How I Started A Million Dollar Online Business With $300 In Capital

DISCLOSURE: This blog post may contain affiliate links and any purchase(s) made through such links will result in a small commission to HUSTLR (at no cost for you).

Table of Contents

This article is the first part of the “How To Start An Online Business With 0 To Little Capital” series. To read the other parts, check out the links below.

Part 2: How To Start An Affiliate Marketing Business With 0 To Little Capital
Part 3: How To Start An eCommerce Business With 0 To Little Capital
Part 4: How To Start An Online Course Business Teaching Your Passion

I just want to start off with this. Never has it been easier to start an online business these days. The best part is, it’s super cheap (think USD250) if you know how to do it the right way. This guide will be split up into 4 different pieces of articles covering the different types of online businesses that you can start today with 0 to little capital.

Before I begin, I just want to say that it means a lot to me that you are reading this post. In the first chapter, I want to share a little bit of what pushed me to start this blog – which is to share my journey in running online businesses – a journey that I started since 2015 and is still ongoing.

In the time of writing this article, I’ve created multiple online companies from scratch in the last few years, some of which have achieved 7 figures in annual revenue – with a start-up capital of USD300. The online companies that I still run now specialized in dropshipping, selling physical products and digital products. You might have heard of some of them but let’s leave that for later.

You see guys, my life hasn’t always been like this. I was born to a middle-income Asian family in Kuala Lumpur with typical tiger parents – who always pushed me to study harder, get good grades (and a scholarship – which I did for college), get a good job and retire at 60. And that’s the path that I was on for the first 21 years of my life. I soon discovered it wasn’t the life I wanted.

Back in 2015, I was this wide-eyed 24-year-old who’s spent 3 years of his life working a desk job in well known FMCG companies in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia as a brand marketer for about USD600 a month in salary – pathetic, I know. When I was still working my day job, I experimented selling stuff online during after work hours – which was 2-3 hours a day before I went to bed.

During my spell of working a full-time job, I had spent about 14 hours on average a day sitting in my desk and in meetings. I knew deep down that I was not put on this earth to be slaving away like this, and I always looked out for some form of salvation. I started attended online marketing workshops and reading books, and I even paid for a course about affiliate marketing that cost me about USD2,000 at that time to get my feet wet in online marketing.

Some of you might think that it’s crazy to be spending that much on an affiliate marketing course, but hear me out. Even though the course’s teachings weren’t super exceptional, it exposed me to the world of making money online through building sustainable, automated online businesses.

After attending the workshop and excited to implement my learnings. My first stint in online businesses was affiliate marketing with Clickbank. I started a blog on WordPress (I had no idea how to do this at the time – I just experimented a lot) and I made a review blog post about this product called the Venus Factor – which was a weight loss program targeted at women. I wrote a 1,000-word blog post talking about the product and one month later, I got my first sale.

Let’s be honest, it wasn’t easy. Starting a website can be an extremely daunting task – especially if you have absolutely no idea what you’re doing, but let me tell you this.

The first sale that you make online, will be one of the best feelings in life.

So good that it will change your life.

I didn’t have any experience when I first started, but I had the “do it anyway” attitude, and I attribute a lot of my success to my willingness to experiment (and fail). To be completely frank, I’m numb from making online sales now, since I get 30-50 orders per day on my various online businesses – most of them happen when I’m asleep.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to be cocky when I say this. The point that I’m trying to make here is that taking the first step and seeing the result for the first time will create a paradigm shift in your thinking. Once you go online, you’ll never go back.


Selling online is addictive and exhilarating in the beginning. It makes you crave for more. Most importantly, it will help you change the way you think about making a living for yourself and hopefully drive you to better, bigger, badder online businesses.

You could be flipping burgers for a living. You could be a self-employed entrepreneur doing something you really love. You could be a student working part-time jobs to earn extra pocket money. You could be a stay home parent that’s also doing part-time babysitting to earn some income. Heck, you could be a CEO in a huge company getting a 7 figure paycheck.

But at the end of the day, you’re trading your time for money.

This brings me to one of the two points of why every business needs to be online now. If you’ve followed me previously, you’ll know that I am a sucker for automation that can separate my earnings from my time put in. This was the reason #1 why I dedicate a lot of my energy and time towards building online businesses – because they’re the easiest and cheapest to automate. Only when you can free up your time from meaningless tasks that are crucial to generating revenue, you can focus on growing your business.

Another reason why I think every business needs to be online now is the potential that online businesses bring. If you’re selling a product that is exportable or can be delivered over the internet (like this blog post), you can reach out to billions and billions of people, which is what founders should focus their energy on. The ability to scale is one of the key factors why online businesses are eclipsing traditional offline businesses.

There’s a reason why newspapers are getting replaced by blogs like this, why offline retailers are getting their ass kicked by Amazon and Alibaba and why more and more people prefer remote working. The Internet is a fantastic connector and supplier of products and services. The Internet has already taken over the world. The internet is here to stay, whether you like it or not.

“If your business is not online, then you won’t have a business to run in a few years”

– Bill Gates

Before I get carried away, let’s go back to my journey. A few months later on I built a dropshipping online business focused on dropshipping Korean fashion clothing targeted at urban females who were into k-pop and k-drama. This was my first time experimenting with Facebook’s advertising platform. I was still working my full-time job at this time and I was primarily working on this site at night.

I’ll admit, I very got distracted at work during this period of time and I barely slept. I was just learning as I go. I built the website up myself with a relatively small time eCommerce store builder (Shopify wasn’t available at that time – and I probably couldn’t afford to pay for it anyway). My work performance suffered and I got warning letters after warning letters. As a result, I stopped pursuing the dropshipping store even though it was making about USD200 for me a month.

Deep down, I still knew building online businesses was my true calling.

After 1 more year of slaving away in the corporate environment, I decided enough is enough. I quit my job after I landed a scholarship in a coding bootcamp in Malaysia – because I thought I needed to upskill myself to build my own online business. I was always afraid of coding you see. So I thought it would be a good test of my character. Turns out I almost never code these days, even though my business is completely online.

After graduating from this Bootcamp, I decided to launch an online vape business because it was the shit back then and I’ve been vaping for about 3-4 years prior to that. Why not right?

Fast forward 4 years after, my company currently rents a 5,000 sq ft building. We currently employ 7 full-time staff including myself, and about 10 freelancers that help us out in various aspects of the business – the bulk of them on marketing and work that requires creativity. This is the team that I’ve built that powers 3 different online business:-

1) A chakra healing jewelry drop shipping business, Zenna Gems
2) A vape e-liquid eCommerce store, Vape Club
3) An online school for digital skills, Moola Boss – started end 2018

My current company is split into two divisions, the physical goods division and the digital division. The physical goods division is manned by two warehousing staff and a combination of many cloud systems – an eCommerce store system, inventory management systems and various marketing automation systems.

I can further break down the physical goods division to two different types of business – dropshipping and self-fulfillment. The dropshipping part of the business is extremely light on workload and time. The entire marketing, sales and fulfillment process is completely automated with about 1-hour time commitment per week on customer service.

Vape Club is more profitable but is way more labor-intensive, it requires 2 full-time team members to get the warehousing, procurement and fulfillment done. Even though 90% of the work has been delegated to systems, there is still about 10% of work that has to be done manually, which I’m honestly not too happy about. I’m always looking for ways to automate tasks that require labor input because humans are usually the hardest variable in business for new entrepreneurs to deal with.

The digital division, on the other hand, is primarily powered by freelancers, systems like Teachable and content generation processes that are manned by my awesome team members. I have 15 freelancers processing content for this division. To be completely honest, this is my favorite part of the business, even though it’s (still) not as profitable as Vape Club or the dropshipping stores.

And all these were fruits borne from an initial capital of only USD300.

So can you see now how starting an online business has completely changed my life?

Am I good enough to start an online business?

I find that when people discover my online business results, they tend to ask me this question. Since this is like an FAQ sort of thing, I decided to pen down what I believe in and I hope that this will be able to inspire you to take action as well.

Let me first tell you this, If you’re thinking I was born into some Crazy Rich Asian sort of family, or that I’ve had financial support from my family members when I was just starting out, boy you are wrong. The startup capital and the courses I’ve attended were funded with my own savings, I’ve put in my hard work in the beginning. It’s super simple, if you don’t have the money, put in more of your time and sweat.

Not having enough capital is the poorest excuse you can give yourself from not taking action. In my first year of starting up, I paid myself an extremely modest salary, just to pay my bills and to live. My company is the product of constant reinvestment of profits and the principle of delayed gratification. If you want to spend every single dollar you earn online, I guarantee that you’re gonna be stuck doing everything yourself and you’re not going to build a very successful online business.

Another common excuse I hear people say is “now is not the time, I’m not ready”. The truth is, you’re never ready. There will never be a perfect time. If you think that all successful businesses are built while waiting for all the stars to align, please think again – with pure logic this time. One main regret that I have is that I did not start my entrepreneurship journey sooner.

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, the next best time is now.”

So if you’re doubting yourself, or you hear a little voice in your head telling you that you’re not good enough – I’m telling you that you’re good enough to do whatever you want to do. You need to remove all the self-limiting beliefs that you may have and know that the human mind is an extremely powerful asset that you can harness to achieve greater heights of success.

P/S: Go to a mirror right now, look yourself in the eye and tell yourself that you’re good enough.

I hope you had a smile on your face after doing that. Do this every morning until you’re confident enough.

At the end of the day, it starts with you. If you don’t want to do something or you feel you’re not good enough to do something, no amount of world-class articles, guidebooks, courses and reading blogs will ever be enough to spark a change in you. I won’t lie, there are still periods where I feel that I’m not good enough, but I never let it stop myself from succeeding.

WARNING: This may sound cheesy, but this is something that has worked for me during my lowest times. I constantly restructure my thought patterns by telling myself certain things – some beliefs that I’ve held very close to my heart for the past few years. Here are some of the things I told myself and other people:-

– It’s totally possible to get rich quick, but it’s not going to be easy.
– If you’re willing to do what most people don’t want to do, you’re going to be rich.
– Don’t create a job for yourself that disguises itself as a business.

This “talking to yourself” exercise may or may not work for some people, it really depends on your personality and existing mindset. It worked for me so I feel obliged to share it with you.

In the next article in the series, I will be sharing some methods on how you can start an affiliate marketing business with 0 to little capital upfront. This article series is a breakdown of my personal experience with online businesses, sequenced in chronological order. I hope to see you on the other side.

What do you think of this article? Please leave a comment to let me know!

This article is the first part of the “How To Start An Online Business With 0 To Little Capital” series. To read the other parts, check out the links below.

– Part 2: How To Start An Affiliate Marketing Business With 0 To Little Capital
– Part 3: How To Start An eCommerce Business With 0 To Little Capital
– Part 4: How To Start An Online Course Business Teaching Your Passion

How I Started A Million Dollar Online Business With $300 In Capital

2 thoughts on “How I Started A Million Dollar Online Business With $300 In Capital”

  1. Thank you, it's truly an inspiring read especially on the struggles and how you got through it. Would love to know how do you automate your businesses.

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