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So What’s A Legitimate Home Based Business?

Scam pinned on wall

Yeesh — Can someone make a legitimate home business out of all those scams?

Damn it.  Scams abound.  Sometimes it seems the only way to secure a legitimate home based business is to create it yourself, and even then there are massive pitfalls.

It is a wicked world out there.  And that’s the truth.

I hate to admit it, but I still get pulled into scams from time to time.  So many promises.  So many guarantees.  So little return.  It’s enough to make a grown woman cry.

The Golden Rules For Identifying Legitimate Home Based Business Ideas

I have two Golden Rules.  If you’ve ever been caught in a scam, or if you even think you might have – maybe – at some point been really tempted, cut these out and post them on the top of your monitor.

(1) Rule No. 1 for a legitimate home business idea.  There is nearly always one way tell if a “deal” is legit or not:

If it’s too good to be true,
it ISN’T

That’s it.  That rule will eliminate well over 90% of the scams that show up in your mailbox.

A major sub-set of this is the “guru” who is sharing his astounding method of earning millions, AND you can have it RIGHT NOW for only $XXX.  Look at this realistically.  If this guru had really earned millions using this technique, or any other, why would s/he still be hawking it on the internet?  Good grief, if I had that kind of money, I’d be writing poetry, or traveling.  I don’t think I’d be devoting a whole lot of time to a website.

(2)  The second major rule is just as effective:

Follow the Money

Who makes money off of your participation?  And how much do they make?  Somebody, somewhere is going to make money off you.  And often this is very legitimate.  When you buy a loaf of bread, you expect that the baker will earn a living.

Often on the web world, it is not legitimate.  Gurus hide the fact that they are making money off recommendations, an action that certainly colors the kind of recommendation they give.  [Note:  If I list a site or service that pays me from what I do on this site, I let you know.  The one exception is Amazon products, since most everyone knows Amazon.]  And it is not always easy to determine who is making money off your purchase.  Few internet marketers recommend items just because they are nice people; most are making money.

So assume that the site recommending the product or service is going to make money, and make your decisions accordingly.

There are so many scams out there that it is hard to list them all.  By “scam” I refer to a number of less than honorable marketing techniques, such as:

Quick Money!  How to make lots of money, real fast.   Retire in a year!  If you see a picture of a couple by a pool, or in front of a fancy house, run.

No Work!  Baloney.  There is no way to reach success without work.  If that couple is on the beach, run.

No Computer Skills Needed!  Good grief, they are advertising on the internet themselves, and they say that you won’t need any computer skills?  Sounds fishy to me.

Free!  Well, it is likely a free trial.  After the trial period is over, you will have to pay to keep it.  And removing it entirely from your website will be difficult, if not impossible.  I do look for freebies from companies that I know.  Often it is a tool to capture your email to create a mailing list.  I do this too.  I ask for your email address when I send you the “50+ Great Business for Great Women” series.  Mailing lists are sometimes legitimate online marketing tools.  [Giving out your email address is a whole discussion in itself, so we will save other issues for another day.]

 Legitimate Home Business Ideas Are There!

Rest assured that the home business ideas that I suggest via this site are truly all legit.  All require work.  All require time and dedication.  There are no “gimmies” in the world.

  • Some cost more to start; some cost less.
  • Some require more time; some require less.
  • Some require lots of computer knowledge; some require virtually none.
  • Some require a special skill set; some don’t.

The object is to find those businesses that most closely align with your ability to invest time and money, and find those that fit your interest profile.  But never ever will I promise to give you the world for nothing.  It just doesn’t happen in the real world, online or off.

I indeed wish you success and happiness, no matter what home business you choose to pursue.  And I do invite your comments and suggestions below.  With luck, we can all find legitimate home businesses to talk about for many years to come!

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  • Home business scams are rampant not only on the internet but even circulated through flyers distributed with newspapers. My personal rule for anything is that if something sounds too good to be true, it probably isn’t real.

    Excellent tips, MaryAnn. I’m going to share them forward.

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