How I Went From Stacking Supermarket Shelves to Making Six Figures Per Year Online

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Do you have a dream of working from anywhere, anytime—not being a slave to the 9 to 5 in a job you hate?

I did, and that’s why in 2004 I made a commitment to do everything it took to quit my job and make a full-time living online.

When I started, I had no idea what I was in for.

The whole “make money online” concept began in my early 20’s while I was studying I.T. at TAFE (community college for American folks) and stacking shelves in a supermarket.

Tired of My Job

I was tired of coming into work doing the same thing over and over again. There was nothing to work up towards. 

I wanted control over how I lived my life. I wanted freedom to work where, when and how I wanted—and not have an income ceiling that left me waiting to be promoted if I ever wanted an increase.

The Search Began

I began to look into how I could make money online. I literally typed in “make money online” and that’s when the search began.

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The search came back with loads of information even though it was only 2004. From there I tried everything from affiliate marketing and creating apps to buying and selling domain names.

One day, I was introduced to a health and wellness network marketing business. Which, by the way, only lasted 6 months—it didn’t feel good selling $50 green tea to friends and family!

But don’t get me wrong, it was a significant part of my entrepreneurial journey. My mentor in the networking marketing business told me to read two specific books: Think and Grow Rich, By Napoleon Hill and Rich Dad, Poor Dad, by Robert Kiyosaki. These books completely changed my perspective on life and business.

No Support When I Started

I didn’t have any support when I started my journey. Not from family or friends. 

My mom would always tell me to get a real job—work for a big company, wear a suit and go into an office every day.

She never supported the idea of me starting a business, but I don't blame her since business can be risky and considering that she worked hard all her life until she retired at 65, working two jobs, doing labor work to support me and my sister.

However, none of that stopped me. If anything it fuelled me to want to make it work even more. 

But just like many beginners, I fell into many traps. I bought course after course and fell for the next shiny object. 

My First Taste of Success

It wasn’t until 2006 when I had my first taste of success. I launched one of the biggest internet marketing giveaways called The Underground Giveaway.

Members got access to hundreds of products contributed by product vendors, from software to ebooks, you name it. It made over $12,000 in 24 hours.

The Day I Quit My Job

Over the next few years, my online income grew. As it grew, I cut down the number of days I worked from 6 to 5, 5 to 4, 3 to 2, 2 to 1, and eventually quit.

I was making a full-time income that I was confident it would support my lifestyle.

That's when I told my boss, "Next week will be my last week".

From then on, I thought I was set and that I made it, but I was wrong.

I Failed and Went Deep Into Debt

The next few years I continued dabbling around with all sorts of online businesses but failed at many.

$100,000 in debt later, completely maxing out my credit cards and not being able to borrow any more money from the banks, I was depressed and felt like the biggest failure. I said to myself “maybe I should just go back to a job. This is too hard.”

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But like anything, starting a business has its uncertainties. Even with everything that had happened, I still felt that I was doing the right thing—and deep down I wanted to prove to everyone that it would work.

I Stopped Chasing Quick Wins

I didn’t give up. I kept at it, but this time I stopped chasing “quick wins” and instead thought long-term goals. In short, I started treating the business like a real business.

That’s when things started to shift.

  • I focused all my attention on just one business model.
     

  • I stopped wearing all the hats in the business and started building a team of writers, designers and admin staff so I wasn’t the one doing all the work.
     

  • I focused more on delivering value to my existing customers and subscribers.
     

  • I put systems in place so that I could free up my time to grow the business instead.
     

  • I started building stronger relationships with others in the same industry.
     

  • I set more realistic, tangible goals that I could reach.

As a result, I went from being $100,000 in debt and not making enough to get by, to making six figures. I even managed to pay off all my debt in just 11 months. It was a great feeling to have such a burden lifted.

I’ve set up my business in a systematic way so that I no longer need to work 60-hour weeks. I spend just 20 hours a week focusing on tasks that I enjoy doing or ones that grow the business, ultimately creating an ideal “freedom business.”

How Am I Making Money Online? Here Are 5 Ways

Looking at my business today, I make money in five ways:

  1. PLR eBook Business. With over 20,000 customers, I have a consistent schedule releasing two new ebooks a month at UnstoppablePLR.com ranging from self-help to internet marketing.
     

  2. Affiliate marketing. I also make money from recommending other people’s products and services to my email subscribers for a commission.
     

  3. Memberships. I have two paid membership sites. The first is NichePLRClub.com, an eBook club where members receive a new ebook each month that they can resell. The second is an online business training site at The Unstoppable Profits Membership, where members get video training and coaching from me in order to learn how to start and grow an online business.
     

  4. Content writing agency. Over the years, I've established a team of talented writers so naturally, I leaned towards offering it as a service. I specialize in providing custom written ebooks, blog articles and social media content for brands and businesses who don't have the time to write or don't have their own team of writers.
     

  5. Ad Revenue. I have a few niche sites earning passive revenue from AdSense clicks. A few years back, I bought an expired domain name that had great authority. I placed a few long form articles on the site and they are ranked number one on Google for some high volume keywords. The great thing is, I haven't touched the site for four years! Ad revenue makes up just a small slice of my business.

It's More Than Just Work and Business

I didn’t see the long-term benefits of starting my own venture when I was in my early twenties, but now it’s paid off.

Although quitting my job to pursue freedom and not limit my income was a goal of mine, the ultimate dream and "reason why" I did it all was to eventually do the things I love.

My wife and I have been able to travel twice around the world for four months straight, traveling in all parts of Europe and Asia, while still maintaining the business.

 Positano, Italy
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 Da Nang, Vietnam
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What’s more, it allows me to spend more time with my daughter. 

I want to be there for parent-teacher meetings, take her to her after school activities and do my work next to her while she's doing her homework so that she can see daddy's also doing work, too.

It's those memories and milestones you can't get back.

Entrepreneurship Isn’t For Everyone

As an entrepreneur, you’re forced into the deep end and everything relies solely on you to make or break the business.

With a regular job, you do the work and you know you're going to get paid. As a business owner, you need to put in the work with no guarantee you'll make any money at all.

I would be lying to you if I said it was easy and that there was only one formula, book or course that would make you successful.

I was only able to cut down to working just 20 hours a week instead of 60 because I spent long hours each day learning, implementing, testing to see what works and what doesn't, finding, hiring and training staff then systemizing everything.

In the end, it's a combination of everything that I've gone through that brought me to where I am today.

I know some people who have attempted to go down the entrepreneurial route, only to find that it wasn’t for them. That, or they would give up when things got hard and going back to their regular jobs.

Being an entrepreneur is a way of life.

You need to live it and breathe it each day. 

You’ve got to be prepared to see no results at the start.

You need to keep at it and be persistent.

It’s usually when you feel most like giving up that you start to see results. It could be your first follower or first sale. Once you get to that point, that’s when things start to happen.

Entrepreneurship is a Journey

This path I chose is a journey. I chose it when I decided I wanted to be in control of my freedom rather than letting someone else dictate my future.

My purpose is to share the failures, lessons and experiences I got from taking this path, so that you can be inspired and take action through your own journey as an entrepreneur.


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Aurelius Tjin