How to Launch Your Online Startup Right Now
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How to Launch Your Online Startup Right Now
Now that the internet is in its most considerable boom period ever and will only become an even more significant presence in our lives, the possibility of launching a startup is available to more people than ever before.
Years ago, you would have likely needed physical premises; you would have been required to pay a lot for advertising in newspapers, billboards, and television or radio; all of that stuff costs a ton of money.
Now, you still need a certain amount of capital to get yourself started, but most of that stuff we just mentioned is no longer necessary for getting a business off the ground and finding success.
Starting your business online requires much less money, mainly because you don’t necessarily need an actual brick-and-mortar store or office, and marketing a business online is cheap.
Does this mean that starting a business is going to be easy or that you can guarantee yourself a success? No, but the online business world is full of opportunities that didn’t exist before and that you can take advantage of.
Let’s look at the steps you need to take to launch your online startup right now:
Gather Your Funds
Starting a business is not as expensive now, but you need money before getting anything done. It would be best if you had a few things, such as a computer and an internet connection, but I’m assuming you’ve got those already.
You would also benefit significantly from having access to a domain name and a website builder at the very beginning, but this shouldn’t be too expensive. You could probably get a good domain name for less than $10/per year.
So that’s the basic stuff, and depending on the type of business you want to start, it might be all you need. Suppose you are a freelance writer, web developer, video editor, affiliate marketer, or some other job you can do entirely on your computer. In that case, you can start a successful business with less than 0 capital on day one.
But that doesn’t cover every possible type of online startup. If something like an eCommerce site sells things, you need more money for equipment, materials, and shipping costs.
You can expect a business with about $1-2,000. Your first step in terms of generating capital should be to map out your expenses and then draw up a budget so you can determine how much you need.
If you don’t have enough in your savings, it’s time to think about taking out a loan. It might be daunting, but if it helps your business get off the ground, it will soon feel like a drop in the bucket expense.
Decide on Your Specific Niche
This might be the most crucial part, and one of the primary reasons why so many startups fail is because those behind them don’t understand the importance of offering something that no one else is suggesting.
One of the disadvantages that come with the fact that it’s easier now to start a business online is that everyone is trying to do it. And so, say, for example, you want to be a web developer, and you are offering what you might call a general web developer service; there are already thousands of people doing the same thing.
So it would be best if you did a ton of market research to discover a niche for yourself. You’re looking for a specific problem that no one working in the same industry can solve effectively.
It is then down to you to figure out how exactly this problem can be solved and become the one who solves it. Using the example of the web development business, maybe your research has led to the knowledge that many people are now offering business coach services.
But such services aren’t adequately represented by the websites the coaches are hiring people to develop for them. You would then figure out what kind of website will generate conversions for a business coach.
You can build a reputation in that niche, and eventually, people will actively come to you.
Generate Your Online Presence
So having a niche is essential, as we’ve said, but it’s not worth anything unless you can make customers aware of it. And the only way to do that is to have a substantial online presence.
Your website will be essential, but it’s not the only thing to focus on. You won’t generate traffic for your site over other established ones right off the bat, so I would instead put more focus on a LinkedIn profile.
This is already a site that’s well in use and probably where people will first search when looking for a particular service. You can build up a network on LinkedIn as you get more jobs, and it’s also a place to open lines of communication.
Stay active on LinkedIn, update it with every new job you do, and add people as contacts there. You will start to notice work coming your way through the pipeline. For many businesses, it’s worth being on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, but prioritize LinkedIn first.
Build a Customer Base
Building and maintaining a customer base is the tricky part, but it’s something that you can take actionable steps towards, and this will put you ahead of the curve because many people don’t do that.
Some people get a website built and expect all the jobs to come to them straight away, and that’s not how it works. Having your online presence, as discussed above, will help a lot, especially after you’ve got a few jobs, but those first few are more likely to come through your action.
An email marketing funnel is a surefire way to get your name in people’s minds. It would be best to show people that you have a product or service from which they can benefit. This involves building a list of potential customers and sending cold emails.
If you send out 100, you’ll probably only get responses from less than 10 of them, but that’s enough, especially at the beginning. And you will be sending out more than 100 anyway because it will be an automated system.
Eventually, you can rely on word of mouth. People will know you as the expert in your niche, but this is how you get the ball rolling toward that.
As you can see, launching a startup now requires a lot of work, thought, and patience, but it is highly accessible. With the right niche and approach to sourcing customers, anyone can become a successful online business owner.