How to Start a Business Online

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Five Steps to Building a Business and Tools You May Find Useful

Imagine you have a great idea, but you’re unsure of where to start. Perhaps you do not know what you want and are searching for the best option available to you. But there is one thing that you’re certain of: you want to start a business!

That’s great! Because we will be sharing with you some tips on how to start a business.

1- Start with a business plan:

Let’s not make things confusing and scary. Starting a business isn’t as scary as it seems. Even if you’ve never written a business plan, the internet makes it possible for anything to be found online these days.

There are many free tools you can use to make a business plan. Oprah’s Business Plan templates or Bplans Business Plan Template for Small Businesses and Entrepreneurs can be a great help to create your business plan.

2- Create your Branding:

Your brand defines your business personality. It involves much more than just creating your colour palette and logo. Branding is how people perceive your business, and how they remember it.

Consistent branding across all consumer touchpoints will make people remember your brand. Touchpoints include your website, social media graphics, copy, etc. You can learn more about the importance of brand consistency by clicking here.

Having established your brand guidelines, it is now time to get all of these touchpoints in place.

3- Create a Website:

WordPress is free and powers 27% of the web. In order to build a functional website, you should use WordPress instead of DIY platforms if your business is a long-term investment. This means investing in your own domain name and hosting – and owning your website. 

Do-it-yourself platforms like ShowIt, Squarespace or Wix are hosted platforms, and you don’t own your website when you use a hosted platform. Not to mention that you will have to pay a subscription fee and additional fees for every new feature you need.

Check out our custom branded website plans and why we use WordPress by clicking here >

4- Market Your Business:

Once your branding and website are ready, it’s time to market your business using marketing channels. These marketing channels are:

  • Social media (Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, TikTok etc.)
  • Email (see our recommended email marketing tools here, see our article about how to collect leads here)
  • Networking (you can create a free business card using the 4Over4 website
  • Podcasts
  • Blog, commenting on blogs and guest blogging
  • PR (digital or traditional)

5- Scale Your Business

You will need to scale your business for efficiency once you start earning and growing your business. Taking advantage of outsourcing, repurposing your content, automating your emails and delegating are some ways to increase efficiency.

The importance of productivity cannot be overstated. Set your goals, track how much time you spend on each project, and improve processes as you go. You can use time tracking websites like Harvest or Toggle.

As an entrepreneur, you aren’t only doing what you’re good at, but you are also doing things you may not enjoy. Be prepared to spend time on bookkeeping, team management, and other things along the way. If you’re a service business, make sure to improve your contracts. You can use a website like DocuSign to send, sign and approve documents from anywhere.

Eliminate distractions and set boundaries. Take the time for learning and growing every day. In addition to YouTube, Udemy and Khan Academy are great for learning new skills.

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Social Influence

Damla is the founder of Social Influence. She has spent over a decade working and leading digital marketing positions for some of the world’s most exciting and forward-thinking brands. She writes about digital marketing, websites, entrepreneurship and more.

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