ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Know If Your Business Idea Will Work

Updated on April 15, 2020
tamarawilhite profile image

Tamara Wilhite is a technical writer, an industrial engineer, a mother of two, and a published sci-fi and horror author.


Before you quit your day job, how can you determine that business idea is viable? How will you know whether or not a market exists? After all, you can have a lot of ideas, most of which won’t pan out. And you want to know which ones will pan out before you start a business that fails, as most of them do.

You must identify customers who will pay for what you are offering.
You must identify customers who will pay for what you are offering. | Source

What You Must Do to Know If the Idea Will Work

First, imagine your potential customers. This isn't going to be everybody but the few who will want to buy what you are intending to offer. What do they want? What do they need? Never start a business because you want to be in the middle of the subject, like starting a sports bar because you want to talk about sports all day. Don’t start a daycare just because you like children.

The key is knowing what your ideal customer is willing to pay for you to do for them. For example, I knew someone who worked in the wellness and nutrition area. This is a wide field, but she knew the market and the customers very well. She couldn’t initially see how to create a business in this area. We first identified her ideal customer, the client she wanted to target. What problems did that person face, and which would they be willing to pay well for someone to solve them? We looked at the problems they faced and business ideas that could be presented as solutions to those problems. These had to be serious problems or widespread ones many need resolved that don’t have a lot of competition.

You cannot and should not market to an amorphous "everyone" or "anyone".
You cannot and should not market to an amorphous "everyone" or "anyone". | Source

Identifying your ideal customer and understanding their challenges gives you the confidence that your business idea is viable. First, this ensures that there is a paying market. Second, it identifies the consumer profile to which you will be marketing the product or service. You need to have information about the market before you even bother investing in the business, and you need the second to successfully market the product.

How do you do this with regard to your own business idea? First, write down all your ideas. You’ll ideally have dozens of ideas to mix and match, test against various customer niches. You could have multiple products to offer to a small market or one product that fits a niche that no one else serves. But you want to have many options to consider before you say they aren’t really a good option. Don’t censor yourself. What seems silly or impossible now may be a breakthrough now, especially if combined with something else. You can always improve upon it later.

When you can’t come up with ideas, write down your frustrations, the problems you wish were solved. If you have this problem, surely others will do, and some will pay you to solve it for them. Listen to others’ complaints, too, since that is a potential market.

Think about your ideal customer. Where do they live? What do they do for a living, or how do they earn an income? How do they spend their free time? How do they find out about new products, whether it is word of mouth of other parents or in store advertising when they are shopping? Get specifics, like new parents taking advice from parents with a little more experience and solved the problem the new parents are having. Put yourself in their shoes and consider what they would consider to be important. For new parents, getting the baby to stop crying faster is the highest priority, so any solution must be immediate or nearly so. For busy working adults, convenience and time savings are what they value most. For stay at home parents, low cost typically trumps convenience. Understand their problems and how they would consider it solved.

Understand your prospects so that you can better sell your product or service to them. It can help to imagine the customer as a family member or friend, so you can better relate to them. Write down a profile of that person in detail, from a profile of how they live to what they want their lives to be. Then you can understand how to offer a product or service to them to buy, and the channels and positioning that will make them want to buy it. If you can imagine the person and how you’d present the product to them so they say of course I’d want that item/service to solve this problem, you have both your market and your marketing plan.

If you can do this, you know your business idea will work.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)