In this post, I'm going to show you how to start your own business with no money.
There's this belief that you have to spend money to make money. It holds a lot of people who want their own business back from starting.
I'm here to tell you that it's absolutely BS that you need money to start a business.
Yes. Having money makes it easier and speeds up the process a lot but that doesn't mean you shouldn't even try.
I started my business without investing even a dollar in the beginning and the moment I started making a little money I spend the equivalent of a cup of coffee a day on my website, hosting, online marketing research tools, and training.
I was skeptical at first but it is possible to create a business that generates a full-time income while having no money.
If you keep reading I'll give you a step-by-step method so that you can do it too.
What do I mean with $0?
When I say zero dollars I mean the amount you can invest in the business you're creating. To make this work you need to have money comes in so you can pay your rent, eat food, and other things needed to survive.
If you don't have that I suggest you either work freelance or get a job and work on your business in your spare time. While it's true that the more time you put in, the sooner you start making money it's possible to succeed just spending 3 hours a day working on it.
Now let's get into it!
Eliminating business options
When you have $0 you're going to have to be realistic and realize that you can't start any business. Some businesses require you to at least have some money. This is why we're going to have to eliminate some business options first.
Offline product-based businesses
With no money, it's going to be hard to create a business offline. Let's say you want to sell products you're going to have to have a place for inventory, buy materials or the product itself.
Even if the products are hand made it's going to be hard to scale because it takes time to make the products and without money it's going to be hard to delegate these tasks.
Offline service-based businesses
When you do an offline service-based business you're going to run into the same obstacles. The goal is to make money not spend it without even knowing if the business is going to work out.
The financial risk has to be non-existent or as close as possible to that.
This why I recommend starting an online business in affiliate marketing.
What is Affiliate marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a form of marketing where companies form partnerships with marketers to promote their products to get more exposure and boost their sales. The marketers get a percentage of every sale that was made by people that they refer to the company.
Why you should start an affiliate marketing business
In a lot of ways, an affiliate marketing business is the perfect online business to start when you have no money. If you sell product online you will have to make or buy the products first. You don't have to deal with that when you have an affiliate marketing business.
You're strictly the middle-man guiding people to companies.
As an affiliate marketer you don't have to:
- Invest in a place to store your inventory
- You don't have to deal with customer service
- You don't have to invest time or money into making or inventing a product.
The only thing you're doing promoting the product which requires no money if you do it smart.
The Steps to creating an affiliate marketing business without spending money
In contrary to a lot of other businesses the steps to creating an affiliate marketing business are simple but you do need to follow them without deviating even a little. While reading this you might think I need money to do this but at the end of this article, I'm going to show you a way to do all this without spending a dollar.
1. Pick a niche to focus your business on
A niche is a group that's interested in products, services, or interests that only appeal to a small section of the population. Picking a niche is very important for promoting affiliate products.
To be able to successfully promote affiliate products you need people their trust. When you suggest that a certain product is perfect for them they need to believe you or else they won't spend money on it.
The best way to get peoples trust is to position yourself as an authority. This is very hard to do when you're considered a jack of all trades. You need to be seen as an expert which is easier to do if you choose a specific thing to be an expert in.
Does this mean you have to be an expert before you can make money?
No. Not at all but you do need to be part of the community and seem knowledgeable over the products you promote.
There are a few things you have to take into account when you pick a niche.
1. The profitability of your niche.
Is it even possible to make money in your niche?
2. The competitiveness in your niche.
It's going to be hard to stand out if there are millions of people offering the same stuff you do.
This might sound like a challenge to find out when you read it like this but I have a few simple methods that can help you get the answers to these two questions with no more than 10 minutes of work.
2. Find Products to promote
As I said before in affiliate marketing you partner up with companies that offer affiliate products. There are multiple ways to find good affiliate products to promote.
1. Look for Affiliate marketing places
Affiliate market places are websites where you can submit your products for promotion or selling.
A lot of companies that sell affiliate products are active on these websites so its easy to find affiliate products that you might want to promote.
examples. ClickBank, JVzoo, Warrior Plus.
2. Google Affiliate programs
Google makes finding affiliate programs easy just type in "[niche] + affiliate program" and you should have enough affiliate programs to choose from.
3. Create a Professional looking Website
When you know in what niche you're going to operate and what products you're going to promote you'll need to build a website.
Is it possible to make money without a website?
Yes, but you'll be handicapping yourself severely.
While you can do a lot having your business on social platforms you're still at the mercy of the platform.
You might have created a nice logo for your branding but the logo that will get the main attention is the social platform you're on.
Also when the platform decides to change something that might be bad for your business such as their algorithm you have no say.
Having a website will:
- Give you full control of your marketing.
- Give people a way to contact you
- Give authority to your business
- make it possible to store all your content in one place.
- function as a calling card
Building a website might seem hard but it actually isn't.
You just need three components to make a simple professional looking website.
Hosting provides you with a storage facility where you can store all your content. Videos, audio, pictures it'll all be stored there for people to see.
- Domain name
Your domain name can be compared to the address of your website. This is what they type into the search bar of browsers to find your content.
- Website theme
A template that decides how your website is going to look. When you use a template there's no need for you to know all the technical stuff behind building websites. They'll be ready within a few clicks.
4. Start Building A Brand For Your Business
As I've said before you're going to have to position yourself as an authority which means you're going to have to build a brand for your business.
Having a brand will make you stand out between your competitors and make people more willing to buy because it looks professional.
This doesn't mean you have to show your face like me on the homepage but you do have to show that you know what you're talking about.
The best way to build a brand is by providing value in the form of content.
This way you can showcase your knowledge on the subject you chose to build your business around and you can help people with their problems. Choose a medium you feel comfortable with and start creating content. The moment you get the hang of one you can start combining it with other mediums(audio, pictures, video).
5. Promote your products
To make this all work people need to know about the products you're promoting. Luckily you're doing it online so you don't have to talk to everyone face to face and try to convince them that the products that you're promoting. You're going to let your content do all the talking.
When you're marketing your products you have two options. You market by investing time or money.
Sacrificing money means paying for advertising. Advertising is very effective because it brings people to your website immediately and can differentiate between those who are interested in your products and those who aren't.
The goal is to start a business with $0 which means putting money into your marketing isn't an option.
When I say time I mean putting time into creating content that attracts people organically. This also filters out people that aren't interested in your products because you're only making content for those in your niche.
This might take longer than advertising but is very effective.
There are a lot of ways to market your products purely by creating high-quality content but from experience, I can say that these are the main three methods that you should put all your focus on.
Search engine optimization (SEO)
SEO is the art of optimizing your website and the content on it so that search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo can read it better to get on the first page of these search engines.
The moment you're on the first page people will click on your links automatically and find your website that way. It's a very effective way of doing marketing and when you're on the first page you rarely drop in ranking which means you'll keep getting website visitors without actively having to do something.
What you have to keep in mind with SEO is that it's a long term solution. Before you can get on the first page search engines have to see you post high-quality content for a long time. They do this to prevent spam websites from getting on the first page.
You probably heard of Pinterest before. It's a social media platform for sharing pictures. At first sight, I couldn't imagine getting traffic for my niche which is "making money online" but I was surprised by the results. It turns out a lot of people use Pinterest as a graphic search engine just like they use Google to get information.
The moment I found this out I doubled the number of website visitors I had in a week. Pinterest is a great way to get people to your website in the short term. The conversion rate is a little bit less than SEO but it's very effective.
The last method I want to share with you is YouTube. Just like with Pinterest (if you know what you're doing) you can direct a lot of people to your website in a relatively short time. I think Pinterest is more potent than YouTube at the moment but both methods are effective and can be combined.
Making money with affiliate marketing
Having a website and directing people to it isn't going to get you money on its own. From your website, you're going to have to direct people to companies website so they can buy the products.
The affiliate company you partner up with will provide you with special links to their product pages. They can track where the customers came from with these links. You place these in your content and direct people to the company's product pages that way.
What can you expect from affiliate marketing
You're starting an online business without spending any money at all which means you'll be investing your time to get exposure.
This means it's going to take a while before your website generates enough that you can get a full-time income out of it.
Patience is an important part of any business.
Everyone's affiliate marketing journey is different depending on their niche, previous experience, and how much time they put into building their business.
While paying for advertising is quicker doing it the "organic" way is much more rewarding.
You'll be in a better place in the long term profit-wise and you'll learn a lot more skills along the way.
A lot of people have taken the organic route and started their business from scratch. I've read and seen affiliate marketing success stories that'd blow your mind.
How you can get a website, training, and marketing research tools for $0
You probably thought while reading this how can I get a website and the tools needed without spending money? Normally, I'd say there's no way to do this without money but 17 months ago I started this journey and created the website you're on now.
Don't forget to pin so you can find it again!
How I did it without money
I found this online marketing training platform called Wealthy Affiliate that taught people how to make money online by creating an affiliate marketing business.
To test it out and show people that it works they created a free starters subscription that gives people access to:
- Free WordPress websites + Hosting
- Online marketing research tools
- Expert step-by-step training
You can also get a premium account for the cost of a cup a coffee a day.
The premium account has all kinds of extra features to speed up the process but this post is all about doing it with zero dollars so I'll leave that for another post.
That's all for today. I hope this article inspires you to start your own business just like I did.
See you at my next post!
PS. If you like this post don't hesitate to share or leave a comment.
Most people think shares and comments don't make a difference but they're a vital part to keeping this blog alive.
Thanks and to those starting their business good luck!