What is an Online Business Manager?

office building: what is an online business manager, how to become an online business manager, how much do online business managers make

Have you ever heard of an online business manager? What exactly do they do, and are they in demand? What’s the difference between an online business manager and a virtual assistant? These are all great questions that I’m going to break down so you can make the best decision for yourself and your family. But first, let’s start with the question: “What is an online business manager?”

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So…What is an Online Business Manager?

An online business manager (or OBM, as you may hear more often) helps business owners streamline, organize, and execute business processes so the CEO or owner can focus on other tasks. Seems simple enough, right? Well, there’s a lot that they do.


Operations management is one of the most popular tasks an online business manager does. They oversee the day-to-day operations and functioning of the business, manage projects and teams, and can even improve processes.

Systems and Technology

An OBM is almost like a small business’s IT team! Most businesses rely on various systems and software, so an OBM helps identify, implement, and integrate these tools to help the business become more efficient. Sometimes things go wrong, so they can be the go-to troubleshooting team member of the business.

Team Management

Much like operations and project management, the OBM will act as a liaison between the business owner and the rest of the team. They help with team coordination, task delegation, and ensuring that projects are meeting deadlines. 

office building: what is an online business manager, how to become an online business manager, how much do online business managers make

Strategic Planning

An online business manager will work closely with the business owner to create and execute strategies. They may do market research, identify target audiences, analyze competitors, and can even create action plans to achieve the business goals.

Performance Monitoring

For the success of any business, monitoring key performance indicators (or KPIs) are crucial. An OBM may track and analyze relevant metrics like website traffic, social media analytics, and even customer engagement.

Marketing and Sales Support

Online business managers often help with marketing and sales efforts by managing social media accounts, coordinating campaigns, overseeing email marketing, and even optimize advertising strategies.

Customer Relationship Management

OBMs help maintain strong relationships with customers and clients. They can manage customer and client inquiries, feedback, and support ensuring a positive experience and increasing the business’s reputation.

office building: what is an online business manager, how to become an online business manager, how much do online business managers make

That may have been information overload. If it was, that’s okay! You’re normal! These are just a few tasks that OBMs are tasked with daily, but they vary depending on the size and industry of the business. They micromanage much more than a typical virtual assistant. If you love the ins and outs of business processes and are skilled at keeping a timely schedule, you may want to consider becoming an online business manager!


What’s The Difference Between an Online Business Manager and a Virtual Assistant?

If you’ve ever heard of a virtual assistant, you may be thinking: “okay, but this sounds awfully similar.” Which isn’t wrong! They are both similar, but there are a few differences that you should consider before becoming an OBM or a virtual assistant.


In the hierarchy of OBMs and VAs, online business managers have more responsibilities, higher say, certifications, and possibly a degree in business. OBMs will be responsible for teams, systems, marketing…basically, everything that goes on in a business! OBMs are more proactive in finding tasks, while VAs often have tasks assigned to them or are proactive in a much smaller setting.


Because OBMs have more responsibilities than a VA, they have a high say in what happens in a business. But, because OBMs are so busy, they usually only have one to three clients and micromanage the day-to-day of the businesses. VAs have time to work with more clients, sometimes up to 10, and have more freedom to work on projects on their own time.

Client/Customer Service

As a VA, if you’re not hired specifically for customer/client support, you may not have to deal with that side of your client’s business. However, as an OBM, this is almost expected. You will manage all things emails, contracts, files, and arising issues for your client so they don’t have to. 

office building: what is an online business manager, how to become an online business manager, how much do online business managers make


Yes, OBMs have more work cut out for them than VAs, but they get paid much more. Most great OBMs with certifications, experience, case studies (something that shows what the business looked like before the OBM started working with a client vs. after), and possibly a degree get paid much more than a VA. Most OBMs have packages that start at $3,000/month/client and can be as high as $15,000/month/client, depending on the size of the company and the work that the OBM is expected to do. Most VAs have packages as low as $100/month/client and $1,000/month/client. However, this all depends on the work, responsibilities, hourly rate, experience, and industry. So many things to consider!


How To Become an Online Business Manager

Becoming an Online Business Manager is very similar to becoming a virtual assistant. The only difference is that having certifications, any sort of full-time experience, or a degree in business is highly recommended. Becoming an OBM requires more than a VA. 


But to actually get clients as an online business manager, you should join Facebook groups, talk to your community, and try out Fiverr and Upwork! Build your portfolio by offering services at a discount or even barter (you’ll be an OBM for a clothing company for free shirts for a month).


It may be overwhelming, but you can do it! Take it one step at a time.


Have any questions or comments? Feel free to email me at hello@strivehustles.com

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