The 21st century answer to a global recession may well turn out to be the boom of the making money online industry. The topic is hot at the moment but unfortunately just because you have lost your job and need to make money online doesn't necessarily mean you have the skills to make money online. Its entirely possible to be highly educated and have had a successful career working for other people but that doesn't mean that you have any entrepreneurial skills.

Entrepreneurial Skills Are Essential

Although it may sound idyllic to be able to work from home in your PJ's after only a few months many who try it are literally climbing the walls, battling weight gain, depression and cash flow problems.

The often quoted statistic is that most small business fail within two years. The scary statistic for on-line businesses is that its probably more than 95% of people who attempt to make money online fail. One of the main reasons they fail is that they fail to understand that they have stopped being an employee and become an entrepreneur. Without this realisation your won't know that you need to learn quite a few new skills - and I am not talking about the ability to write CSS and HTML code.

Gap Analysis of Your Entrepreneurial Skills

gap analysis

The first thing you need to know is that you lack something - then you can go about learning it, or hiring the knowledge if you don't want to do it yourself. Most blogs that you read about making money online will talk about software and frequency of blog updates and possibly even keyword selection. But very few will take the step back and start from the beginning: you are starting a business - do you have the entrepreneurial skills to do that?

You may not have all the skills I list below now - but if you are not prepared to acquire them you are probably wasting your time online. The personality skills are probably the hardest to change - though not impossible - the technical skills are the easiest to acquire (or buy in).

What Personality Do You Need?

The ThinkerYou need to believe in your business model: you have to believe that a) it will make money and b) that you have the ability for it to make you money.

You need to be realistic. The Internet is a Wild West, you won't get far without being offered an e-book that will offer to make you rich while you sleep, teach you how to "cheat Google" and sell you an expensive membership site to learn the "secrets of the Internet". There are no secrets, there are no short-cuts. It is possible to make money online but it is neither easy nor quick - anyone who promises you otherwise - you need to look hard at their motivation and the chance of getting your money back.

You need to be able to take the path less travelled. Most people aren't entrepreneurs - most people don't understand the Internet at a deeper level than eBay and email. Your friends and family won't believe that you can make money online - you need to.

What Marketing Skills Do You Need?

You need to have the ability to find "buying keywords" which are simply the phrases that buyers will search on. A visitor looking for "cheap hotels within 5km of Convent Garden" is more likely to be "buying" than one who searches for "London attractions". Learning to use keyword tools and understand the data they provide you will go along way but those who have a feel for sales will find this easier to develop than others.

The most important skills you need are knowing how to close a sale. Anyone who comes from a direct sales background will have a big advantage of someone who does not. Making money on the Internet is about making sales. It doesn't have to be the abuse of power that you see in the "make money" over-hyped products, but you still do have to be the broker between the advertiser and the customer and get your cut in between.

What Mindset Do You Need?

You need to stop procrastinating. Many of us have spent many years being told what to do by your boss, or worse, have learned that as a good employee it is best not to be too quick or efficient. None of these circumstances are going to work for you as an entrepreneur. You need to take control of you time and make every moment count. Although on the face of it you have unlimited time because no one is telling you when to go to work or have a coffee break. In reality time is the only thing we can't get back, its your most valuable resource.

You need to not be desperate. For many people that means that you need an alternative income stream or savings which will keep you afloat financially for at least 12 months. You may be able to replace an income in less time, or it may take longer but 12 months is probably realistic.

What Technical Skills Do You Need?

The technical skills are last - because they are the least important, by a long way, and the easiest to learn.

You need to write copy - or have enough money to buy a writer to do it for you. Writing is time consuming even when you are practiced at it. Its a skill worth getting competence at and then learning to outsource otherwise it will probably slow your business growth done.

You need to be able to setup a blog or a website. There is little difference between the two and using WordPress is generally the easiest way to do it. Design skills can be useful to, but don't spend a huge amount of time learning how to code CSS or HTML. The basics you need to be confident of is setting up domains and redirecting name servers, using a ftp program and configuring and setting up a WordPress blog.

If I have put you off trying to make money money online - you weren't serious anyways. However if you think you do have the entrepreneurial skills to make it online the very best of luck and do leave a comment below if you have any thoughts - what skills do you lack and how have you gone about acquiring them?