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How to Start an Online Business With No Money - 5 Simple Tips

Photo of a laptop computer, open journal, and pen sitting on a desk to represent starting an online business on a budget
Starting an online business doesn't require a lot of upfront costs - just a laptop, expertise, and motivation are enough to get started.

Starting an online business without any capital may seem daunting, but it is possible! With some grit and creativity, you can get an online business up and running without spending a dime.

Here are 5 tips for starting an online business with no ( or small) money:

#1: Choose a Business Model That Requires Little Upfront Investment

The good news is that the online world is full of business models that require minimal start-up costs, like:

  • Affiliate Marketing - Promoting other company's products and getting a commission on sales. You only need a website and some promotional skills to get started.

  • Selling Digital Downloads - Creating info products like eBooks, courses, pintables, templates etc. and selling them online. With just your expertise and a laptop you can start developing products. Check out this bundle of 10 digital products you can re-sell too!

  • Dropshipping - Selling products shipped directly from the supplier to customers. You don't need to stock inventory.

  • Consulting/Freelancing - Offering your skills and expertise as a consultant in your field.

#2: Build Your Website For Free

You don't need fancy website design skills or to spend money hiring a web developer. There are plenty of free website builders like and Wix that make it easy to create a professional looking site quickly.

#3: Use Free Marketing Channels

Paid advertising isn’t necessary when you’re just starting out. Focus on free marketing strategies like:

  • SEO - Creating optimized content to rank high in search engines.

  • Social media marketing - Building an audience on platforms like Instagram and Facebook. Check out this Social Media Marketing Course for tips.

  • Email marketing - Building an email subscriber list to market to.

#4: Outsource Tasks to Cut Costs

In the beginning, focus on high return activities like sales and marketing. Outsource lower skill tasks like customer service, web design, writing etc. via freelance sites.

#5: Join Affiliate Programs

Sign up to be an affiliate partner of complementary services and products. You can earn commissions promoting them to your audience.

The bottom line is that with resourcefulness and persistence, you can get an online business going even without deep pockets at first. Focus on providing real value to others and the money will follow!



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