The secret: How to earn extra money online
Before getting into the secrete of success, a word of warning. There are many on line businesses that sell “foolproof” systems and tools to anyone who hopes to earn extra money online. Be wary of those who promise you thousands of dollars every week on autopilot, who claim to have push-button solutions to earn money, or anyone who uses the phrase “cracked the code”. Somewhere deep inside, you know that that there is no magic that will grow your bank account overnight – and you are absolutely correct! Listen to your gut.
With that warning behind me, I'd like to let you know how you can earn extra money online. Elsewhere on this site, I provide links to free tools and resources you can use to build your online business. Once your new business gets some traction, you can consider purchasing premium tools or attending seminars that give you much more control over your site and its earnings, and which can save lots of your precious time while doing do. They will help your in your quest to earn extra money online – but alone, even the best tools won't get the job done.
Still another warning
In still other areas of this site, you'll have a chance to read and learn the best techniques to build your online business. You may become highly educated, but if you don't take action, you won't have any earnings to show for all the time it took to get that education.
Neither tools nor education will provide the extra income you'd like. They're a great start, but the key is perseverance. You must take concrete action everyday. If all you do is become educated and acquire tools, you won't earn a dime. Plan on making mistakes; look forward to making mistakes – they prove your online business exists, and they are the true milestones documenting your progress. If you never have any interaction with any visitors to your site you won't have any failures – and you won't have crossed the starting line in your quest to earn extra money online.
No excuses – it's time to make it happen!
“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan Press On! has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.”
“Press on!” must become your mantra. You must not only press on, but you must pay particular attention to those things you want to avoid the most.
I've been warned, I'm motivated – now give me some help earn extra money online!!
You can earn money online in a variety of ways, but in all cases you need to have a web site, and you need to get traffic to your site. You can create your own web site in under two minutes (literally!), and you can do so for very little money. Here's how!
First, let's cover the “for very little money” part of the last paragraph – without any fine print or legalese. Normally, you'd have to ‘rent” a domain name for about $10 or $15 per year, and you'd have to find place to host your new domain, which costs between $3 and $10 per month, depending on the host and program you choose. I'll get into how to set it all up in another article. The bottom line is that the host keeps the site you create on their computers (called servers). Folks surfing the Internet access your site on those servers, using the domain name you rented.
You'll choose a domain name and select a host for your account below. You can get free hosting if you give up control of your web site, but your website will be filled with advertising – which doesn't fit my definition of free. What's worse, your site can suddenly disappear from the Internet without warning – and you may be left with nothing to show for all the time and effort you put into building the site! We'll get into the need to backup your site regularly (and how to do so) later.
First, let's talk about renting a domain name
You can hunt for a domain name which is related to the business you're interested in. By this time you should have chosen the the topic of interest you'd like to pursue. For example, you may want to start a web site about gardening. Your first task is to narrow the focus of your business – gardening is a huge category! Are you interested in raising herbs, is your interest in raising crops to be harvested, eaten, and re-planted for the following year, or are you interested in greenhouse gardening, hydroponic gardening, or …
Once you've narrowed the focus of your interest to a select niche, you're ready to hunt for a suitable domain name. Your challenge is to find a name that relates to your subject matter, and (ideally) something that is relatively easy to remember. For example, if my interest was in hydroponic gardening, I could go to NameCheap.com to see if I could find a suitable domain name – a unique name no one else had chosen. The name of that website (namecheap.com) should give you a clue as to how to give your own domain a descriptive name.
Coming up with a domain name
- Your domain name must be unique. Ideally it will end with .com. Domain names ending with .net or .org are also acceptable. Other domain names are available, but you should stick with one of these three. Go to NameCheap.com, and search for the name you'd like to use. As I write, the name hydroponicgardening.com is, as are indoorgardening.com and gardeningindoors.com. Hmmm… After a bit more thinking, I found HydronicHopeful.com is still available for $10.98 per year. There are a variety of upsells along the way to checkout -for Whois protection, for email accounts, etc. Ignore all of them – just checkout. Ignore online upsells, or your bank account will quickly drain.
- All domain names must begin with a number or letter, and can only contain letters and numbers. Hyphens ( – ) are allowed, as long as they are surrounded by a letter or number, so you cannot have a double hyphen, nor can you begin or end your domain name with a hyphen. Spaces are not allowed anywhere in your domain name.
- There are a few other “rules” you should consider in choosing your domain name. Try to keep your name short and catchy, and try to avoid hyphonated names (for example, my-site-is-here.com). Sometimes the hyphen is useful though. For example, Who Represents, a database of artists and agents, chose whorepresents.com as their domain name. That could be read and remembered as whore presents, an unfortunate coincidence. In such a circumstance, who-represents.com might be the better choice.
- Try to avoid names which include words that end and begin with the same letter. For example, avoid having a site named hydroponicclinic.com (HydroponicClinic.com) – it toys with your visitor's memory – and confusion is your enemy when it comes to enticing visitors to your site.
For your next trick…
Have you got your domain name yet? Great! You've graduated from the “First Thoughts” tab in the menu bar at the top to the “Getting Started” tab – Congratulations! Click on the “Getting Started” tab and read the page on Starting an Online Business. Once you've read that page, it's time to take the next step, finding a host for your new web site. You can also find a link to that page in the top menu – its the first link in the “Getting Started” dropdown.
Once you have a domain name and a host, you need to have a platform on which to build your web site. You'll be using WordPress, which is used by vast numbers of bloggers – perhaps as many as 25% of the Internet! They offer a “Famous Five Minute Install“, but your host may offer an even faster method to install WordPress.
We'll cover your WordPress installation in Part 3 of this topic.
Questions or Comments?
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