Which tools do you need to build an online business?

Recently, a client of mine bought a product that she didn’t need. She didn’t need it because she already had a similar product, one that did the same thing. But she didn’t understand that and I realized that she wasn’t clear on the building blocks of her online business — what each piece was for. In her case, she bought a page builder when she already had one.

What are the major Building Blocks of an online business?

Building blocks An online business has what I call Building Blocks. The major ones are:
  1. Your website, with an optional “page builder”
  2. Your email service provider
  3. Your shopping cart with a merchant account and gateway to process credit card payments
  4. Your social media accounts — I won’t cover these in this post

Secondary tools might be a webinar service, a pop-up form creator, an appointment calendar, and any number of other possibilities.

Just like toy building blocks, you fit the pieces together to make a strong infrastructure for your online business. For example, you…

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by Ellen Finkelstein

Stay in touch with your list with less work


online-business-maintain-relationship-subscribers-1As an owner of an online business, you know you need to grow your list of subscribers. These are the people who have told you they want what you have to offer and they are your primary source of customers.

But if you don’t stay in touch with them regularly, you’ll lose them…

  • They’ll forget who you are
  • They’ll unsubscribe
  • They won’t learn to know, like, and trust you
  • And they certainly won’t buy from you

Maintaining a relationship with your audience is SO important, yet, like many online entrepreneurs, you might not manage it. Perhaps you’re focusing on creating a product, doing events, learning about online business and maybe even working full time. You’re busy! But being too busy to keep in touch with your best audience is not a good approach.

Do you know what batch processing is?

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by Ellen Finkelstein

13 Secrets to Relationship Marketing for Online Entrepreneurs


online-business-secrets-relationship-marketing-1You’ve probably heard that people buy from someone that they know, like, and trust. It makes sense, after all. Would you buy from someone that you don’t know, like or trust?

But if you’re an online entrepreneur, how do potential customers get to know, like, or trust you? They aren’t meeting you in person, so you need to create an online relationship.

Creating an online relationship would seem hard when you’re trying to attract a large number of customers. How do you have time to meet with people individually? The truth is that you often don’t. If you’re selling high-priced products or services, you may bring people to a 1-on-1 sales meeting, but many online sales are completed without that personal touch. People buy from a sales page on your website or a link in your email.

There are secrets to creating relationships with people online. If you master these, your sales will increase, sometimes dramatically.

In addition, some of the relationships you create will turn into partnerships. These partnerships can bring you many subscribers and customers at a time because people trust a recommendation from someone they trust. (And you can recommend their products to your subscribers in return — maybe even get a commission for doing so!)

Here — in no special order — are 13 secrets to creating relationships. Please leave a comment if you have a question, want to add a secret that has worked for you, or have a comment. Read More

by Ellen Finkelstein

How to Create an Opt-in Page to Grow Your Subscriber List


online-business-create-optin-page-1Offering people in your target market a free product in return for their name and email is such a basic concept in online marketing, but many people struggle with the technology.

Yet without this free product, often called a freebie, you won’t be able to grow your subscriber list. And without the list, you won’t have people to sell to via email. Email marketing is the bedrock of online success.

In this post, I’m assuming that you have something to give away and just need to create an opt-in page where people can subscribe to get it.

Here’s a brief overview of the process. Note that the specifics will vary depending on your email service provider, page builder, etc.

Upload the freebie to an online storage location

In order to deliver your freebie, you need to give subscribers a link that lets them download it. Here are some options: Read More

by Ellen Finkelstein

3 keys to make more and work less


online-business-3-keys-good-living-without-working-too-hardThere are 3 keys to make more while working less

1. Automation
2. Leverage
3. Focus

Too many entrepreneurs get burned out doing everything themselves and doing it the long, drawn-out way. They either don’t get enough done to make a good living or they end up quitting because they’re overwhelmed.

It doesn’t have to be that way, but you do need to do some preparation and practice some discipline.

I’ll explain each key in detail below.

1) Automation

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by Ellen Finkelstein