If it’s always been your dream to start and manage your own company, there is no better time to start than the present. Costs of entry are at an all-time low when working from home using a website that’s seen globally that can turn your hobby or invention into an online business. However, do not convince yourself that success is assured and there’s low risk involved.
In fact, you should know that 50 percent of new businesses fail within the first four years, even for companies with substantial startup budgets. No matter your budget size, there are proven strategies that will help increase success chances. Here are some of the key ones recommended by advisors and successful entrepreneurs.
Choose an Appropriate Business Name
Apart from the local and legal requirements, you have to choose a business name that works well as a website domain name. The name should also work with your social media channels like Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. Also, ensure that it has no adverse implications in any foreign culture or language.
Offer Useful Online Content
A website that your customers cannot find will not help you. Your clients expect to see your site somewhere on the first page of search engines. The only way to do this is by using relevant keywords and regular new content with in and outbound site links – consider focusing on video, sound, layout, and usability. It’s smart to designate part of your budget to SEO consulting services.
Budget for Marketing
For a sustainable business to thrive, no matter what you are promoting – from baby diapers to specialized services like prototyping – Weiss-Aug, word-of-mouth marketing will not work. Any marketing, including search engine optimization, social media support, viral marketing, and click-through will cost money. You need to assess the cost versus value continuously to achieve the best returns on a low budget.
Engage With Customers via Social Media
Hosts of businesses tend to ignore social media, others are listening to only one channel, while the best will continually talk and listen to their customers and potentials. Today’s customer is looking for more than just transactions; they are looking for relationships. They want to know more about you before they recommend you to friends and family.
Focus on Memorable Customer Experiences
Your business’ customer service should be more than just about solutions to problems. Customer service starts the moment a customer starts looking for a solution to a problem they have, extending all the way to following up on transactions. A delighted customer is your best advocate, bringing in more clients than any advertising would.
Personally, Manage Your Cash Flow
A massive number of customer orders might feel like a success but may also kill your business fast! Especially if you don’t have the cash to create the product and deliver on time while covering receivables. The best business owner will manage cash flow ruthlessly without delegating decisions and using simple tools like spreadsheets you can download from Clockspot to manage time and cost.
Measure Against Specific Objectives
While surviving the daily business challenges that come your way is significant, it’s not an efficient method of measuring the success of your business. Instead, have specific growth targets and put into action metrics for charting your progress. Update your objectives and implementation plan at least on a quarterly basis.
Therefore, while getting into business today is relatively low cost, it does not mean that you will achieve business success so quickly. A low-cost entry should not lure you into the trap of a false sense of security. From the experience of others, the key strategies and principles identified above will contribute to long-term business sustainability and satisfaction.