There was another thread where someone just starting out in IM was talking about how they weren't having any luck and wanted to quit. I thought what I said to him will benefit other people as well, so I want to repeat myself here, while I edit and expand a little bit:
There is no such thing as failure, only results. You haven't failed, you just learned more ways to not succeed. The only way to fail at something is to quit. It's alright if you REALLY want to quit, maybe it's not for you, but if this is something you REALLY want to do, why quit after you've already gained so much knowledge and practical education?
Don't jump from one "secret system" to another. You have a much better chance of success if you pick ONE proven method (that you think would be a good fit for you) and committing a certain amount of time and effort to making it work. If you give it your all for 3 months to one system, and you still don't see yourself any closer to success, then move on to another. But while you are trying that first system, make sure to change up what you're doing within it before you move on. Test to see what you might be doing wrong, and when you find yourself doing something right, explore that more. Just keep in mind, the first one is almost ALWAYS purely an educational experience, not a money making powerhouse. Treat it like education, take your time. Moving on too quickly to the next "great system" can only hurt that education.
Don't expect others here to motivate you (although many here are very good at that without even being asked to). The truth is you need to be the one who motivates yourself if you want to succeed. If you really want this, develop a burning desire within yourself. If you can't do that, you probably aren't going to get very far along in this business.
When starting out, I would suggest not spending much money (other than for the basics: domain names, premium themes, hosting). If you go spend $1,000 before you start making any money, you're just going to be that much harder on yourself when you're going through that initial learning phase and you will be that much closer to wanting to quit. There is so much FREE information on this forum, it's really all you need to get started. You can easily start making money online without paying for advertising, fancy membership sites, or buying every single WSO ever written. Once you have a small degree of success, if you need to spend money to scale up that success, then by all means, go for it. But for now, MASTER the basics, everything else is pointless until you can do that.
I'm new to this, just like most of the newer guys reading this. The reason I know I'm going to be successful is because I really believe I can succeed at anything if I work hard enough, long enough, and never quit. It's more than a belief, it's a deep rooted CONVICTION that I've built into the core of who I am over the years.
I haven't made any money yet either, but this is exactly what I've done and why I know I'm on the road to success:
1) Upon joining this forum, I was well aware how easy it would be to get a bad case of information overload and analysis paralysis. So I decided from the beginning that I would read as much as I can, and learn as much as I can for only two weeks. I told myself at the end of that two weeks, I would choose one PROVEN method and stick to it. Out of all proven methods I could find, I chose one that I thought had a good combination of being somewhat easy to learn, had a decent chance of success, and would be the most fun so I would be less likely to get bored and quit.
2) I took action! I hit the gate running. Within 1 week I built 5 sites around 5 different niches. I generated organic traffic through a few different ways, SEO, a couple social networking sites, and good old fashion word of mouth. I never once paid for traffic. I haven't sold anything yet but that's because I have yet to TRY to sell anything. I've been focused on building a highly targeted email list for each one of my niches. After 1 week of starting all this I already have around 100 people on each list, and it's growing more and more every day. Not a whole lot compared to most people's lists, but I know that they are highly targeted to my niches, so I can expect a higher sales conversion than if I tried to get just anyone to sign up. While I'm letting my list grow, I'm sending some articles here and their to my different lists (created out of PLR material I obtained), to also build a relationship with my potential customers before I even try to sell them anything. I've done all this for less than $100. My greatest cost has been my time and effort, but that is the cost that will pay off the most.
3) Right now I'm working on product creation: informational ebooks for all 5 niches I chose. I should be done with the first ebook by this weekend.
4) Once I launch that first product one of two things will happen. Either I won't do that well, or I will. If I don't do that well, I simply examine everything I've done, and figure out where I may have gone wrong. I then make any necessary changes and try again. If it DOES do well, fantastic! Then I figure out what I did RIGHT and try to duplicate it across all my 5 niches.
5) Once I make it this far and am generating decent money, I'll probably end up writing my first WSO including EVERYTHING I did in greater detail. I want to do this while being a newbie is still fresh in my head so I can remember and address everything that I had a problem with when I first started.
I hope if you've read all this that you got something out of it! There is so much on this forum I'm still learning about adsense and SEO and affiliates and product creation and sales copy and etc, etc. I just wanted to share the one thing I DO know for sure:
Develop a burning desire to succeed and never quit. This alone guarantees success.