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What's your online business as a nomad?

 

by @sarah1 9yr  | 28 comments

Iโ€™ve read so many articles, blogs and posts about โ€œhow to set up an online businessโ€, โ€œonline business tipsโ€ or โ€œbenefits of having an online business while you travelโ€ etcโ€ฆ

What I really want to know is what online businesses people actually have! As a noob nomad, enlighten me as to what you all actually do at your laptops while you travel! And why does this specific business fit into your lifestyle?

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@andrewc 9yr

Thanks everyone for sharing your points. @Jakub I am curious as well. Please do share when you have a moment.

Cheers,

Andrew

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Hi @Jakub, how do you do to invest in websites?, where do you find them? would like to invest some in them, but I am trying to understand how it worksโ€ฆ Thanks!

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@jakub 9yr

I worked my ass off in Australia at 2 jobs (3 at one point) to get some $ which I invested into websites.

Now the websites earn enough to live in Asia, but considering Iโ€™ve been working on average less than 20 minutes a day in the past 6 months I canโ€™t complain.

Now in Bangkok for 3 months, planning to do some heavy work, but so far Iโ€™ve been just heavily drinking and enjoying the female part of the population:)

If you choose websites wisely, the ongoing work becomes โ€œoptionalโ€

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@sarah1 9yr

Thats amazing Jakub! What is your website about? Can you send through the link?

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@vitavalka 9yr

Iโ€™m using Bondora in small scale (โ‚ฌ2000) and checking how it works. But over coming years my plan is to put there more as itโ€™s roughly making 11-13% return per year and thatโ€™s so far the most stable return while in double digits. Be aware that the money are locked there usually for the lenght of the lending period. I know two people on Lending Club and the both make 10-12% return.

But still, all P2P is new, so governments might start to regulate it over time, so you should thing long term as well, and that for me is stock investing. Where I recommend this book: https://www.magicformulainvesting.com/

Resources:
http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/the-lending-club-experiment/ (US citizens and companies can invest)
https://www.bondora.com/ (for Europeans)
http://www.forbes.com/sites/groupthink/2013/04/23/crowdfunding-in-europe-the-top-10-peer-to-peer-lenders/

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Iโ€™m a lawyer who works with US/California clients virtually. Iโ€™ve tailored the services I provide to just those that can be done from anywhere in the world (contracts, IP registration, company setup, etc.).

Iโ€™m setting up another business where game developers can pay a small fee to get contract creation automated for them. Hopefully that site is ready to roll within a month or so! That should provide a decent income, I hope, that takes some pressure off the โ€œhustleโ€ of finding clients. In the meantime, I do freelance blogging through Textbroker.

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When I first left the US, my business was a copywriting and content strategy business called Content for Do-Gooders. I developed content strategies, social media strategies, and content (mostly web, though sometimes print) for companies mostly in the non-profit, education, sustainability, and travel sectors.

After about 1.5 years on the road (and three years of the business), though, I decided to take a leap and pursue my childhood dream of travel writing, so now I make my living as a full-time creative/travel writer. The focus of my time is my new series of unconventional travel guidebooks (100 Locals guides), but I also write for magazines, online publications, and my own travel blog.

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@sarah1 9yr

That sounds like the dream, Gigigriffis! Do you make money through your travel blog? Through AdSense or something? Or do you make most of your income through your guidebooks and other publications? Thanks!

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About 40 - 50% of my income comes from guidebooks at the moment (hoping for those to cover my full expenses by the end of the year) and the other half comes mostly from magazine and online publication writing. I make a very small amount from donations on the blog (I donโ€™t do advertising on the blog, but instead opened up to donations just this winter) and affiliate sales.

If you want, I can point you toward a few detailed pieces I wrote about my various income streams.

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@sarah1 9yr

That would be great Gigigriffis! Thanks!

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@Sarah1

Hereโ€™s an early one: How I Make Money While Traveling the World Full-Time: http://gigigriffis.com/how-i-afford-to-travel-the-world-full-time-income/

And hereโ€™s my most recent: The Not-As-Sexy-As-You-Think Story of How I Make My Living As a Writer: http://gigigriffis.com/on-writing-entrepreneurship-risk-taking-breaking-even/

My anti-advertising announcement: http://gigigriffis.com/the-ramble-is-now-taking-donations-heres-why/

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@sarah1 9yr

Thanks Gigi! I love your website design. Really awesome info too!

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Thanks! :slight_smile: Cheers. - Gigi

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I own several productised service type of businesses (I worked with companies like google , pepsi , walmart, GE , ) , I used to outsource the actual product but in the last 2 years I set up a team to take care of the sales and actual product so I have more control and profit margins on what I sale.

It fits into my lifestyle because I am my own boss and I have the freedom of time, income and mobility.

@Sarah1 I would recommend you to start with a productised service to earn good money and be able to build wealth while on the road.

Think of services that start at $1000-$5000 per transaction (think services that companies would need , not individuals), this way you donโ€™t need many clients per month to make a good living and create wealth and the margins are always (with outsourcing or creating your own team with VAs) 60-70% net profit after adwords , employees, online tools (Basecamp, asana,etc ,etc)

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@replay 9yr

I got hired by a US company for a job, but I didnโ€™t have any US working permit, so instead of bothering with applying for one it just made sense for them to hire me remotely

Edit: And before that I got hired by a Kenyan company, where it would require unspeakable amounts of hassle, waiting, bureaucracy and bribes to get me working in the country legally. So same thing, remote just makes more sense.

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@abarron87 9yr

How do you get paid when you work remotely? Do you only need a permit/visa to work from the country where you do the work and not the country of the company?

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@replay 9yr

I get paid by wire transfer to two accounts, one in HK and one in Switzerland, plus some BTC but not much of that.

I think strictly speaking a permit would be required every time you work in a country which is not your home country (except Europeans in EU because Schengen), and thatโ€™s independent of your contract with a company or if you have your own company or how you arrange that. The problem is that itโ€™s often hard to get such a permit if you donโ€™t work for a local company, so the best way to be completely legal would be to create your own company, although a lot of hassle and probably not worth it if you go somewhere only for a few months :slight_smile:
At the same time Iโ€™m sure there are many tourists going to other countries on a visa exemption and still reply to work emails on their phone. Theoretically this would probably be illegal too in many countries, but no country I know of enforces that. So itโ€™s a blurry line to when itโ€™s too much:) Anyway Iโ€™m lucky to do 100% of my work at the laptop so I might as well be posting pics on Facebook, hard to proof.

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@abarron87 9yr

Thanks! And where do you file taxes?

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@replay 9yr

Thatโ€™s a good question with a complicated answer, short version is โ€œnotโ€. Weโ€™ve discussed that here: How to best set up your taxes, residency and and business as a digital nomad?

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@abarron87 9yr

Thanks for the replies. Iโ€™m going to be working a remote contract next month. I assume I still invoice them the same way and itโ€™s up to me to figure out the tax rules for me.

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@sarah1 9yr

This is very cool! Do you have normal work hours when working remotely? Or the luxury of working where you want, when you want?

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@replay 9yr

I donโ€™t have work hours, but I have a team Iโ€™m working with and most of them have work hours, so usually Iโ€™m just trying to get some over lap with them each day. Sometimes in Asia that can be weird because I often work at night, in Europe, Africa and the Americas itโ€™s no big problem.

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@lucha54 9yr

can you write an ebook on all that and i will be in line to buy itโ€ฆ

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@vitavalka 9yr

Actually thinking about it :slight_smile: And I should think less and act more :wink: For now, check 4-hour Work Week by Tim Ferris as a good start.

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@vitavalka 9yr

Iโ€™m basically doing these themes:

1. Daily job: Webdesign, icons, illustrations and product management as my main theme to generate income.

2. Sustainable income: And then I experiment with sustainable โ€œmassive passive incomeโ€ while trying Stock Investing, Peer To Peer lending, Vector Illustrations on stock agencies and renting real estate (in small scale now).

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@abarron87 9yr

Could you be more specific about the product management part? Any weโ€™d know?

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@vitavalka 9yr

The biggest site with stock video (and other digital media) site www.pond5.com

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@skatkov 9yr

Any chance you can share your experience on p2p lending? Iโ€™ve been researching some passive income to invest my money and this sounds interesting (especially if it works for you)

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Read and participate in 14,117 discussions on Nomad List

Suggested topics

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Holร  ! What's the internet / wifi situation in Sayulita ?


in Puerto Escondido , Mexico by @ambroisedebret 3yr 3 years ago  | 0 comments

After being told it's unworkable in Puerto Escondido, looking for alternatives :)

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What's the best thing to do with your phone/ your phone number when travelling?


in Poland by @davda1546 4yr 4 years ago  | 6 comments

Hey, hope everyone is well!

We're leaving in a month to go travelling. Our first destination is still to be confirmed, but will likely be Poland or Slovakia. We will be moving around every month or two to different destinations.

The question we have is: what do people do with phones/ phone numbers when hopping from country to country? Ideally we'd just like one number for the whole trip (even better, the number we already have) wherever we go, rather than getting new SIMs with different numbers.

This is just so it's easier to keep in contact with family/ clients/ etc.

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What is the best online insurance for digital nomads ?


by @berberos 4yr 4 years ago  | 4 comments

Hi guys ! hope you are doing well.

I would love to get your feedback regarding the best insurance for digital nomads. i'm traveling around Asia since 1 year and for next 4 or 5 years. Would love to buy an insurance to cover especially :

- health

- laptop, phone ...

- Flights

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What are the best blogs by individuals who have started businesses in Southeast Asia?


in Thailand by @haiducii 4yr 4 years ago  | 0 comments

Hey everyone,

Looking for blogs by individuals who document their progress/business in South East Asia - ideally Vietnam, Cambodia or Laos - but also Thailand/Myanmar too.

Thank you,

Haiducci

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What's the best SIM card you can get for traveling to Spain?


in Spain by @gabygarreau 4yr 4 years ago  | 3 comments

Hi! I want to relocate to Spain and I was wondering if someone can recommend a SIM card with a good data package.

Thanks

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Any Ph.D students dissertating while a digital nomad?


by @larsheather 4yr 4 years ago  | 5 comments

Anyone know of any groups or resources for Ph.D. students working on dissertation while living as a digital nomad? I know there are several virtual writing groups around, but wondered if there were any specifically for digital nomads, particularly those who are dissertating.

Thanks!

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How do you invest internationally as a nomad?


by @mateuszwieloch 4yr 4 years ago  | 17 comments

I have finally saved enough money to start investing. What company gives good, diversified access to stock, ETFs and mutual funds? Does it make sense to use company like Vanguard or Fidelity for that? Iโ€™m a EU/Poland citizen, how would I transfer my money back and forth without incurring significant fees?

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I dream of being a digital nomad? How do I do it?


by @programmingmark 4yr 4 years ago  | 2 comments

Hello digital nomad!

I dream of being an independent digital nomad. But it feels very elusive & unattainable with my success rate. In full disclosure, whilst I have dreamed about making money online since high school; I have not earned a single cent making money online. $0, nada, zilch!! On the contrary, I have spent a lot of time & money on books, podcasts. Even though I have spent a lot of time reading/listening to others, I do not have anything to show for it!

I have made attempts in the past to start an online business, but these fizzle out quite quickly when I do not see traction especially when the goal I have set myself is too high.

Instead of reaching for the ultimate nomadic lifestyle goal, I want to start much smaller. Really small! I am simply looking to make $50 profit per month from a new online business. Thatโ€™s it.

I need some advice from you please!

  • Is $50 profit too low? How long did it take you to earn $50 profit per month?

  • What is a good way of achieving this goal?

Thanks
Mark
aka the $0 online business entrepreneur

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Central America - Where and what's next?


by @as11 5yr 5 years ago  | 11 comments

Currently in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico and heading to Santa Teressa, Costa Rica next week.
Then Aruba in the Caribbean Sea for Christmas and New Year.

However I feel I want to head back to Central America to bring living costs down, rather than staying in the Caribbean Sea among the expensive Islands.

This means I have around 2 - 2,5 month of unplanned travelling.
Any digital nomads who have ideas about where to head in that timeframe?

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What's the first step now that I can work remotely?


by @mariaplslourdes 5yr 5 years ago  | 4 comments

Hi everyone and nice to e-meet you!
finally, after so long I found a job that allows me to work remotely.
But now? Do you have any practical advice that I can use to approach this new world?
In particular, I have to put my tax situation in order, do you know a good tax advisor from whom I can ask for advice? (Iโ€™m Italian but I live in Franceโ€ฆI donโ€™t know how long it will beโ€ฆ) )
Beyond that, any advice is welcome.
Thank you!
Maria

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Do you "out" yourself as a digital nomad?


by @larsheather 5yr 5 years ago  | 2 comments

When you meet new people or reconnect with old friends, do you โ€œoutโ€ yourself as a digital nomad? The simple question โ€œwhere do you live?โ€ makes us uncertain now. We wonder if some places may be less welcoming to digital nomads, or if โ€œdigital nomadโ€ has a negative connotation in some places. If you are forthcoming from the start, does your status as a digital nomad make it hard to form friendships?

We would love to hear how other people navigate thisโ€ฆ how to balance being authentic in relationships vs. withholding the context (and allowing people to assume youโ€™re on vacation, for example).

Thanks!

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What's the best warm destinations in Europe in the winter?

 

by @jammingsloth 5yr 5 years ago  | 33 comments

Planning ahead for the winter. Iโ€™ll be in Spain in the Fall and want to go someplace warm for the winter in or near Europe, but not Schengen. Was first thinking Cape Town, but the internet is slow and it is very far. Was also thinking:
Israel - but airbnb listings are very pricey.
Morocco?
Turkey - maybe a little chilly.

Any other suggestions?

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What's the best bank account for a global nomad?

 

by @barrybjjoubert 5yr 5 years ago  | 25 comments

Dear all
As a wanna be nomad figuring out a way to get free of the rat race, I was wondering what is the best bank account to have while travelling the globe? I need an account where is easy for me to receive payments from all over the world and it also need to be a bank that I can find almost anywhere in the world. I want to avoid carry cash on me if itโ€™s possible.

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Recommendations for UK/Scotland accountants that understand remote businesses?


by @eduardoyi 5yr 5 years ago  | 1 comment

Looking for recommendations for reliable accountants who understand how remote businesses with off-shore freelancers and clients work. Thanks!

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Ko Lanta or Ko Phangan - which island is better for a digital nomad?


in Ko Lanta , Thailand by @melinda 5yr 5 years ago  | 6 comments

Iโ€™m currently in Penang, Malaysia and I was thinking to head to Thailand next. What are the best islands in Thailand to get some work done? I was considering either Ko Lanta or Ko Phangan because those both islands have coworking spaces. I might need to take some client calls, also video. Is the wifi good enough? Are there any other differences between the islands?

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What's the best CRM/system for managing remote work opportunities?


by @panoramica 5yr 5 years ago  | 3 comments

Iโ€™m currently doing some work through Upwork, but itโ€™s sporadic and Iโ€™m keen to get more active on other platforms like Freelancer, Toptal, CodeMentor, Fiverr etc

Currently Iโ€™m managing leads in a Google sheet. Basically itโ€™s just a list of projects I pitched for, how much I bid, what I did differently from the last pitch/bid, how much time went by before I got a offered a job etc.

Iโ€™m not actively following up anybody, and Iโ€™ve in fact โ€˜lostโ€™ a few jobs where the client was keen, but then disappeared without a trace. I guess I need to keep in touch with those people to ensure that they remain focussed on our agreementโ€ฆ

Iโ€™m also keen to take on more small projects concurrently, without dropping the ball on any of them.

Iโ€™ve done a quick Google and turned up a few names including Salesforce, Zoho, Nutshell, HighRise, Base, Nimble, etc etc. But testing out all these products isnโ€™t all that appealing, so I thought Iโ€™d ask here first :slight_smile:

Ideally Iโ€™d like something that integrates with remote job boards in some way.

Feature list

Iโ€™ve done some research and currently have this feature list:

Proposal building & tracking

  • Compile proposals from snippets - technologies, past projects
  • Quickly pull together a realistic/client friendly quote
  • Test and measure different approaches
  • Beat proposal deadlines while maintaining quality
  • Fine tune pitch material to bid more quickly and win more work โ€“ templates
  • Store history about past projects involving common needs and technological solutions
  • Learn which proposal content is working, and which is not

Lead generation and client management (CRM)

  • store info about regular clients
  • track remote projects which Iโ€™ve pitched for
  • Remote Job Board integration
  • search multiple job sites for keywords
  • track projects across multiple remote platforms โ€“ API integration / message alert/response

Project Management & Scheduling

  • Break projects down into granular tasks
  • Gantt chart to visualise overlapping jobs
  • Calendar to schedule daily work, deadlines, R&D
  • follow up, plan and schedule future work now, rather than once current work has dried up
  • offline reminders via a dedicated Android app
  • time tracking โ€“ to get an idea of true cost, to flag issues to client
  • BitBucket integration

Billing

  • Integration with Xero
  • tracking status of payments, actual payment date vs expected payment clearance date

Marketing

  • Get repeat business
  • Build Word Of Mouth
  • Proactive lead generation
  • Publish proposals as case studies

Cheers,
Dan

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What's the best place to incorporate an online business?

 

by @octave 5yr 5 years ago  | 63 comments

I have an commerce website. We get around 1000 orders per month and this is going to get quite a bit bigger in next few years.

I am British. I live in Thailand.
Im not allowed to majority own a Thai business and small foreign entrepreneurs are not really welcome. So i need an offshore company.

I need PayPal and an ecommerce internet merchant account. Also looking at alternatives like worldpay. 2checkout etc

Does PayPal need me to be a resident to the country i register my account to? Are there complications being a non resident to get other payment solutions?

Apparently in Hong Kong you need 2 years trading history to get an Internet Mechant Account and they generally turn their noses up at those with less than $1m(us) a year turn over. Singapore seems a bit easier.

I really want to avoid paperwork and book keeping. I hate it.

So i was looking at Seychelles, Panama, BVI, Belize.

Does anyone have experience with payment providers in these countries?

Most nomads i see donโ€™t really have a high volume of small monthly transactions which i do. Im going around in circles and donโ€™t know where to start.

Ill also need a bank account for business and a personal bank account to pay my salary into

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Where should I register my company as a digital nomad? Singapore, Hong Kong?


in Singapore by @raphadk 5yr 5 years ago  | 14 comments

Hey guys, hereโ€™s a question Iโ€™ve been asking nomads I meet everywhere, but still havenโ€™t found good information. My startups mostly focus on american and european markets but I donโ€™t have a registered company, nor I live permanently on any of these countries.

I get the cash payments online in paypal (or adsense) and transfer it to Thailand (or Malaysia, or Bali, or Brazil, or wherever Iโ€™m at). The thing isโ€ฆ for low volume living expenses it seems fine, but as I scale the business, Iโ€™m starting to think more and more about fiscal law.

A fellow nomad told me to transfer it to Singapore, Hong Kong or The Virgin Islands, and then use an international credit card anywhere. I donโ€™t know if itโ€™s the best way to optimize thisโ€ฆ any ideas?

Also, could there be any problems in selling to these countries without a registered local company?

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What's the best mobile-data option in New Zealand for nomads?


in New Zealand by @goldsaj 6yr 6 years ago  | 2 comments

Hi All! Iโ€™ve heard Spark and Vodafone are the best. I plan to move around, so I care mostly about having good coverage, and all Iโ€™ll need is around 1 GB of data or so.

Any suggestions?

Thanks!

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Foreigner owned Coworking business in Malaysia


in Malaysia by @newyam 6yr 6 years ago  | 0 comments

Heyo folks! The idea to open up an own coworking space in Malaysia has been on my mind for quite a while and I would like to reach out on foreigners being a business owner/co working space owner in Malaysia, there are a lot of questions that would follow up but most importantly is to reach out to someone with experience.

Ideally would be someone who runs a coworking space in Malaysia, second best would be to just come in touch with a foreign business owner in Malaysia.
Cheers
Yamin

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