Getting started in business can be a very daunting prospect, but the process can be much easier if you have a clearly defined path before you start.
One of the first questions you need to ask yourself is: Why do you want to start a business? The answers are varied – more money, freedom, entrepreneurial vision, great business idea. Before you even start a business you need to define:
- What you want from the business?
- What are your goals?
- What are your strengths and how can you apply them?
- What are your weaknesses?
Michael Gerber in The e-Myth discusses how many business owners go into business for the wrong reasons and end up being their own worst boss and their worst employee. You need to understand why you are getting started in business.
I talk to many people who say “I would like to open a shop selling (clothes, books, shoes …) because I love (clothes, books, shoes…) but there are many different ways to structure and run a business based around your interests and passions.
The internet opens many other opportunities that were previously not available. Instead of opening a retail store, you could:
- open an online business selling (clothes, books, shoes…)
- start a paid membership site for people you love (clothes, books, shoes…)
- sell other peoples products online.
- or a combination of all of them
Whatever type of business you decide to operate, it is important to choose your niche within that market and develop a valuable unique selling proposition (USP), so that you can clearly define who your target customers are and why they are going to buy from you.
Online or Offline?
Having a website is no longer an optional extra for business. Every business must have a internet marketing strategy if they want to prosper and survive. A simple static website is not enough – you need to have an integrated blog, list building tools, email and social media.
The business environment is continually changing and complex, in order to keep up you need to invest in continuing education in developing your business skills in sales, marketing, time management and accounting.
Getting started in business and growing your business requires planning, dedication and education, but the results can mean it will be the best investment you ever make.