by Lisa McGrimmon
I didn't set out to become an internet entrepreneur. It was actually a very happy accident.
Before I started my online business in 2006, I was an independent contractor (semi-self employed) throughout the majority of my career. I'm a pretty independent-minded person, and I have always loved the freedom that comes with self employment.
I worked for many years as a career coach, helping people reach their career and business goals. I worked from home and had extremely flexible hours, which was ideal because it allowed me to spend a lot of time with my young son.
Suddenly, and without much warning, massive changes were made to the program I worked under as a career coach. Working in that field was no longer a reasonable option for me, but I really did not want to return to a traditional office job while I had a very young child.
I worked in a creative field before I became a career coach, and, as much as I loved supporting my clients in reaching their goals, I also felt the need to have work that provided a more creative outlet.
When I started my craft business, I was lucky enough to be accepted into a year-long program that trains new entrepreneurs. Through that program, I worked with mentors who had run their own businesses, marketing professionals, tax specialists, and other local small business experts.
I learned a lot in that year, far more than I would have if, like most new business owners, I had been left to figure things out on my own.
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I was happily working from home - at the time, I was selling handmade jewelry - when I started researching the possibility of creating a website for my craft business.
My plan was to create a simple site that would serve as a virtual business card/gallery to promote my work to local customers and shop owners. I had no idea my research would take me on this amazing journey.
In the course of researching resources for creating and promoting a website, I discovered Solo Build It! (back then, it was called Site Build It!).
Solo Build It! is a set of all-in-one internet business building tools I use to build and promote this site.
At the time, I knew almost nothing about online marketing, but the more I read, the more intrigued I became with the idea that I could become an internet entrepreneur.
I realized that I could take all of my experience as a career coach, helping clients build new careers, and combine it with everything I had learned about building a craft business. My goal was to create a site that was a comprehensive business resource to support other professional craft artists.
When I started this site back in 2006, I really didn't know what to expect. I wanted to share and chronicle everything I learned and experienced selling crafts, but I had no idea that this site would become a reliable source of income for me and my family.
Since I launched this site I have seen some wonderful results.
I work on this site on a part time basis, and I earn a good part time income which is enough to:
When my second son was born, I was able to limit my work hours for the first six months and focus on caring for him. I wrote articles ahead of time while I was pregnant, so I could continue to share new information with readers in spite of my sleepless haze. I simply took a little time to post them about once a week while my newborn was napping.
The income from my site also allowed me to cut back on selling at craft shows while I was pregnant and when my son was an infant. Some of you may be more intrepid than I am, but running a craft booth while eight months pregnant was not something I looked forward to.
I love knowing that I am able to share my experience and help support craft professionals building their own businesses. As a career coach, I helped about 500 people each year. Through this site, I'm able to help hundreds of thousands of people every year.
I work every day doing something creative that is uniquely my own. My internet business allows me to live, work and parent exactly the way I want to, and that, in my mind, is absolutely priceless.
It takes commitment, plus good tools, trustworthy information, and timely support to build a profitable online business.
I couldn't do this work successfully without a good degree of self-motivation. I also couldn't do it without the resources, tools, and support I get from Solo Build It!.
If you think you'd like to take your own craft business online, and you're willing to put in the work it takes to grow an online business, I highly recommend SBI!. There's nothing else like it. Other companies help you publish a good looking website, and they may provide some articles to get you started, but no company provides you with the step-by-step, in-depth, and ongoing business training and support that you get from Solo Build It!.
It's hard to explain everything SBI! does (they do so much). You can get a good overview of everything they offer here.
If you'd like to check out the types of solopreneurs that build successful businesses with SBI!, you can see hundreds of their customers' websites here. Particularly, take a look at the "hobbies" section of that page, where you'll find plenty of craft-related sites. All of the sites on that page are in the top .5% of all websites.
Top .5% - Think about that for a second.
There are about 200 million websites on the entire internet. To be in the top .5%, that means your site has more visitors than 199 million other websites. You can make a good income if your site is in the top .5% of the entire internet!
I've been a Solo Build It! customer for over ten years, and I'm thrilled with the tools and genuine help and support that I've had over that time. I wouldn't have the life and the business I have today without all of their help. My only regret about starting my SBI! site is that I didn't hear about it sooner.
Most people visit this site to learn more about building a business based on their own creativity, and in my opinion, Solo Build It! is a great match for that goal.
Whatever direction you do decide to take with your own business, I wish you all of the success, freedom and fulfillment in the world.