Starting An Internet Business
Starting an internet business can be a challenging task. From checklists to marketing, SEO to business plans, figuring out how to do it all can be tough.
However, starting an internet business can be one of the most rewarding things you will ever do. There is too much spam online that tells you how you can make thousands of dollars all while sitting on your couch. I refuse to add to that clutter.
This is an article that will help unpack what is involved in starting up an internet business, explain the different types of start up online businesses and give you the tools you need to start working on your online business today.
Let's get started...
How likely are you to startup your own company online?
Starting an Internet Business- The Basics
Organized people live and die by their to-do lists. If you are not a "to-do" kind of person, call it something else and do it anyway! Pen will have to meet paper and hands will have to work to get your online business up and running.
Everything begins in the conceptual stage, that is, your brain. Get a notepad out and begin writing. Write what you'd like to do, where you'd like to see yourself in five years, how you would like to run your business.
If you need help brainstorming ideas for your startup company, begin writing about the following ideas and then see what you come up with:
- Tasks at your current job
- A need you have seen at some point (like the need for -insert witty comment here-)
- Your passions
- Your talents
- Something you enjoy thinking about
Take a look at your paper and see what you've written down. Does anything jump out at you? Does something really get you passionate? What could you turn into a website business online?
After you have figured out these questions, you are ready to move on to the next step.
Starting an Internet Business- Solidify the Major Details
At this stage in the game, you aren't going to have everything figured out yet. And don't worry- that's completely normal.
What you should have is a basic idea of what your website will be about and what you want to accomplish. Use these thoughts to solidify some basic details about your business:
- How will I make money? (This is the most important question. Will you earn by selling ad space on your website, by selling a product or information you provide or by selling someone else's products)
- What will my website look like? (You don't have to have everything nailed down, but a general idea is needed at this point)
- What sort of goals do I want to accomplish? (This is also a very important question, but more will be said of this later. For now, keep in mind some general goals.)
- How much money will I need to launch my business? (time to crunch the numbers!)
This is a good place to start, but add more details as you think of them. Remember to always write things down so you have a record of what you're doing and where you're going.
Online Business and the Importance of your URL
Choosing a website's URL is vital. If you don't know what a URL is, read wikipedia's article on the topic.
Think carefully about the url you would like, then go purchase it from godaddy or another reputable website. You should easily be able to purchase it for $10 a year or less.
Here are some things to keep in mind before buying a URL:
- Pick a website name that is easy to remember
- Try to get a website that helps describe what your business is about (If you want to sell birth announcements, name your company something like "Birth Announcements 4 Baby" not "Janet-Birth-An")
- If possible, try to buy the .com, .net and .org sites with the same name so a competitor doesn't steal them from you later
Starting an Internet Business- Set Some Goals
Now that you know what you want to do for an online business and you purchased a URL, get serious about setting some goals for your business. Get out that notebook again and write down some specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely goals (S.M.A.R.T. goals).
What kind of traffic are you expecting from your new business? What google page rank do you want to achieve in a year? By when would you like to complete your first sale?
Final Thoughts on Launching an Internet Business Venture
Do not underestimate search engine optimization (SEO) and internet marketing. One of the biggest keys to being successful online is to market yourself well. If you want sales you will need traffic and if you want traffic you need a solid marketing plan. Spend a good amount of time figuring out a step-by-step marketing program for yourself and six months down the road you will be thankful you did.
Launching a business can be a very difficult task. Remember to take everything step by step and do not get discouraged. I've done it plenty of times in the past and I have helped many clients do it as well. Slow and steady wins the race so don't burn yourself out early by sprinting.