You don’t have to have experience to start an online business. Whether you are looking to earn a part time supplemental income or a want a full time business, anyone can take this step online. The amount of money you make is up to you. You set your own hours. This is the perfect opportunity for stay-at-home moms, retirees, students…anyone who wants to be their own boss! What follows is a simple 5 step plan that is easy to understand. I have even included links in this article for beginners who are new to the online business world. Look how simple it can be to get started:
1. Decide what niche you want to fill in the marketplace.
2. Design a website
3. Fill your website with attention-grabbing copy
4. Sell yourself through advertising
5. Earn and keep customers
You just have to be willing to make time to take the above steps and be willing to learn what you don’t know. Take charge of your destiny and start your own business by following these steps today.
Step 1: Decide what niche you want to fill in the marketplace
Decide what you have to offer. Perhaps you knit, sew, or make your own jewelry. Maybe you’re an artist or a writer. If you already have a product you’d like to market, then you’re halfway through the first step already. If you don’t, then start researching what market needs filling.
· * What do consumers want that they can’t easily find?
· *What is there a demand for?
· *If you’re not providing a service start comparing wholesalers or other ways to get the product you want to sell. An easy way to find wholesalers is to visit Wholesalecentral.com where they list wholesalers by product.
Step 2: Design a website
You only have 5 seconds to grab a potential customer’s attention, so design a website that is simple but attractive and easy to navigate. The quicker and easier it is for a customer to find a product and checkout, the more likely they are to buy from you.
· *Keep the pages uncluttered and free of clashing colors.
· *Dark lettering on a light background is best.
· *Choose an easy to read, simple font
Anyone can build a website, even if you’ve never done it before. There are many web hosting sites that offer to walk you through designing your site. They usually offer free sites with just the basics and paid plans which offer perks. If you’ve never built a website before, try wix.com, bravenet.com, or weebly.com.
Step 3: Fill your website with attention-grabbing copy
You don’t need an ad agency to write your website pages. You just need to know how to describe your product so it grabs a potential customer’s attention and makes them want to read more. You want them to sign up, call you or make a purchase. You want to grab their attention within the first few sentences or they are going to move on to the next product or service. This is why your website’s homepage is the most important. On this page, and without too much fluff, you need to tell the customer what you promise to offer them if they visit your site. If you’ve never done copywriting, or even if you have, there are some great tutorials out there to show you how it’s done. Smashing magazine offers a quick course on effective website copywriting. ConversioniQ also offers a tutorial on writing good web copy.
Step 4: Sell yourself through advertising
Advertising is what’s going to get your new business up and running. There are many ways to advertise both for a fee and for free. People don’t read ads, they scan them. Again, what you need is compelling copy. You want to grab the attention of anyone that scans your ad.
· *Advertise your product on sites like online classified ads and Craigslist.
· *Invest in Google AdWords. Click here if you don’t know how Google AdWords works.
· *Try advertising on venues like StumbleUpon and Facebook.
· *Publish an article promoting your product online.
· *Make use of online directories such as Google Places, Yelp and Yahoo.
Earn and keep customers
You want to keep your customers coming back for more. Offering great customer service is a must! Here are some tips on keep the customers you make.
· *Update your website regularly. Keep it fresh and engaging. Offer something extra (a free gift) or fun (a contest). Put a poll on your site and ask for customer’s feedback.
· *Make yourself available. Be sure that a number where you can be reached or an email address is prominently displayed and answer all inquiries promptly ! If a customer has an issue with one of your products or has questions, you want them to ask you…not go looking for the right product somewhere else.
· *Send out email newsletters telling past clients about new products. They will appreciate that you remembered them at all!
Now, start planning your new business and see how wonderful it feels to be your own boss! You will on your way to having job security and getting to do the kind of work you’re passionate about.