Working online has become the goal of many people worldwide. With no borders, no glass ceilings, and no discrimination, owning an internet business can be both lucrative and rewarding. So mainstream are virtual businesses that many internet business owners actually make their full-time living from online sources. But at the same time, working online is not a get-rich-quick scheme. In practice, it takes years of hard work and persistence to maintain a regular monthly income. And for many, subsidizing their offline wages with an online hobby is enough to help their monthly budgets.
Indeed, the terms internet business and internet marketing have been widely used as interchangeable phrases. But this is not accurate, as internet marketing is only one component of an internet business. More precisely, an internet business encompasses anything and everything required to manage an online enterprise, including functions like accounting, web design, content creation, choosing products to sell, conforming to legal standards, finding a server or host, creating sales copy, and stats tracking or analysis. Internet marketing, on the other hand, involves the ways and means of promoting an internet business.
Unquestionably, there are many examples of what an internet business is. It might include one website on a favorite topic that provides end users with valuable information. An internet business might be a large enterprise consisting of thousands of websites, each earning a monthly or seasonal amount. In fact, an internet business might consist of nothing more than registering a free blog and adding one's content and some type of earning mechanism. The number of domain names owned does not constitute the business itself, as everyone has their own comfort zones.
Additionally, monies from an internet business can be earned in a multitude of ways. For example, someone might sell patterns for woodworking or crochet. Others might sell their services while many other internet business owners choose to sell products and services from large companies and be rewarded with commissions for each sale. Another internet business model might involve buying and selling domain names or even holding large portfolios of domains in order to reap the benefits of domain parking revenues. And some people are more comfortable using ready-made websites such as online auction sites to sell their items.
Internet marketing is the way in which an internet business owner makes his online business known and ultimately earns an income from the traffic or end users. Each person's business model will be different but there are many “standard” ways in which to publicize an online endeavor. Briefly, some examples of internet marketing are
- ¤ word-of-mouth advertising;
- ¤ offline marketing such as billboards, trade shows, posters on homes and vehicles, flyers, and business cards;
- ¤ online promotion on social media sites and free blogs, forum posting and participation, backlinks (similar websites mention or link to one's site), article promotion, smaller niche sites feeding the larger, overall topic site, search engine ranking (being in the first couple results for a search term), and paid advertising.
While running a successful internet business means understanding many facets of the business, without a detailed, researched plan for internet marketing, one is surely to fail - and if you miss the needed skills, there are a lot of Internet Business Consulting Options available on the web. It is true that there have been instances of immediate success, but they are not the norm. Internet marketing is a continual and time consuming component of a successful internet business. Basically, a real entrepreneur can achieve success both online and in the real world. People like Tim Jacobs (iVallley) and Perry Mandera (The Custom Companies) are able to do great things on many platforms - and if you have what it takes, so can you!