Add the main advantages of your business that make it unique and the best. Add text why customers have to choose your products or services and what benefits they will get after the product is purchased. Write your own text, style it and press Done.
Of course this is not going to tell you exactly which product to sell or what you should do, but it is only a guideline to help you set up what is best for you. Face it, if I told everyone to sell only Betsy Wetsy dolls, there would be a flood of people selling the same thing to a limited audience and no one would make money. Your business must be individual to what you like, what you can do and how much effort you want to put into it.
Be warned! This article is NOT about pie-in-the-sky hype about how everyone can easily make thousands of dollars running their own business. This is a realistic look at all your options and you may not want to hear it. I will not mince words. Starting a business is NOT for everyone. If you are one of those people who should be not be self-employed, do not lose heart. I didn't say you would never be rich, but simply there are other options and self-employment may not be for you.
Do You REALLY Want Your Own Business?
Most who fancy the idea of having their own business want in on the lure of:
Making a lot of money
Having more free time
Being their own boss
Claims that no sales are involved
Claims that this business runs itself
Claims that there are no further investments
Do you really want to start your own business or are you just sick of your job and want a better one? It is important to figure out what you really want. Not everyone is cut out to have their own business. If you just want a better job, consult the career center.
If you just want to make a lot of money with the least amount of effort and are not suited to running a business, you do have one other option - INVESTMENT! Keep your job, but put aside 10-30% of your income and invest in stocks, bonds, T-bills, CDs, mutual funds, or any other investment vehicle. If you do this consistently, you will be able to make enough money where your money will support your lifestyle. Try this program - The One Minute Millionaire: The Enlightened Way to Wealth. Actually, this is a good idea for everyone whether employed or self-employed.
Are you just wanting to make a lot of money with no effort? It will never happen! Everything takes effort. The more effort applied, the better the results. You can choose to work smart to save time. You can follow examples from people doing what you want to do to avoid their mistakes. What will not happen is if you make a pitiful effort here and there have large sums of cash fall into your pocket.
It is a rare business that makes thousands of dollars a day the first day in business. Those who do make "an overnight fortune" have a unique product and plenty of publicity and advertising to announce the opening day. This can be done if you have a truly new, unique product and plan a campaign months in advance. Something most people starting a business will not do as they want it NOW!
So, you want free time to spend with your family and think a home based business is the way to do it? You can involve them in the process and work together as a family and it will give you plenty of time to spend as a family.
However, if your family is not interested or does not want to be involved in your business, you will be running the show alone with some mighty long and hard hours.
It doesn't matter what kind of business you decide to run, you will have to commit to it and invest in it even if you are alone in this adventure. If this is your garden, you must toil in it to make it produce fruits.
I don't care what those fly-by-night, come on network marketers, or late night infomercial people will lead you to believe. ANY business you want to make money in will take lots of time and effort. A smart business person will figure out how to do it with the least amount of time and money, but will have to spend both for success.
Want to be your own boss? You must be a very responsible person if you want to be in business for yourself. You have to know to seek out the laws, rules and regulations in your area to practice business. You need to keep accurate records and be timely with your bills and invoices. You need to be strict with your work schedule.
If you have employees, you have to understand they are not going to have as much interest in your business success as you, they want a paycheck. It is up to you to make sure it all runs smooth. This is a heavy load for most people to carry.
All business is sales! Again, the same people trying to sell you the idea that if you get into their business you will never have to sell a thing. THEY ARE WRONG!!
How on earth would one make money without sales? Think about it! You are in business to make money obviously. From where does the money come? Your customers, downline, or others who want your services or goods.
In order to get them to give you their money, what do you have to do? Sell them on the idea as to why they need to part with their money and give it to you as opposed to someone else.
Your sales pitch can be subtle or in your face, but you will have to sell or you make no money. If you hate sales, you should not go into business for yourself.
Internet businesses, MLM, and other such get rich quick plans do not run itself. The only degree of putting your business on "automatic pilot" is in reference to being able to accept credit cards or having affiliate programs which can take orders even when you are not at the computer. HOWEVER, you will need to be at the helm to make sure people come to your site or offer as soon as they can. This means you actually have to put in the hours to reach out to find your customers.
Businesses are in perpetual need of investment whether in time or money - both valuable assets. It takes a smart business person to work out a plan to save the most amount of time, money and effort to get the job done.
And it is very important to remember, if you want to run your own business it is necessary to conduct yourself in a professional manner. Common sense dictates that if you want to have people take you seriously with the goal that they will pay you for your goods and/or services, you have to know at least HOW to run a business in all the small details as well as the large.
Can you look professional? Are you literate? Slobs, poorly dressed people, those who speak in street slang or use a lot of profanity cannot succeed in business if they engage in this behavior while conducting business. Your public image needs to be sharp and professional which includes your speech, dress and overall communication.
It may seem like an absurd question as you are reading this now, but I mean can you read, write, and comprehend on a business level. It won't help your business image if you write letters to people using horrible grammar or spelling. If you talk to people, do you speak in a professional manner or do you use a lot of slang and street language? Communication plays a big part in making a successful business.
If you need to contact another business which is crucial in your own business, would you know how to write a business letter in a professional manner or would it turn out looking like something a child would do? Would you know how to speak to them over the phone? Would you know how to dress and act if you meet them in person?
First impressions are vital with your customers and other business contacts. Even more important is how you communicate. If you dress poorly or send a company or a potential customer a terrible looking letter, it does not make a good first impression and is an automatic turn off. They won't hear anything else you have to say.
If your physical impression is good, but your communication is off, you will never get through to the other side as a professional who deserves their hard earned money, time, or attention.
Are you organized? Owning your own business means you often juggle several projects at the same time. Can you deal with the daily grind of promoting your business, dealing with customers, dealing with suppliers, handling accounting and mailings, clean up, employee problems...?
Can you balance your checking book? Can you keep track of important receipts? Can you keep a written record of your daily expenses, profits and activities? Can you normally pay your bills on time? Can you stick to a schedule? These skills are even more crucial when you own your own business.
If you run a business out of your home, organization will be extremely crucial. It would be very easy to be distracted by household chores, a spouse, children, television, and other comforts you may associate with being at home. Your mind may relate being home to being off from work or school and put you in the mood for relaxing, not working. Organization will keep distraction at a minimum.
Are you independent? When you go into business for yourself, you are on your own. There is no one to hold your hand and tell you what you must do next. You have to be able to determine what needs to be done and how, who to contact to help you get it done, and schedule in the time to get it done.
When push comes to shove and you are faced with a problem, would you know where to turn to find the answers you need? Could you come up with these solutions on your own? Do you know how to get what you need?
You could always try asking others in similar businesses for advice, but there will come a time when you must learn this for yourself. Even successful business owners will get fed up trying to coddle someone who cannot do the basic things on their own. If you cannot think for yourself and need someone to look over what you are doing at all times, you should not go into business for yourself.
Do you have a plan? Without an idea of what type of business you wish to conduct, how do you expect to get started? How do you plan on running the business and figuring out the goal of such business if you do not know the nature of the business you want to run. Do you know, exactly, what kind of business you wish to run? If you cannot answer this question, you are a long way from becoming self-employed.
Once you figure out what type of business you wish to run, do you know exactly what it will take for YOU to do it? How much will it cost? How much time will it take to get started? How much time everyday must you devote to it? Who will be your customers? How will you reach out to find these customers? Who will supply you with the things you need to run the business? How will you support yourself while you are trying to make your business successful?
These are very important questions and they only scratch the surface. You need to write out a plan which include the following:
The Nature Of Your Business
Your Business Creed
The Goals Of Your Business
Getting Your Business Licenses and Other Legalities
Setting Up An Accounting System
The Expenses To Get Started
The Daily/Monthly/Yearly Expenses
Your Living Expenses
Advertising And Marketing Plans
Staff Expenses (If Required)
Outside Help Expenses
Long Term Plans
Back Up Plan In Case It Doesn't Work Out
In the end, if you are like most people who are tempted, but don't see the big picture, you may realize it is just better to hone your marketable skills and find a better job for better pay and hours and plan to invest wisely in your future with stocks, bonds, and other forms of investment opportunities.
Get A Product Or Service Idea
You cannot have a business unless you have something to sell to people. It can be a service or a product, but it must be something people will be willing to hand over their money to you.
Reach inside yourself. What do you like to do? What do you believe? What could you see yourself doing in every spare moment of your time?
Your business must be you. Your likes, dislikes and personality shines through anything you promote. If you hate doing MLM plans, you will never make money because you don't have the enthusiasm and drive to follow through.
Think about a well loved hobby, childhood dream, or a current passion or cause. Brainstorm until you can come up with an idea on how you can turn this into a money making venture.
For instance, if you love to watch sports, you could create your own sports magazine, sell sports equipment, coach,... the possibilities are endless.
The most important thing is whatever business you choose, you should love what you do since you will have to spend a lot of time pursuing it to make it profitable. Don't just choose something because others make a lot of money doing it. You are the one who has to work it so make sure YOU like it.
These are the types of businesses where you really must be a people person because the very nature of the service industry implies you will not only sell your service to people, but must work with them directly. If you want to do a service for people, you must like people.
It should go without saying, but I have seen some people out there who should never really work with the public. They display bad manners, speak in slang, use a lot of profanity, are very impatient or intolerant, dress in an inappropriate manner, do not have clean hygiene, or convey the attitude that you the customer are invading their valuable time and space. It is bad enough when your employees are this way, but it is even worse when you own the store and act in such a manner.
Remember, any service business success depends on the happiness of the customer. It is more true in this industry than any other type of industry. When you are face to face, the customer will remember you and how you treated them. It is personal. The customer will be angry and upset with mail order and deals done over the phone when they have not been properly serviced, but when you are face to face it is more intense. Your great work and happy face will increase your business with more word of mouth advertisement that you cannot possibly get in the mail order business or online. Conversely, your disdain and rude attitude in the face of the customer will bring about a faster negative campaign against you, but at least that will mostly be a local failure [with the Internet business, one rude response to a customer can bring you the worst kind of publicity.]
When thinking of doing a service business, think about what you can do for others. What do you like to do? What are you capable of doing? Ideas include lawn/garden, household repair and chores, car cleaning and detail work or repair, painting, errand running, pick up and delivery services, typing, advertising, ... the list is endless. Just think of all those things you do on a daily or regular basis that you love doing. Ask yourself is this a type of thing others may pay you to do. If so, you may have found your niche.
You might find yourself ironing clothes and discover that you not only do not mind doing this chore, but you love it. You know there are people out there who absolutely hate doing their own ironing who would be your target. Perhaps they would pay you to do a chore they cannot stand doing themselves.
Or you might be outside tending to your rose garden. You know keeping roses looking nice can be a hard thing, but you have the knack. Others who love to have roses may not know how to deal with the bugs, what to feed the plant, how to prune it and other issues pertaining to rose care. As an expert in this field, you can cater to a specialty market for those who need a Rose Doctor.
Remember, reach within yourself to find a skill that you love to do and make it uniquely your own marketable service product.
The most inexpensive thing one can produce to sell is information. Write a report based on something you know very well. Create in an e-book format if you want to sell it on the web or make it into a book or booklet form if you are selling by mail order.
Selling information by mail has a severe drawback - expense. Not only do you have to spend a lot of money in advertising, but you will have to spend on printing and mailing. The best way to sell information is online where your only expenses will be in the advertising and promotion aspects as well as developing the report itself.
Click here for more information on selling information.
Products can be made by yourself or you can find someone to produce a product for yourself. If you need to find a wholesale broker who will dropship (mail the products you sell to your customers), then click on this link for dropship sources.
A simple way to get a drop ship online is to join an affiliate program. For a list of good ones, click here for the affiliate sources.
Another alternative to consider, a franchise. A franchise is an already established business which has a proven formula, product and marketing plan. You pay the entry and miscellaneous fees associated with the specific program and follow the already proven plan for success.
One great listing for franchise opportunities is The Franchise Opportunities Directory which is a list of the best franchises for sale organized into industry categories.
Or investigate these other Business Ideas And Reports.
Before you move to the next step, be sure you:
Brainstorm and come to a decision of what you like to do and how you wish to spend most of your waking hours
Think of a way to make a profit from your hobby or favorite activity
Find a product or service related to your hobby or activity to sell.
Develop A Business Plan
Don't make the same mistake as the dot coms who are going bankrupt. They took all kinds of investment money on a dream of the potential to make big money. The problem was there was no real business plan on how the money would be made.
You need to figure out how much it will cost you to start up your business, the day to day costs, and living expenses. You also need to figure out the cost of your service or product and how much you will need to sell to be profitable.
When you have an idea of the money involved, you need to figure out how you will pull off your business plan. Go to the Small Business Administration and ask for help in creating a business plan.
No matter what others will tell you, there is no such thing as a business that will cost no money out of pocket. They use a fancy phrase, "Use Other People's Money!." I don't know about most of you, but I find it hard to believe that very many people have a friend who is willing to take a bet on a business venture for a friend. The other part of "Use Other People's Money" comes from maxing out your credit cards in order to pursue your business venture. If you fail, the loss to you will be great. Banks and credit agencies want people with a good credit history or at least a co-signer AND a business plan.
Yes, there are free ways to get products and to advertise, but that will only take you so far. You need money for your daily living expenses while you are pursuing your venture. Good advice - start your venture part time and please keep your day job. Only when your business can make enough money to produce a nest egg income for at least 6 months, then try to make a goal of it full time.
If you are in the unfortunate situation where you are trying to stake your riches on the Internet because you are out of work or in a despairing circumstance and need a lot of money, then you are simply going to have to work harder than you have at any full time job to make some money. It can be done without money, but you cannot take a passive role in advertising, YOU WILL HAVE TO SELL IT!!
If you are in such dire straits, you cannot afford to gamble with the business. You MUST find some other ways to get immediate income while you are also pursuing the business. Consider doing odd jobs such as baby sitting, house cleaning, lawn care, gardening services, fast food, telemarketing and other temporary types of jobs just to get you by while you are going for something bigger. Remember, it is not forever, but to help you to get someplace better. Apply for any type of government assistance that may help get you through rough times while you are doing all of this. NO, it is not an easy place to be in and it will be hard work, but if you stick with it and keep a positive attitude you will come out on top. If you face even this with an already defeated attitude, chances are you will probably stay like that for a long time.
Before you go on to the next step, be sure to have a completed outline for your business and some cash funds for your venture.
In a nutshell, this is the next part of doing business online:
Figure out your current living expenses
Figure out how much it will cost to run your business
Figure out how you will get the money to run your business
Put it on paper
Develop A Marketing plan
Once you know what you will do or sell and how much the product or service will cost, you need to develop a strategy to get the word out to the public that you have something to sell.
First the price! This should have been worked out in your business plan. Be sure to price your product or service where you will actually make money. The key is to figure out how much the product costs you to make or produce, or how much performing your service will cost you.
Then add in the cost of delivering your product or service along with the time for customer service.
Then add in your expenses for advertising. This is where most people lose money! Calculate the cost of the ad divided by the customers it gets you. If an ad costs you $1000 and it brings in 10 people, then your cost per customer would be $100 - not a good deal unless your profit is over $1000! If the same ad brought in 10,000 people it works out to 10 cents per customer. This is why it is critical to be careful when you target your market.
It would be a big mistake to take out a full page ad in an expensive newspaper with a target audience of 3 million people when you don't know if this ad will pull or not.
Instead, test a small classified ad in a cheap local paper. Using a classified ad, you can make one that is only 10 words by using a powerful headline with a number to call. Make that phone number a voice message system that you can describe your product or service in detail. You can either direct the caller to call another number for more information, leave a message or even where to send payment. By using this method, the potential customer does not feel threatened by a high pressure salesperson to find out more. It also clears the time wasters out who are not interested so you can spend more time selling to a likely candidate.
Once you have discovered what aspects of your product are able to sell, you can work on a bigger marketing plan. Just be sure to keep the ads within a budget.
Be sure to correctly target your ad. If you are selling fishing gear, don't advertise in a Woman's Crochet magazine. If you are selling cures for an aching back, don't advertise in a swimsuit magazine.
If you are selling get rich quick plans, do it in those cheap rags such as Thrifty Nickel or if you have more money, the tabloid magazines. If you are selling things related to hobbies, find out the things hobbiest read and advertise there. If you are selling cookbooks, do it in a magazine for cooking related items (those who sell recipes in the tabloids often end up on mailing lists.)
Just because you see an ad in a magazine for many weeks does not mean it is making any money. Some ads are duds that people have bought many weeks in advance to get a price break. Others are scam ads where the person was told to make a certain amount of money, they would need to place the same ad like they saw.
Your marketing strategy will be different depending on the nature of your business. If you have a brick and mortar store, or your office is a street corner, or a virtual online URL, your approach in finding your audience will vary, but the principles will be the same.
Use common sense when advertising. For help in developing a sales pitch. Work on your pitch to sell and your plan to sell it.
When you want to advertise online, you have many options. There are ezines, classifieds, newsletters, free for all, search engines, and many other ways to reach out to people. For example, click here to place your ad free in the Classified Ads or learn more about web site promotions here and you will see how this process works.
Be sure to include automatic submission programs in your arsenal of campaigning. These will post to many ffa sites, search engines and classified ads. Some you have to download and let it run from your computer. Others you have to log in and let the program run at set times for you. Here are some of the best programs:
This is your outline for the next step in doing business online:
Figure out your target audience.
Create several sales pitches - one line headline attention getters, small classified ads, full page ads, search engine ads, ffa link ads.
Find the places you plan to advertise and bookmark them for easy access.
Get submission software to promote automatically.
Consider advertising offline.
Use e-mail carefully when advertising.
Re-Invest Your Earnings
An important, and often overlooked part of a business, is the follow up. Unless your service is recurring, you will never see that person again without something to make them come back.
Master your customer service skills. Follow up on orders to make sure they were satisfied. If they weren't, then do what you must to make them happy. Offer other products along the same lines. If they felt good about dealing with you before, they certainly will be likely to trust you again.
When you see that you have finally made a profit, don't be tempted to blow it on a luxury cruise. Put some of that money aside for a nest egg for living expenses and to expand your business. Make sure you have a comfortable nest egg to support you for 6 to 12 months just in case your business falls on hard times.
Once you have a cushion of financial safety, then slowly and cautiously spend the booty!
Obviously, there is a lot more to running a business than listed here. There are so many variables to consider depending on your business, your skills, your personality, your cash flow and other possibilities. This is why you should really think about what running your business will mean to you in all aspects of your life. If all this information just seems too hard for you to put into practice, you probably should stick with your day job.
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