What do you have to offer?
The first step towards building any business is deciding what you are going to offer.
There are three main ways that you can offer value to people in exchange for money:
At Online Selling Experiment, we focus on buying and selling products for three main reasons.
The first is that products offer the most accessible start for beginners.
The second is that retail is what we have experience with and are qualified to talk about.
The third is that a product-based business is the most straightforward to scale and automate. That translates to more money in less time.
Starting Your Business…
Despite what other people will lead you to believe, you can’t just start a million dollar business overnight.
The more money you want to make, the more you need of three things:
- Skills / Experience
If you haven’t developed or earned the skills, money, and connections it takes to run a million-dollar business, there is no course in the world that will allow you to step into running one in the next few months.
But that doesn’t mean you should sit around and wait for conditions to be better. There’s only one reliable way to get more of those three things, and that is by investing the time and energy needed to earn them.
That is the main idea behind our Stairway to Seven Figures system.
OSE’s Stairway to Seven Figures
The Stairway to Seven Figures is a system for building a successful retail business that is based off my experience building my own business and working with hundreds of other people over the last few years.
This Staircase involves 5 main steps:
- Retail & Online Arbitrage
- Developing your own brand.
Most people look at sourcing strategies like flipping, arbitrage, wholesale, and private labeling as options that they have to choose between. The Stairway model challenges this assumption with the idea that they all offer distinct advantages based on where you are at in the development of your knowledge, skills, and capital ready for investment.
Even if you like the sound of private labeling because of the big profits, you should resist the appeal of starting there.
The vast majority of people who jump straight in to developing their own brand via private labeling fail. They invest thousands of dollars – usually by draining their savings or maxing out a credit card – but never see a dime in profit.
This happens because they get sold on a shortcut to success that doesn’t exist.
There are many people out there who will tell you the best way to start a business is to use some software to find a product to have manufactured in China and sold exclusively on Amazon. This is the “private label” method that most people know and try.
According to this theory, all you need is a few thousand for the course, a few hundred for the software, and several thousand for the product – then you’ll be raking in millions by summer.
As many people will tell you, it doesn’t actually work this way!
If you attempt “private labeling” like this, you are much more likely to end up with a lot of cheap junk in your garage and mountains of debt than a successful business.
And if you do strike gold and find something that makes money, Amazon or another desperate third party seller will undercut you in a heartbeat.
There is a ton of money to be made by developing your own brand, but a lot of work, experience, and money goes into building the framework needed for consistent success.
There’s no guarantee that the Stairway to Seven Figures will work for you, but there’s no guarantee that any other system will work either. It’s impossible to guarantee success in this way, there are way to many variables – including and especially your own level of commitment and willingness to do hard work.
But if you are up for a challenge, I’m definitely up for helping you as much as possible.
So where should you start?
The right place to get started depends on how much of three things mentioned above you currently have:
- Experience / Skills
If you don’t have any of these things, you have to start at the bottom step and work your way up. If you do have these things, you can potentially skip ahead. The degree to which you can skip ahead depends on how much you have.
For example – Bill Gates and Warren Buffett have the time, experience, and connections to start selling any product with any brand that they can dream of, as long as a market exists for it.
But the vast majority of people do not have enough of these things to start any further than retail arbitrage. Being deficient in even one of the three is enough to warrant starting at the beginning and working your way up.
If you only have two out of the three, your odds of failure dramatically increase. The two most important are money and experience. You really can’t reliably replicate success if you don’t have both.
To a certain extent, having more of one can make up for having less of the other. Having a huge reserve of cash allows you to make more mistakes, which means you can start with less experience. Having a lot of experience means you are less likely to make a mistake, so you can start with less money.
All of this means that for 99.999999% of people, the best place to start lies in either flipping, retail arbitrage, or both.
Why start with flipping and retail arbitrage?
Flipping and retail arbitrage are the ideal way to start because they are low risk and allow beginners with little to no money to gain the experience and capital needed to try strategies like wholesale and private labeling, which offer more profit for your time.
Flipping refers to buying and selling used items for a profit, whereas retail arbitrage refers to buying and selling new items from local retail stores to sell online.
If you don’t have any money that you can safely invest in a business, then flipping used items for profit is where you should focus your attention.
Flipping allows you to start with absolutely nothing and build a solid base of capital quickly. It is also a great opportunity to learn important skills that you will use and rely on as you build your business – things like negotiation, value assessment, shipping and handling, customer service, and feedback management.
To get started with flipping, check out the Flipping For Profit course. It is an in-depth flipping course centered on a challenge to make $1000 in 90 days, starting with $0.
You do not need the course to try flipping, but it only costs $20 to enroll. The lessons on negotiation alone can pay for the course in just a flip or two. This course will help you make more money faster if you are going to try flipping.
If money is a concern, pick something you can sell for $20 on Facebook Marketplace tonight and use the proceeds to enroll tomorrow. If for some reason you don’t like the course, there is a 30-day, money-back guarantee.
Retail arbitrage can be added at any time, including from the very beginning.
The reason why we have retail arbitrage positioned as Step 2 is that it does require a little bit of money to get started with. While you can read the free guides I have available, you will ultimately be the most successful with it if you are able to enroll in my retail arbitrage course and still have a few hundred available to invest in products.
If you are starting with little to nothing, then the best route forward would be enrolling in Flipping For Profit, completing the $1000 in 90 day challenge, and reinvesting your earnings into more flipping and adding retail arbitrage.
If you are starting with $500+, then you have the option of starting with retail arbitrage from the beginning. You can start with just flipping, just retail arbitrage, or both. If you enroll in the retail arbitrage course, you will get access to the flipping course as well.
Still not sure if this is right for you?
A great first step is reading the free report on 3 Mistakes That Nearly Guarantee Failure. This is a great place to start because the mistakes discussed apply to any business that you end up starting, not just one following the system described above.