Are you thinking of starting up your own online business? What an exciting adventure and one that brings a lot of benefits with it. Not only will you enjoy the benefit of being able to work flexibly in different locations, but you’ll also enjoy being your own boss and being able to ditch the long commute. Being self-employed you get to choose when you want to go away – no longer will you have to wait for your boss to approve your holiday request.
Starting up your own online business can be a challenge, but one that brings with it plenty of accolades. Whether you want to run an online magazine or an online shop, both will require you to work hard and to be as prepared as possible. The more time you plan and the better prepared you are, the less stressful starting up your own online business will be.
From organising your accountants and setting up your online website to creating social media channels and putting together a brand, there is plenty to think about. To help you, we have put together our guide on things to consider when starting up your own online business.
Arguably the most important element of any online business is their website. Your website is your shop front, it’s what your customers will see every time they visit you, and if it’s great, they will likely buy and visit again. If it’s poor, they may leave in search of one of your competitors. Having a website created for you is very easy and in today’s world, you have plenty of options. You can attempt to create it yourself using a drag-and-drop builder, you could hire a freelancer to do it for you, or if your budget stretches far enough, employ an agency. There is no right or wrong answer to this, it’s down to your preference.
Hire an accountant
The aim of the game for an online business is to generate as much revenue and profit as possible. If your online business is to be a success, you will most likely need an account like Stephen P Higgins CPA Firm. By using an accountant, you can relax knowing your taxes are correct, your expenses are being recorded properly, and that your invoices are being paid. Depending on the accounting firm you choose, you can request they send you monthly reports, to help you keep track of your spending and plan for the future.
Social media channels
In today’s world, your social media channels are almost as important as your website. Social media allows you to keep in touch with your current customers as well as promote and reach new ones. You can share product launches, new articles as well as urgent information that you need to get out there. When choosing which social media channels to sign up for, consider the type of content you are going to create. TikTok is great for video whereas Instagram is ideal for sharing photos. News pieces may benefit from being on Twitter and Facebook. When you start your channel you will have a small following, but over time this following will grow.
Creating your brand identity
Everyone on the web needs a brand identity. Your brand identity represents who you are as a company, it separates you from your competitors as well as attracts customers to engage with you (if done well). Things that make up your brand identity include your logo, the fonts you use, the imagery, and your slogan – if you have one. Depending on how creative you are, you could put your own brand together. If not, it may be worth looking at a professional such as a freelance graphic designer or an agency.
Determine your niche
In business studies, they say you have to have a niche/USP when starting up a business, or that you need to do what someone else is doing but better, in order to succeed. The online business world is vast, with many competitors. For this reason, it’s important you determine your niche before launching. By having a niche you can separate yourself from your competitors, convincing customers to engage with you. The better your niche, the easier this will be.
Conduct market research
How do you know your online business is a good idea? Have you conducted any market research to see what your potential customers think of your online business? Research is so important, you may think you have a great idea, but when reaching out to others, it turns out it’s not as good as you think. Alternatively, your idea could turn out to be a great idea and your market research shows this! When setting up, put aside a small budget that you can use towards conducting market research.
Write a business plan
A lot of people assume a business plan is only for physical businesses like a high street shop or a barbershop/salon, but this isn’t the case. Every business, including an online business, should have a business plan. It helps you to plan for the future as well as think in depth about your idea. If you ever need to get some investment, you will certainly need a business plan if you are to be successful.
As you can see, there are plenty of things to consider when starting up your own online business. Start by completing a few of the points and once done, then work on another. Try to give yourself plenty of time before launching as this will help reduce the stress and pressure on yourself – as mentioned above, the more preparation you give yourself, the less stressful starting up will be (although, you can never completely remove all the stresses involved).
What tips do you think would help someone start up their own online business? Which of the above tips do you think is most helpful? Are there any tips that you think we should add to our list? Please let us know in the comment box below, we would love to hear from you.