When To Invest, and When Not To

This post has been kicking around in my head for a while now.

There’s a huge market targeted at new Internet marketers, trying to sell them products and services that are supposed to make their work easier. The sales pages for nearly every product says something along the lines of, “you need to invest in your business”.

That’s true. You do need to invest in your business for it to grow.

The problem is that many new Internet marketers are not making any money online. That’s to be expected, there’s a learning curve involved. So when they spend money, they’re not spending profits, but whatever they can spare from their regular income. Often, they spend more than they can spare from their daily income, thinking that this new product or service will be the one that catapults them into profit.

Investing in your business means more than just throwing money at it.

There’s the investment of time to learn the skills you need to succeed. There’s the investment of risk in trying a project to see what happens (e.g. starting a blog, starting a membership site, etc). Many of these investments can be made with just a little money involved.

Until you learn the skills you need, products and services won’t help. You may find a program that makes you some money, but if you aren’t learning the skills you need you’ll never be truly successful. You’ll be dependent on someone else’s program and someone else’s skills. And you won’t make as much money as you could if you were the one creating the program.

So while a certain amount of investment is needed in the beginning, I’d suggest that new Internet marketers not jump on every ebook and service that promises instant riches. Stick to the quietly marketed resources that truly provide value, not the latest flash in the pan.

And don’t overdo it. You don’t need five ebooks on SEO, you only need one. And always see if you can hunt up the information for free on various blogs that give SEO tips.

The key point to this post is that money management is part and parcel of doing business online. If you can’t manage your starting capital to last until you get into profit, you’ll likely give up before you get that far.

6 Replies to “When To Invest, and When Not To”

  1. I would suggest that you really don’t need to buy any books to get started on your online business. Start out with a free blogger account, start researching other blogs to see what they do and how they do it, keep expanding your watch list of blogs, join payperpost and get some income, use that income to get hosting and install wordpress, and finally, once you have some nice content, use part of your income for advertising.

  2. Excellent advice and so very well said.

    And yes, I have found a lot of information for free online. My biggest investment has been in time spent learning.

    I am old enough to remember all the “get rich” schemes involving mail order. Pretty much the same principles involved. Get rich quick schemes rarely work, no one book or program makes you rich, you get what you put into it. And most important of all, patience is a virtue!

    I like Desty’s approach, invest time, start with free blog, research blogging, make improvements, get payperpost (or adsense or any program that pays you without too much monetary investment to begin). Turn that income back into your online venture, maybe move to paid hosting for your blog…

    As usual, I learn something, get inspired or affirmed whenever I visit this site. I wish I had time to visit more often. Thank you.

  3. The free services are definitely the way to go in the beginning. Make a minimal investment in a domain name, and your Blogger blog is portable to paid hosting if you want to go that route later.

    I think a lot of people have problems when they realize that building an income online takes time…and they start looking for a magic technique to shortcut that process.

  4. Everyone says to start with your own domain. Well what if you spend that money and two months down the road, you find out that blogging just isn’t for you? Some would say that you didn’t spend that much money. Why spend anything to see if you would like something when you can try for free? WordPress allows you to migrate your posts from Blogger. I don’t see a downside here…

  5. Hi Desty, the downside is that if you find out you’re successful at blogging and get lots of incoming links to your Blogger address, you lose those incoming links and the search engine traffic that goes with them when you migrate to your own domain name.

    Starting with your own domain name ensures you keep those links. You do run the risk of losing out on the domain name fee if you decide blogging isn’t for you. If $9 for a year’s domain name is a burden for someone, they definitely should start without one. But if it isn’t a burden, starting with one is a great convenience later on if/when they switch hosts.

  6. I started with Blogger and it was the best thing for me. I had read Desi Notes and Cash Quests, and thought like everyone else, “hey, they make money online, I want to as well!” So I started and it only took me about 2 weeks to realize that I didn’t know jack about making money online. I still wrote, but it took probably another 2-3 weeks before I found my voice, and started writing about businesses and business practices. Then I started to look at blogging as a business and writing about that. Now I’m slowing adding online marketing to my topics. I switched over to paid hosting after probably 2 months. I lost a whole 8 links. Woo…

    Each to their own, but I would say start free and when you think you’re starting to get the hang of this thing called blogging and you know that you want to do it long term, THEN go to hosting and wordpress.

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