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6 Foolproof Steps to Launching a Unique Online Business

6 Foolproof Steps to Launching a Unique Online Business

In a market that is saturated and filled with strong competitors, you need to come up with a practical but unique idea for a business. Trying to find a business model that fits your skills, doesn’t make you want to kill yourself at the end of the day, is profitable and has room for development isn’t an easy task.

However, there’s a pattern you may follow which can make things a whole lot easier for you. Starting your own business is a risky move and you’ll need to invest your time, money and yourself to ensure that it works out as planned. If you’re ready to go the distance, you should know it’s worth it.

1. Make Sure There Is Market Demand

Many brilliant minds of the past ages have been a center of mockery because the world wasn’t prepared for them. Let’s remember the most obvious example for this claim – people thought Earth was the center of the universe for very, very long time and to say otherwise was to be labeled as a heretic or madman.

My point is that even if you do have a revolutionary business model or an innovation of some kind in mind, you need to make sure that people are ready for it. Therefore, make sure that there’s a demand on the market that can enable you to develop your startup and work your way up from there.

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2. Budget Distribution

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    Even if you do have a great idea and you can wiggle into the world of business thanks to market demand, you can still end up bankrupt, if you don’t know how to handle your money. As a business leader, you need to be prepared for various outcomes and you need to think several steps ahead and count various different factors into your equation, so you’re practically able to predict the future of your business.

    Startups are all about prioritizing – there’s no room in the budget for nothing more than necessary. Other than covering paychecks, your budget also needs to be distributed to utilities, rent, inventory, and promotions.

    3. Get together a Professional Squad

    Team assembly might be the most troubling step here. If you’re starting out with an acquaintance or perhaps a friend, it might be easier for you because you’re already familiar with someone’s skills and abilities – you have more than just an unfamiliar resume and a stranger’s word backing it up.

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    The fact you’re only just beginning with your business implies that you don’t have enough money to pay for experts to work for you. The chances are you’ll employ young people who lack experience but compensate that by being eager to work and earn money.

    Your best chance is to build a small team as soon as possible and transfer your work ethics to them – values you share with them will be the glue that holds you together through both the good things and the bad. On the other hand, a lack of those values will create anarchy, lack of authority and team spirit, which is one certain path to imminent bankruptcy.

    4. Create a Unique Proposition

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      Experts claim how the most important thing to build your business around is differentiation. Let me draw you a little picture; when a person who is in need of a service they have never used before start browsing for a proposal, they won’t be able to tell you apart from your competitors. You need to give them a strong reason to remember you and find you unique.

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      First of all, you need to strive towards profiling your ideal customer. Once you figure out their characteristics, the next step is to fashion your business around them. Applying this strategy to your business will enable it to grow in the right direction from the very beginning, which is quite efficient. If you create a functional version of your business in the beginning, it won’t be necessary for you to make big changes later.

      5. Take Your Online Presence Seriously

      Even if you already own a brick-and-mortar business, launching your business online is paramount – if you’re not present on the internet, you don’t exist. Your website is your business card and everyone who gets there by browsing online will make judgments based on what they see.

      When making a website, you need to stick to the current trends, but don’t try to implement all of them because that can only create a mess. The selection of design options you decide to go with need to be in accordance with what you do and be capable of showcasing your offer in the finest light.

      However, it’s not just what’s on the surface but also what’s beneath it. When trying to decide about your tech support, you need to do thorough research in order to select a good hosting option based on reviews and make sure it fits your budget. Be very confident that your visitors won’t waste their time trying to load a single page of your website if it takes too long, and be sure that they will turn to your competitor in a matter of seconds.

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      6. Tweak according to Feedback

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        Social networks are your most trustworthy partner when it comes to business development. Managing your profiles on these platforms is something that needs to be handled carefully; these accounts will be a way for your audience to reach out to you, leave their comments and share you with the rest of the world.

        The feedback you receive through these mediums should be most precious to you, whether it be a praise, suggestion or a simple complaint – you should look at reviews as if they were pointers for further changes. Even the finest tweak you plan on making should be based on profiling your ideal customer and trying to meet their needs and possibly predict them.

        Following these steps will enable you to transfer from a startup to a full-fledged small business quicker – each of them is a growth hacking method based on sound business logic. One last piece of advice; you should take risks only when necessary, but don’t hesitate from being brave enough to follow your gut when you’re most certain that’s the right thing to do.

        Featured photo credit: https://www.pexels.com/u/kaboompics/ via pexels.com

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        Ivan Dimitrijevic

        Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

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        Last Updated on June 1, 2020

        How to Start an Online Business That Will Grow and Succeed

        How to Start an Online Business That Will Grow and Succeed

        There are thousands of free guides available online on how to start an online business. However, the most valuable lesson they never discuss is that starting a new business online is probably going to fail.

        Successful professionals that excel at some point with a venture never gave up, had a passion for creating a meaningful service or product idea, and never stopped trying.

        Starting a business is a great opportunity for anyone with a passion to work on something you never get tired of. If people like coming to you for advice or to help them with work-related tasks, then you have the necessary skills and experience to start a business.

        In addition, if you have a curiosity about services and products, maybe you have the capacity and capabilities to create something more innovative.

        In the next section, we will comprehensively examine the core elements in starting a business. They will not necessarily catapult you to create Google, Facebook, or Apple, but they will guide you on how to start an online business.

        1. Remember That the Likelihood of Your Business Failing Is High

        Building a product or service is a process that takes a lot of time, so do not think that successful CEOs did it with the snap of their fingers.

        According to the Small Business Association (SBA), only 30 percent of businesses will fail in the first two years and 50 percent will probably stay open in the first five years.[1] It is something to think about when launching your online business.

        However, this does not mean you should be discouraged, and it’s actually a valuable lesson to fail since it will give you clues on what to do right the next time.

        2. Focus on Your Audience and Targeted Niche Market

        One of the most difficult things is figuring out who your customers are and tailoring your product or service for them. Depending on your available resources and the size of your network, the scale of your venture will be contingent on this. Knowing your targeted niche is important in knowing how to start an online business.

        If you are launching a business, will you go the retail route or create an online store? Will your service satisfy the needs of a startup, small business, enterprise, or corporation? There is no right or wrong answer.

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        Think about your audience and what the size of your customer base will be. Without knowing your customers, you cannot start a business.

        3. Conduct a Lot of Research and Examine the Segment of Your Potential Market

        Depending on the sort of business, you will have to do hours of research and ask a lot of questions. It helps a lot to look at specific companies or businesses to get an idea of how they started.

        This may be a daunting task for some, and there are other avenues to explore to assist you with building a business. The web has tons of resources and you can check out Fundera’s list of 50 tools to help grow your business.[2]

        In addition, you must tap into a reliable business networking list of people to guide you on how to start an online business.

        4. Tap Into the Reach of Social Media and Expand Your Message

        Gone are the days of paying expensive advertising budgets. Thanks to social channels like Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook, businesses can advertise for free. On the other hand, you can spend and create marketing campaigns on those different platforms.

        Figure out which one is best suited to your needs and where that audience is active. When your online business has figured out where its message has the most impact and when your customers are responding to your message, then you know you are in the right place.

        5. Network With Influencers and Brand Your Company on an Optimized Blog

        Depending on the size of the organization and the number of employees, you may need to consider networking in the initial phases. If you want to know how to start an online business, then you should also learn how to network with influencers.

        Social media is a valuable tool, and you can reach out to brand influencers depending on the line of products or services you wish to promote. Gone are the days of just putting an advertisement campaign and expecting a big return. Instead, you now have to create partnerships and blog about your branded efforts.

        Make sure you have an optimized blog with search engine optimization (SEO) tools built-in, so you can focus on attracting customers and followers.

        6. Create a Monetization Plan Tailored to Your Products and Services

        Whether you are a startup, small business, enterprise, or a large company, you have to be strategic with your company efforts. Do you have an omni-channel strategy in place to attract clients and potential business?

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        In other words, you must have the integration with your site and selected social media channels to generate revenue from products or services.

        Believe it or not, not having a clear investment plan on how you will generate business is one factor often overlooked by starting businesses. The technology is there and depending on your institutional resources, you will have to look at a couple of vendors to see which one gets you the best value for your company.

        7. Monitor Your Progress and Schedule Meetings Weekly

        When your business is live online, you need to monitor progress. You must look at your data, key performance indicators (KPIs), and financials to see how your company is progressing over time.

        This is a very different mindset when you are in a large company, but an average-sized online business has to do housekeeping procedures. The products or services advertised online are just one part of the equation.

        Are you attracting customers? Are your interactions with clients translating to transactions or conversion?

        These questions can only be answered by looking at your data and financial statements. When you can compare both, you will have an excellent understanding of the current state of affairs.

        8. Once You Have Refined Your Online Product or Service, Officially Launch Your Business

        Once you have more or less found the online product or service to serve customers, you are ready for prime time.

        As long as your monetization plan lines up carefully with your investment, you can go live with your business. This can be in the form of an official announcement via your site, hosting a live event, or reaching out to media outlets to plug your company launch.

        There is no right or wrong way to go about his process. But make sure that the state of the company propels you to launch the online service or product.

        9. Once Your Business is Growing, Retain Customers and Attract New Ones

        Having customers at the beginning is crucial for an online business. In fact, it is important for any business period.

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        For the customers who have decided to adopt or buy your service, make sure you are delivering above and beyond customer service. They will not only continue to buy services, but they will also likely recommend your service to others. So, go the extra mile to thank them for their business.

        If possible, develop perks programs and giveaways since customers enjoy the red carpet and celebrity treatment.

        10. Use Social Media Networks Ethically and Steer Away From Shady Business Practices

        It is tempting to use several social media platforms and buy fake followers. The problem is if the business is a lot bigger than it seems, it will come back to haunt you.

        There is nothing more embarrassing or outright unprofessional than having thousands of followers who never interact with the posts you share. Unfortunately, social media has lost credibility when it comes to building fake followers and fake news. So, do not fall in the trap of trying to grow your brand artificially.

        Aim for organic followers. This means having real customers following you and engaging your brand in authentic ways.

        11. Continue Tracking the Results of the Business

        Meetings are essential to tracking the state of affairs and the state of your staff. These meetings should also include tracking the performance as a result of your online business (product or service).

        Are the results positive? Are they negative? Are they producing productive results?

        Analytics is vital to understanding how the business is performing, so make sure you can get a snapshot of where you are at. Successful businesses cover their tracks and that includes looking at the bottom line performance of their product or service.

        12. Utilize Search Engines to Attract Targeted Customers to Your Site

        There are advertising systems and price tiers for the different social networks, but search engines like Google and Bing are still important.

        Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is offered in tiers through the Google search engine and Microsoft’s search engine Bing. This remains one of the simplest and most effective ways to generate traffic to a brand new site.

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        As reported by Entrepreneur, the PPC offers two advantages. One advantage is that PPC ads show up on the search pages right away. The second one is it allows you as a business to test different keywords including headlines, prices, and selling approaches.[3]

        13. Provide Expert Advice and Testimony Through Different Mediums

        It can be challenging to get brand visibility when you are a brand business. However, if you have some significant knowledge and expertise in your company product or service, you should offer insight. This means you can publish a blog post with powerful visuals, an infographic, a webinar, a YouTube video, etc.

        The idea is to plug your service but make it an interesting testimony that tells a story. It is not enough to tell the story of your product, but you have to connect with popular culture if possible.

        Be creative and take risks because that may be the difference between success and failure.

        14. An Online Business Cannot Succeed Without Effective Email Marketing Strategies

        When you are compiling customer data, one of the most valuable pieces of information is a phone number and particularly an email address.

        With an email, you can build an opt-in list. This list allows you to create newsletters or announcements to be sent to their inbox for exclusive offers.

        You can set up a provider or a third party to analyze customer interactions with your email offers. What it will provide your business is cost opportunity and it is cheaper than print, TV, or radio.

        Final Thoughts

        After you have found your calling in building a product or service, start putting the building stones to create your service and product. It needs to solve a problem that no other business offers. If you are about solving problems, an online business is a right venture for you.

        Launching an online business is a complicated undertaking, so do not expect instant results. Building a successful online business takes time, investing money, and developing a service that makes a profit.

        Finally, make sure you have the available resources and a reliable team that will accompany you throughout your journey. They need to be loyal and have to bring something unique to your big idea.

        Take risks and fail early because these experiences are the foundations for launching a successful company.

        More Tips for Aspiring Entrepreneurs

        Featured photo credit: Olu Eletu via unsplash.com

        Reference

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