Digital Presence & Marketing Strategy

Tuesday Tutorial: Starting an Online Business – 7 Must-Ask Questions

finding-your-dream-jobAre you considering starting an online business?

Does making money on the internet catch your attention?

When you see infomercials on late-night TV, does your heart begin pounding with anticipation?

Do you know someone who is already running a successful online business?


One of my favorite quotes about success is from Abraham Lincoln:

That some achieve great success, is proof to all that others can achieve it as well.

So why are you hem-hawing around about starting a business online?

Or even a more straightforward question,

Why are you dragging your feet with the decision you made to start an online business?

If you are always looking back and second guessing your decision,  you’re not going to be successful and need to keep working for someone else.

Many of the readers at Moller Marketing are in the process of starting their online business.  The information I share today will help you assess what you are doing, review the direction you are headed, and hopefully confirm why you chose the path you are currently on with your online business.

This information will also help people who are just getting started.  Brainstorming is one of the first steps all entrepreneurs take.  Asking yourself important questions will help open the doors of opportunity as you take necessary steps to online success!

7 Must-Ask Questions For Starting an Online Business

1: What makes me happy?

As you think about this question, OPEN YOUR MIND!  Avoid the “…that won’t make me any money” mindset or the “Oh, that market is already saturated with competitors online – I could never do that…”  BULL CRAP!  You can be successful in ANY ENDEAVOR if you love what you are doing and find a way to differentiate.  What are your hobbies, interests, skill sets, etc.?  Write all these down on a piece of paper and dig deep!

2: What do I find easy to do? or What am I good at?

You know, like num-chuck skills, bow hunting skills, computer hacking skills… Girls only want boyfriends who have great skills. – Napoleon Dynamite

So what are YOUR “skills”?  One of the main reasons I started a clogging shoes website as my first online business was because I’d been in that industry since I was six years old.  I had “clogging skills” :).  Plus, I knew a lot of people in the industry.

Had I ever sold anything clogging related? No.  Did I know exactly where to find clogging shoe suppliers? No.  But I knew that, once I did find some of those answers, I would have some people I could contact to start making sales online.

Remember, you don’t have to re-invent the wheel and come up with something totally new and unique if you want to be successful online.  As Napoleon Dynamite told Pedro:

Pedro, just listen to your heart. That’s what I do. – Napoleon Dynamite

3: What sparks my creativity?

I read a quote from Donald Trump the other day in en eBook about industry specialization.  Donald said this:

…you better chose what you love or you will never work hard enough to be successful.

In every start up business, there will be road blocks, speed bumps, and things you have to work around.  If you don’t have any creativity for what you’re doing, those hurdles will probably hold you back.

4: What do I like to do for free in my spare time?

You might as well start making money doing something you already do in your spare time :).  One of the things I like to do in my “spare time” is eat at restaurants in Utah County.  So, I created a website that does reviews on Utah County restaurants. We monetize this website with sponsors, coupons, etc.

Creating an online business is as much about lifestyle as it is about just making money.

5: What do I like to talk about with friends or family?

Most likely, if you talk about a certain topic with friends and family, you have some knowledge in that arena.  Why not turn that knowledge in to something profitable?  There are e-books all over the internet that share knowledge and make money doing it!

6: What would I do if I knew I wouldn’t fail?

This question is all about mindset and self-motivation.  “If you think you can, or you think you can’t…you’re right!”  Failure isn’t an option.  Think more about how and when you are going to succeed.

Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it. – Henry David Thoreau

7: What would I regret not having ever tried?

My uncle-in-law recently started a business selling a video camera stand that attaches to your golf cart so you can record your golf swing.  Honestly, I don’t know how many of them he’s actually sold nor do I know what type of research he did before jumping in to the endeavor.  But the point is, who cares?  He’s doing something he would have regretted having never tried and most likely he will be successful because he’s determined and he loves what he’s doing.  Will the final product be what he initially envisioned?  Probably not.  But I know that most successful businesses, online and offline, are adaptable and adjust as their market changes.

How have these questions helped you determine what you are selling online!

24 replies on “Tuesday Tutorial: Starting an Online Business – 7 Must-Ask Questions”

I try to live by the motto: do what you are passionate about and you will always be a success. That’s pretty much what you’ve shared here, and I think everybody thinking about starting a business should take it to heart. I love communicating, and have found that my passion for that blends well with marketing, so, as you say, it sparks my creativity.

Great comment Jennifer! If my clients can get this one concept – do what you love – many of the roadblocks would be small things that they wouldn’t have problems working around.

I appreciate your comment!

What?! You mean I can’t just pick a random topic and just go for it because someone else said it was a good idea? I’ll answer my own question: you could, but you’re not likely to stick with it when the bad times come, and they will.

When I have clients ask about random products they know nothing about or have no passion for, I usually tell them to sell Clogging Shoes and that I’ll be their supplier 🙂 That usually helps them get the point I think!

Thanks for the comment!

This is great. I do believe I have picked the best business for me. My world is creating and playing with the fabrics I have and shopping for more, (no idea why I became a CPA!).
Even if somehow we had a windfall of cash, I would still be making this business grow and strive and still loving it!

That’s the best attitude – running a business is so much more than just making money. If you love what you’re doing, the money seems to come even quicker if that’s what you really want to happen (not sure who doesn’t want that to happen that’s a business owner 🙂 ).

I’m glad to hear you’re battling the economic storms and pushing forward. Keep me posted!

Great comment Sheri! It’s like in golf, once you find that “sweet spot” (even if it’s just once or twice), you’ll never want to quit or give up! I look forward to hearing more from you about the direction you’re headed.

Thanks again for the comment!

The article was very informative and interesting which is a relief to me. Also, Nate is a great name so you’ve got two things going for you. However, I really like good clean language, okay sometimes I slip when I’m driving or drop something but if bad language can be avoided I would appreciate it. Honestly, I expect mentors and teachers to cut the —-crap. Keep it in small letters if you must use it. Cause I don’t want to catch it, I want to loose it. I don’t want to sit in it or smell it or even think about it . So couldn’t we just leave it out of the lessons. Please. Why ruin a good or great thing? People prefer G rated movies. The ones without profanity. They do better and the Lord knows we need to get better and better. Okay, he knows we can’t be perfect but my dad’s name was Nate and I never heard him curse. So I will leave you with that and this quote from a ministry letter that I received from Sid Roth today. “It is out of intimacy with God that His healing love is released. I have prayed that the Lord would help me overcome my tendency to let bad language come out of my mouth…So far I haven’t been successful but I’m still trying.

Hello Florence,

Thanks for the comment. I hope the questions helped you consider what you want to do with your online business.

I apologize for the “bad language” although, in my opinion, the words were fitting and intended to add emphasis to the time people waist focusing on the “stuff” they don’t need to focus on.

If a new online entrepreneur plans to see success with a new endeavor, they have to sift through the “stuff”, work hard, love what they’re doing, and at times take things with a “grain of salt”.

This content is by no means a product of Prosper, Inc. It is owned and provided by Moller Marketing, LLC.

Again, I apologize for the non-G rated language and will keep this in mind in the future.


Nate Moller

I’ve always considered one’s happiness with his or her career incredibly more important than one’s salary. The internet seems to be an invaluable tool in transforming what you love to do into a way to make a decent living. Why not take advantage of it?

@Lilly and Paul AMEN!

…transforming what you love to do into a way to make a decent living.

This is exactly what online marketing and eCommerce offer to those who are ready! I look forward to working with you to make this a reality. Keep the questions coming and use all the resources you have access too!

[…] 7 Must Ask Questions When Starting an Online Business […]

This is great, Nate! As you know, I have skills: THESAURUS skills! I love education–teaching is my passion. So the book helps kids, teachers, and parents, but more than that I’m learning through blogging that I know things that others can benefit from beyond that. Even if in the beginning the e-commerce is slow going, I’m enjoying putting it out there. You have opened new doors for me. Thanks very much.

Another thing I pondered as I was reading this is that vision is vital. The vision of where I want to go with all of this helps the bumps and frustrations along the way.

And it’s true that knowledge is the key. So I just keep learning as much as I can, and work on some aspect of it every day. Today was setting up a Facebook page. 🙂 (And yes, I put my URL on it. ) I have no “friends” yet, but it’s up and running and I’m reaching out. It’s all about vision and constant work. I get it!

This was a good article, point number 7 is somthing that I have heard a lot of my older friends say. Thanks for the pointers that makes one think.

Excellent points, Nate. We so often read of learning to think “outside the box”. I think your article demonstrated that this “thinking” must come from “within” a person who fully understands “the box” that is HIMSELF. We must know fully what we are as to know how we can best contribute. It is only then that thinking “outside the box” will be productive.

Thanks for confirming what I needed to see before my eyes – it’s amazing how we can have answers and not see them — at least clearly — Which is why coaches and mentors are sooooooooo very very needed. Thanks again Nate, and I am getting ready to ‘get in on’ as in SUCESS!!!

All relevant questions, all have to do with what makes a person passionate about their life and life’ work.

Nate, the Tutorial really got me thinking about the things that I am passionate about and things that I would never though about going into business with I.E. Antiques and thing of old times. Thanks Nate

I just finished the replay of your webinar……GREAT!

I am so pumped, you gave me a great deal of information and broke it down.

I have been on most of the sites you have recommended. Incredible!

Thank you Nate for the insight. I have an eBay business but not doing too well. I am writing an E-book about E-commerce, but I need affiliates to make it a success. Can you help me out?

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