Whether you are researching keywords for your startup’s website, trying to figure out what exactly they MEAN when they say “cloud,” there are many things that come into play when starting your own business online. Unfortunately, in the business startup world, there are often more mistakes made that not. This may explain the statistic about most business startups failing within the first five years of inception. There is a group of people, of which I begrudgingly admit to being part of, that view failures as learning experiences and stress that people don’t worry about them any more that taking the lessons learned from them and moving on to the next challenge. When possible, I am a much bigger fan of learning the hard lessons from someone that has already done it! So with that, lets look at some of the things we should be avoiding when it comes to starting our online business.
There is a tough trend that I see with people that start businesses doing something that they love. For example, if you are an avid snowboarder and you decide to start a snowboard company to fill in a niche in the market, this may be something just for you. If you do not treat your business as that- a business, then you will start to hurt in the end. Maybe all of your friends find out that you are making a new type of snowboard camber and all want to try it, and love it. Then, they have a riding buddy that wants the same board. You had better make sure that you treat this guy like a customer and not like a riding bro, or else you will start to look unprofessional from the start. Get a business email address, not a gmail. Get an office address for all your mail, even if you are working from home. Make sure if you do work from home, you are setting aside a certain area of your home where work happens. Set work hours, and make sure you are taking it seriously.
Another thing for online business entrepreneurs is to make sure they are realistic when it comes to “doing what they love.” There is a fine line that you need to strike here. If you have a good idea that you absolutely hate the implementation and running of the business, and have no passion for it, I would advise not starting that business no matter how lucrative it could possibly be. On the flip side, if you have something that you absolutely love, then you will want to make sure that it is something that the market actually needs. Perhaps you love to snowboard, but snowboarders have absolutely no need or market for detachable bindings(something that someone found out about, some ten years back). This would be one of those situations where you would be better off starting a company that offers binding rentals and sales, rather than inventing a product that nobody wants in the first place.
Don’t make the simple mistakes, that may hurt you in the long run!
Photo Credit: Flickr – Yoann JEZEQUEL