All to often I read about people getting viruses, or having a computer simply die, and their entire IM business is lost. Over the years, people have continued to say "Back up your files", but not everyone knows how to do this, or simply choses not to. But, there is another way...
A few months back, I purchased a 4GB USB2.0 Flash Drive. They are static drives, which means they have no moving parts to wear out or get over heated. USB's are compatible with all the major Operating Systems. You can even install programs directly onto the Flash Drive and run them from multiple computers without much problem.
Since I made this purchase, I have kept my entire business plan, ideas, contact information, and even my backed up information, on this 4GB Flash Drive. How does this help my IM business? My business is always with me. I don't have to worry about what computer I am at. I can even work on my business on a strange computer, such as those at the local library or schools. All of my files come with me at all times, and I can even password protect the drive in case I am in a public place.
As I said before, this doesn't directly deal with making money. But, it could save you from losing your business to a virus or system crash. So ask yourself... "Is it worth a $20 investment?"
(Please do your fair share of research before purchasing any Flash Drives to make sure they are compatible with your system, have the storage space that you require, and are within your price range)