Welcome to Step 4: Profit Forums BUSINESS MODELS & INCOME STREAMS Client Services Local Client Services Business Model

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    web design local client

    Perhaps the most profitable online business model of them all, this income stream is based on finding business owners who are willing to pay you for your expertise in making money online. These business owners have money to spend, yet often lack the knowledge or the time to build a website, manage their social media presence, or write content.

    You earn money by making them money, using your digital marketing knowledge as the foundation.

    What kind of services can you offer? A few of the more common ones are:

    • Website design
    • SEO
    • Social media management
    • Google Business Profile management/optimization
    • Content writing
    • Lead generation
    • Hosting

    You do not need to be an expert in all of these – few individuals are, since digital marketing is complicated and ever-changing – so odds are you will focus on one or two of these services. And perhaps partner with others who have the skills that you do not.

    (Here’s How to Make Money with Local Clients If You Don’t Know Digital Marketing.)

    Why Is the Local Client Model So Profitable?

    It’s because successful companies with marketing budgets have the willingness and the funds to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars, every month, to get these done.

    They understand that their online presence is vitally important to their continued business success, and they’re not marketers. (“They don’t teach marketing in optometry school,” as a client once noted.)

    This business model isn’t the easiest, though. You need to gain knowledge and experience in your chosen service, enough to prove to another person that you know what you’re doing.

    You can learn these skills as you experiment with affiliate or ad click models. Doing these first, for yourself, means that you can allow for your learning curve.

    As you become better at site building, keyword research, writing content and driving traffic, you’ll be making money while acquiring the skills you want to offer to other people.

    Finding Local Clients

    Assuming you have skills that business owners want, you need to find those people and persuade them to hire you. This isn’t easy and does not usually happen quickly.

    Begin with an assessment of the time you have, the tools you have, and the type of work you like to do. Look at other companies who offer it. It’s often smartest to start in your home town, since you already know people who own businesses and some prefer to work with a local service provider.

    If you want people to hire you, you must also figure out:

    • How to market yourself

      What exactly do you know, and what makes your expertise different or better than your competitors?

      Are you going to specialize by location or by industry – say, doing lead generation for roofing companies?
    • How to talk to business owners

      Many business owners don’t speak “geek” – they don’t know the difference between a domain name and a hosting company, or what a backlink is.

      You need to ask lots of questions about what they do, who their ideal clients are, and what marketing methods they’re already using.

      Ask what works and what has not, and how they know. Find out what pain points are prompting their conversation with you.

      Couch your recommendations in terms of benefits, how you can solve their problems. (“Mr. Smith, thank you for your time. Based on what you’ve told me, I’m confident that we can get you more site traffic within 3 months.”

      If you’re not comfortable talking to people, find a salesperson or partner who is.
    • How to prove that you can do the work

      You will need to have some evidence of success in delivering your chosen service. It may be that you can show proof of sales or traffic growth for your own online store.

      It may be some sort of certification.

      It may be an ebook you’ve written, a course you’re selling, or an extensive series of articles.

      You may need to start with smaller jobs for other people, so that you have work to show potential clients. You might do a website for a local non-profit. You might barter. You might create 10 social media posts for free.
    • How to manage the hassles of managing expectations and collecting payment

      You’ll have to talk about money. (Gulp.) And it can be tough to figure out how to price things. (Ask for twice as much as you’re inclined to ask; most newbies undervalue their services!)

      You’ll need to be clear about what you offer and what expectations are, usually in the form of contract or agreement that is signed by both parties. Put deadlines on it. Put prices on last-minute “oh I decided I’d rather have another layout” changes.

      And be willing to fire a client if they become too hard to work with; it’ll happen.

    • How to collaborate/supervise/delegate (perhaps)

      Digital marketing doesn’t happen in a vacuum; most of what we do to promote businesses online is not an isolated service.

      For example, social media can enhance SEO because it gets more people to visit and engage with your site’s content. “Social signals” are related to how websites rank in Google.

      Backlinks are also related to search engine rank.

      If you just build websites and do not offer social media management or SEO, it could pay off to find competent experts to refer to. You can give direct referrals (often for a commission) or simply add them to your team for that project and pay them from the project total.

      Which bring us to supervising and delegating. If it comes to the point that you want to offer a service and cannot do it yourself, you may need to hire freelancers or even bring on employees. Do NOT bring someone in for a huge important project without giving them smaller, less important tasks to do for you, first.

      You will also need to be able to clearly explain what tasks you want that employee to do, and what criteria you will use to judge performance.


    The local client business model gives you an excellent way to make a lot of money – even build an agency, if you want! – because you are helping people who have the money to pay you well.

    Need to learn a bit more, before you start offering services? Plenty of help in our Training forums, and feel free to ask questions!

    Case Studies Expert | Google News Expert | Domain Expert | I Make Websites Work Harder

    Simple 1 Page Case Studies

    • This topic was modified 1 year, 3 months ago by Diana.
    • This topic was modified 1 year, 3 months ago by Diana.
    • This topic was modified 1 year, 3 months ago by Diana.
    • This topic was modified 1 year, 3 months ago by Diana.
    • This topic was modified 1 year, 3 months ago by Diana.
    • This topic was modified 1 year, 2 months ago by Diana.
    • This topic was modified 1 year, 2 months ago by Diana.

    finding a client is a real pain. I have skills but i do not have clients.


    Hi, yes finding clients is hard for a lot of people. I gave you some ideas in this article – you have to be able to prove you can do what you offer, and you have to be able to find people who need it. I’ve found Facebook to be a good source – get to know people in your niche, find groups where prospective clients hang out.

    You can’t be spammy or real promotional, but be helpful and make sure your personal FB profile says what you do.

    Also connect with other people on FB who might need what you do. I’ve worked with multiple SEO companies, so if I have quite a few mutual friends with someone who does SEO, I invite them to become my Friend. Often they accept and I’ve gotten work that way – they see what I do and contact me.

    If you want to work with people who live near you, you DO have to get good at talking to people. Attend networking events and ask questions.

    We’ll probably post a lot about this as the Forum grows, I hope this was helpful!


    Case Studies Expert | Google News Expert | Domain Expert | I Make Websites Work Harder

    Simple 1 Page Case Studies

    • This reply was modified 11 months ago by Diana.
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