How to Start an Online Store that Generates $3m in Annual Revenue

In this episode of Business Systems Explored, we speak to Jon Butt. Jon is the CEO of Fire Protection Online, an e-commerce store he built that generates $3m in annual revenue. He also runs, where he shows people how to build a successful, self-marketing company.

Want to spent less than an hour a week on your business?

It’s totally possible when you break down your business functions into simple processes, and automate anything that doesn’t need doing by a human.

With a bit of planning, you can start today

Learn these techniques from Jon Butt, who built a $3m annual revenue business with customers such as Cornell University, Canary Wharf, and Buckingham Palace.

After selling his first company in 2003, Jon made enough to comfortably retire… but then went on to accidentally start an outsourced e-commerce company that took off without much marketing needed to get it off the ground.

All the while, Jon was paying cash to the neighbors every week to borrow electricity and hosting his office in a grim building without a toilet…

Using teachings from The E-Myth, Jon scaled up faster than his suppliers could handle, all while on holiday in Greece.

Learn how to build every process in your business, then gradually remove yourself from them, outsourcing and automating as much as possible.

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Quote to tweet:

“Having an internet business isn’t fun, but I learned how to systemize to get to $3m ARR working one hour per week” (tweet this)

Show notes:

  • How Jon manages to work just one hour each week
  • Jon’s journey to $3m annual revenue
  • Why laziness builds the best systems
  • The book that inspired Jon to remove himself instantly from every business process
  • The unexpected place Jon makes his major business decisions
  • Dropshipping explained
  • How to avoid the money-sink that is short-sighted online marketing
  • Why Jon won’t model his business on Amazon
  • The story of how Jon (accidentally) developed bulletproof systems
  • The very first step is when building systems, according to systems experts
  • How to reverse engineer business systems from scratch
  • Jon’s no-nonsense approach to transparency
  • Why Jon doesn’t like calling people ‘managers’, and what he uses instead
  • Getting your team to learn products for you, and train other people to do the same
  • The importance of customer education in marketing, for customers and staff
  • Why delegation can cause a lot of damage if it’s not done perfectly
  • Which types of employees should be in charge of processes, and nothing else
  • When to develop and improve your systems
  • Prioritizing your processes for review
  • Big mistakes people make with process documentation
  • The different tools Jon uses to systemize his business
  • How to decide whether something is worth systemizing at all
  • Running your business on free tools alone
  • Why Jon decided to cut his workweek down and focused on marketing instead of growing his business directly
  • How understanding your life’s purpose helps with business growth and systemization

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Vinay Patankar

CEO and Co-Founder of Process Street. Find him on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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