Tips For Starting an Online Business

How does an online business differ from a brick-and-mortar one? In some ways, not much at all. In other ways, it differs a great deal. For example, you’ll need to build trust with customers and clients you may never meet face to face. You’ll also need to be particularly savvy about the use of social media, search engine optimization and tracking your digital marketing strategies. You can get your online business up and running with the tips below.

Think Digital Footfall

Most companies need at least a minimal web presence these days while some will have a dedicated digital marketing strategy and team. However, in your case, you will primarily be relying on your online presence. For you, footfall means not potential customers passing your store but the people who might wander past you online. However, unlike brick-and-mortar businesses, no one ever has to walk past your storefront, meaning that you will need to come up with ways to make yourself visible to others before they first visit your website. This could mean establishing a presence on social media platforms, writing guest posts on blogs and creating content on your site that is optimized for high search engine ranking so that people know you’re out there.

Have Your Cashflow

One of the best things about starting an online business is that in many cases, you don’t have to spend much more than the cost of a domain to set up shop. However, the truth is, you nearly always have to spend money to make money, and you can operate more effectively if you aren’t on a shoestring budget. You can dip into your savings to help support your endeavors, or there might be other options. For example, did you know that you could potentially sell your life insurance policy for cash? Use a life settlement calculator to find out how much your policy is worth. This could potentially be enough to fund your entire business and keep you afloat for a while.

Be Social Media Savvy

You can pay other people to handle social media if you prefer, and you should do so if you really don’t know anything about how to succeed on these platforms and what pitfalls you should avoid. However, whether you are going to manage the social media accounts yourself or turn them over to someone else, you should still have a good broad sense of what does and doesn’t work and what your policies will be. For example, it’s generally a big mistake to get into a big argument with a customer over a bad review. Instead, you should try to turn this into an opportunity to show your excellent customer service skills. On the other hand, what if someone launches an angry social media campaign against you? This is not uncommon, and you should have a crisis plan in place if this occurs that will help minimize any damage.

Use Tools for Measurable Results

There are myriad tools that can help you track customer behavior and what types of marketing they respond to. Be sure to use them, because this will provide you with the solid data that you need in order to assess which approaches are working best and which ones aren’t working at all.

Adam Hansen

Adam is a part time journalist, entrepreneur, investor and father.