What it takes to build an automated internet business

I started with eBay over 15 years ago and gradually moved into affiliate marketing. Originally, I was buying and selling and came across an eBook that taught a simple eBay strategy. The buy-sell model was working. But he wasn’t making much progress.

When I bought the eBook it seemed like a simple strategy. The eBook was an automated sale. The owner simply creates a listing on eBay and lets it run. He could sell multiple items through that single listing, plus customers could download the book and there was nothing to do beyond creating the listing and the book itself.

Despite some changes to eBay laws in the UK at the time, which meant you had to ship a physical product to be allowed to list, it seemed like the perfect “autopilot” business model to me. I created my own e-books and tried to sell them online, with little success.

However, I knew the idea was a good one, so I went with it! I knew there had to be a business model that would allow me to use the Internet to its full potential.

I’ve tried many so-called “autopilot” money courses, many of which failed for me. Over time I also became quite disillusioned. But I continued because the alternative seemed to be my current reality of continued financial worry.

I did several ‘make money’ courses that used various tactics. The last one I did really worked. But a few years passed and I was getting disappointed again. It wasn’t until I saw myself as a possible problem that something changed for me. He was working the same tactics over and over and never really looking inward. This course I finally found taught personal development as well as online business skills.

Perhaps you think that this is not important to you? I also thought this. But the problems persisted and he was always jumping from one ‘shiny object’ to another. I never grew personally while working in these businesses. I just ran the same programs and did the same things over and over again. It wasn’t until I started noticing my patterns that things changed.

I began to focus on changing my self-image, building my confidence, and developing my awareness. My language always let me down, and although I blamed others, it was my own “internal dialogue” that was recording the “register” of failure. Every time I talked about my business on the Internet, I always felt that someone would leave it. So I started talking before they could talk. In a way, this seemed to be a self-protective mechanism. But in other ways, he was creating the results he was envisioning.

As I bad-mouthed my Internet business, I believed in it less and less. When I finally realized how little I believed in what I was doing, I stopped talking about it. I decided I would have to make it happen before I bring it up again.

It’s easy to let others defeat your belief in something when your belief is very weak. I realized that I had to try it for myself, before I could mention it to others. Otherwise, your skepticism would topple whatever belief I had spent months and years building on.

It is belief that is the basis for building something worthwhile. Without belief, nothing would even get done. No one would attempt something difficult if they didn’t believe it could happen. An Internet business is no different.

Building your belief and protecting it is therefore quite important. Unless you’re already surrounded by employers praising, challenging, and motivating you, you’ll need to protect yourself from the endless barrage of negativity from well-meaning friends and family.

Most people just don’t believe in the possibility of making money online. Even if they do, there is a subconscious belief system for most that is geared towards staying “safe.” If it is possible to make a full-time living online, then negate any effort that might be undermined by an easier or simpler way of doing things.

Because an Internet business offers a means to stop trading time for money, it’s hard to reconcile this if you’ve been doing exactly that in a job or career. Especially if you have dedicated a large part of your life to it.

After the belief, there is the real possibility of failure, or the doubt of getting caught up in something that is not quite right. Once again, this comes down to belief. When you need to invest in something again, most people feel pressured. They do not believe that a large amount of money can be earned with an Internet business. People’s attitude toward money affects how they spend it. They often can’t see beyond the way they’ve always seen money. This was me too. I held on to what little I had because I was afraid of losing it. Until I realized and got over this fear, my business could not move forward.

Thinking of making money on “autopilot” is an exaggeration if you’ve had to work very hard for it. It’s hard to let go of your attachment to money if it took you years to save it, for example. So there is a lot to let go and there is also a lot to learn.

The technical aspect of an Internet business can also be a challenge. You need to learn new skills and be able to follow instructions. Although software and technology have removed many of the difficulties of building an online business, there are still things to learn.

Once you start to see things working with an internet business, it’s a huge boost. Before that, you are taking everything on trust. If you don’t personally know anyone who is actually having success with an Internet business, you may be erring on the side of caution. This makes it difficult to take whatever leap of faith you’ll need to move forward. Investing in a business model and paying for advertising are two of those jumps.

For years I blogged hoping things would change. I was focusing on the wrong activities. Until I found a good source of training and education, I was wasting a lot of time doing the unnecessary to fill the time and feel productive. This is another easy mistake to make: being a busy fool.

Finding a community of trustworthy and willing people to share is worth its weight in gold. Without it, your chances of success are much lower. Building your belief, finding people to connect with, and learning are probably the two biggest barriers to success with an online business. Before belief, there is no action. When you know and trust others who are already building successful online businesses, you can follow his teachings.

It still takes patience to learn a skill like this, but it’s a lifelong skill if you don’t give up first.

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