The Four Pillars of a Successful Online Business

There are really only four ingredients needed to create a successful business. These ingredients are indispensable. You cannot have one without the other, just as you can’t have a house with missing pillars. If just one pillar were to break down, the entire house will collapse. Similarly, without even one of the four pillars, your business will crumble.

Online business success or any business for that matter, is not dependent on luck or good fortune. If your business is solely built on luck or accident then you are doomed to fail eventually. Look at many of the Dot Coms they were simply riding a wave of luck. Then luck disappeared and the bubble burst. 

There are many who build their business by default (accident or luck). But business success is really built by design. This article will reveal the 4 key pillars of online business success.  

Data conservatively suggest that more than 70% of new businesses fail within the first ten years, and 60% will close up shop in the first five years. These data lead many to think that business is purely a gamble. But it is not. Business is no different from any other aspect of your life. If you possess these four pillars nothing will shake your business or your life for that matter. 


1. The First Pillar – Mindset

Mindset is everything. This is by far the most crucial of the four pillars. Without the right mindset, you’d fail even before you begin. Let’s face it, not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur. Not everyone has what it takes to build and run a successful business. 

We’ve been taught a big lie! When we arrived on this planet; when we emerged from our mother’s womb as mere babes, we came hard-wired with a sense of joy, individuality, creativity, and wonder.  We came hard-wired for well-being and success. 

Our education system has compounded the lie. Our entire education system was designed to create employees and not free thinkers; not entrepreneurs. Consequently, we have been programmed in a particular way. We’ve all been told to, “Go to school. Get good grades. Graduate from college. Get a good job. Work hard. Get a promotion. Get a raise. Retire happy”. That’s the process that we have been programmed to follow from day one. We’ve been taught to place our lives in the hands of someone else (boss, government, church, parents, etc). Entrepreneurship, individuality and creative thinking are not taught as a result. We learn a formula, which we are then required to regurgitate at an exam and ultimately in life. Real-life lessons are seldom taught in the classroom.

I’ve interacted, communicated and dealt with a number of different individuals from all walks of life (different ages, stages, genders, nationalities, religious backgrounds, etc.). And I’ve seen many succeed and I’ve observed many others fail. And I’ve asked myself, “What causes some to fail and others to succeed?” It all boils down to mindset. Those who succeed have the right mindset for business. Those who fail have the wrong mindset. It’s that simple. 


The REACH Method of a Successful Mindset

There are five dimensions you need to master in order to REACH the level of a successful entrepreneur. Understand these five dimensions and work on each one until you REACH deep within your mind to unleash your inner entrepreneur.



You need to work on all five dimensions of the entrepreneur mindset in order to be a true entrepreneur. Don’t worry, though, you are already on the right path on your journey to REACH and master the entrepreneur mindset. 


i. Risk – As an entrepreneur, you are better able than most in dealing with risk. Keep developing your risk tolerance to REACH deeper levels of the entrepreneur mindset. You are able to take calculated risks. You do your research and due diligence. And are not overcome by analysis paralysis. Remember, you don’t have to get it perfect. You just have to get it going. You typically more decisive than most and rely on your instincts. You need to strike a balance between instinct and intelligence. 

A real entrepreneur is not afraid of failure or losses. He knows he can start over. It’s the way of life. 


ii. Expectation – You are typically able to set reasonable levels expectation. Too many people fail because they either underestimate what needs to be done or they are overly optimistic and come crashing down. Learn to achieve a balance between optimism and pessimism. Learn from others in your field on what are realistic expectations. Do you need 6 months, 1 year or 5 years to build a successful business? Don’t get your hopes up too high. 

When things don’t happen as planned you are not the type to lose your confidence and purpose to go on. You strive to win and succeed.

You have a tendency to have a clear vision and purpose for your self and your business. As an entrepreneur, you are striving to become a visionary. 


iii. Action – You have ideas and inspiration and are willing to take action to see them become a reality. Setting clear, attainable goals in alignment with your vision is not difficult for you. You’d be surprised at how many people cannot do this.  But you need to take responsibility for the outcomes of your actions, whether they are good or not so good. 


iv. Care and Community – This is a dimension of the entrepreneurial mindset that most people striving to become entrepreneurs fail to realize. You already have innate ability to reach out to others. You just need to REACH deeper and make a greater impact on others around you. You’re not far off and a little effort will take you to the level you need to be at. 


Many so-called entrepreneurs are more focused on making money and less on making a difference. Both are important. Interestingly, those who make a difference in the world, build a name for themselves and gain credibility within the community. This, in turn, leads to greater profits in the long-term. Making a difference makes dollars and cents.


v. Happiness – Burnt out, stressed out, failing relationships, neglected families, poor health, no time for self, are all examples of a failing entrepreneur. A true entrepreneur is able to master the mindset of happiness. Happiness of heart, head, health and home. They find true fulfillment in leaving a legacy behind. This is your ultimate task as an entrepreneur. You need to REACH this level and master it. It won’t be easy, but with time you can succeed. Fortunately, you already have the foundation to achieve and master this level of the entrepreneur mindset. 


Click on the link below to assess your entrepreneurial mindset.


===> Yes Kevon, Give Me Instant Access to the Mindset Assessment <===



2. The Second Pillar – Systems

Using the right systems is the second pillar needed to build a successful online business.

Without systems, nothing will get done. The Planet Earth is built on systems – the rotation on its axis, gravity, the water cycle, the eco-system, etc. These systems are integral to life on Planet Earth.

Similarly, running a successful business requires using the right systems. Knowing which buttons to click, what processes to employ and in what order. Some of these systems include a website and all of the bells and whistles that come with a proper working website – plugins, choosing the right theme, layout and structure, what content to add to your site, should it be responsive or not, what security software to include and so much more.

Another system is content creation. What are the do’s and dont’s of content creation? How frequently should content be added? What types of content should be used and when? Should it be text, images, video, webinars, etc?

Then there is Search Engine Optimization and Search Engine Marketing.

Social Media marketing is another example. What social sites to use, how often to post, what times of the day to post, what type of content to post. Social media advertising, such as Facebook advertising. What are all of the intricate aspects of Facebook advertising? How to use Facebook retargeting pixels?

The aspects of email marketing. Developing and executing a successful sales funnel system.

There are literally hundreds of systems that work together to make your online business run smoothly. There are so many and it can get daunting. Plus, I’m certain that you don’t know half of these systems. You either don’t know what systems to use. Or you know what systems to use but you don’t know how to use them. That brings us to the third pillar.


3. The Third Pillar – Knowledge

I hate to sound cliche, but it’s important for me to say it, “Knowledge is Power!”. We live in a world where those with knowledge are the ones who succeed. Those without knowledge are left behind. 

There are literally hundreds of places you can learn what’s required to become a successful entrepreneur.

The challenge though, is knowing where to find the right training.

Often one platform may have training on just one or two aspects needed.

Others may be way too expensive. I once registered for training in quiz marketing and segmentation. This is just one aspect or one system that could be employed. This training cost me $2,000.

If I were to pay 2 grand for every system I need to understand then, that would literally cost be hundreds of thousands of dollars. Can you afford that? I bet not. 


4. The Fourth Pillar – Community

The Four Pillars of Successful Online Business

You might have heard the old African proverb – It takes a village to raise a child. In the same way, it takes a community to build a business.

If you think you can succeed on your own, you are dead wrong!

Building any business requires support from your community – your family, friends, investors, benefactors, and mentors.

If you are able to surround yourself with the right kind of people – people who will help you thrive as opposed to people who will only point out why this or that can’t be done.

There’s an ‘I’ in business but there’s also a ‘US’ in business. It’s that way for a reason. ‘I’ alone, without ‘US’ does not make a successful business.


The #1 Solution

The main challenge is that you often have to search different sources to help master these four pillars. And often they are quite expensive solutions. 

What if I told you that I’ve discovered the #1 solution that addresses all four pillars all in one place? Would you be interested in finding out more?

Click on the button below to start your free account at Wealthy Affiliate where over 1 million online entrepreneurs are learning to master the four pillars of successful online business.

36 Comments to The Four Pillars of a Successful Online Business

  1. Rania Masaeed says:

    Hello Kevon,
    This is one of the best articles I have ever read.. As always, You could easily attract the reader.. No doubt, you are a unique write.. This is not a compliment.. It’s real! I enjoyed reading it word by word.. I will recommend for all friends
    I agree with you that Wealthy affiliate is the best online site to start a business..
    Wishing you all the best

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Thank you so much Rania. You are too kind. Writing is one of my passions and I like to create content that is engaging and easy to follow, like the diagrams I used to describe the Four Pillars of a successful online business.

      I am truly please that you found value in this content.

      And also thanks for the endorsement of Wealthy Affiliate.



  2. Bobbi says:

    Amazing article, very informative, loaded with information. I am sold on the pillars, it tool me forever to get to the first pillar, Mindset. I hope that now I have my mind right and ready to make some good decisions for my website. Thanks for the post, got a lot out of it.

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Thanks Bobbi for your comment.

      Yes, mindset is critical to success. It was deliberately put as the first pillar for a reason. Without this pillar, the rest are useless. It is the start and the end of success in business and in life.

  3. Furkan says:

    I really liked how you look at online business and I actually wonder that should I create a business if I can spend only 1-2 hours per week?

  4. Subhadeep says:

    Great post. Liked the way you broke it down. I agree, mindset is our biggest roadblock and strength. Anything can be achieved with the right intent and guidance.

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Thanks Subhadeep for your comment. Mindset is indeed the biggest roadblock or strength. It all depends on our outlook. But good thing we have control over how we think and feel, so we are able to change our mindset and learn how to be more positive in each of the five areas in REACH approach.

      As an online entrepreneur what would you consider to be your biggest challenge or frustration?

  5. Roger Bynoe says:

    Hi Kevon,
    I like your article. It was very informative and gives a lot of information about how to succeed in online business. You are right that people need to maintain a neutral mindset because there will be positive and negative situations. Also you need to have realistic goals at the beginning of the process.

    All the best,

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Thanks for your comment Roger.

      Realistic goals are critical. But deeper than goals is your vision. All successful leaders, business people, etc have clear vision for their life or business. Your vision is your WHY.

  6. Razzy says:

    Wow, very inspiring post. I really enjoyed learning from this and thinking of how I can apply it to myself, not just with Wealthy Affiliate (I’m already a member, and yes, it is great) but with how to implement the REACH mindset and other ideas. Thanks for the info

  7. Maurice Jackson says:

    Your four pillars build a sturdy foundation. Before anyone even begins a marketing campaign they should take an honest self-evaluation of abilities before starting.

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Totally agree Maurice. You actually reminded me of an entrepreneur assessment/evaluation I prepared together with a colleague of mine. Have a look at the assessment here

      Thanks a mil



  8. Merry says:

    Thank you, Kevon, for an excellent article and gentle reminder of what we need to be successful. Especially online. You were so down to earth in sharing what every person seeking to make an extra income needs. I too had the misfortune of spending and losing so much money due to signing up for the never-ending ‘learning’ curve! When I finally clued in and started looking for what I didn’t know I wanted and I found Wealthy Affiliate. It is the best place to start learning. No, it is the only Place!

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Thanks Merry,

      Yes I concur that Wealthy Affiliate is the ONLY place to really learn everything you need to do online business all under one roof. But even with the best training, without the right mindset, you’d fail, no ifs or buts.

      Thanks for dropping by


      • Merry says:

        Absolutely! so many are too quick to point fingers, they are just pointing them in the wrong direction sometimes. Mindset is huge and something we need to work on all the time.

        thank you again kevon

        • Kevon Wilson says:

          You’re welcome Merry. The sad part is that many fail but blame everyone and everything but themselves. They just don’t get it. You are totally in control of your own reality.

  9. Vince says:

    Such an important post for Online Business folks to read.
    This information can really prepare them for a fantastic journey and align their expectation plus action plans.

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      THanks for your comment Vince. Setting expectations is so important. People get into this online business world and expect to become millionaires from the get-go. That never happens. All of the guys and gals out there who are making tons of money online have done so after months. Some even years.

      Mindset can make or break the inner entrepreneur in you.

  10. Wayne Towns says:

    Very well stated Kevon. Can see I have a lot of studying to do. All of the four pillars are important and if a person stays with he will be successful! Gathered a lot of good information from your blog. I just have to keep working at it.

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Thanks Wayne. You are too kind.

      Yes, stick with it and you will succeed. As I said in the article – the name of the game is to stay in the game until you win the game. If you take away just that one simple yet powerful saying then you will be in good stead.



  11. Byron says:

    I have been in business for over 30 years and I have been a self employed entrepreneur for the past five years! The principles you have described are accurate and I enjoyed your presentation of them, especially the REACH formula. Thanks for the read!

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Thanks Byron for your comment.

      And thanks for the confirmation of what I’ve written about concerning the Four Pillars. It’s a real honor that a seasoned entrepreneur like yourself can validate what I’m saying.

  12. David Donahue says:

    Interesting post and well written.

    I do believe that it takes a certain type of person to succeed as an entrepreneur. It’s tougher because you have the ball in your court and you have to serve the ball constantly. There’s no guarantee that the ball will be returned.

    Whereas with a job it’s a give and take. You give your time and you will be rewarded. Problem is, employers take more from the employee in many cases and that employee burns out, goes on unemployment or disability. It’s no wonder in the United States the employment is about 50 percent of the people. That’s half that receives some type of pension, retirement, disability, etc.

    The odds as an employee becoming successful are dim.

    Entrepreneurs understand this and don’t want to get pulled into the never-ending cycle. Being your own boss is definitely the road to happiness if you can succeed. If anything it’s worth giving it your best shot.

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      I couldn’t agree with you more David.

      It does take a certain type of person to be successful at anything in life. But more than the ‘person’ per se it is the mindset.

      I do believe that being an entrepreneur is very rewarding whereas being an employee is ‘comfortable’ in the sense that there is a perceived notion of income security. I say perceived because you are at risk of being fired or laid off or burnt out as you said. So as an individual you really have to choose between the risk-reward dynamic on one side or the perceived income security on the other. The problem is that you can never be a success financially or from a self-actualization perspective, as an employee. As you said the chances of an employee becoming a success are dim.

  13. Sarah Gaddes says:

    Very informative article!

    I liked how you split up the pillars of a successful online business into categories.

    It’s very important to not only have the right mindset but to also have the right resources and team behind you.

    To build a business it really does take a community of support and knowledge.

    Enjoyed the read.


    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Thanks Sarah.

      I really appreciate the positive remarks. I’m pleased that you enjoyed reading this article on the Four Pillar of a Successful Online Business.

      While all the pillars are important, I believe that mindset is the most important one.

      Thanks for reading



  14. Dom says:

    Hey Kevon,

    These 4 Pillars are well laid-out and easy to understand. The hard part is actually implementing them to the point where they become habit or second-nature.

    It’s definitely easy to get distracted! (Especially since online work is done on the internet with a ton of distractions right there in your workspace.)

    I will bookmark this page and keep working on using these tips to continue improving in these areas.

    Thanks, I enjoyed reading this. 🙂

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Thanks Dom.

      I am glad you enjoyed this article on the Four Pillars of Successful Online Business.

      Understanding the four pillars is great but as you said, implementation is the hard part. My advice is to take one idea at a time and work on it. Examine your own thought patterns and behaviour and see what area you need to work on most.

      Keep learning. Keep persevering. Keep an open mind. Keep positive. And Keep connected to your community.

      And rememer the name of the game is to stay in the game until you win the game.

      Best of luck to you Dom



  15. Andy Anderson says:

    Great article, Kevon.

    One thing that stuck with me was how you wrote about the education system actually being a detriment to our success as entrepreneurs. I think nowhere is this more relevant than in the way the education system makes us more risk-averse. I remember in school encountering several students who were really smart but avoided honors classes because they were harder and might negatively impact their GPA. In the education system, there is no incentive for risk because any failure becomes a part of your permanent record, so you quickly learn that failure is bad. To an entrepreneur, failure is just part of the learning process and is often viewed as a necessary step to success.

    Thanks for posting this.

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Wow I never saw it from that perspective Andy. You’re totally right. When you fail an exam it was final, unless you got the opportunity to repeat. But yes, the education system trains us to believe that failure is final and that failure is not acceptable. When in reality in order to succeed failure is a stepping stone along the journey.

      Your unique perspective really has added value to this article on mindset for success.

      I thank you, Andy for your contribution.

  16. GiuliaB says:

    I couldn’t agree with you more, Kevon. Especially with regards to mindset. If I told family and friends that “that’s it, I’m leaving my secure job for a risk calculated business venture”, I would be disowned.

    Yet, how many times amongst colleagues do I then hear words to the effect of: “So lucky he’s leaving” or “If only I could just pack it all in and work from home making cakes like she did!”.

    It feels to me like those people wish for freedom, but every day is never the right day.

    I’m not suggesting acting irresponsibly, especially when it comes to financial obligations. The risks taken have to be calculated.

    At present, I’m benefiting from the best of both worlds, whilst I’m working part-time for my employer, I’m also trying to expand my online business.

    Perseverance, time and lots of hard work will tell!

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Thanks Giulia for your comments.

      People are always afraid to take a leap of faith. I know, because I’ve been in that situation several times as well. I really takes a lot of courage and calculated risk, as you say, to make a move.

      You have taken a correct approach. Invest in your business while at the same time have the comfort or security of a fixed and secure income coming in. With the fixed income you can actually fund your start-up business.

      So congratulations on that wise choice.

      When I first attempted to start my own business, I quit my day job right away. That was a big mistake. As you know, building a business takes time, especially if you do not have any experience.

      The second time around I used your approach. Full-time job by day and my online business by night.

      I wish you lots of success in your business adventure.



  17. Norman Richards says:

    Great breakdown on the journey to be successful it really does take a community. Like the old saying goes, no man is an island, people need people in order to succeed. Thanks for sharing this awesome post.

    • Kevon Wilson says:

      Thanks Norman for your comments.

      We really cannot do it by ourselves. That’s one of the reasons I totally and completely love Wealthy Affiliate

      There’s not only access to knowledge and systems to help you grow your business and to develop the right business mindset, but the community is second to none – real people helping real people succeed in their online business.

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