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CAREER

How To Start A Successful Online Business

No matter your education level

BY Amahle Melokuhle

Mar 18, 2021, 04:18 PM

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Starting an online business has never been easier, but that ease doesn't automatically mean every business will become successful. Budding entrepreneurs need more than a good idea and fast WIFI speed. While those thinking of taking their existing business online need a clear and concise understanding of the benefits pivoting to an online model will bring.

Some entrepreneurs have found it more cost-effective to run their businesses online due to the fact that they may not need to rent a physical office, they're no longer restricted by geography in their hiring and they can reach a wider audience. 

However, it doesn't automatically become a success as soon as you power up your laptop. Here are some of the things to consider if you want to successfully start and run an online business.

Find your niche product

Let's go back to the beginning - what's your niche product? Just because you can start selling online doesn't mean you should. Before you start your business, it is important to identify what you are actually offering? If you don't quite know what your niche is, start by identifying problems that you've noticed in the area you're interested in and see if you can come up with a solution you can charge for. It might be a product, but it could just as easily be a skill or a package. 

Identify the market 

Now that you know what you're selling it's time to find your customer, who are going to sell to and why do they want to buy from you over anyone else? Once you know who your customer is you can then start identifying your competitors and remember, competitors, aren't just companies doing the exact same as you. Look outside your own area and see who else is offering similar products in a different market - could they impact your sales?

Say your name

In case you are not able to settle on a name, there are a couple of websites such as https://namelix.com/  that can assist you in generating a name based on certain keywords. Considering that your company profile will be online, it is important to ensure that no other company has a similar name to ensure that customers can find you easily.

Domain name

Since you have a name for your business, the next step is to secure a domain name. It does not matter if it may be a while before you are ready to launch, just purchase it so that you can know it’s safe for you to use whenever you are ready. 

Analyze your target clientele

Here you have to dig deeper to understand who your target market is, what are their behaviors?   What are they interested in? And what is the best way to communicate with them? This will help you to ensure that your business plan targets the right audience hence making it easier for your products to sell.

Create an online business plan

Since now you are aware of your business including your clients and the products that you will be selling, it’s definitely a good time to create your business plan. Your plan should include the company’s description, the products/services offered as well its financial projections. This also involves understanding if you would need investors on board.

Prepare enough inventory

You don’t want to launch and then discover that you did not have enough products for the clients and so they have to wait much longer to receive them. However, this step varies depending on what kind of business you are launching but either way you have to ensure that you’re ready to start selling by the time your first customer is ready to purchase.

Create awareness of the product launch

Before launching it makes sense to create awareness that you’re products are about to launch. This can be achieved through teasers, advertisements or exclusively giving the products to influencers and asking them to market the launch date to ensure more traffic during the day.

Launch the product

Finally now the whole world can access your product. It is important to ensure that the website is up and running ready for all the purchases that are coming in.

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