Of all the questions I am asked there is one that stands out above the rest.
That question is …
What are the real keys to succeeding online?
That’s a good question, and one that deserves an honest answer.
Before I share my answer, let me share this. I truly believe that anyone, anywhere, can succeed online if they do three things.
- Understand the difference between building a business and making short term money.
- Set goals that are big but achievable and are patient.
- Follow a proven process and avoid just do what I do products.
With that foundation, here are six keys to succeeding online, according to the well known awol academy.
What follows is based on my own experience.
- The experience of going from having $17 in the bank to where I am today.
- The experience of serving over 21,000 paying members.
- The experience of prospering in spite of illness.
I hope what follows means as much to you and your family as it has to mine.
I think Zig Ziglar said it best …
“Winning is not an accident. It is the result of planning and hard work. In order to succeed you have to plan to win, you have to prepare to win and then (and only then) can you reasonably expect to win.”
Notice that sequence, because it is very important.
- Plan to win.
- Prepare to win.
- Expect to win.
Much more about these topics soon. For now, here are the keys to succeeding online in my view.
Key 1 – A Proven Model
Many people don’t take the time to think about which business model they will adopt before trying to make money online.
But this choice is a vital one.
You would not borrow $100,000 to start an offline business and not care which business you started.
If you risked your life savings, or went into debt, you would be sure to know just what you were doing, and how you were going to do it.
There is no difference with an online business.
When starting out online you need to know what your business will be about.
- Will you be an affiliate, selling other peoples’ products?
- Will you be a product creator, creating a book or membership site?
- Will you be an expert, creating or curating a site about one specific topic?
- Will you be a service provider, providing services (like building websites) for others?
These are only few of the business models that work very well online.
Have you chosen your business model yet? If not, today is the day to start.
Key 2 – Laser Focus
We all suffer from shiny object syndrome. I’ve been there too. This new offer sounds so good you just have to click the link to learn more.
We have all done it. Some of us many many times.
But when we do we lose sight of an important fact – there are only 24 hours in our day.
And our time needs to be spent building our business not drooling over the latest and greatest “dime sale” that you know won’t work but will contain three or four upsells.
Again, not throwing stones here. I do it too.
A wise person once said that success was more “about saying no than saying yes.” It’s true.
If you want to say yes to your own success it will be vital to develop laser focus on what you need to do today and leave those shiny objects behind.
Key 3 – A Commitment To Succeed
Commitment is a commodity in short supply these days.
If “what are the real keys” is the #1 question I hear then this statement is the #1 problem I see.
People quit too soon.
It’s true. No real business you join is going to provide instant success.
It takes time to get your bearings, find the prospects, create a sales funnel, drive the traffic and get things going.
The idea of joining a business (or website) and then counting on making quick money to pay for what you bought before the refund period is over is just never going to work.
What does work is this.
- Know what you like to do.
- Choose a business you believe in.
- Make sure the business is viable.
- Make a commitment to learn before you earn.
- Set a goal and deadline for making progress.
- Evaluate your progress when the deadline comes.
I know a lot of sites promise that you can join, do what they say and make the money back quickly, or “roll it over for more profits.”
In my experience, that is not the real world.
Key 4 – A Great Mentor
We all need help. We need someone to ask who has “been there and done that”.
We all need a mentor.
When you look for a mentor be sure to look for these things.
- They walk the walk, not just talk the talk. Watch what they do, not what they say. This is the only way to know if your potential mentor is credible.
- Their values are the same as your values. This is vital, and most “mentees” miss this.
- Work with your mentor any way you can. Some mentoring relationships work best in person. For some, email or chat works just fine. Find something that works for you both.
- Insist on a good fit. Don’t adopt the mentality that you are “lucky” they took you. You have as much value as any other person, even the super-successful ones.
Key 5 – Measuring Results Objectively
After you have worked your business for a while you will have results. Those results, be they big or small, will need to be measured and understood.
This is why setting up measuring in the beginning matters so much.
This is actually very easy to do. Here are two important keys.
- Learn and use Google Analytics.While GA is not perfect, it is free and good. And, in the beginning, those things both matter. Google provides excellent “how to” resources for using GA, so take advantage of that.
- Always use an ad tracker. If you use Aweber or another top autoresponder, this is built in and useful. If you want to go deeper, a tracker like Hypertracker will work well.
Doing business by the numbers is the only way to go. You don’t have to become a number-cruncher to do this.
But if you never learn the basics of knowing how much traffic you will always be limited in how much success you can achieve.
Remember this – you will have an initial surge of success as you find what works for you.
After that, your time will be spent improving on what you are doing and that is when knowing the numbers will really matter.
Key 6 – Willingness To Fail Forward
I will go back to Zig, as I so often do.
He said “Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly until you can learn to do it well.”
I’ll use myself as an example.
- My first article was … ugly.
- My first solo ad was long, and did not do very well.
- My first sales letter was disorganized.
Here’s another one. The first time I rode a bike I skinned my knees and cried. 🙂
Thank God I did not quit after the first time!
If you are committed to a real business of your own you will love failure because you know that every failure brings you closer to the success you want and deserve.
Will you enjoy the failure? No, not at all.
But, when you are fully committed, you will quickly learn that every “no” life hands you brings you closer to the big “yes” you want.
There you have it. Six keys that can take you from where you are now to where you want to be.
I can promise you this – it won’t be easy and it won’t always be fun. But, if you plan, prepare and expect, success will be yours.
And when you succeed online, you will have something offline businesses don’t have … both time and money freedom.
And those are beautiful things indeed!