Run a Cheap Website Business

cheap website

Last Saturday I spoke in front of 1,100 ambitious men and women down at an event in San Diego, and the energy was incredible. I shared with them my biggest regret in business…

… not getting a coach soon enough.

When I hired my first coach in 2006, my online fitness business exploded. He taught me how to have a massive product launch. He made me a millionaire. I am eternally grateful. But I could be more successful today, helping more people, and having more money for an even better life and bigger Toys for Tots charity donations each year if I had done just ONE thing…

Hired my coach sooner.

And I don’t want you to make the same mistake.

If you really, REALLY want to succeed – in ANY area of life – you need a coach.

That goes from your weight loss to your love life to your business success. Because when you get a coach, you get all of their experience and wisdom. And with a coach, you can live the dream Internet Lifestyle.

My life is infinitely better thanks to the Internet.

If there were no Internet, who knows what business I’d be running today.

Maybe I’d be stuck in a dead-end job… because of my reluctance to get coaching.

I hesitated because I thought it cost too much.

Being cheap almost cost me my freedom.You see, the truth is, I’m really cheap.

I am half-Scottish, after all. And while being cheap can get you into a little trouble, it can also keep you out of big trouble online.

Here’s where it has gotten me into trouble….

I hesitate to invest in things – and I know that this has hurt me and my business – but I’m getting better at letting go and investing in coaching and mentoring which is paying off big time. But back in 1999 when I started my email newsletter, I don’t think I would have started a print newsletter if the Internet wasn’t around.

Fortunately, because I could start a free email newsletter, that’s what I did.

A website business is potentially the CHEAPEST business in all of the world.

Today, the computer I use still has stickers on it from my 2007 surfing trip to Australia. My desk shakes, because it’s from Ikea, and I put it together in 2003.

So with a $2,000 set up that is a combined 12 years old, I run a 7-figure business.

I can’t think of anything else that allows you to get started with such a small investment as a website business.

Almost everyone already has a computer. You’ve got the communication skills – or you can easily learn them with practice. And these days you can find someone to create a site for you for less than $500. Just find someone on,, or

So having said all of that, I hate reading emails like this:

“I was turned onto your website about a month ago, and I’ve settled on what I consider to be a really great idea and have begun to pursue it. I’m first to this particular market, have a good product and a killer name. The problem is that I’ve already gone through about 50% of the startup money
and I realized that I don’t even have a business plan. My enthusiasm and desire really have overtaken my common sense. Is there any list of steps or guidelines that I need to follow in order to set a good foundation for my business?”

Well, yes, I suppose you could start by inventing a time machine, but other than that, your money is gone. At least though, your story can serve as a warning to all of our other readers.

Keep your costs low.

That’s one of the big benefits of starting a personality-based website business – you don’t need a massive money investment. So here’s what you need to do:

  1. Get a $500 WordPress site going (could be less)
  2. Invest in,, or Icontact (this will allow you to collect emails and contact your list)
  3. Build your list with amazing content
  4. Offer affiliate products to your list BEFORE you invest time and money into creating your own products. This will allow you to determine if this is a good idea or good market to get into.
  5. See what they like and then create your own product that is an improvement over what sells well now.

That is a low cost, SAFE way of getting started online.

Keep it cheap,

Craig Ballantyne

“Create your own category so you can be first in the consumer’s mind.” – Yanik Silver

  • Dan

    Hey Craig, great info as always.

    I just wanted to ask you. A couple of weeks ago you wrote about how to sell to seniors and I was just hoping you can do something similar to how to sell to teenagers since even though they are always on the internet, they are strapped for cash moreso than most adults.

    Thanks Craig

    • Anonymous

      Hi Dan, they are easy to find (Facebook), and they will buy (see ringtones), but without knowing everything about your business, it’s tough to give advice.


  • Hi Craig,

    Keeping costs low is right up my alley. I am particularly interested in building an email list and the steps to start harvesting contacts.

    I don’t know if you have read the book StrengthFinder 2.0, which you really just buy so you can take the online assessment. I am part of a management book club and this was January’s book. The reason I am telling you about this is because two of my top 5 strengths are Learner and Input (definitions are provided in the book, which I would recommend for anyone wanting a deeper self examination). So you are probably asking yourself, “who cares”, but this sidebar will dovetail into my question…

    I started a personal blog a little over a year ago as a way to talk about my passions (health and fitness) which falls in line with my strengths above. At first I was just looking for a venue to share the ideas/info I was learning. and a way to collect my thoughts. I have recently started getting interested in making some money from my blog. What is the best way you have found to get people to give you their name and email address? You gave three great email marketing companies, but what is the best motivator for readers to sign-up?

    Thanks in advance!

    • Anonymous


      The best way to get someone’s contact info is by offering them a report or video that instantly solves their #1 problem.


  • Hi Craig.

    Would love to know more about how you, “3) Build your list with amazing content “. I am specifically interested to know how to plan articles and if there is a framework/skeleton for writing good articles. Any tips?

    Thanks for the great insights.

  • Roman

    Hi Craig,
    Love the way you think and all that you share. As far as solving their your list’s #1 problem, how to you find out what that is? Do you do it as suggested above, by posting different topics and seeing which one people respond to and react to the most?

    • Anonymous

      You ask anyone in your target market. It might be people you know in person (create a survey they can fill out), or people on your newsletter list (again, create a survey). But if you really know your market, it should be fairly obvious – what do they keep asking about?

  • Anthony

    Hi Craig,

    You had said “Get a $500 wordpress site going (could be less).” I am familiar with WordPress, have used it for years and like it. That is a very good suggestion.

    Elsewhere you had suggested several Web Sites where we could find competent designers in search of clients.

    Would you be willing to make a suggestion as to a specific Web designer or designers who could assist with the set up of a sales template?

    Thank You for your assistance.


    • Anonymous

      Sorry, I personally don’t have any web designers I can recommend.


  • seo

    With havin so much written content do you ever run into any issues of plagorism or copyright infringement? My website has a lot of exclusive content I’ve either created myself or outsourced but it looks like a lot of it is popping it up all over the internet without my agreement. Do you know any ways to help reduce content from being stolen? I’d truly appreciate it.

    • Anonymous

      Yes, this happens all the time. I don’t worry about it.