I got some great questions that came in after my latest article. Thanks to Jon Haas of www.WarriorFitness.org for sending this one in.
“How do you get to the point where the stream of income is steady and reliable? For instance, I have had my online business going for over 2 years now, yet my monthly income has never exceeded $500 per month. Usually it is much less. I have several products of my own that I sell as well as being an affiliate for you, Bud, and Eric. The really frustrating thing is that last month I sold 2-3 ebooks per day and had my best month ever and this month I have not sold 1 damn thing. Any help would be hugely appreciated!!!”
I understand your frustration. This is something I battled with early on myself.
There can be a time when you have a breakthru month and you think it will always continue like that, then the next month you may make half of what you did before, or even less.
I remember with my first product launch I brought in about $1200 in that first month. This was a lot of money to me at the time and I was very happy with it. A couple months later I only sold two or three copies of it and made less than $200. This wasn’t enough to even cover my expenses.
Since then I’ve learned many things to grow my income in a consistent manner.
Steady and Reliable Income
The first question to ask yourself is what is steady and reliable? What would you like to earn in this manner?
When I set business and income goals I like to look at a few different things.
This is the big number and the one I have focused on the most in the past. I’m still seeking to bring this one up and I will always have a goal for it. The problem is just like was mentioned, if you have one great month, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll do the same thing or even close to it the next time.
This is actually the more important number yet until recently I didn’t give it much thought. If you made $50000 in one month you’d probably think that was great. But what if you spent $60000 to make it? That would be a negative cash flow and a bad situation. If you expenses continue to grow when your income does you will not be building true wealth, thus looking at net income, or profit, is very useful.
Automatic or Auto-Pilot Income
Most of my income coming in is from new promotions. This means a new product launch or a special promo with an affiliate. These are great as they can bring in lots of income. But it is different from auto-pilot income.
When you create a product you’ve created an asset that should continue to bring in money month after month. But how steady and reliable this is will depend on a number of factors.
Are there ways to make sure that income is coming in regularly every month? Yes there are and we’ll get back to this topic in a moment. For now let’s talk about offers.
Offers, the Key to Income
If you want to increase your income the key is to make more offers. When you offer something the person you’re offering it to can say one of two things. Yes or no. Yes means cash in your pocket. If they say no then you get nothing.
But if you don’t make an offer what will the other person say? Nothing. It’s an automatic NO!
Thus is you want to increase your income you need to make more offers.
What is an offer? It can be anything but there are some things that make it work better.
Just having a sales letter on your website doesn’t mean anyone is going to it. What is the best way to control traffic, where they go, what they see, and thus what they can buy?
The Mighty Email List
Are you growing your email list? This is still the best way to make offers (except perhaps direct mail, but that requires more resources to do).
As your email list grows you should realize this means you have more people you can make more offers to.
A friend of mine who started his online business less than a year ago has rocket launched himself upwards. How did he do it? There was a whole lot that went into it, but one of the main things is he emails out every single day and there is an offer in almost all of those emails.
What that means is a fairly reliable income from doing lots of work. His email list has grown. His customer list has grown. And with it his income has grown.
There will be some correlation with the size of your email list and your income. These can be very different numbers for different people. A good email list of 5000 can easily beat out a poor email list of 100000. There’s lots of factors at play, but in general the more the better. Thus if you grow your list that should mean you will grow your income.
Control vs. No Control
How in control of the offer process are you? When it comes to email you have lots of control. You decide what to write about and what to offer. This may be a new product of your own. It could be a discount or sale. And it can be an affiliate offer. All of these can be great offers.
What is out of your control? People coming to your site from the search engines or reading a guest article your wrote elsewhere. If you have big enough numbers you will have reliable traffic from these sources but if you don’t, it is exactly that, unreliable.
What else is within your control? Paid advertising can be if you set it up right. Once you have your conversions and traffic sources down this can be very tightly control and you will know if you spend X dollars you get back XX dollars.
Jon, I’d look at what you did last month that worked so well. Was it all up to chance? If that’s the case then sometimes you have good luck and sometimes you won’t. But if there was something you specifically did that worked well then replicate that success.
Two Methods of Reliable Income…
To sum it up there are two main things.
1) Seek greater control
If you can reliably control the number of eyes that see your offers then you will have more reliable income.
You have lots of control with an email list and what offers you put out to it. If you want reliable income the email list will lead to it. In addition you need to have a regular format or schedule of making offers so that it is reliable.
Setting up sales funnels and advertising is another method. Both of these go hand in hand, because the advertising should be growing your email list.
2) Setup autopilot income
All of the above is good but it still means regular work. If you’re email out every day on new offers that will take some time. So what can be done to automate the process? Build systems that do the work for you.
Note that some systems are more autopilot then others.
Do you have an email sequence and offer that works? Put those messages into your autoresponder and let them work for you over and over again. That means every new person that joins your email list gets to see your best promotions. If you do this right it is a money machine.
This can be put into action in several ways. It doesn’t even have to be your autoresponder if you have a good affiliate willing to promote you in this manner over and over again.
The membership model or other form of continuity is probably the best method of making a reliable income. With people signed up to be billed every month you know exactly what is coming in month to month from this service.
But I’m not going to lie to you and say its easy. I’ve had several continuity programs over the years. If you don’t do it right it can be lots of work without a big payoff. But I’m about to launch a new program and I’ll update you on how that goes in the near future.
Another method is offer someone else’s continuity if they offer your recurring commissions for it. This can be low effort and big payoff!
Although there is no continuity built into Amazon and you don’t have much control yourself, with Amazon you’re playing with such big numbers that things tend to even out especially if you have more than one thing listed. Thus the 100% autopilot income I pull from Amazon is fairly consistent.
On my website I’ve updated you how things are going over time. I’ll do a new article on the topic coming up soon with new updates and changes to how it works.
There’s certainly more but this is more than enough to set you on the path. This was quite the comprehensive post going over lots of potential and real ways to build a steady and reliable income from your online business. If you have questions on the specifics be sure to ask in the comments below.