12 WAYS TO A SUCCESSFUL INTERNET BUSINESS
We are in a connected world today. The internet, along with smart phones, has changed the way business is done. Here are some ways to run a successful online business.
- Organize Your Web Assets
This extends much further than just organizing your business. Your web assets are everything from your website to your social media profiles to your hosting account. These need to be in order. All relevant assets should be optimized for your brand. For example, your social media and webpages should have the relevant keywords. They should fall into an integrated marketing plan. And they should be completely updated with the latest information about your company.
- Keep Proper Customer Records
One problem business owners have is that they need to be able to keep records safely. You have a legal obligation to protect any customer information obtained online. For example, you should store information on separate devices and have a number of secure backups. Your systems must be kept updated and controls should be implemented and access should be restricted only to specific employees. You should have a system in place to destroy things like credit card details securely when they’re no longer needed.
- Know your Competition
Any good business will know its competition. You need to know who you’re competing against so that you know why customers choose you over others, or vice versa. Nowhere is this more important than in the online world. You should be aware of social media channels your competition is using. And you should inspect keyword usage from all your competitors using the variety of tools Google provides.
- Protect Your Brand’s Online Reputation
Online business is all about reputation. The slightest mistake can taint your brand forever. The key is control. Setup a Google Alerts notification for your brand. That way, you’ll be able to inspect any mention of your brand. Have a firm set of branding and social media guidelines, so anyone posting on behalf of your brand is aware of what you expect from them. Learn to deal with customer complaints and adopt a mindset of solving problems; even if the customer is wrong.
- Invest on a good internet connectivity
If you are online, you need a good internet connection. Sometimes, I’ve sacrificed on a good internet connection, only to realize I couldn’t act fast on important orders. Without a fast internet connection, you could miss out on orders and customer questions. In short, your business could be paralyzed.
- Have a big idea
Have a big great idea of your own. You have to really capture the imagination of your audience, and give them something that they really want – even if they didn’t know they wanted it until you came along. If you have a basic idea, work on it and come up with a unique selling point which will make you stand out. Just check out these 3 odd, yet successful online businesses you would have never of thought would be a success, yet they are.
- Set yourself Up
The first thing you will want to do is choose a business name, but before you go telling everyone, make sure the domain name is actually available. If you can’t get the domain name your after you’ll have to look at alternatives. Thankfully, new domain extensions are becoming available, so if the .com for your business name is already taken, there are now over 1,000 top level domains available to help you find one to suit your business.
- Create Your Brand Image
Alongside your new domain, it’s time to get set up on social media. Claim the name of your business everywhere you can, even if you don’t intend to use them all at once. It’s better to have the name reserved to prevent someone else getting hold of it first. You should also create a logo that represents your brand well, a brand colour scheme, and a tone of voice with which you will communicate with your customers.
- Get Out There – Create Publicity
Even if you are still waiting for your website to be built, it’s time to get out there on social media. Start following people, putting up previews of what you will sell or what’s going on behind the scenes, and generating interest. Respond to comments as much as possible so that people can see you are a keen start-up with lots going on. The more interest you have in your website at launch, the better – you can even start building a mailing list now ready to send out first-day offers.
- Follow the Latest Trends
The trend is your friend. The online world is one that is constantly changing and evolving. It evolves faster than anything you’ll see in the real world. Furthermore, you’ll see social media trends evolving all the time. You need to be on top of this so you can be on the cutting edge of online marketing and branding.
- Be Persistent
Few businesses become overnight success stories. This is something you’ll have to accept if you want to enter the business world. Persistence will pay off in the end if you continue to do all the right things. You need to be consistent and stay focused on your goals. Did you know most startups take three to five years before they start turning in a profit?
- Know When to Call It Quits
Sometimes an idea will fail. The biggest challenge for an entrepreneur is to know when an idea has failed. It’s no point trying to revive a dead duck. So don’t be scared to change course if necessary.
In Conclusion, running a business is inherently risky. Taking the time to learn and evolve is one of the best investments you can make to mitigate these risks.