7 Steps to Building an Online Business on a Zero Budget Fast

There are a lot of people out there that are passionate about building an online business but don’t really have the money behind them to do so. Whilst starting an online business can cost you very little to almost nothing; there are ways in which you can start building an online business without shedding any of your hard earned cash up front.

Get a Free Website

There are tons of free site building tools available on the web. Moonfruit and WebEden are very useful just to name a few. Moonfruit allows you to get a professional business website up and running in a matter of hours, a website of up to 15 pages with 20mb of storage and 1GB of bandwidth, so starting an online business website really is cost free.


Once your website is up and running, learn how to do basic SEO and apply it to your website. SEO is essential if you want your customers to find you online, learning SEO will cost you nothing but time, and can save you a load of cash through sourcing professional SEO services elsewhere.

Get a Free Blog

Popular blogging platforms such as Blogger and WordPress.com can sort you out with a fully functional blog in no time. Link your website and your blog together and you’ll be onto a winner immediately, and so far you haven’t spent a single penny.

Start Selling on eBay

eBay is a great place to start selling your products or services. There is the small matter of listing and final value added fees, but initially you don’t need to put any cash up front. More over eBay already has the tools and traffic you need to start selling and making some money.

Get a PayPal account

PayPal again is free to setup and will allow you to accept payments for items you sell on your blog, website or eBay. PayPal do take a small fee for each transaction you receive, but again essentially you don’t need to invest any money upfront.

Submit to Free Business Directories

Do a search on the web for all the free website and small business directories available and start submitting to them. This is a great way to start promoting your online business, getting a few backlinks and improving your search engine rankings.

Social Networking is free

You’re probably already using Facebook so getting a business page for your website will cost you zero money. It’s very simple to setup also. If you’re not using Twitter you can also get an account up and running at no cost. The same goes for LinkedIn, Google Plus and YouTube.

When your business has started to profit somewhat, you can then begin to think about moving onto using premium tools and services, but really to start an online business should cost you nothing at all but time, so what are you waiting?

About Samantha Wright

Samantha Wright is the second editor and co-founder of magnet4marketing.net. She was awarded MasterCard Business Woman of the Year in 2007 and now loves to share her knowledge and insights in small business marketing. In her spare time Samantha is also a keen surf photographer, and loves to cook. Samantha currently works for Mole Valley Forage Services as a customer service unit manager. You can follow Samantha on Facebook.


  1. Tom Bowland says:

    Totally agree, spend as little as possible and do as much as possible yourself!

  2. sehlig says:

    If you want to start some e-commerce, Amazon offers something quite interesting. They take care, for really little money, of storage and shipping as well. You only take care that your customers want to buy something in your shop and amazon will guarantee a pretty fast and easy shipping. And it is really not expensive. I think they take about 0.04$ to store sunglasses for one month.

    • Hi Sehlig, thank you for you comment. Amazon affiliate is a very good place to start an online business on on minimum expense, I must agree with you. All you really need is a good website and lot’s of effective marketing, though that is much easier said than done :)

  3. Aaron says:

    Hi Samantha,

    Really interesting article, Now I too agree that setting up a small online business doesn’t cost anything although you need to invest your precious time to make it successful and earn money.
    Aaron recently posted..Goa Carnival 2012My Profile

  4. Richard says:

    When you want to start a business with low income, you must pay time before you could invest to pay money.
    Richard recently posted..SEO for Firefox PluginMy Profile

  5. you are precisely correct! you don’t need to really spend too much or even spend a single scent. all you need so far is a lot of patience, ability to persevere and work hard at the end everything will fall back as a golden opportunity for making money.
    MitchRodriquez @ English Atlanta recently posted..Learning with USING AMERICAN ENGLISHMy Profile

  6. Great post and excellent guide on setting up an online business. I would suggest you get a premium theme for WP if you are reasonably tech savvy.

    Article marketing is also free!
    Ana @ Bounce Rate recently posted..Free SEO ReportMy Profile

  7. Lalit says:

    Hi Samantha, it is right that you can start your blog on a zero budget but it will need spending some quality time for writing quality contents and promoting it. Excellent article and it will really help newbies who are desperate to start online business.
    Lalit recently posted..Samsung Tablet PC–Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 specification and reviewMy Profile

  8. Rich says:

    Some great tips here, however if you are going with a free website / hosting be careful, i know from my own experiences there are some who can do more harm than good.
    Rich recently posted..Updated Vacancies PagesMy Profile

  9. Joseph says:

    Nice Post on building an Internet Business.
    SEO and SEM is very important if you want to suceed online…

  10. Adie Andrews says:

    You are right that most of the things are so easy and simple but what most important is to make them right as even one mistake in the audience you are targeting can lead you to a totally different direction which is not useful for you. So I suggest before even starting to make a list of the thing you are intended to do and goals you want to achieve.

  11. Suzanne Grey says:

    @Adie Andrews

    You said it right, can never disagree on your point!
    Suzanne Grey recently posted..How Can Hydrocodone Abuse Effect You?My Profile

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