Starting an online business on a tight budget in 5 steps
Have a business idea that you would like to try out? But don’t have a lot of money to put into it? Don’t worry! The internet provides you with a platform that is a safe option to start out a business because the investment costs are low. However it is also tricky to become successful with an online business because the competition is very high. Here are 5 things to remember if you are looking to start an online business on a tight budget.
1. Define your target market
Ask yourself who you’re aiming your product or service towards. Is it a product that young adults would enjoy or a service that the middle-aged group would indulge in? Is it a service that complements business entrepreneurs? Setting a target market for your business allows you to explore the mindset of that market and sculpt your business agenda as well as invest in marketing strategies accordingly.
2. Set objectives and keep going back to them
Setting clear objectives will allow you to work towards certain goals effectively. If you know what you’re working towards, you will achieve your goals much faster than if you just work towards the end result with a vague idea of what you’re doing. At every step in your business, go back and remind yourself what your objectives are and check whether you are still following the guidelines you set for yourself or not.
3. Decide on a budget – and stick to it
You have a vision of what your product is, who your target market is, and how you are going to execute your marketing goals. Now train yourself to work within the constraints of a set budget. It will allow you to learn how to work within boundaries and how to come up with solutions-thus improving your problem solving skills, as well as of course, keep you within a reasonable budget to minimize your risks.
4. Create a Brand
To gain an edge in an extremely competitive online market, you need to create a unique brand image for your business. People tend to identify with a brand and if you create one that is simple, clean and reliable, you will attract a much larger client base. People are more comfortable with stability and uniformity. Why do you think every McDonald’s looks exactly the same? It is because McDonalds has realized the secret of a market’s expectations: they want uniformity in a brand and McDonald’s delivers- no pun intended.
5. Make Search Engine Optimization your friend
A smart entrepreneur is one who understands the importance of ranking high in the search engine optimization context. If your business website comes up high on the results page when clients search for a service or product related to your business, they are more likely to click on your website. No one wants to click on the second page on Google. Use specific and target based keywords to improve your site’s appeal. Yes, SEO can be a demanding process at first, but don’t get intimidated. Make yourselves comfortable with the process. It will take your business a long way especially on a small budget.