9 Tips Before You Start Your Own Business

So, you want to be your own boss? Want to set up your own e-shop, eke out a living as a merchant, an entrepreneur, a dreamer? Here are a few helpful tips to get you started:

 

1. Have a vision, yes, but make sure to create a business plan too.

Vision is good, yes. But so is having a solid business plan. This includes deciding on your product and industry. Are you going to offer products or services? Your business plan should also cover your budget. Do you have enough capital to keep you afloat while you wait for customers to take a chance on your product? Do you have a list of financing options if you need money for your capital? Are you eligible for a loan?

 

2. Know about labor cost controls.

Unless the business is quite small, you’re going to need somebody to help you out. The kind of assistance that stocks up the products on display or cleans the room while you create a budget or think of a marketing plan to promote awareness and recognition of your business. You won’t be able to do all of it alone. Besides, having someone else in the shop frees up your time and allows you to do other, more important things regarding the business, especially in terms of determining future plans and direction. All you have to do is to really look into the cost so you know how much help you can afford and how much you should first do on your own.

 

3. Find your customers.

Do you have a specific demographic in mind? Or are you just shooting at random customers, hoping someone will take a chance on your product? If you are, stop that right now and start doing targeted marketing. Targeted marketing doesn’t mean that you try to catch the attention of anyone who’d care to listen. You’re more selective than that. You want customers who’ll buy from you. So think of your product’s main audience or demographic and start there.

 

4 Choose a domain name.

Your domain name is one of the first things that customers find out about you. So make sure to pick the kind of domain name that they won’t be able to resist. It has to have easy recall, has to connect to your product and industry and has to be unique enough that yours would be the first business they think of when someone mentions the name. 

 

5. Build a site.  

There are plenty of available web-solutions you can use for this step. You could go for packages that offer you everything you need to turn an empty, ecommerce site into the perfect e-shop for you. Or you could sign up for free content systems. However, both options offer their own set of advantages and disadvantages. Make sure you know which solution is better for you in the long run. Monthly charges might not sound so great in the beginning but if the tradeoff is you get a fully-functioning site, customized with features you like and that make your life as an entrepreneur easier, wouldn’t you take it?

 

6. Make that site mobile.

Starting an online shop as an extension of your own store to drive more sales and more people to your door is a great marketing move. However, don’t forget to ensure that your site is mobile-friendly. With many customers today choosing to shop via their smartphones, you could end up losing quite a lot of potential sales if you don’t have your content ready for mobile. To make sure, always check your site using different platforms—through tablets, laptops and mobile devices. This way, you can see if a page isn’t a aligned or if it doesn’t fit the screen.

 

7. Pick a payment service.

One more thing you need to decide on is the payment service for your online shop. There are quite a number of online payment services like Shopify you can choose from. However, you’re not just choosing one for you, you’re choosing one for your customers as well. Make sure you sign up for a payment service that offers your customers the security and flexibility they need.

 

8. Start marketing efforts for your site and products.

To ensure that you’re running effective marketing and PR campaign strategies, have controls in place. Track and monitor results. Don’t leave everything to hope. You’ve got to learn every bit of consumer data you can. Doing so will give you the insight you need to provide the kind of solutions your customers will love.

 

9. Develop a crisis plan.

This might seem too early but you should also create a crisis plan, one that you can use in times of emergency. Having this kind of back-up allows you to protect your business and your team in the event that an accident or devastating storm happens. It helps to be prepared for anything.

 

These are just a few tips on how you could launch your own ecommerce site. Good luck on discovering more on your own!

 

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