Ten Tips for Launching a Successful Online Business

Today it’s relatively easy to start an online business. However, creating a successful and profitable business is a whole other story.

The online space is crowded. In just 20 years, websites grew from a mere 3,000 in 1994 to more than one billion in 2014!

If you’re going to start an Internet based company, here are 10 Tips to help make sure that you don’t get lost in cyberspace.

  1. Solve a Problem: You may love the idea of a product that keeps light from seeping in the space your curtain doesn’t cover, but if you’re the only one awoken by a sliver of light, your product isn’t going to sell. Consider products or olve a Problem:services that solve an issue enough people have. Look at forums, keywords and competitors to see what people are searching for and what is selling. Bill Gates has been quoted as saying that the most common startup mistake is solving a problem no one has.
  2. The Customer is King: Happy customers are great, but you can learn a lot from people who return your product. Ask them for feedback to determine what is needed to improve your idea. Actively seek their input through automatic follow-up emails that thank customers and solicits feedback.
  3. Be Different: How many different products are there? Make sure whatever you’re selling has something that sets it apart from the competition. You have to give the customer a reason to pick your product over another.
  4. Actions Trumps Words: Stop talking and start doing. We can have grand ideas on paper for our business, but if we don’t implement them, we’ll get nowhere.
  5. Create a Visually Appealing Site: Make your site visually appealing and easy to navigate. You need to grab someone’s attention in seconds. Have an opt-in offer to capture email addresses. Don’t make a customer click more than twice to checkout and don’t litter your site with pop-up offers or ads. User experience goes a long way to converting window shoppers to buyers.
  6. Make it Mobile: Make sure your website functions and looks good on a smartphone. You’ll be hard pressed to find a smartphone user who doesn’t scan the Internet on her phone.
  7. Understand SEO: In such a crowded marketplace, you need to have strong search engine optimization for people to find you.
  8. Be Social: If you have an online business, you need to have a social media plan to drive traffic and create relationships with your customers. Social reviews help convert skittish buyers into customers.
  9. Advertise: To standout, you will want to advertise. It isn’t enough to have a “if I build it they will come,” mentality. Explore Google Ads and social media ad programs.
  10. Repeat Visits: You know it is far less expensive to retain a customer than acquire a new one. Keep your customers coming back by offering valuable content and special offers to purchase.
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