I'm Amanda. I'm a business and marketing coach for ambitious entrepreneur who want to create a freedom lifestyle. I travel around the world full time and spent most my days in Thailand, Vietnam or Bali. I'm a strategy and systems girl and here to help you scale your business and become unstoppable.
Get 100 New Ideal Client Followers on Instagram Every Week
There are a million and one guides out there about how to get started (including one by yours truly!). But with so many voices telling you what to do, it’s easy to get lost in the noise. That’s why I put together this starting an online business checklist: Where we’ll break down what you really need to launch your business – and what you can do without.
Ready to dig in?
This starting an online business checklist will walk you through everything step by step. If you want an even more in-depth version, make sure to download the Laptop Lifestyle Blueprint, which breaks the process down into 30 days. Grab your copy here so you can follow along!
Maybe this goes without saying…or maybe it doesn’t. Some people just choose a business idea that they think would be fun and jump right in. But first you need to validate that idea – meaning, is this something people are willing to pay for? Do a quick search on Google and social media to see if people are offering something similar, and if they are, how you can differentiate yourself.
I always recommend new entrepreneurs start a service-based business (as opposed to a product based business), for two reasons:
If you’re not sure what kind of business you want to start, check out the 10 Best Digital Nomad Jobs for Beginners for inspiration.
Not only is this important for legal and tax reasons, but you’ll also want to claim all the relevant social media handles and domain names. There’s nothing worse than choosing the perfect name, spending money and time on a logo, then discovering someone’s already taken the Instagram handle. Oops!
This is the website I look to use to check if your desired social media handles are available. If everything looks good, then purchase the domain name for your website. Depending on your country/state, you may also need to register your business. Check your local government site for details!
Technically, you don’t need a website to launch – but I highly recommend you set one up as soon as possible. The main reason is that, while social media is a great place to start, you don’t actually own your Instagram or Facebook page.
Having a website gives you a home base where you have 100% control. Not to mention, it also makes you look more professional!
You don’t need to hire a pricey designer right away nor know how to code. My go-to website platform is ShowIt, and it’s super user-friendly – no coding experience required! You can also buy a plug and play template that you can simply change colors, fonts, photos and text and be ready to go 48 hours later.
You can also set up a temporary “website” with a tool like the Milkshake app.
No starting an online business checklist would be complete with the dreaded tech set up! Don’t worry, it’s not as complicated as it sounds.
All you really need to get started are these five things:
There! That wasn’t so hard, was it?
Marketing doesn’t often make it onto the starting an online business checklists. But when it comes to getting your business launched and profitable, having a solid marketing plan is one of THE most important pieces.
At the very least, you should know who your ideal client is, where you can find them online (ie. Facebook, Pinterest, email, blogs), and what their pain points are. This will allow you to tailor your marketing message directly to who you can help most.
Plus you need to start to get visible and be active on the social media platform of your choice that best suits your business.
Tip: Start with one (max two) platforms and really establish your presence there before trying to be in all the places. However, you may want to secure social media handles for all the platforms you think you might want down the road.
There’s no need to get all fancy and hire a brand designer at this stage (after all, you’re still getting to know your own business!). But even in the early days of starting an online business, it’s important that you show up consistently.
Pick a few colors and fonts that you’ll stick with on your website and social media. This will make it easier for people to recognize you in their feed and across platforms. You may also want to create a basic logo and some graphics. Just remember, you’ll probably change these down the line! Don’t get too caught up in the details.
The absolute best tool for all your graphic design and branding is Canva, which has ready-made logos and social media templates. All you have to do is pop in your brand colors and they’re good to go!
The number one regret most online business owners have? Not starting their email list sooner. Get ahead of the curve and launch with your opt-in and email system ready to go!
The first step is to create an opt-in freebie – some incentive for people to join your list. This could be a checklist, PDF, email course, webinar, or something else. The key is to orientate it towards your ideal client, and so that the next logical step would be for them to invest in your paid offer.
Watch this video here all about how to create a freebie and start your email list.
Next, choose your email marketing platform. Two I recommend are ActiveCampaign and ConvertKit. Put up a basic landing page, and start collecting emails!
I saved the best tip for last: No matter what tasks are on your starting an online business checklist, mindset is the most important! This is something I’ve talked about at length on the Laptop Lifestyle podcast, my Youtube channel, and other blog posts, so I’ll try to keep it short:
Mindset is everything when it comes to building the business of your dreams.
I hope you found this guide helpful. Just remember, no matter where you’re at in your business, you have to just start and keep moving forward!
If you’re ready to build the online business of your dreams and join a community of incredible female entrepreneurs, get on the waitlist for our next round of Laptop Lifestyle Bootcamp. My signature group coaching program follows a proven path to success – whether you’re just starting out or scaling to six figures. We dive deep into everything on this checklist, plus so much more. Don’t miss it!
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