Are you looking for a Steve Chou review? If you want to make money online, you might have heard of Steve Chou. But you may wonder if it is a scam.
I have a passion to help people explore money-making opportunities online. Over the years, I have reviewed many programs like Steve Chou’s Profitable Store Online.
In the past week, I have done thorough research about Steve Chou and his course so I can tell you more about it.
As a disclaimer, I’m not affiliated with Steve Chou. It means I’m not paid to write this review. So you can be sure that my words are unbiased.
At the end of this review, I’ll also tell you a better alternative that has enabled me to make a full-time passive income online.
In this Steve Chou and his course review, I’m going to cover the following.
Who is Steve Chou?
Steve Chou is the creator of the course Profitable Store Online. You may not be able to find too much information about him online.
Steve Chou started his online business in 2007, which is many years ago.
Unlike many young gurus, Steve Chou is a rather mature guy. If you have watched other eCommerce gurus, you can see a lot of them are just around 20 years old and like showing off their cars to sell you the lifestyle. But Steve Chou seems to be different.
Steve Chou is married and has kids. He owns a 7-figure eCommerce store and has a blog called MyWifeQuitHerJob.
Steve Chou is also quite active on YouTube. At the time of writing, his YouTube channel has around 39.7K subscribers.
So you may wonder why he creates and sells online course instead of focusing on his eCommerce business. Does he make most of his money from selling his course or eCommerce?
Before I answer that question, let’s take a look at his course in the next section.
Profitable Online Store Overview
Profitable Store Online is a course that teaches you how to set up an eCommerce store and make money.
There are 15 modules in the course. The course includes video training and PDF.
Let’s take a look at each module so that you will know exactly what you will learn.
Module 1: Find a Profitable Niche
This module teaches you how to search for profitable niches and to assess the competition. Take the example of Steve’s niche, wedding handkerchiefs, which he makes seven figures with.
Module 2: Sourcing Products
In Module 2, you will learn where to get cheap and legit products from.
You will learn about the following:
- What the retail supply chain looks like
- Purchasing wholesale
- Identifying illegitimacy and whether or not it is worthwhile to buy from
- Importing products from overseas
- Develop your product with Chinese factories
Module 3: Set Up Your Online Store
You will learn about setting up your website. Usually, people just recommend Shopify but Steve Chou actually shows you a way to make your own site for free using open-source software. Personally, I use Shopify because it’s easy to set up.
Module 4: How To Sell On Amazon
In this section, you’ll get some tips on selling on Amazon by using Amazon’s FBA model. Amazon is by far the largest online retailer so it’s well worth leveraging. You’ll discover and learn how to write listings for sales conversion and how to get reviews on your products.
But this course is not dedicated to Amazon FBA, so you shouldn’t enrol in this course if you want to do Amazon FBA.
Module 5: How To Create Sales Funnels
This module will teach you how to use sales funnels to increase conversion. People go through a process that is pretty universal when buying. Sales funnels are used to get customers to take standard steps to make the purchase.
Module 6: Make Your Business Legal
The boring legal paperwork is discussed in this section, so you’ll learn all the legal mumbo jumbo and licenses to start a business.
Module 7: Market Your Online Store For Free
In this section, Steve Chou will give you some suggestions for free marketing, including word of mouth and how to market to customers who already purchased.
Module 8: Email Marketing
Among Internet Marketers, email marketing is their favorite way to make money online. Here, you’ll find out how to set up an email autoresponder, build a contact list, and sell email lists that generate sales.
Module 9: Google Adwords And Google Shopping
In Module 9, Steve Chou will teach you how to make sales with the Google Adwords (now known as Google Ads) and Google Shopping advertising platforms.
Module 10: Facebook Advertising
In the eCommerce industry, Facebook tends to be the preferred platform for advertising.
The following will be covered in module 10:
- Launching a Facebook advertising campaign
- How to retarget
- Identifying which ads work and which ones don’t
- How to make Facebook advertising more effective by incorporating sales funnels.
Module 11: Facebook Messenger Marketing
You can make sales using Facebook Messenger, and this module will teach you how to build your list for free and then leverage messenger.
Module 12: Optimize Your Store For Search Engines
You can also get free traffic from search engines through SEO. These are known as search engine optimization. In this section, you’ll learn how to use SEO properly and start getting free traffic from Google.
Module 13: Price Your Products For Maximum Profit
You must learn how to properly price your products for maximum sales. Price too high and you won’t make sales, and if you price too low you have too small profit margins. In Module 13, you’ll find out how to price your products for maximum sales.
Module 14: Advanced Website Optimization
In the earlier module, you learned how to set up your e-commerce site, and in this module, Steve Chou will talk about giving your website an overall professional look.
You will learn the following:
- The basics of building a website
- A call-to-action that optimizes conversions
- How to utilize coupon codes for more sales
- The art of optimizing your images
- Closing sales tips
Module 15: Customer Service
This module will help you master customer service and ensure that your business receives good reviews from customers.
Profitable Store Online Pricing
Profitable Online Store is a very expensive course. It costs $1699 to enrol. Personally, I think it is overpriced. There are better and cheaper eCommerce courses on the market.
As for the refund policy, you will have 30 days to consider getting your money back. It claims to be no-questions-asked but I’m not sure if it is true in reality. Most of the time, they will ask you for the reasons and might need to meet certain criteria like proving the course doesn’t work.
Actually, you don’t have to invest $1699 to start an online business. Let me explain to you why in the last section of this review.
Profitable Online Store Pros And Cons
- You can learn all the basics of eCommerce.
- The courses cover multiple traffic sources like Facebook, Google.
- Steve Chou does update the course content from time to time.
- The course is too expensive. It’s very much overcharged because there are better and cheaper alternatives on the market.
- Steve Chou’s successful eCommerce store which sells wedding handkerchiefs was set up in 2007, so the strategies he used for that store might not be applicable today.
- eCommerce is not the easiest business model for newbies
- There are no verified success stories of students
- A lot of the information in the course can be found online for free
- No unique strategies were shared that can guarantee your success
Is Steve Chou A Scam?
I cannot say Steve Chou is a scam. There is no evidence to say so. In fact, Steve Chou is quite experienced in eCommerce and he does have success. You can learn the basics of doing eCommece from him.
The problem is whether you can make money by enrolling in the course. It seems that Steve Chou has switched his focus to selling online courses many years ago, instead of doing eCommerce.
He might have success in eCommerce many years ago, but today, I reckon most of his income comes from selling online courses. So you can see he devotes most of his time and energy to promoting his online courses.
Steve Chou started his 7-figure eCommerce store back in 2007. By that time, the internet was much simpler. It was very easy to drive traffic from Google. So I doubt if his strategies really work today.
Recently, he helped his kids open an eCommerce store selling kids t-shirt, which is print-on-demand, but it seems that the store is not successful at all. There is very little traffic and it looks like being abandoned a long time ago. That makes me feel like he cannot replicate his success at all.
Moreover, Steve Chou doesn’t tell you the difficulties of eCommerce because he is trying to sell you his course.
If you are new to online business, you have to understand why eCommerce is more difficult than you thought.
Is There A Better Alternative to Make Money Online?
I did eCommerce before, so what I can tell you is that eCommerce has become increasingly difficult. If you want to build a 6 figure eCommerce business, you need to shed some blood, sweat and tears to figure out how it works.
Here are a few points why I would not recommend eCommerce:
1. Financial Risk
Your eCommerce store won’t sell ANYTHING if you don’t ADVERTISE. But Facebook ads costs are skyrocketing and will eat away your PROFITS. You might need weeks or even months to just break even, before seeing any profit.
In another word, you have to take a huge FINANCIAL RISK in eCommerce.
2. Facebook ads are Pricey and Difficult
After observing most eCommerce stores’ results, at best, the total Facebook ad cost will account for at least 30% of your total sales.
But Facebook ads seldom stay effective for too long. Once your ad has exhausted the audience, it becomes ineffective. Your total revenue will be much lower and even result in net loss.
According to Forbes, Facebook saw an increase in Ad costs of 90% year-on-year.
Worse still, the learning curve of Facebook ads is quite steep because Facebook changes its algorithm all the time. You have to invest a lot of time and money in learning and testing Facebook Ads.
If you run Facebook ads without any experience, your ad account will be banned for violating their strict policies.
3. Customer Support
In eCommerce, you have to spend a lot of time communicating with suppliers and dealing with customer service.
If your customer has any issues with the product, you have to wait for your supplier to help you. If your supplier is not helpful, you have to bear the loss yourself. Therefore, many eCommerce stores have poor customer review and have no returning customers.
In the worst case, you would expect a lot of credit card chargebacks, which risk getting your payment gateway shut down.
4. A lot of work on product research
For your store to keep making money, you always have to find a product that has the momentum to go viral in order that the ads costs can be covered.
In eCommerce, most products reach their peak in 1-2 months or even weeks. This is because many competitors will steal your product and create a better ad. Or increase their budgets on Facebook ads to outbid you.
Therefore, you need to keep finding new replacements to keep generating cash flow.
You might see people post revenues online but they don’t tell you the net revenue.
Some of them might be making money but it’s not sustainable.
The eCommerce business model is not as passive as you think. Most people who succeed in eCommerce are doing it full time because it requires you to keep finding new products, creating new stores, testing new ads and looking for new suppliers to make your income stable.
Is There an Easier & Better Alternative to Make Money Online?
If you don’t want to waste your time or risk your hard-earned money, you might wonder if there is a better business model that doesn’t need Facebook ads and can do it as a side-hustle.
Yes, I would suggest you get started with affiliate marketing. It is far easier and less time consuming as you don’t even need to handle customer service.
In affiliate marketing, you can run your business almost with zero cost. Most importantly, you don’t need to invest in creating and developing any products.
But How Much Can You Earn in Affiliate Marketing?
A 21-year old student from my #1 recommended training platform of affiliate marketing was able to earn $7,395 in just 1 week, which means he made more than $1k a day…all while using free traffic methods and affiliate marketing.
Wealthy Affiliate has existed for more than 10 years and there are many success stories over the years.
To give you more examples, here are some of the other inspiring success stories of Wealthy Affiliate members.
Where to Join Wealthy Affiliate?
Wealthy Affiliate has a very simple pricing scheme. It has free and premium membership.
If you want to feel about Wealthy Affiliate, you can sign up for the starter membership here (no credit card required). You can select to be a free member with no time limit.
And as a starter member, you can get instant access to the community, live chat, over 500 training modules, 2 classrooms, networking, commenting, 1 free website, access to the keyword tool.
You can enjoy all these values without paying a penny. So I strongly recommend you to register a free account and see it yourself.