So you have decided to go into business for yourself but are wondering where to start? Well the internet offers umpteen opportunities to the entrepreneur and if you follow the steps given below and with some luck on your side, who knows you could be the next hot shot round the corner.
The Internet Has Infinite Potential
The internet plays a pivotal role today in influencing purchases and services.The traffic generated on the net is growing each day and is enthusing young minds to become entrepreneurs who are eying the internet as a potential source for revenue generation by starting their own enterprises. The most basic requirement for this media is to have a sense of technology and of course business acumen.
Define The Need
Do your homework. Find out what needs and requirements you can fulfill. Find the market for your product or service and half your battle is won. Visit on line groups and determine what kind of solutions are people looking for? Do a keyword analysis and find out which word is often coming up for search, but the sites are limited.
A Clear And Transparent Business Plan
Thereafter prepare a business plan which determines short term and long term goals. Prepare detailed excel sheets on the finances and show the flow of cash – incoming and outgoing.Be clear and transparent. The more detailed and thought-out your plan is the greater the likelihood to attract financiers and capital. The plan should attract attention and should be so lucid that even a lay person sees its potential in becoming a viable business enterprise.
Build An Eye Catching Site
Now build a site. It should be attractive and easy to use. Use great copy that is enticing and can sell what you offer. Program search engines, so that traffic may be driven towards your site. Advertise appropriately. Use advertising on other sites and promote yourself on social media sites and YouTube. Opt for shopping carts and easy payment gateways.
Research And Test Thoroughly
Conduct test research with the target audiences and expose them to the site and advertising and monitor their responses. Collect all the positive criticisms and suggestions and discuss with your technology adviser on how you can incorporate the changes on your site. The research and testing is important because:
1) If a person visits your site and does not have a good experience, in all likelihood will not visit it again or recommend it to others.
2) All technical failures or oversights can be caught and handled in the trials itself instead of going in for corrections or long maintenance afterwards.
Use Tools That Attract More Traffic
The Internet is essentially used to source information. Provide information free to other sites, but embed it with a small nugget of data that includes a link to your website. This way you can drive more audience to visit you. Include opt-in lists (where you get direct permission form the customer to solicit them by sending e-mailers and other messages), send to a friend or share links. This could prove valuable reference points for new visitors/potential customers.
Below The Line Can Also Help
Always keep a tab on the market pulse. Keep tracking your sales and identify areas where you can penetrate better perhaps by conducting below the line activities such as road shows, participation in local events, fairs and so on or other forms of physical advertising to capture more eyeballs.
Eye On Costs
In any business you need to keep a strict control of costs and e-business is no different. Limit expenses, overheads, be judicious and spend wisely. Also taking calculated risks is a part of expected returns. Get a good business structure in place and hedge yourself against risk.
The internet is a great place to do business and an entrepreneur with good business acumen can be very successful on the net in a short time. However as the internet evolves faster than brick and mortar businesses, it is important to constantly analyze and evolve to stay alive and afloat.