“How to Start Your Own Business Online” written and video by Mike Marko.
Are you looking to get started with your own business using the internet… but are hesitant to get started?
Maybe you are not sure what all you need, or have all the resources in place. Or maybe you have been doing research and the more you learn you realize that the more you don’t know… and so you are caught learning and learning more…
These are all common challenges for a lot of people trying to get started with their own business online. That’s why I want to share some tips on how to start your own business online.
How to Start Your Own Business Online
In the following video I talk about how to start your own business online.
VIDEO: How To Start Your Own Business Online
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Steps On How to Start a Business Using The Internet
Step 1. The first step is to decide on what type of business you want to start building. The cool thing about internet businesses is that they can offer products, services or a combination of both. With a “virtual storefront” you can promote your own products or sell products from others using affiliate links. By using tools such as email, web conference and collaborative project management programs you can provide a host of services that include coaching, consulting, accounting or freelance specialties. So determine your business’s offering… what you want to sell… and develop a plan for delivering it — via download, mobile phone ap, “good old fashion” mail, etc.
Step 2. You need a website… start by outlining the details of your website on paper (or I prefer PowerPoint) before building it online. Its very easy for websites to become disorganized so a little planning goes a long way. Make sure you keep your customers in mind as you decide what information will be on the site and how it can be organized so it’s easy to access. Most sites include a home page and then branches to other pages organized by category, such as type of product or business information. Take a look at “competing” sites to borrow ideas (make sure you only borrow ideas because ultimately you want your site to look unique).
Step 3. Obtain needed permits and licenses to operate your business. For example I only need an LLC for my business, but your business may require additional requirements. Check with your local government business office about what’s required in your area. Make sure you ask about filling out a doing-business-as statement if your business name is different from your given name. If you’re going to be selling tangible goods (and not through an affiliate link from another company), you’ll need a sales tax permit to charge sales tax to customers from your own state.
Step 4. You also need to consider having a hosted site vs. a self-hosted site. A hosted site means that your blog is created by someone else, and is hosted and the site maintenance managed by someone else with many other blogs. A self-hosted site means that you can use the blogging themes, fonts and other applications. Both blogs may have your own custom URL mapped to the blog platform. A self-hosted blog may incur much more start-up costs.
Step 5. Purchase a website domain name (the name for your website address… for example I have the domain www.mikemarko.com). Use a domain name that matches your business name.
Step 6. Select a payment processing services to accept credit cards and other virtual payments through your website. If your website is using a shopping cart system, check the system needs to make sure it’s compatibility with the payment processor you want to use. Common payment processors include PayPal and Stripe.
Step 7. Build and launch your business website. If you don’t have a clue on how to build a website (or just don’t have the time) you may want to hire someone to build the site. This is the most expensive option but its also the choice that can help ensure your have a professional-looking site that works. Once your site is up and running, test the pages and features by visiting all of the pages and checking that shopping cart and payment links work.
Step 8. Market your small business website. The Internet has millions of websites… and without promoting your website then it gets lost like a needle in a haystack. To standout, you need to develop a marketing plan that lets consumers know you exist. The first step is to identify your target market and where they can be found online. Then you develop the marketing copy (text) and even video that will show how your product or service solves your market’s problems. Successful Internet marketing strategies also include search engine optimization and submission, writing and distributing articles and social networking. There is a lot involved in marketing your business online… that’s why a lot of businesses hire our services to help them with their marketing online.
Final Thoughts On How to Start Your Own Business Online
Follow these steps to on how to start your own business online. But don’t wait until everything is figured out. Follow each step I outlined and get started right away… you don’t have to know it all before you get started.
Remember if you are struggling with growing your business: we can help.
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