Is It Difficult To Start An Online Business? 5 Simple Steps

Several years ago, I used to think building a business online would be super easy. But I was wrong, as it’s not “easy” to achieve overnight success with little to no effort. So, is it difficult to start an online business?

It’s not difficult to get started; however, it’s not easy to build a successful business over time. 

That’s the key difference: It takes a lot of time and effort to see success take place in business.

The work you put in now may not pay off instantly, but likely not until later on.

Many people tend to overcomplicate doing business online, but it’s much simpler than that. 

In this post, I’m going to discuss a simpler process to make money online.

I’ll go over what you need to get started, along with providing five basic steps to creating a successful business online- beginning today.

Note: We may include products or services that will be helpful to our readers. This post may contain affiliate links. For more information, please review the affiliate disclosure page.
  1. Things I Need To Start An Online Business
  2. Five Steps To Starting An Online Business
  3. Choose A Niche (Direction)
  4. Build A Website (Foundation)
  5. Get Traffic (Audience)
  6. Make Money (Revenue)
  7. Bonus Tip: Be Consistent With Content Creation
Is it difficult to start an online business? This article will lay out five simple steps to starting a business online.

Things I need to start an online business

Believe it or not, you don’t need a lot of things to start a business online.

There’s no need for large amounts of capital or investing in expensive software.

That can be a waste of time and money if you don’t know what you’re doing. In some cases, it’s not worth it if it won’t be a huge return on your time.

You will need some money to get rolling, but not that much. To get started, you only need a few basic things, which include the following:

  • A domain name (usually costs less than $15/year)
  • Website hosting
  • A passion or interest
  • A community of like-minded individuals

The best place to get these things is at a platform called Wealthy Affiliate. It’s one of the most cost-effective places to start an online business from scratch.

Along with that, it’s a great way to get started in the online world. Once you have those basic things, you can jump right into the core training they offer.

To get the full breakdown, be sure to check out my extensive review of Wealthy Affiliate. If you want to learn more and are interested in this platform, read “Is Wealthy Affiliate A Good Program? Wealthy Affiliate Review” to get all of the details. This review is well worth your time as you make your best decision.

Do you need money to start an online business?

There’s a saying, “You have to spend money to make money”. No matter what type of business (online or offline), there will always be costs to maintaining it. But in the online world, you can operate a business on a budget that’s under $1000 a year.

The basics you’ll need are a domain, web hosting, community support, and possibly a website theme. Other than that, you don’t need anything else when starting an online business.

Is it difficult to start an online business? You only need a few things to start an online business.

Five steps to start a successful business online

Kyle Loudoun, one of the co-founders of WA, instructed an expert class outlining the four simple steps to starting an online business.

I will go over those steps, along with providing an extra step that I recommend you follow as you get rolling. 

If you want to watch the class in its entirety, feel free to sign up for a free starter account at WA. It’s free to watch with your starter account.

Is it difficult to start an online business?

It’s not that difficult at all unless you think otherwise. The process is much simpler than people think because business is all about helping people solve their problems.

In the online world, it’s far much easier to get started since it’s cheaper. Also, there’s much potential to reach a massive audience on the internet today.

Let’s go over the five basic steps to getting started with an online business.

Is it difficult to start an online business? These are the five steps to starting an online business.

Choose a niche (Direction)

As mentioned before, a niche is a specific industry area that appeals to a group of people. It can be anything related to your interests or something you’re willing to learn about.

When deciding on a niche, it’s best to not go too broad with it. If you do that, it can be difficult breaking down topics you’ll be creating for content.

Example: Baseball

Let’s go with baseball in this case. Baseball is very broad because there’s so much you can dive into this sport.

But if you break it down, here are some categories you can narrow down further for a niche. They include:

  • Baseball gloves 
  • Baseball cards
  • Baseball bats
  • Baseball catchers mitts

If you do a little brainstorming, you can come up with a lot of areas to do a niche website about.  In the case of baseball, I can easily do a niche website that focused only on baseball gloves.

Best tip: Choose a niche you’re passionate about

When it comes to selecting a niche, I believe it’s best to pick one based on what you have a passion for. 

Also, you can pick a niche you know nothing about, but you’re eager to learn more about.

Once you’ve figured out your niche, then move to narrow it down to a specific component of that niche. You want to do it so that way you’re not going too broad with the niche.

There are a couple of places to find niche ideas, but one place to look at is Amazon. It’s a go-to place to find the latest products that are in the best sellers area.

What is the biggest challenge in affiliate marketing? Amazon has an affiliate program, but commissions are relatively small.
Is it difficult to start an online business? Amazon is a great place to find ideas for niches.

So scroll around on Amazon and see if you find anything that sparks your interest. You be amazed to see what you can come up with for niche ideas.

A relevant article from

Read next on “How To Find Your Niche For An Online Business: Best Guide“, to see a great guide on picking a niche for your online business. If you’re new to all of that, this guide will help you immensely.

Build a website (Foundation)

A website is the foundation for any online business. It’s the bedrock/starting point to any successful online business.

Unfortunately, some beginners will end up taking bad advice from other sources about how they should go forward in online business.

Some of these things include:

  • Posting links on social media
  • Signing up for expensive funnels/landing pages
  • Spending on ads only (i.e. jumping right into pay-per-click ads without any knowledge)

There’s so much bad advice online that people will fall for, only to be disappointed later on.

It’s why the best way to get started (especially if you’re a beginner) is by having a simple website. 

Is it difficult to start an online business? Building a website is the foundation to any business online.

With a website, that’s where you’ll direct your traffic, and ultimately, the outcome is to make it a great source of revenue.

The best part is it doesn’t take much effort to get a website up and rolling. It literally takes less than 30 seconds when you follow the steps outlined in the WA core training.

A relevant article from

Read next on “How Do I Create A Free Website In 30 Seconds? Not That Hard“, to learn how simple it is to create a website- in under a minute.

Get traffic (Audience)

Once you have a website set up, it’s time to work on getting traffic. Out of all the steps, it’s probably the most difficult step to achieve because it takes more time than people think.

But if you’re willing to learn how to do it the right way (and remain patient), you’ll see excellent results later on.

There are two routes you can move into:

  • Organic (free) traffic

It’s possible to acquire free traffic for your website; however, it does take time and effort to get a substantial amount of it each day.

That can be done by mastering the process of search engine optimization (SEO). It’s a skill worth learning if you don’t want to pay for getting traffic to your website. 

SEO takes time to see the intended results, but it’s well worth learning this valuable skill.

Examples of SEO in action

To show some examples of how SEO can work, I wanted to briefly talk about a niche website that’s able to get free traffic. 

This website is several years old, and it’s ranking for a lot of great keywords (at a low competition). Whenever you type in a related keyword, this website will show up on the first page of Google.

In the image below, here’s where they’re ranked on Google.

Is it difficult to start an online business? This niche website ranked well as a result of implementing basic SEO.

Here’s another post that came from a current WA member, which is ranking very well.

Is it difficult to start an online business? This post was ranked at the top by a WA member.

Finally, here’s a post I published on this site near the end of 2022. This post is positioned in the #1 spot on page one of Google.

Is it difficult to start an online business? Here's a post I wrote that's ranking # 1 on page one of Google search results.

For a relevant topic, I feel so good to have a post ranking at the top of Google. It was not easy when I first tried it out, but it’s not impossible.

If you’re willing to put the time and effort in, you can see great results when you implement SEO while creating content.

  • Paid traffic

This route can be done through pay-per-click (PPC) or social media ads. For example, you can use Google ads, Microsoft ads, Facebook ads, and much more.

This option is the faster route, but I do NOT recommend it when starting out. The reason is you need to learn search intent and understand what users are looking for online. 

It’s why my best tip is to learn how to do SEO first before jumping into PPC.

If you can understand search intent through Google (i.e. what people are searching for), it’ll be much easier to determine what your audience is looking for.

Once you start earning revenue as a result of free traffic, then you can invest some of that revenue back into paid traffic.

A relevant article from

Read next on “How Can I Find Keywords For My Website? Free 5-Step Guide“, to learn how to find relevant keywords for creating content on a niche website. You can do it by using Google right now.

Make money (Revenue)

The final step in the process is the easiest one- once you fulfilled the previous three steps.

The key part is the following: If traffic is coming to your website, that leads to so many opportunities for revenue ahead.

You can monetize your website in many different forms. Related to this training, you can sign up for affiliate programs and networks online.

How to find affiliate programs in a basic manner

To do that, you can do a few things, including:

  • Do a basic Google search (i.e. type in “{niche} + affiliate programs)

-“Keto foods” + affiliate programs

  • Use the affiliate programs search at WA
  • Find affiliate products through places like Amazon (physical)and Clickbank (digital)

From these sources, you can find a lot of programs that offer low-ticket or high-ticket products.

If you’re going to promote physical products on Amazon, they’ll more likely be on the low-ticket end because physical products may not cost that much. 

If you’re going to promote products through Clickbank, they may be high-end because digital products tend to have higher prices.

Either way, this step is all about monetizing your website. Once you’re able to monetize, and you have the traffic coming, the chances of earning revenue look pretty good.

Is it a good idea to start an online business?

Yes, because the process of starting one is simpler than most people think. Some people think they need lots of capital and expensive software, but that’s not necessary.

With a website and web hosting, along with some training and guidance, it’s totally possible with an ever-growing audience on the internet (5 billion + users). There are many opportunities to reach out to a global audience that big of a size.

Bonus step: Be consistent with content creation

After going through these four steps, it’s basically rinse and repeat going from there. But I’ve added a bonus step that has helped me.

This step is staying consistent with creating content. Content is a key part of an online business- without it, there’s no point in doing business online.

What’s needed more is being consistent with creating more content.

Whether that’s two-three blog posts a week (or publishing three videos on YouTube), that will help in the long run.

I find that staying consistent helps me stay accountable and remain in a good rhythm. Also, it can help with delivering fresh content on a regular basis.

If that’s providing new content every week and doing that for 6-12 months, you’ll see great results down the road.

So remember: One of the keys to succeeding in online business is staying consistent with it. If you can keep up with a regular schedule of content production, you’ll do yourself a massive favor later on.)

Final Words

Starting an online business is not difficult- the process of doing it is much simpler than you think.

Following the steps outlined earlier will help you get on the right track. If you want to learn more about the process, I encourage you to check the class Kyle did on each of these steps.

It’s free to watch when you sign up for a free starter account. Along with watching the class, you can give this platform a test drive to see if it’s the best fit for you.

So be sure to watch it and then go through the first level of the core training offered. I believe you’re going to like what you see.

Your Turn: Is starting an online business simpler than you think?

I would like to get your thoughts on this question. Do you find the process much easier to start an online business?

Did you use to believe the other alternatives (i.e. building a funnel or paid ads) were the best way to go about it? 

What made you change your mind on this subject?

Which of the steps did you find most interesting? Or which one looks like the most difficult one to achieve?

Feel free to share your thoughts by leaving a comment below. I look forward to reading your responses, and I’ll gladly respond promptly.

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Eric is the owner and chief editor of 

He takes great pride in helping people manage their time and grow their businesses. 

Eric is a firm believer in financial and time freedom, as he believes in financial independence and taking ownership of your time. 

“Time is your most important asset. It can be your best friend or worst enemy. How you use your time can shape the future you desire to have.” 

In his leisure time, Eric loves to write and read whenever possible. He enjoys going for long walks outdoors while doing in-home workout videos every week. 

You can also connect with Eric via LinkedIn.

Self Photo 2019: Here's a picture at a building in downtown Chicago.

2 thoughts on “Is It Difficult To Start An Online Business? 5 Simple Steps”

  1. I used to think the exact opposite Eric and that assumption that building an online business would be too difficult and time consuming kept me stuck in a job that I hated, was terrible for me and my family and in the end, resulted in disastrous consequences.

    Now, that is not to say that building an online business is a walk in the park but it is very doable and not something that people should be afraid of even attempting. 

    There is a lot of work that goes into the creation of content and not only that but tons of time just coming up with the ideas for the content.

    All the tools that Wealthy Affiliate provides though for the cost of a hosting subscription make the work necessary more easily and efficiently achieved!

    • Hi Joseph,

      Yes, it’s not “easy” to build an online business as it was mentioned in the post. It takes time, effort, and discipline to get the needles going.

      Whatever type of business- physical or digital, there’s always work involved regardless. If you’re not willing to put in the work necessary, it will be harder to build a successful, sustainable one over time.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts- they’re greatly appreciated.


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