Category Archives: Small Business Administration

Start Business No Money

Get plugged into SBA Training Now!

Get plugged into SBA Training Now!

Welcome!

You got right to the point with that search term: Start Business No Money. It indicates that you have a very strong desire to start your own business but that you have little collateral to do it. Don’t feel alone. Many are in the same situation,

No matter what kind of a business that you want to get into, I suggest that you go to SBA.gov and develop your free business plan. That will help you define your goals and make plans for the future. It’s hard to follow a trail if you don’t know where it is going.

The Internet

At first, let’s not think about the Internet. Let’s assume that we are going to use the Internet to bring folks to our business but that it is not our business.

Here are some transitions that I’ve witnessed:

Doll Parts

A couple had a business in their home. They sold doll parts. People contacted them directly by walking into their storeroom, by mail, and by email. When daddy decided to put a site on the Internet showing their merchandise. They set up the site and emailed their customers or notified them by mail that they had a web presence. Their sales quadrupled overnight.

Here you can see that they already had a business and that they were already making business decisions.

Irish Flutes

My son did this very thing. He is a veterinarian but he was selling flutes on the side. He told me that he wanted a website which we set up. He had a large email list of his customers worldwide. When we had the site going, he email them and from that point on, he did most all of his business on the Internet. But his business was selling flutes, not the Internet.

Niche Markets

Both of these examples show that they were working in niche markets. A niche market is a small part of a larger market. A niche market can be broken down into a sub niche. I think I just invented that term. But the market in Irish flutes is part of the flute market which is part of the musical instrument market.

Books

I had a connection years ago, still do, with my friend Ty Hicks in New York State. Ty has put many people in the business. He has authored many books and reports. I went to visit Bizland.com and set up a bookstore. Bizland furnished the e-commerce (credit card) function and the traffic. I too was in business on the Internet almost instantly. But my business was selling books.

I also had a large quantity of books’s stored at my home in Arizona. I bought them at yard sales and estate sales, often paying $.10 for a book. I sold them on Alibris.com and Amazon.com. (I wrote a booklet of this some years ago which is sort of obsolete, but it will tell you how to get into the business.Send me two dollars for shipping and handling if you want to copy. TJ Books, 213 3rd Ave. N., Buhl,ID 83316)

A fast way to start in a business is to go to yard sales and estate sales. You can sell antiques and handmade items directly on ETSY and other sites.

Baby Hats

Two of my granddaughters are in business together. They make baby hats. They have about 10 employees and they sell them exclusively on the Internet. They make good full-time incomes to support their families while their husbands are in college.

Pads

Another granddaughter and her partner import special leather from China. They have it fabricated into mats that are moisture proof and stain free. There used to change babies diapers when they are on the road or at home.

Herbs

My vet son, who once sold Irish flutes (he sold the business last year), got into the herb business. He is very busy in his vet business but his herb business is very demanding and profitable.

We Mentioned a Niche Market

It’s hard to compete with Walmart and Sears and Home Depot and supermarkets. Some years ago Saturday Night Live had a skit where a man and his wife opened a store that sold only one thing, Scotch Tape. They stocked the store and the mans at behind the counter smoking his pipe waiting for a customer to come in. He sold only one roll of tape.

The point is that a niche market may not be profitable and it may not even be a niche market. Think about it. Where do you buy scotch tape? You can get it anywhere so you don’t go to a special store for scotch tape. It is not a niche market. It is like a commodity, bread, milk and carrots.

Hobbies are Good and Can Be Profitable

Business often develops because of the hobbies or interest of an individual. A good example is the gentleman who loved to juggle who opened a store on the Internet which sold juggling supplies and equipment. It was very successful, A niche market stays successful until competition destroys it.

As I have illustrated, you need a product for your business.

It is best to have control over your own products.

Promoting or Selling Other Peoples Products

Some folks promote other people’s products on the Internet. Others deal with the distributor or manufacturer and sell the products on the Internet but have them delivered by the manufacturer.

Sometime back I was selling flagpoles and flagpole accessories from my website. My supplier was the manufacturer who drop shipped the product for me but I handled the customer relations.

Affiliate Marketing

If you do affiliate marketing, you will be promoting products, not selling them. You link to the vendors site and he does the selling. If he makes a sale, he pays you a commission. You don’t know who the customer is, but he does. He will pay you a high commission just so that he can take that customer away from you and make subsequent sales–which is where the profit is.

Yet affiliate marketers can earn good incomes. One source says  the average income is $5000 a year. However, most of the earnings are made by 10% of the affiliates while the other 90%’s earnings are essentially zilch. The reason that they are not earning income is because they thought they were going to get rich quick but didn’t realize that they would have to work very hard to build up an affiliate business. They drop out or just piddle along.

Various sources give various views on the income of affiliates. As a guess, beginning affiliates lose money, low-level affiliates earn up to $300 a day that some earn nothing at all, intermediate affiliates earn from $300 to $3000 a day, high-level affiliates earn above $3000 day, and the very top affiliates think that anything under $10,000 a day is crummy. Source: http://finchsells.com/2013/10/10/how-much-can-you-earn-from-affiliate-marketing/

Four of my friends earned their way through college. One made over $500,000. Another had a full-time business running after six months so he went full-time in the first year. Another had so many websites that he had to hire English majors at his university to provide the content for his sites.

I know quite a few folks who are earning from &30,000 to &100,000 a year. They are very hard workers and they know what they are doing.

Where to Learn Affiliate Marketing

The premier site for learning affiliate marketing is Wealthy Affiliate University. I joined Wealthy Affiliate in 2008 and I’m still there. I’m 84 years old so I won’t be much longer lol.

Business Start-up Decisions

if you have decided to start a business, start locally. Go to your local Chamber of Commerce and asked them where you can learn how to start a business in your area.

Contact your state and local colleges to see if they don’t have a free program to benefit you. A number of educational, business and civic organizations use retired business executives to teach new people how to start a business.

Talk to local business people in your area. Talk to your banker. If you seek an SBA loan, it must be initiated through your bank.

At the very beginning go to SBA.gov and start a business plan. Don’t worry about it being the actual plan you will use, at least not at the start. Keep revising your business plan until it is what you want. If you do have a retired executive working with you, have him review your plan.

John

807 total views, no views today