This being the first week in January, many people are making resolutions to improve their lives. For many one of those goals is to create a side business they can eventually turn into full-time self-employment. They see other people doing it on Facebook or Instagram and they want to do it too! But there’s an issue: Those people aren’t sure how to start a side business while working full-time. Today, I’m providing three steps which worked for me so you can start on your side business now!
How To Start A Side Business Tip #1: Schedule Your Time
The first tip isn’t about developing a business plan or finding a problem to fix out in the world. Although those are good steps, those aren’t the first thing you should do for your new side business. Focus on scheduling your time!
Why? Because a good portion of your time (at least 40 hours a week) goes to your full-time job. You already made a deal with a business owner or a company to exchange your time per day for a paycheck. This is how I schedule my time to include my day-job and my side business:
- I work on my side business before going to work.
- During my breaks at my full-time job, I work on my side business.
- After work, I work on my side business until it’s time for bed.
“But when do you relax, Brittany?” Truth is, I don’t relax as much as I used to. On weeknights, I allow myself to watch about 30 minutes to 1 hour of YouTube while I fix and eat dinner. But then it’s time to work on the side business! On the weekends, I give myself a little more relaxation time, but I spend a good portion of it working on my side business.
And I’m single without kids, so I have more time to dedicate to this. If you have a spouse and/or children, then your time is further constrained. You need to come up with a schedule that allows you to not only work your day-job and side business, but incorporates family time. If that means you can only work on your side business 1 hour a day, so be it. But make that time count!
How To Start A Side Business Tip #2: Do Your Research
When I wanted to make writing books and my blog my side business, I did research even though I wrote books and created blogs before. Why? Because there is always new information and/or technology that can assist you.
Now you don’t have to spend much money on your research. I highly suggest using YouTube to do nearly all of it. Why? Because it’s full of people just like you who started a side business you want to do, and they can detail all of their successes and mistakes. You need to learn from people like them because you don’t have much time to flounder around.
“But, Brittany, how do I research on YouTube?” In the search bar, type in your question. Let’s say you want to create a Shopify store selling handbags. First, you need to find out how to create a Shopify store, and then you can research how to sell handbags on there.
Type into the search bar on YouTube “how to create a shopify store?” Hundreds of videos will pop up. Watch one and take notes. If you don’t like that video, go back to the search results and watch another.
And take notes the best way it works for you. Me? I have a journal, as I love to jot my notes down. But you may like to dictate your notes into your phone or a digital assistant like Siri or Google Assistant. I know a few people who use apps like Evernote, OneNote or Google Keep to write and organize their notes.
This step will probably be the most time-consuming, but it’s highly important!
How To Start A Side Business Tip #3: Start Lean
When I revamped my blog, I fell in love with spending money on my website to make it look great! I was going to buy premium WordPress themes, a fancy commenting system, a high-end contact form plugin, things like that. But as I did more research, I found free or low-cost plugins that did just want I wanted. Instead of being flashy, I decided to keep my costs lean.
So keep your costs as low as possible with your side business. You don’t need the most expensive Web Hosting package as you won’t have 100,000 visitors a day at the very beginning. Don’t buy a new computer from Amazon; use the one you have. And if you need a logo for your website and/or business cards, use websites like Fiverr for an inexpensive design.
Starting lean doesn’t mean you’re cheap; you are being frugal with your money by spending it on what’s important. Lastly, starting lean isn’t permanent. You can upgrade later when you make profits.
And if you need some recommendations on Web Hosting or Domain Names, I use NameCheap. I’m not affiliated with them, so if you click that link I don’t earn any money.
Working your side business while you work your day-job is going to be difficult at times, and it’s going to take a great amount of sacrifice to achieve your goal.
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