Just a few weeks ago, I got another email asking how we can fully automate the online business and really generate passive income. In fact, this is one of the frequently ask questions that I get. We all love to achieve ultimate freedom and generate passive income. So, what does it take to achieve all this?
Proven Business Model
Before we start asking finding a way to automate our business, we will need to adopt a proven business model, that is allowed to be automated. What is the difference between working for a company and running an online business?
The short answer is Leverage and Scalability!
Think about the reason for a company to hire employee. This works the same in the online business but you are the employer / business owner instead of employee.
We need a business model that allow you to gain the maximum leverage and be scalable. For example if you providing SEO services, initially you might be doing everything from on page optimization, article submission, content generation, press release submission, link building activities etc… for your online business if you are short of budget.
Then you might move on to outsource the tasks by tapping on outsourcing sites like guru.com, elance.com, fiverr.com, etc… and do the quality control before you issue to your clients. Later, you could hire a few low cost full timer from India, Philippine to help you to do all the ground work . When you have enough budget, you will hire a manager to manage the worker and make sure the quality are up to the standard.
At this point, your role will only be dealing with the clients, bring in more jobs and deliver them. You can take it to the next step by getting another full timer to take over your role.
However, before you can outsource the jobs, you will need to document every single steps you take from start to finish for every single job. This is not for you but for your worker to follow the procedure so that they can do the job well. If you are lucky, you might get talented and experienced worker that will do a good job. Most of the time, you will expect at least 1-2 weeks on the job training under your supervision before they can perform the task that meet your satisfaction.
So, hiring and training a full time worker takes time and effort. Nevertheless, you will enjoy the awesome leverage when they are capable on their job.
Affiliate Marketing / Product Owner
Similarly, for a typical online business like affiliate marketing or selling your own product, you will need to know your numbers well before you can leverage and automate your business. For example, if you start out with affiliate marketing to promote a product, you will need to know the conversion rate and the earning per click (EPC) for the product. If the product conversion rate is 3%, that means for every 100 people visiting the sales page via your affiliate link, there will be 3 people that buy the product.
Another important thing to note is that the conversion rate varies for different type of traffic source. There are tons of traffic generation techniques, such as video marketing, SEO, press release, etc… and the profile of the prospects from different sites is different. For example, visitors come from a video site like YouTube will convert better on a video sales page comparing you will to a typical sales page without video. There are quite a number of factors that can be tweaked to improve conversion rate of the sales letter such as pre-selling, headline, font color, testimonials, money back guarantee, angle of the sales letter, etc…
Once you have a rough idea of the conversion rate of the sales letter, all you need to do is to drive traffic to a squeeze page and to send the subscribers to your sales page once they opt in to your squeeze page. Why not straight to the sales page?
You don’t want to waste the traffic!
Think about this, if the conversion rate of your sales page is 3%, that means that there are 97 people (out of 100) leave your site. So, it will be wiser to send them to a squeeze page to collect their email at least as generally the opt in rate of a squeeze page will be a lot higher (40%-50% is normal) because they don’t need to take out their credit card.
If the subscribers are not interested to your recommended product the first time they see, you can follow up via the email to try to close the deal. If they are totally not interested in the product you promoted, you can still offer some other products in future.
Remember never send the valuable traffic straight to a sales page (especially for affiliate product).
Unfortunately, there is no magic button to generate a huge amount of traffic. The good thing is once you know the conversion rate, you know how much you can earn for every single visitors you send to your squeeze page. If 1 video can bring in 100 visitors, do a few more videos to generate some more traffic.
If you can create 100 videos every month, bring in 10,000 visitors to your squeeze page, receive 5,000 subscribers and generate 150 sales up front (excluding email follow up). Your earning is $3,000 for a $20 product. Do you think you can hire at least 1 full timer that cost around USD400-500 to help you create the video?
Of course you can do that.
Similar to any outsourcing task, always start small before you scale up. Get help by outsourcing the traffic generating tasks and push as much traffic as possible to generate sales. When you reach a bottleneck point, you might consider to try out other traffic strategies (paid or free) and do it again. Or you can build up another affiliate funnel to promote another product using the same strategy. Just rinse and repeat.
This is how you can build your business to generate passive income (almost). Initially, it will be a lot of hardwork because you will need to test the funnel and find out the best traffic strategies by yourself. After that, it will be easier as you can delegate the task to others. If you train your staff well, it will literally become hands off for you. Just keep an eye of your daily earning while your staff are doing the hardwork for you.
As usual, leave your comments below to share your thoughts on how you will automate your business and the difficulties you face.