The internet has grown to be a huge place for business and commerce. We have seen many successful entrepreneurs started from small venture and become big corporations. Most of them need only a few years to multiply their profits and assets. You could have been thinking about getting your feet in it too.
But how if you’re not really familiar with the online world? And it makes you afraid to move on? Don’t step back though. Any dreams and ideas that scares you could be your big thing in future. It won’t be easy, but you can learn one thing at a time.
Some of the internet businesses don’t require big capital to start. All you need is knowledge, passion and persistence to carry on.
Before starting your venture, let’s read these basic steps on building an online business.
Know and learn your idea
What business do you want to start? Ecommerce? news portal, directory or other services? Remember to only do business based on your passion. If you like fashion, you might want to start a clothing online shop.
Research the online market
Try to learn the basic of getting online, the markets, users’ behaviour, trends and technology. Read some trusted blogs to broaden your knowledge. Get feedbacks from various people to validate your idea. But don’t ask your family and friends, because they might not give you real answers since they are emotionally attached to you. Write down important things in a document for future references.
Learn about internet marketing
Website, blog, social media, online advertising and SEO could be your biggest challenges. You’ll need to get your products or services out in an already crowded online space so people will know about your business and create sales. Your future sales will heavily depend on this online marketing strategy.
Know your competitions
Similar to the offline market, you should search and learn about existing competitors. How many companies are already in the business, how big are they and how you can compete with them. Bring out the uniqueness of your products and services. This uniqueness is the key to your success.
Define your target market
It is much easier to start locally since you only need to learn local competition and research the local market. If you do it globally, your research will be much more complicated, though the market are far larger. So, define your target market clearly and prepare carefully.
Calculate your capital
Before starting, you need to know how much capital you have. You might don’t have enough capital to start and operate the business. If you need more capital, you can consider looking for investment or funding. Try crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter, Indiegogo and Rockethub.
Create your online business plan
After all the above pre-startup works are done, try to documented them in a business plan. State your marketing strategy and ROI clearly. This plan will be your reference to start and operate the business.
All startups are similar to gambling. They all have risks. But if you follow the above tips, you will minimize those risks. The internet has grown to be a virtually big space. If you’re starting a small business online, apply these steps and you’re good to go. If ou’ve been in the online business for a while, try to review and see if there’s any step you haven’t done in the first place.
Share these tips if you find them useful. If you have something to add, do contribute in the comment below.
Wahidin Wong is a digital marketer. He is also a jazz and bossa lover.