Saturday, June 22, 2024

 Hey everyone! It's David Barnett today. I have an interesting question from Sam, who wants to know what kind of online business I would start if I were to do it all over again. Watch here: 

My Online Business Journey

A couple of years ago, I started my online journey with YouTube videos. Initially, these videos served as a marketing tool to attract consulting clients to my real-world business. Over time, this venture evolved into a full-fledged online business. Here’s how it happened:

  1. Books and Courses: I started writing books that people can download or purchase as physical copies. Additionally, I developed online courses, such as my Course Business Buyer Advantage: Online Training and Sell My Own Business System: Online Training (Prepare yourself for Exit or Transition) which help people learn valuable skills on their own time.

  2. New Products: Recently, I’ve been writing my new book Buying vs. Starting a Small Business.: Search or Startup? A guide to keep you from going broke in this book We will explore what it really means to be successful in your own business beyond the surface-level statistics. You will learn how businesses are valued and how to use tools like debt to acquire one or buy the stuff you need to do a startup. Most importantly, we’ll explore the real risks of small business and manage those risks by understanding how to plan for contingencies, pivots and setting limits.

Why Online Businesses Appeal

The appeal of online businesses is multifaceted. Here are a few reasons why they’re attractive:

  1. Side Hustle Potential: Many people can keep their day jobs while growing an online business on the side. This reduces the initial risk and financial strain.

  2. Scalability: Creating electronic products, such as online courses, involves a lot of upfront work. However, once the product is created, it can be sold repeatedly with minimal additional effort.

  3. Automation: Platforms like Gumroad handle e-fulfillment, managing sales, passwords, and payments, allowing you to focus on creating content rather than administrative tasks.

My Advice for Starting an Online Business

If I were to start an online business again, I’d likely follow the same path—creating electronic products that can be sold multiple times. Here are some tips based on my experience:

  1. Create Once, Sell Often: Invest time in creating high-quality products that can be sold repeatedly. This could be online courses, eBooks, or other digital products.

  2. Leverage Automation: Use platforms like Gumroad for digital products or Shopify for physical goods to manage sales and fulfillment automatically.

  3. Focus on Value: Ensure your products provide real value to your customers. This helps build a loyal customer base and encourages repeat business.

Buying an Online Business

Even in the online world, my core advice remains the same: it’s often faster and easier to buy an existing business than to start one from scratch.


Starting an online business can be a rewarding venture, whether you create your products or buy an existing business. Focus on creating scalable, valuable products and leveraging automation to handle administrative tasks. And remember, sometimes buying an existing online business can be a quicker, less risky path to success.

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David C Barnett

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