, then try again. And it’s not about one time, many are successful after 100+ times of failure. Can we have the same mindset?
I think not that much right now, but if we learn and experiment and participate in the competition, we can win.
And to win, I think the following things are important to learn and to focus when starting and running online or offline business:
- Learn to focus on what will make you money.
- Learn to take decisions fast after analyzations.
- Learn to Execute the plan faster and effectively.
- Learn to manage finances and Investment wisely. Invest one by one and don’t invest all in one thing. It can be time and money.
- Learn to compete with the big brands so that you learn more and become stronger in business.
- Learn to identify the failures and grow after that faster and keep repeating it.
- Learn to explore and take a managed risk so that you can achieve more in life.
- Learn to use the knowledge so that you can do the things that are important in business.
- Learn to use the money so that you can earn, save and invest more.
- Learn to build and use your network so that you will get more work.
And many others.
In conclusion, it’s important to learn about the things, that help you to achieve your business and startups’ goals. The same is important in career and profession. So dear friend, be confident about learning and experiments. Things can take time. But be consistent and never give up.
Hi, my name is Vijay Sharma and I am a freelance IT consultant.
I like to write and share useful, practical, professional tips, insights, data, information, and experiences here that are focused to grow and enhance your personal and organizational IT capabilities.
To get in touch with me or want to ask questions then please follow me on the following social media networks: