Starting a business can be challenging, especially if it is a pure online business. For small business owners building an online business there can be many benefits, including lower overhead costs. Online businesses have one disadvantage – you will be competing with many other online businesses for customers’ hard-won attention.
So, with that said, how do you start a successful online business? Discover five tips that can help make your online business stand out on Wide World Web and help you achieve the goals you have set for your online business start-up.
1. Be authentic
Your business is an extension of you, no matter how small or big it may seem at present. How people perceive your brand and the way they feel about your online business will determine whether or not your young online business sinks or swims. Be true to your values in every aspect of your business, from customer service to product creation to marketing to sourcing to back-office administration.
When building a business online be sure to personally verify all communications and advertising. Customers will have high expectations about your products and services. Negative reviews and customers being sceptical of fakes can cause problems for your online company.
Authenticity is the key here. Be the person you really are, whether that be sophisticated or simple. You are who you are, so don’t worry about changing that. Only you know what works best for you and your customers, so project confidence and authenticity through all facets of your new online business. If your business is going through a rough patch, you may consider creating a persona that represents your brand and helps to humanise it.
2. Aim to under promise and over deliver
It is possible to set benchmarks for your products or services, and then push yourself to surpass them. This can be critically important when you are launching your first few products. A strong impression can lead to repeat business from customers; some of whom may in time even become brands advocates and actively promote your online business to friends, family, and colleagues.
It’s worth noting that the price point of your products or services doesn’t have to be low to imply that your products or services offer great value to your customers. Even if your product is expensive, clients and customers should perceive the price as a high-value item.
3. Don’t focus on selling, focus on serving
Remember that as an online business owner building an internet business your goal is not to sell a customer something – but to gain your customer’s trust. Your customer will be more likely to purchase from you in the future if you have given them a fantastic customer experience for their first purchase from your online business. This will help you to maximise your revenue and increase the lifetime value of each of your customers.
To build a successful website business you may also benefit from identifying the needs and problems of your target market before you attempt to position your products or services as the best on the market for solving those problems.
Advertising copy that is engaging and creates desire for your products or services can be especially effective for communicating your message to your target market and convincing your audience that they can believe that your business can truly help them solve their problems. Showing customers how your products and services can benefit them is the best way to grow your online business.
4. Create lasting relationships
The building of long-lasting customer relationships is only one aspect of running a successful business. Your network is also important. It’s easy to forget the people who helped you find your key suppliers or shared their industry or business knowledge with you. Many of them will not mind if they aren’t contacted again. They know that you have time-consuming obligations and are busy.
Paying attention to the small things that make success stories unforgettable is also crucial. It is also important to thank your mentors for their help. It doesn’t matter if the mentor is not with you anymore, or if they are a former employer, business coach, or someone else. They will appreciate your gesture because it will remind them that they have helped someone achieve their goals. They might also be able to use your success to show to their customers and increase sales for your business.
5. Set weekly goals and stick to them
We are creatures of habit, and we can all struggle with forming and sticking to new habits. This includes showing up day in day out for your fledgling online business – no exception. The best way to ensure working on your online business becomes habitual is to form a routine and to stick with it.
Recommended reading: Setting better business goals: First steps to success
6. Don’t focus on selling, focus on serving
Remember that as a business owner managing an online business your goal is not to sell a customer something – but to gain your customer’s trust. Your customer will be more likely to purchase from you in the future if you have given them a fantastic customer experience for their first purchase from your online business. This will help you to maximise your revenue and increase the lifetime value of each of your customers.
You will also benefit from identifying the needs and problems of your target market before you attempt to position your products or services as the best on the market for solving those problems.
Advertising copy that is engaging and creates desire for your products or services can be especially effective for communicating your message to your target market and convincing your audience that they can believe that your business can truly help them solve their problems. Showing customers how your products and services can benefit them is the best way to make grow your online business.
7. An online business is still a business
One of the most important online business tips for beginners is to remember and acknowledge that an online business is still a business. Online businesses offer many advantages, such as keeping start-up costs low, but they still require significant planning, skilful acquisition, hard work, precise judgment and ongoing maintenance if they’re to stand any chance of succeeding over the long-term.
Exercise caution with anyone who tries to convince you otherwise – because online or offline, building a successful business isn’t simply done on a wing and a prayer. Succeeding in business takes no small amount of strategic planning.
Recommended reading: How much does it cost to start an online business?
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I start my own online business?
To transform your bright business idea into a thriving online business, there are several steps you can take. You must first create a business plan. This will help you to organise your thoughts and goals and create the plan for your online business. Next, choose the type of business structure you want to use and register your company. If you have investors, they may help you finance your venture if you are considering outside investment.
How do I market my online business?
There are many marketing options for your online business and to be successful in online marketing you may need to embrace many of them to get people to know about your business. Online business directories and business listings can be handy for marketing your online company. Targeted social media marketing can also play a key role in helping your online business reach and engage your customers. Your website should reflect your brand, so keep it up to date. You can use SEO and other digital marketing strategies to make your business easier to find online.
Four final takeaways for growing your online business
- The success of your online business is dependent on your ability attract customers’ attention. In today’s information-rich world, this can be difficult. However, you and your business can benefit from having a clear plan in place from the start.
- If customers feel your authenticity and you back it up with fantastic customer service, they will be more likely to trust your online business and become long-term customers.
- Your customers should perceive your product/service as more valuable than the price they pay.
- If you pitch your online business as being able to help solve the key challenges your customers are facing, you will increase your chances of succeeding with your online business.
How BizCover helps online businesses reduce their risk
Discover online business insurance policies to compare competitive insurance quotes for your online business, get covered in only 10 minutes, and get back to building your business. If you prefer to speak with us, you can reach our friendly team on 1300 920 863.
This information is general only and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. It should not be relied upon as advice. As with any insurance, cover will be subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions contained in the policy wording.
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