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To make enough income in your online business, you need to focus on income-producing activities. online-business-income-producing-activities-1-scaled.jpg

Therefore, if you’re wasting your time on other things, you won’t be making the income you want.

It’s hard to know if the time you’re spending is purposeful or not, so this post will help you figure that out. You’ll find the exact types of activities that CAN produce income, with lots of examples.

I’m going to try to prove to you that you’re wasting a lot of time by asking you a few questions.

1. How much time do you spend on social media?

Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram can send you down the rabbit hole. Any content that’s personal should be read AFTER working hours. online-business-wasting-time-2

You’ll be shocked by me saying this, but you don’t ever need to read your wall/newsfeed/timeline.

  • For reading, just look at your notifications–click the Bell notification icon and start from there
  • For posting, get in there, post, and get out! (Better yet, outsource this task and just respond to your notifications)


Use social media strategically. I can’t tell you how many times people send me a friend request. When I accept, I send them a message that says, “Thanks for the friend request. How can we work together?” Then they reply, “Oh, Facebook suggested you, nothing right now” or “I was just expanding my list of friends.”

That’s mindless use of social media. Everyone should have a strategic reply that furthers their business goals. Do you?

2. How much time do you spend on free content, such as webinars,  PDFs, podcasts, and online groups?


I’m not saying that you shouldn’t learn. You should. But for each hour you spend learning, you should spend an hour implementing. I bet you haven’t been doing that.

If there wasn’t much to implement, then the free content wasn’t that valuable. Learn to distinguish between nice-to-have, feel-good content and content that you can implement. I hate to say it, but you often have to pay for the best content.

And while you should never stop learning, if learning is taking the place of doing, you’re spending too much time learning.

3. How much time do you spend struggling with technology?


Technology can be a hassle and you have to fix whatever is broken. And you have to learn the tools you use. But if you’re spending too much time struggling with your tools, either outsource that part of your business or get new tools. Otherwise, you’re working in your business, not on your business.

Some technology problems are unavoidable — stuff happens. But if your shopping cart, email service, membership program, affiliate software, or website page builder are regularly giving you problems, consider alternatives. It might seem a hassle to switch, but you’re wasting time NOW. And you’re probably spending more time being frustrated that is good for you.

Here’s a free guide to the online tools I use and recommend.

So, what is income-producing activity?

online-business-wasting-time-5To succeed at your online business, you need to master what I call the Business Triad:

  1. Audience: An audience of people who need what you have to offer
  2. Relationship: A relationship with your audience so they trust and respect your Knowledge
  3. Offers: Offers that are relevant to the problems your audience experiences


This is a principle from my Knowledge to Income Roadmap program.

Any activity that grows your audience, nurtures the relationship with that audience, or involves offers to that audience is an income-producing activity. If you aren’t spending time in all three, you won’t be successful in your business.

Audience-growing activities

online-business-wasting-time-6Growing your list — which means increasing the number of subscribers you have — is essential. You can’t expect to make money promoting offers to the same small group over and over. The bigger the list the more you can sell but you also need new people coming in. Those new subscribers are the most engaged.

And over time, people unsubscribe, change their email, or just stop reading, so you need to be adding to your list continually.

Here are activities you can do to grow your audience:

My guide, 10 Free and Unusual Ways to Grow Your List is a great place to start.

Audience-nurturing activities

Once you have even a few subscribers, you need to maintain contact with them, show them your expertise, and inspire them to take action. You do this through your emails. First, you use autoresponders, which are automatic emails that are sent after someone subscribes. These are very important because they are the most opened emails you’ll ever send.

After that, you send out “broadcast” emails. Of course, you should make offers as well.

My blog post, Stay in touch with your list with less work” describes a system for making this easy.

Offer-creation and promotion activities

online-business-wasting-time-7You must continually create content that you can give away or sell. Yes, it’s possible to have one big product and sell only that, but then you need to greatly multiply your audience building activities so that you always have someone new to sell to. Most online entrepreneurs have multiple offers.

And then you must make offers regularly. If you don’t, you don’t have a business. Notice that the creation of the content of your offer isn’t an income-producing activity by itself. Lots of people create content and never do much in the way of making an offer.  I have training on creating content fast so that you can move more quickly to making the offer. Check out “Quick Content Creation Bundle” here.

In this category, you can also put pricing techniques that create more income.

Here are some activities that bring in income through offer creation and promotion:

  • Emailing your list an offer of a product you created or a service you provide (You can promote it on social media, too, but don’t go down the rabbit hole when you do so!)
  • Sending out an affiliate offer
  • Doing 1-on-1 sales calls
  • Sending proposals to potential clients — this is usually done in the corporate arena
  • Increasing your prices
  • Offering upsells to existing offers
  • Asking current or past customers for referrals — AND following up
  • Participating in partnerships, such as bundles — these are like giveaways but are not free. If you aren’t the organizer, you’ll get an affiliate commission on sales you make.

If your audience isn’t responding to your offers

If you’re making offers but not getting a good response, here are some activities to consider:

  • Research if there’s a good market for what you’re offering
  • Research what your competitors are offering — both the product and the price
  • Re-engage your audience and partnership relationships
  • Plan a new campaign that doubles or triples the reach — perhaps you just aren’t promoting enough. Remember that most people need to see an offer several times before they buy.

What other ways do you waste your time?

Leave a comment about other ways you waste your time!

If time management is a problem for you, check out my masterclass, Get Everything Done!

4-reasons-consultants-coaches-products-courses-6Next steps

Pick up the offers mentioned in this post that seem relevant to you — most are free — and implement them!

Please also leave a comment and use the Share buttons to help your friends and colleagues.

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    4 replies to "You’re wasting time — that’s why you aren’t making enough income — and how to fix it"

    • Hanzel Villanueva

      Wow! This is a really insightful post. I learned a lot! Thanks!

    • Crissy Daniels

      Your post opened my eyes to how much time I waste on social media. Thanks for the reminder. I’m gonna try and implement some of your tips.

    • Laura Bunchild

      I’m a work-from-home mom and I think I waste my time cleaning the mess of my child every minute. This got me to think that I should just clean at the end of the day to allot more time for work instead.

    • Larry Goldstein

      This is a real eye opener. Thank you so much!

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