How To Start An Online Business - Part One
Getting involved in the online business world is a relative simple process. Whether you just want to make some spare income or become the next Internet business mogul, you have to start somewhere. It is best to start with the basics and work your way up from there. The goal of this informative article is to allow you, the reader, to start an online business quickly.
Step One: Legalities
Depending on where you live in the world, you may need to obtain legal documentation such as a business license. It is best to consult a local attorney. However, not everyone can afford such an expense. If this is you, look for local small business groups. By calling around, you should be able to find out what will be required for you to legally do business on the Internet.
Step Two: Business Plan
Every successful business has a business plan. To many, this may see like a daunting task. It is well beyond the scope of this article to explain how to properly create a business plan. Software exists to help you with this task. Basically, a business plan helps you clearly define your goals, understand your competition and visualize what you must do to achieve your goals.
Spend some time thinking about what you wish to accomplish with your new business. The answer ?make money? is not a valid one. What is the specific purpose of your new business?
Example: I want to start a business that will sell motherboards for computers.
Example Expanded: Initially the business will work to obtain wholesale pricing from motherboard manufacturers and retail them to the end user. The business will work to create our own brand of motherboard to retail and distribute to other computer parts outlets.
Example Long-term: The business will formulate a motherboard design, have it manufactured and distribute it to computer parts outlets. Additionally, the business will work to secure working relationships with computer manufacturers to have our motherboard built in.
As you can see from the above three examples, we have a working goal outline. If you do nothing else for this step, do what is in the above examples. So many people jump into business without a clear idea of what they wish to accomplish. The end result is failure.
Step Three: Familiarity
This next step involves you becoming extremely familiar with the industry you wish to do business in. The more educated you are, the higher your chance for success is. You should know as many competitors as possible, especially the big ones. Seeking out trade publications and informational resources is an absolute must.
The first step here is to create a new bookmarks folder in your browser. Call it whatever you wish, but remember to keep your bookmarks extremely organized. Next, it is time to sit back with your favorite non-alcoholic beverage and go website cruising.
The first website you will want to visit is the search engine of your choice. I go to Google.com myself, but this is up to you. You are going to type in many search queries and visiting many websites. If you are familiar with tabbed browsing, this task will be much more orderly. Below I will show you some common search queries I would do for a new copywriting business.
? Copywriting forum
? Copywriting newsgroup
? Copywriting board
? Copywriters association
? Copywriters trade publication
? Trade publications writing
? Writers forum
? Writers board
? Writers association
? Copywriting books
? Copywriting sites
I hope you get the idea. I am basically looking for my competitors and informational sources where I can eventually learn and advertise. If your industry has specific product names, search for those as well.
This is an ongoing process. You want to try and learn as much as possible in the beginning, but you certainly won?t find everything. As you progress in your business, take note of the websites you run across. In my bookmarks, I have a folder called ?Check Later? that has a listing of websites that might be beneficial, but I have not had the time to review yet.
This concludes part one of ?How to Start an Online Business?. This first part is crucial. Those who ignore it are almost certainly destined to fail. Great things take time and to rush is foolish. If you wish to read the rest of this guide, visit my website at JasonAMartin.com. You can also find other helpful articles there on a variety of topics such as marketing and writing.
Copyright 2005 JASON ANDREW MARTIN LLC
About the Author: Jason A. Martin is a Journalism major and has over a decade of successful Internet business experience. His informational articles can be found at http://www.JasonAMartin.com. He owns a marketing company located at http://www.MarketJunction.com, which specializes in copywriting & copyediting, article writing & editing and search engine optimization