Are you interested in starting a small business and slowly moving towards full time self-employment?
You are right to consider this lifestyle, since working for yourself has a lot of perks: you are in total control of your time and income potential, can travel and take care of your kids, get more rest and taking advantage of more opportunities.
If you are considering starting your small business, here are few tips to do it properly:
Study your competition closely
Even if your business idea seems to be one of a kind, chances are somewhere in the world someone is running a similar one.
Search online for your business and see what you can find.
By studying your competition (even companies that are on the other side of the world, so they are not direct competitors to you), allows you to understand your niche even better, see what’s missing in this industry and what you can come up with.
Are your competitors making any mistakes? Do they have an incomplete service offer? Do you think you can come up with better prices or services?
By studying your competition you can get a lot of ideas, from how to structure your offers to what keywords to target on your search engine optimization work.
Get a responsive website designed for your business
Going into business without a website is like running with ski boots on. You do move forward, but it’s slowly and painful, compared to how you’d spring if you got the proper type of shoes.
Studies show that over 70% of the people who search online for products and services use mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets.
Many outdated websites are still created for desktop computers only and they display horribly on phones, making it almost impossible for people to use them.
This is why it’s mandatory to get a proper responsive website design for you and choose a smart domain name. Don’t use Wix or other similar free website builders, they are a waste of time for your business.
They might seem like a good deal now, as you start, but the website you can build there is so badly designed and coded that it will ruin your online marketing for years to come.
Get a solid foundation from the start and you can build on it.
Invest money on your business
Don’t splurge on fancy office space and a luxury car from the start, these are most likely useless for your immediate success.
Invest in a properly designed website and a smart marketing campaign, though, since these are the engines that will drive your business to success.
Do you need any special tools for your business? Find out which have the biggest impact on how you can deliver your products/services and buy what you need.
A car repairman will slowly build a tool box to deliver the best services for his clients. A web designer will invest in software and courses to be able to deliver a top service to their clients. A cook will buy an excellent stove and source out the best ingredients for the recipes etc.
Network with complementary businesses
I have an online friend who’s killing it as a web hosting provider. He’s smart, he’s dedicated and offers an excellent service.
During the years I helped my web design clients get a great hosting experience by recommending his services. He proved to be a great choice, all my clients are still hosting their websites on his servers and speak fondly of their experience together.
Since he’s not a web designer, but his clients need website design services from time to time, guess who’s the web designer he recommends?
We have complementary services: I design websites and he is hosting them and, since both of us are doing a good job in our industry, we cross-promote and help our clients get a great hosting deal and a good design service.
Don’t be shy, make friends in your industry and other related ones. Even your direct competitors might refer clients to you, when they have way too much work on their plate, just like you’ll most likely do, when it’s your turn to be booked solid.
These are just 4 tricks to start your small business on the right foot and slowly build from there. What else would you add?