Growing An Online Business: From $500 to $3000 months as a Virtual Assistant

I had always thought I was going to be a lawyer. But then I discovered the fascinating world of virtual businesses, and that’s when everything changed.

I accidentally stumbled into virtual assisting in my first year of law school in London and at first, it was a side hustle that I ran while going about getting my degree.

But slowly, that side hustle became a passion and I quickly realised that the career I sought was not one of offices and 9-5s but of options, freedom and alignment.

I ran my business during all three years of law school, learning, growing, investing and upskilling. And then I graduated with my degree and proceeded to go full time with my VA business.

Fast forward to today, my business went from side hustle $500 months to a thriving $5000+ months across my 3 pillars (virtual assisting, web design and coaching) and this post is going to tell you how I did it.

4 Years as a VA – How Did I Discover the VA World

My first legit VA job was with a Forbes featured full time travel blogger. The whole thing was quite accidental and not at all what I had planned.

I had started writing for this very blog in early 2017 with the goal of sharing my experiences with whoever wanted to read them. But I was enthralled by the up and coming online space and wanted to learn everything I could about it.

So I went on a blogging retreat in Bali (with the goal of monetising my blog, I had no idea what a VA was at this point) and that’s where I met Anna Karsten who would invite me onto her team as a VA by the end of the programme.

I worked with her for about a year and that’s where I learnt what it was to work for someone else on the online space. And (thankfully) she was amazing to work for, was very patient with me and taught me a lot (shoutout to you Anna if you ever read this!)

That experience taught me two things:

1. making money from your laptop while sitting on your couch is a real job!

2. BUT, it’s not as easy as just sitting on your couch with your laptop and expecting to make money.

After that, the past four years went something like this: over $15k invested in mentors and coaches, new clients, no clients, failed strategies, successful strategies, mental highs and lows, plenty of money in my bank account and no money in my bank account.

A lot of people enter the online space with the goal of making fast money. To be fair, the online space is often advertised as being a space for fast money.

Here’s what I’m not going to tell you. I’m not going to tell you this ride is easy peasy breezy street and that you’re going to go from three to four to five figures in a snap.

It took my 3 years of law school plus 6 months of doing it full time for my business to grow to the point where I was thriving and hitting 5 figure income projections. So I was certainly not an overnight success.

Starting a VA business is the tip of the iceberg

After I landed my fourth VA retainer client, I began to realise that I was really becoming my own boss and I had to start making some more moves.

In order to expand myself, I niched into web design and copywriting. That’s where I was able to expand my income even more with niche specialist services. I also began writing for publications and getting featured in other blogs.

And then I dove into adding mentoring and training programmes to my product suite.

Being a VA is just the tip of what you can do on the online space and it’s the understanding that you can and should seek to expand and offer more and niche more, that is going to allow you to hit those big numbers down the line.

So then I reached the point where I had too much on my plate to do alone, and that’s where I, the virtual assistant, hired a virtual assistant and seriously stepped into the role of CEO of my own life.

A piece of advice for new VAs from your VA big sister

While all of us on the online space are working towards the same things, financial freedom, freedom to manage our own time, to work with our ideal clients, my definition of ‘thriving’ and ‘success’ is going to be different to yours and ours are going to be different to everyone elses.

As much as it can be tempting to look at what others are doing on this space and imitate it in order to hit those big numbers, the key to your success will be understanding what YOU can bring to the table that is different to everyone else.

Yes, the numbers are great and they’re what allow us to say that this is our full time jobs, but the numbers mean nothing if you don’t love what you do and who you work with.

When building your business model, seek to learn various proven strategies AND incorporate your unique skills, values and abilities to find the clients who you are going to love working with and who will pay you your worth.

And if you want to learn the business model it took me four years to perfect, in 4 months, check out The Virtual Assistant Business Builders’ Academy!

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