Before you can properly assess any Internet business opportunity, you must have a clear idea of the rewards you expect.
It is pointless being vague. “Enough to stop the day job”, or simply “Rich” are not good enough. Be businesslike and make a proper assessment of your monetary, and other needs and expectations.
It is only by being clear about what rewards you want and need, that you can assess the choices that different web business opportunities present.
It never ceases to amaze me how many people start a web business based on the best of alternative online opportunities without ever considering if that best opportunity was good enough. [cynic on] Of course, if everyone planned properly, then the snake oil salesmen with their KEI and other elaborate con tricks would never earn a living.[/cynic off]
When I described the first stage of Internet business planning (Purpose), I said that “monetary rewards are important, but they constrain purpose, not define it”. Let Drucker explain why:
This does not mean that profit and profitability are unimportant. It does mean that profitability is not the purpose of business enterprise and business activity, but a limiting factor on it. Profit is not the explanation, cause or rationale of business behaviour and business decisions, but the test of their validity. If archangels, instead of businessmen, sat in the directors’ chairs, they would still have to be concerned with profitability despite their lack of personal interest in making profits. [...] For the problem of any business is not the maximization of profit but the achievement of sufficient profit to cover the risks of economic activity and thus to avoid loss.
So the relationship between purpose and rewards at the planning stage is very similar to that between actually producing your website and reaping the rewards from it later. Most of your effort will be spent in creating and promoting content, making reaping the rewards an enjoyable by-product. But this will only happen if you have a clear purpose, and your expected rewards are compatible with it.
Rewards are never planned in isolation. You have to consider what is achievable given the amount of time and capital you are willing to invest, along with any other special resources or particular risks that you have. Resources might include special skills, specialized knowledge or a strong (relevant) contact network. Risks might include technology obsolescence, time constraints, or lack of business skills.
The key to a successful Internet business opportunity is to budget for reasonable rewards in the light of your investment, and your strengths and weaknesses. Assess your opportunities carefully, and ensure that your expected rewards are sensible in view of your current earnings, and those around you with similar skills. You might get lucky, and exceed all your expectations, but to plan to get rich quick, or expect to outperform all your competition is almost certain to end with a broken business.
Many people argue that you cannot hope to make money if you have no startup capital. I disagree. What you have to be prepared for is to plow some of your earnings back into the business to gradually invest in commercial hosting.
Remember that the PROSPRA process is repetitive. If you achieve your expected rewards sooner than planned, the Appreciate step will allow you to gear up to the next challenge. If you don’t, then you can scale down your expectations and, if they are still acceptable, adapt your plans to reap rewards that are achievable.
The key to success is to start with something realistic and achievable, which reflects the resources you have available. The beauty of all decent Internet business opportunities is that they offer a realistic chance of earning an average developed nation income with a monetary investment of less than $100. If you do not have $100, there are free hosting plans that allow you to get started, then you can upgrade to better hosts once you start earning sufficient income.
Internet Business Opportunity: Next Steps
If you are clear about the rewards you need, prepare a short income and expenses forecast. This need not be a detailed set of budget accounts, but you should have a clear idea of expected revenue ranges and estimates of time and other inputs.
If you still need help setting your rewards targets then study the other pages in this section:
- Online Business Opportunity
- Why forecast online business opportunity rewards?
- Online Internet Business
- The benefits of quantifying online Internet business rewards
- Internet Business Opportunities
- What potential rewards ranges apply to your Internet business opportunities?
- Online Business Opportunities
- Options for assessing your online business opportunities
- Internet and Business
- Produce your Internet and business forecast
- Online Web Business
- Testing your online web business forecast
- Your Own Online Business
- Perfecting your own online business expectations
And if you still need help, discuss your rewards-based Internet business plans in the Web Business Rewards Forum.