Struggling To Make $1,000/Month Online?

Over the weekend I posed a question on Twitter.com that started an interesting discussion about making money online. It was a simple question but it really opened my eyes about how people feel about time and money, and online business in general...

Granted, most people can't live on $1,000/month so the question was taken seriously by some, and laughed at by others. But the point was brought up that "97% of online marketers are making less than $500/month".

I'm not sure how accurate that statistic is, but I would be willing to bet that the majority are not bringing in anywhere near what they would like to be earning online. That point was made obvious by the replies to my simple $1k question.

To add to the discussion, I asked:

Now it's starting to make more sense, right?

As I said earlier, most people cant live on $1,000/month. But its a great starting point or initial goal, and a great increment to use in continued growth.

It surprised me how many people were skeptical of the concept, or thought I was trying to sell them something by bringing up the topic. It also surprised me how few people were even making as little as $1,000/month.

Next, I asked:

I had a point in asking these questions, of course. And no I wasnt trying to build anticipation or lead into a sale of any kind. I was genuinely curious where people stood on the topic of making money online. What they were willing to invest in their online business. And just how much they believed in it.

Obviously it is possible to make money online. Its even possible to make really good money online. I am living proof of that. This is my 12th year in business and I work from home (online) full-time. I am a single mother to two children, and my online business is our sole source of income. You can click here: How I Make Money Online to see just some of the ways that I earn my living.

Thinking back on that discussion over the weekend, I have another question...

How long have you been working online, or trying to start an online business? How many hours a week do you research or work or manage your websites? Has it been 6 months... 6 years? And finally, how much money are you earning every month as a result of the time you've invested so far?

Take a moment to get that figure in your head. Now if you go back to that question I asked about investing 40 hours a week for an entire year, it doesnt sound so crazy, does it?

I know a lot of people that put in 4-6 hours a day, day after day, week after week (for years) that still arent earning $1,000/month consistently.

Why is that?

In our conversation on Twitter.com, we determined that the main culprits are lack of focus and lack of follow-through. Not a single person involved in that discussion blamed the industry or "the gurus". Everyone took personal responsibility for their lack of success in achieving even $1,000/month.

If you have spent at least 4 hours a day trying to start or grow your online business - for at least 90 days now - and you are not yet earning a consistent $1k per month, I am curious: what is it you are doing when you are online?

Whatever it is you are doing will fall into one of two categories: time waster or money-maker. Its so easy to get caught up in a "time suck" when you get online. Believe me, I know that one firsthand. But if you are really serious about getting over the hump, and making good money online, then it pays to analyze what it is you are doing to make that happen.

One thing that I found really helped me was to keep a Time Log. I did this 5 or 6 years ago because I was frustrated with the amount of hours I was working online vs the amount of money I was making at the time. I had set a goal to double my income that year, yet I couldnt find a single extra hour in the day to "work more".

For an entire week I kept a legal pad on my desk beside my mouse pad, and simply jotted down the things I was working on throughout the day - and how long I spent on each task. It only took me a couple of days to identify my major Time Wasters.

That old 80/20 rule stands true even here. 80% of what you do is a complete waste of time. 20% of what you do actually gets you closer to your goal.

Try it out for yourself. Keep a Time Log for a few days, and then take a close look at it. Take a piece of paper and draw a line straight down the middle of it. At the top of the left column, write "Time Wasters". At the top of the right column, write "Money Makers".

Watch that list on the left grow ;)

Then do something about it.

It really is that simple. If you are one of those people that is struggling to make a consistent thousand per month with your online business, then its time to make some changes. And it really doesnt matter if its $1k or $10k. Figure out exactly what it would take to achieve your goal, and then make every day count.

I'd love to hear your thoughts, of course...

Best,

p.s. You can follow me on Twitter and join in on my discussions there by signing up at Twitter.com and then "following" me: http://www.twitter.com/lynnterry

About Lynn Terry

Lynn Terry is a full-time Internet Marketer with over 15 years experience in online business. Subscribe to ClickNewz for the latest Internet Marketing trends & strategies, Lynn's unique case studies, creative marketing ideas, and candid reviews...more»

Discussion

  1. Thank you Diego & Welcome :D

    I was referring to the Fast Cash Strategy, which is not yet publicly available - but I let my readers download it for $10 here. That includes a free copy of the 2nd Edition if you register on the download page.

  2. Jerry Voyer says:

    Like allways I enjoyed your great post. and all the response with lot of wisdom and ideal.
    My english is second to french, as you will see from my web site I need to know where can I get a decent price to edit or re-write the sale page.
    thank you for your time and wisdom.
    Successfully yours
    Jerry

  3. Hi Lynn,
    This seems to be a very common problem with the beginners. I have been online from the last 3 months and doing article marketing. I have managed to get only 3 sales during this time period. I am staying online for at least 6-7 hours a day but I wasted all my time in to reading other people's success in the forum and finding some shortcut. Even I know that there is no short cut and if you continuously do hard work then you will definitely get the result. I know that writing articles works but I wrote only one article a day for few days and many more days not written even a single article. I wasted my most of time finding some magic trick to become rich overnight. I thank you for writing this article. Your article will help me to stay focused.

    Dhruv.

  4. Dhruv,

    You have the right attitude, and congratulations for writing as many articles as you have. That will pay off eventually for you. Persistence is the key. (Listen to me, like I've achieved something so far. LOL)

    I haven't even started article marketing and I'm a writer and a native English speaker. You've challenged me. If someone whose first language is NOT English can make 3 sales (which is 3 more than I have made), then I need to get off my tuckus and put some articles out to the directories.

    Sheesh, I'm a slow learner! That and allowing myself to be pulled in a gazillion directions. (I counted them. Took a long time. About a trazillion hours.)

    Deb Gallardo

  5. I need to know where can I get a decent price to edit or re-write the sale page.

    Hi Jerry - You can post job/task requests in some of the marketing forums or on freelancing sites (like elance.com or similar). You will find NO shortage of people who are willing to work for pay ;)

  6. Joseph Ratliff says:

    Alright, this thread is also starting to hit me in the gut...so I would like to offer some insights to attaining your first $1000.00 a month online, kinda giving back to the community who helped me attain that goal:

    * Your why. Do you know your why? Because really, you DON'T want to only earn the $1000.00 a month online, you want what $1000.00 a month gives you in terms of experience. For now that may not be much...but really figure out, deep down, what your perfect day will be like when you achieve your version of success, and write it down.

    * If you absolutely don't have a game plan, you WON'T make $1000.00 a month until you have one. Your game plan MUST contain specific, measurable, attainable, revisable, and tangible goals. Call the shorter term plan goals your checkpoints, and the longer term goals your "camps". When you reach checkpoints, check your whole plan quickly, when you reach a "camp", you sit down and re-evaluate your entire plan and tweak it.

    Oh yeah, write it all down on paper. Don't type it, hand write it. If you don't want to do the "tedious" parts of earning $1000.00 a month or more, then get a job. Nothing should seem "tedious" if you're doing what you love to do online. Hand writing these goals, and many more of these types of things, creates a firmer connection in your brain, and allows your inner mind to help you make things happen.

    * Do a "Brain Dump"
    http://www.im4newbies.com/traffic-secrets/john-reese-special-report.pdf

    You will feel better :) .

    Ok, sort of a mini game plan here...forgive me if this lacks every single detail imaginable...it's really only a skeleton plan that can earn you $1000.00 a month in any niche, in any economy, but it requires work on your part, and it's dead boring (but it works, I still use it).

    1) Go to Clickbank, and select 10 - 20 products with a gravity score between 10 and 80. Write them down on paper.

    2) Read the sales letters of each of these products. Do they convince you to buy the product? If not, replace the ones that don't with products that do have a good sales letter.

    3) Keyword research. This is the short and simple version...go to http://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal and choose the "Website Content" button...entering the url of the product you will be promoting.

    You can also use the VRE toolbar http://www.vretoolbar.com/keywords/

    4) What will come up are keywords you can put into a list and download in a .txt file.

    5) Write articles around those keywords...using no more than 2 or 3 per article...write naturally around those keywords...don't try to stuff the article with massively - repeated sentences with keywords in them. :)

    Article crash course:

    Title MUST have one keyword phrase in it (naturally please). "How to..." and "3 Ways To..." titles are a good start.

    Body needs to give information, but not too much information, about 300 - 500 words should be fine.

    Resource box at the end needs to be exciting and enticing, not "author related" for this plan to work.

    For example...

    NOT THIS: "Joseph Ratliff is an internet business growth specialist, direct response copywriter, and author of The Profitable Business Edge 2".

    BUT THIS: "If you would like to see how to increase your online sales by over 100% in less than 60 days...even during a recession...then head on over to http://yourdomainhere.com right now."

    Note: You can also replace yourdomainhere.com with html in MOST article submission services... like so...

    click here

    If you repeat this process enough times...you should begin to see income being generated from the articles.

    Your keywords that you use should be thought about a little too...

    "make money online" is probably harder to use than "make money online with email marketing"...etc...

    "Product name here" is probably a good choice, as the buyer is thinking of buying by using this keyword.

    You can also do a "Google" and check the following to add to your list:

    "How to"
    "Fixing"
    "Repair this"

    And other buying keywords you might use if you were searching for, and were going to buy, the product you are promoting.

    Well, that's it in a nutshell...I realize this plan is not totally, 100% complete, covering every single thing you need to know...but I also know that you are smart enough to fill in the gaps :)

    Plus, I would like this discussion to continue.

    And, I have to do one more thing...I cannot guarantee that you will make ANY money using this plan at all. I have used it to make money myself, but business and market conditions change etc...blah blah blah, more legal stuff, blah blah blah...etc...

    Just use the plan, if you don't have one already.
    :)

    Joseph Ratliff
    Internet Business Growth Specialist

    I also have a free report with other strategies and stuff that might help...

    http://josephratliff.name/this-is-for-youmy-valued-readers/

  7. I believe personality is the key. And that you can learn. Simply by for example applying the 'as if' technique. It is interesting by applying this technique alone consistently how results will show up.

  8. Personality, attitude, persistence are all important to success in any business, let alone on the Web. I have kicked around the working world for over 35 years so I had no illusions going in that there was a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

    Having a plan is important, but you also have to have the basics down in any business and that holds true for affiliate marketing.

    Getting the basics takes time, some money and the right attitude. You have to stay focused and that is perhaps the first lesson to learn above all.

    To the experienced internet marketer, things may seem obvious, but to this newbie they are far from obvious.

    When most people look at a scene of the artic, they see ice and snow. The native eskimo sees hundreds of variations of snow , ice, water and beauty. Well some of us will eventually see those variations but you have to take the time to learn and apply. The trick is finding a good mentor ...that is the real tough goal to fulfill.

    I think you need to pick an activity, article writing, whatever it is, and then build from there . Work in increments to meet achievable targets and then move up to the next level.

    Keep the faith. May your travels be prosperous.

  9. This is such an awesome discussion.

    I didn't add much to the Twitter discussion because I didn't fully understand your question... which seems very obvious now!

    I think the commenter who said that the problem is people don't know which actions produce the result hit it on the head. This is the key in my opinion. If you're unsure where the results are coming from, you're confused and your efforts are far less effective.

    I started internet marketing 6 years ago. Since then I've changed direction a few times, I've launched sites that took off - to my surprise - and had others that I thought were awesome flop.

    So I learned to quickly kick bad ideas to the curb and FOCUS on what WAS working. And to do that you have to know where your traffic is coming from, where your product and affiliate sales are coming from, etc.

  10. Laurie Neumann says:

    This is a really good discussion.

    Lynn, I think I sent this to you in an email. Not sure if you saw it.

    What I'm looking for are consistent day-to-day things I can do to build my business up to the point that I'm making the income I want.

    I liked the Fast Cash Strategy and plan to try to implement some of those ideas.

    But what I'd like are ideas/strategies that aren't necessarily "fast" but are ones that will continue to work day after day. Things that may take some time to build, but will grow and increase over time.

    Any ideas would be much appreciated.

    Thank you!

  11. Burn Fat with Liz says:

    One reason I think for my not earning all that much is lack of traffic. How do you get links in from high traffic/high pr sites? This is my main stumbling block and I think if that could be solved it would help most people.

    It is a question that various services have attempted to resolve but they use either reciprocal linking eg linkmarket,which isn't very useful when they put your link way down in a large directory on an unrelated site.

    Three way links are better but I haven't seen a service offering those. Then you can purchase links but that is very expensive and I am not sure how much you would need to spend to make it work.

    Its easier to get links in if you have a good product because your affiliates link to you but that isn't helpful for affiliate products.

    I recently was tempted to buy a product that shows how the owner got onto Googles first page in 10 days and made swags of dosh. It uses datafeeds on a blog and the product is a Wp plugin that makes it easy to upload datafeeds. I realised that the owner had managed that feat because he could link to his new site with pr 7 sites and most of us can't!

    So if you can solve that problem you will make a mint and we will all love you more than we do already!

  12. @Liz - Can I answer your question in full, and offer you a free blog review, as a new post here at ClickNewz? It would make a great case study for other readers, showcase your site, and give you the answers you're looking for. Let me know if that is okay with you ;)

    @Laurie - great feedback, and thank you. Its not easy to create a step-by-step daily plan or outline since every online business is unique to the person that created it - some rely heavily on SEO, others on social networking, etc. But I love the concept. That may be something I work on for Elite Members - a custom action plan. Love the idea!

  13. Burn Fat with Liz says:

    I would love you to do that Lynn. It isn't very full though as although I have had a site there for a while I only just changed everything and put up the new site as a Blog.

    But please go ahead, it would be just fantastic to get such a review.I am trying to add a new review every few days.

  14. Thank you Liz - I'll keep you posted on that :)

    Also, new post with FREE information for you guys to help you get over the hump and start making some money online! See: http://www.clicknewz.com/1635/learn-how-to-make-money-online/

  15. Akinwande says:

    i really enjoyed this post is as if you no what my problem is , and since a year now have not make a dime on line and i hope i will follow those step thanks

  16. Vera Raposo says:

    Hi Lynn, Great discussion!

    For me I think the biggest problem was:

    1) Wasting too much time
    2) Not marketing my products

    I would build, and then stop. Build something new, then stop. etc. Plus I never made a plan at all.

    Now I plan the things I need done at least a month to two months in advance.

    Also, when my daughter was diagnosed last year with hodgkins lymphoma my priorities had to change BIG time. So I was VERY limited for computer time, I had to spend all my energy in my daughters treatment and getting her well.

    During that time my income tripled! And even more so now.

    The best advice I could give anyone is just to keep moving forward! Don't stress over what isn't working and look at what is, then grow it.

    I look forward to see what comes out of this all Lynn!

  17. Excellent advice, Vera - thank you for sharing what has worked for you, and some of the problems you dealt with along the way. You are such a terrific success story & inspiration!

  18. Hi, Just an update for all of you who sent suggestions, comments, and good wishes & prayers.

    I have just been hired, full-time, to work with my web-hosting company as the support person for one of their new proprietory software products. Creating videos, templates and conducting online support etc.

    Thanks to those who sent prayers. I sent some myself........ must have worked.

    Thanks again, from the bottom of my heart to all of you.

    To Health, Wealth & Success,
    Claire

  19. Chris Imamshah says:

    Hi Lynn,

    Great discussion. A time-log is a fantastic eye-opening tool that shows where our time is wasted. It's so easy to waste time, unfortunately.

    Another time-saving tactic is to not keep our email inboxes open all day. The temptation is to check each new email that comes in and this is where major distraction occurs. If the key is to be focused and I believe that it is, then I would recommend checking emails maybe 3 times / day but in between closing the inbox completely.

    Focus and persistence I believe are key to success in any venture and expecially with internet marketing because there is so much information online that can distract people.

    I truly enjoy your site Lynn. Thanks for being so honest with all of us and trying to help us be more successful.

    Take care,
    Chris
    http://www.christineimamshah.com

  20. Hi Lynn,

    I'm way late to this discussion, but I'd still like to make a comment.

    Because it's not my primary job, I don't always put in the hours that are probably needed. However, as a consultant, I have long down periods, and during those times I do put a lot of hours into trying to figure things out. I probably read too much stuff and let it all get me confused, and yet, at the same time, I read it all because I never seem to get the answer I'm looking for.

    Yes, I do waste some time here and there, but when I'm sitting at the computer for upwards of 16 or 17 hours, wasting a little bit of time isn't such a big deal.

    As for the money,... well, let's just say that, on a yearly basis, I'm not making as much as I would have made had I stayed at Kmart back in 1982 when I was making $2.90 an hour. It's really a good thing I have another career to fall back on. :-)

  21. What is that answer you're looking for?

    Maybe I can help... If you have a few hours a day to devote to your online business, I might be able to help you figure out the best use of that time to see things through to your goal.

  22. I believe there really are a lot of questions that we don't get the full details on how to get it done, but I think the number one thing all of us worry about is traffic. I would say targeted traffic, but the reality is that if you have lots of traffic you can worry about how to thin it out, but if you don't have any traffic, then what's the point.

    And I'm not new to this. I've been online for six years. I write two blogs. I've submitted articles to both online and offline magazines. I'm on a lot of social networking sites, including Twitter. I have six other websites also. And I write two newsletters, though both are only listed on my main business site (kept getting lots of comment spam with my form, so I removed it). I even have a small, free giveaway if people subscribe to either of the newsletters.

    So, yes, I'd say traffic would be the most important question I have. Thanks for the vine. :-)

  23. When it comes to traffic, I'm for SEO all the way. Its free, its easy enough to get, and you can make it as highly targeted as you want. In fact, the more targeted, the easier it is to rank and the better it converts.

    I'm assuming you have a fair bit of experience (at least) with SEO? There is a MAJOR free offer going on right now too, by the way: http://www.clicknewz.com/stse2.htm

    Your thoughts?

  24. My husband and I are disabled and we get Social Security for Him I never worked enough to draw it. He gets $1050.00 a month. I am very thankful to God for it but it is not enough to live on. If anyone has any ideas please pass them on. God bless each of you. Linda

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