Step-by-step guide to making $1000 a month online from scratch

Step-by-step guide to making $1000 a month online from scratch

I’ve been dabbling with blogs and websites since 2004, and I’m not going to lie. Trying to make money online is really difficult, and it took me nearly 15 to really figure it out. I’m a slow learner, ok?

If I can do it, I’m convinced that anybody can do it. The only thing required is stubborn determination. That’s it.

The following is a step-by-step explanation of how I would go about making $1000 a month (online) from scratch based on all the things I’ve over the past 15 years.

There are only 4 things you will need to make $1000 a month online:

  1. A digital product to sell
  2. A website to sell it on
  3. A blog or social media account to promote it with
  4. Relentless determination to keep going when things get difficult (and it will get difficult).

That’s it. Like I said, making a lot of money online from scratch is not rocket science and if I can do it, anyone can.

Let’s take a look at each one of these 4 steps one by one in greater detail and I’ll show you exactly what you need to do to set it all up:

A word of warning though – I’m not claiming that you’re going to be making $1000 a month instantly. This is going to be a lot of hard work, and if you’re not willing to put in that work, this is never going to happen for you. Sorry, but that’s just the honest truth.

However, if you got a massive desire to learn and make a better life for yourself, following the steps one by one will get you there if you put the time and effort into it. I guarantee it. Let’s go!

Step 1: create a digital product to sell

There are two kinds of people in this world: people who are creative, and those who are not. If you’re the type of person who has trouble thinking of really good ideas for digital products to sell online, don’t worry. I’m going to give you a great idea which is been working well for me for many years now (and is showing no signs of letting up):

Business card templates

This is by far and away my best idea for someone looking how to make $1000 a month online from scratch. The beauty is that you don’t even need to be a professional business card designer to do this.

With online design resources such as Fiverr and 99designs, you can hire someone to create templates for you that you can resell as your own. Yes, you will have to spend a little bit of money (no more than $100) to have these templates created, but it’s money well spent – because you will be earning it back in spades.

You’re probably thinking “Gee, that’s great Scott, but how do I know what kinds of templates people will buy?” Well, I have an answer for that as well. According to some recent keyword research that I’ve done, here are some ideas for templates that have high Google search volume with little competition:

digital product keyword ideas
As you can see, these four digital product ideas have high monthly search volume with low competition. FYI, “KD” stands for “Keyword Difficulty” and is ranked from 0-100 (0 is easiest, 100 is most difficult). Simply hire a designer to create digital templates for each, and you’ve instantly got in-demand digital products to sell.

The good thing about making $1000 a month online (from scratch) is that there are literally millions of ways of doing it. If you feel like you’re a talented designer and you want to save a few bucks, go ahead and create the templates yourself.

Or better yet, if you have an idea for a digital product to sell that is all your own (such as an e-book or an online course which teaches people how to do something), go for it.

My business card template idea is simply an example.

Step 2: launch a website to sell your digital product

We’re living in a glorious time of online entrepreneurship. When I first started trying to make money with my websites and blogs back in the mid 2000’s, all we had was blogging platforms such as WordPress and clunky payment systems such as PayPal.

Getting both to work with each other without conflicts was an exercise in futility and I never want to relive those days.

I now sell the majority of my digital products with Shopify. For those who aren’t familiar with Shopify and what it is, be sure to read my post about how I’m currently using Shopify to make $1000 a month selling digital products.

Long story short, you don’t need to know anything at all about building or setting up websites to create a fully functioning e-commerce store to sell your digital products with Shopify.

Even if you’ve never done it before, the set up process is really easy and they will guide you through it step-by-step. You won’t miss anything, and they break it down into a way that’s very simple and easy to understand.

Create your own shopify store

That said, there are a couple things you’re going to need before setting up your Shopify store:

  • A domain name ( I recommend purchasing one at or and then pointing your Shopify store to it. Don’t freak out if that sounds horribly complicated – because it’s not, and the Shopify setup process will guide you through it very easily (and quickly) step-by-step.
  • A bank account to deposit your earnings into. This can be your existing bank account, and again, Shopify will guide you through the process of connecting it to your store in a way that’s quick and very easy to understand.

If you’re just starting out trying to figure out how to make $1000 a month online from scratch, keep things simple and go with Shopify as your e-commerce platform.

It’s by far the simplest and easiest to use method of selling digital products in my opinion, and it’s a service I’m going to be happily using for many years to come.

Step 3: you’re going to need a blog or a social media account to promote your digital products

Don’t worry. I also tend to get the dry heaves whenever someone tells me that I need to promote my work and become a salesman. I’m a content creator, not a salesperson! However, actively selling and promoting your work doesn’t have to feel slimy.

The thing that I have found that works best for me is to blog about my digital products. It works because my digital products are actually things I have a personal interest in.

Therefore, writing a 500-1000 word blog post for every new digital product I create (and including links to it on my Shopify store) is relatively easy for me. As a matter fact, I don’t even consider it to be work. The words just flow, as I am fairly passionate about the work that I do and it comes through in the writing.

Over time, I’ve naturally built up an audience for that blog who actually looks forward to every post that I write. Additionally, I’m getting a lot of natural organic traffic from Google every day, which helps me to introduce my work to people who are searching for exactly the kinds of digital products that I create.

Important tips for creating a blog to promote your $1000 a month digital product business:

  • The blog has to be completely separate from your Shopify store. Don’t worry – using a free WordPress account is good enough in the beginning.
  • You don’t need to be overly active to the point where you’re spending more time writing blog posts then you are creating the digital products that will earn you income. An effective strategy that I use is to write a post only when I create a new digital product, and then primarily focus the tone of the post on how it will be beneficial to the buyer.
  • These blog posts don’t need to be very long either since your goal is to showcase how your digital product is going to make people’s lives easier. If they have to read thousands of words to extract that information, it’s just not gonna happen.

Again, to be fully transparent and honest here, you’re not going to be making $1000 a day online from scratch the day you set up your blog to promote your digital products. It’s going to take a year or two to build it up (at least), so patience is required.

Social media works as well

Good news for those of you who don’t like writing: You can do the same kind of promotion that you would do in a blog post on social media (Tik Tok, Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, etc) without having to come up with a large body of text.

For many people trying to figure out how to make $1000 a month online from scratch, social media is their primary method of promotion and networking. It can be just as effective as blogging – if not more.

Just know that you have to be very active on social media to get any traction at all, which means not only posting many times a day – but also engaging in conversations with people as much as possible.

Remember: being social is the important part of “social media” and if you’re not willing to put yourself out there and start (and join) conversations, the blog option is likely the better for you.

Step 4: relentless determination to make it work

If you’ve made it this far, I congratulate you. The fact that you’re willing to spend the time to read (and learn) is a good sign that you’ve got what it takes to succeed and hit your financial goals.

As a matter of fact, relentless determination is by far the most important element in this 4-step process of learning how to make $1000 a month online from scratch.

Having a digital product with a fancy website to sell it on doesn’t really matter if you don’t have the mental fortitude to stick with it when things get tough. Like, for example, trying to figure out how to get things moving again when you haven’t had any sales in weeks. Been there, done that (a lot).

Making money online is not easy. If it was, everybody would be doing it and there would be no such thing as a 9-to-5 corporate job.

There are times when it’s going to be extremely difficult. Problems can come from anywhere, and as a online business owner myself, I know that problems always pop up when I least expect them. Whether it’s a flaw in one of my products that I missed earlier, or suddenly all of my sales have dried up for no apparent reason, there are always issues that need to be dealt with.

If you don’t have what it takes to be able to deal with these issues and keep the faith that things will only get better, you will fail.

I’ve been knocked to the ground with website problems and bad business partners over the years, but if I didn’t pick myself up each time with the determination of getting back on track and making money from my websites and digital products every month, I wouldn’t be as successful as I am today.

You can do it! Building a thriving online business isn’t difficult if you’ve got the proper mindset.

As you just read, Learning how to make $1000 a month online from scratch isn’t complicated. Three of the four steps I outlined are of a technical variety and are what I consider things that anybody could do relatively simply.

It’s the fourth step which is a doozy – and the one that most people get tripped up on. It took me over 15 years of trying to make money online before I was making over $1000 a month consistently. I achieved that goal through nothing else but sheer determination.

The best part about it is that I feel like I’ve learned enough from my mistakes over the years that I can consistently build $1000-per-month online businesses over and over again until I reach the point where I feel as if I’ve reached my personal financial objectives.

The ability to take control of how much money I earn every month has always been my ultimate goal, and it’s a very good one that you can strive for on your own.

Set up your Shopify store today, throw some digital products on it, promote them any way you gan, be ready to pivot when necessary, and make it happen!

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