If you’re in the very small minority of people who have succeeded in creating a great online business, congratulations. Now comes the time to ensure it’s protected from the many dangers that threaten to destroy it.
Understand that reaching that point of success and maintaining it are 2 different things and protecting your success so it continues to provide for you is not easy. It is even more difficult if you are uneducated about the common problems online businesses face, let alone how to deal with them if and when they arise.
And while I hope your business is ethical, providing great information and help to people and continues to grow, I want to run you through a number of common problems I’ve had to face in my experiences online and how to deal with them in addition to other problems, other businesses face.
In addition I also want to cover ways you can protect your online business by basically hedging it against many problems so even if everything fails, there will be at least some sort of “nest” you can rely on to help you come back.
Question: Are you absolutely sure you’ve got something successful going or are you still in the growing stage?
Chances are you do not. And I say this because a lot of people who will read this article will likely be those who are still growing their business and who think they’ve already reached success and/or are going to get there, but that technically isn’t the success I’m talking about.
What I’m talking about is this:
You have something (a site) that provides you with at least a supplemental income. Ex: You make $100k a year from your NORMAL job and have an online business on the side. Until that side venture makes at least 10% or more (and hopefully 100%+!) you haven’t reached that success point, so you need to keep growing.
But even if you ARE in this stage, here’s what I recommend:
In short, it’s a guideline whose thesis is to ensure your current business stays afloat and not to drift into other experiments/ventures until your main project is self sustaining.
Seriously, that article is a major must read and I strongly recommend it because I know of the many (majority) of people who don’t even succeed with one thing or give it enough time before they jump onto a new venture and keep repeating that cycle, which always leads them to failure.
But if you are the person who has been able to bypass that and/or have issues that have taken your business down but still survived and came back, now is the time to start thinking about how to keep and hedge your success.
10 Common problems/scenarios online businesses face, how to deal with them and keep moving forward:
Now one thing I want to make clear is that when I say the word online business, I am not just talking about one site or one thing (it could be that), but more importantly, the business is you and any ventures you have all working together to make your life better.
So you may have 10 sites making you money and a 100 different ventures going. That’s all part of your business and your well being that’s on the line so these 10 things I am addressing here are in regards to all of that and even if you just have 1 thing that’s working for you.
1) It’s a repeat, but again, what I said above about that 1 supplemental site.
Think of this one site as your starting point. Everything that you do online builds from that, your experience, your success, your investments, your blueprint for what works, ect…
And frankly, it is that one thing that starts you of on the road to experimenting with other investments and ideas and once more, it ties into that extremely important article I linked above (which if you haven’t already, read it, seriously).
Now if you don’t have this set up, one of the best ways to make this happen is to follow a training course which I’ve personally used to make #1 a reality for me, a training course which outlined what and how to I am supposed to build that long term, self sustaining online business. That is the…
Without having this, none of the other 9 things or anything else that arises matters.
2) What to do if the affiliate program that’s making you money dies out.
A major problem affiliate marketers and their businesses encounter is that the promotions they’re engaged in die out for various reasons:
- The affiliate program just decides to stop doing business.
- The affiliate program was actually a scheme/scam (common in MLM programs especially).
- Maybe they decided to “fire you”.
Suddenly your promotion is at a dead end and your profits cease to occur. This has happened several times to me and I’ve come to understand that it’s not a big deal because:
There is ALWAYS an affiliate program you can switch your promotion to. What is more important than that is the fact that you have the #1 thing above down. Provided that’s in check, you will still keep getting traffic and people looking to buy stuff, it’s only a matter of changing up your promotion to something else.
Now in certain cases, you may not be able to find a suitable affiliate program as an alternative. What then? Well that’s when we have the next 2 scenarios and solutions come up:
3) Create your own product.
It’s not something I am a big fan of personally because I hate to do the extra tedious work on maintaining support and other things about it, but if you already had a good website making good money, you’ve obviously been able to do a few things:
A) You’ve learned how to create a profitable niche site.
B) You’ve clearly in a market that has a hungry niche audience.
Now if the affiliate program that got rid of you or died out is no longer working for you, perhaps it’s time you personally create the solution, by creating your own product.
The easiest way to do this is through going through Clickbank.
One of the benefits of having this happen is that now you are no longer bound to adhere to the terms of the previous affiliate program, you make the rule and now you can take more of the money home and with a site that’s bringing in traffic now ready to have your product being promoted to it, the switch and transition would be pretty simple and the profits would continue to come in.
Now if you’re like me and are completely against making your own product, here’s your next option:
4) Start an email list.
Whatever sales funnel you previously had promoting your now dead affiliate program, change all those traffic paths now to a squeeze page and start providing people with valuable content they can get emails on (it can also link back to your site’s articles).
Another thing you can also do is go an start a fan page dedicated to your niche audience so they can flow from your site to the fan page and like it, giving it more juice.
You can also elect to do both the email list and social network.
Now what happens in this case is that the audience that comes to your site is no longer “lost” meaning if originally you had say a 1,000 people visit your page, over 90% of them would either leave the site and a minority of them would buy your offer. But in the end, that majority would probably never revisit your page.
With an email list now, you have the chance to preserve incoming traffic and save them for a later date when you find a better affiliate program, make your own and/or find another marketing solution. Either way, this preservation of your audience will lead to you making up any lost profits in the end when you start marketing to them.
5) Grow by creating more sites based on the same success formula.
Again, I start this example by reiterating the #1 point above. Suppose that 1 site becomes successful, good, keep putting attention on it, but at the same time, deviate slightly to creating another site that may provide another source of income.
You already know what it took to make 1 site work, so take the lessons and experience and apply them to the next site and the site after that. Consider hiring people to write and work on the site for you to save you time.
But at least, consider these different sites you have as potential nests. So even if one falls, you have more.
6) Besides growing your site/s, grow your name.
It’s something to also consider. If you can make 1 or more sites work, you’ve got value. Your name and reputation now has value too.
You can teach and show people how they can do the same things. This can be paid consultations to coaching to creating (again) a Facebook Fan page so people can speak with you and ask questions.
Either way, you possess information that is highly valuable (how to make money). I’ve grown to have this personally with the knowledge in internet marketing I’ve attained and I’ve had many people approach me with questions and offers to pay me to help them. I’ve even taught classes.
The point is, my reputation and knowledge was in of itself a “certification” and a kind of self marketing system. Now I’ve personally not gone that far to make my name more public as of yet, but I am venturing into this very soon by starting a Facebook Fan Page (I’ll keep you guys posted).
7) What do you do about lawsuits? They can certainly hinder your online business.
This is a very sensitive topic and while I am not a lawyer, I have had the misfortune of having to deal with threats of lawsuits a few times. Most of my advice here is about prevention…
My basic thing is this:
In your site, make the best effort to provide the most open and honest information such that the person or program you ever criticize (or programs you sell) will not be able to claim defamation, which is the #1 reason they look for to threaten and shut you down.
You are absolutely free to provide your personal opinion, even if it is critical as long as you maintain that honesty and FACTS about what is up.
Say you’re critical about a program you saw and call it a scam. Fine, but be damn sure you provide facts on why.
Here are some great review tips you can exercise.
Most of the time, in my experience, people don’t go straight to court with you, they often try to “scare you” by threatening it. Again, so long as the information is honest and you are in your rights to your opinion, you should be fine.
8) Your paid campaigns magically disappear and suddenly your profits are in free fall. What to do you then!?
This is certainly a familiar experience to me. In the world of paid advertising, weird stuff can happen, just like with affiliate programs I stated above, expect here, they can stop your ads, they can shut down your account, ect…
Should this happen, the #1 tip from the start still remains intact and in the article I have said 3 times now for you to read, I bring up an example of how my PPC campaign screwed me and what I did control the damage.
Now while I am safe and it’s working, there’s a few tips I recommend for people who do paid advertising (Bing and Google only) should something happen and the main thing is to get in touch with their customer support and prove you’re innocent asap.
9) Consider “leaking” some of your profits to things like steady investments.
This is the one which is least related to specifically online businesses, but honestly, as I said before I went into these things, it’s all about sustaining YOU and your life.
Now when it comes to investments, 2 things personally come to my mind: Real estate and life insurance investments. You will want to speak with experts in each field so they can better help you invest a portion of your money.
10) Doomsday scenario: Everything fails. It’s over! Or is it?
I’ve had a bunch of these doomsday moments happen where sites I’ve made were destroyed and while those are certainly horrible feelings, I have come to learn that if you can succeed once, then the same formula can help you start and rebuild again.
When my sites failed, I went back to the beginning, analyzed where I did the right things to succeed and what caused it to fail, then repeated the same formula (without the failure) to remake the site/project.
Like I said, and bring back to point number 1 yet again, your success with at least one site, and one that grows naturally and ethically is already your blueprint to lead you into the next success and it’s a matter of just doing it and if you are coming back from a massive failure, wipe your tears and understand that online businesses always have to face problems.
If you were good enough to succeed once, you’re good enough to succeed again.
My final thoughts:
Now scenario #10 is LESS likely to happen if you hedge and protect your business through the other things I mentioned above (list building, other sites, investments, ect…) so understand that when you start seeing success, build upon it and make an effort to copy it to multiply the results, and at the same time, look into diversifying a portion of your profits in investments.