“Make money online with very little effort!” This is but one of the countless spam emails that I receive in my inbox everyday. While I have not tested out their claims, it sure is hard not to be enticed with such an easy formula for success.
But is there really a magic formula that could give you loads of money with minimal effort?
Here are some ways you can produce a steady income with minimal effort:
1. Find a profitable business.
Sounds like a no-brainer, right? Yet, this is the hardest step to take. Obviously, not everyone has found the right business that is profitable – or else, all business owners would be millionaires by now. Even those spammers who claim to earn thousands while doing nothing are not earning even a fraction of what they say they did.
So how do you find a business that can give you big bucks with less effort? Research, research and research. Ask around. Read books. Check out if there are any market research tools available for your business. If you are an eBay seller, for example, there’s this neat tool called DeepAnalysis that can tell you the most profitable item categories at Ebay; or check out eBay Marketplace Research (a subscription based tool that can provide you with data on eBay sales). With these tools, you can have an idea with what would be the best possible kind of product or business that you can also engage in.
2. Change your goals.
Did you start your business to do what you love, even if there is no demand for it? Well, profits and “what you love” do not always go well together. You may huff and puff everyday doing what you love, only to find that no amount of sleeplessness can bring in the millions that you long for. If you want to earn more, find a business where ample demand exists for it. If there is a healthy market for your product or service, you will make more money for smaller amount of effort.
3. Operate the business on a part-time basis.
If you want to take it slow, work on the business part time. Even if you dedicate only a few days a week to your business, if you are engaged in a high-profit business, then it could still net you big bucks.
However, by working part-time, you may not be maximizing the full potential of your business. You may not have enough time to go out and find your customers. Or you may lack the time and resources to improve your product offering. But if by working a few days of the week on your business fits your lifestyle, then be content with the extra income your part-time business can pull in.
4. Focus on your customers.
Select the customers that can provide you with a consistent stream of income and repeat business. Customers, who have a constant need of your product or services, can be your goldmine.
However, it is also important not to put all your eggs in one basket. What if your sole customer backs out on you? You will then be left empty-handed. Limit your customers, but be smart about it.
5. Minimize investments in advertising and other promotions.
Marketing is a time-consuming and costly effort. It is a lot of work; in fact many small business consultants recommend that you spend at least two hours everyday marketing your business. You will also find that a significant part of your expenses can come from advertising and other promotions. If you want less work and fewer expenses, start your own business without spending a dime in marketing. Adopt a passive attitude in marketing and simply wait for customers to come.
Instead of exerting effort marketing your business, devote the little amount of time you have to improve your product. Exceed the expectations of your customers in every single transaction. Sooner or later, your satisfied customers will act as your ambassador of goodwill. Word will start to spread around about your business.
Also, research every possible way to market your business on a shoestring budget — and find out which one of the methods actually works for you even for little effort. You may find that your content has the power to go viral in the social media. You may also be good in creating videos that can go viral: one video can reach millions of potential visitors.
If you are on the Web, continue developing and improving your content. The more content you have, the greater the chances for search engines to index your pages in a variety of keywords, thus bringing you visitors. Even with very little marketing investments, you can still achieve your traffic targets, albeit a little slower.
What the spammers say is true: you can make money even with very little effort. You just need to make every single effort a smart one.