Step-By-Step Guide to Start an Online Business
Starting an online business is not as easy as many thought it would be. It is something that requires much research and certain amount of capital investment.
Firstly, you have to determine what item to sell. It could be a physical product, a digital product, a service or selling other people’s products known as affiliate marketing. This product or service should be something that is related to your interest or expertise such as your hobbies, talents or areas of knowledge.
Next, identify an existing niche market within your field of interest by checking on the search volume in Google AdWords. It is vital to ensure that there is sufficient demand for the product or service locally and globally. A good gauge will be to have at least 50,000-100,000 Google searches for the identified product or service per month.
Once the niche market has been decided, you must then identify a problem which has yet to be solved. One way is to join online groups to observe what people are discussing and to research on the competitors’ business strategy to ascertain that the problem is indeed real and that there is commercial value to provide a solution to the problem.
Now, you can then size up the profit potential by doing a simple mathematical calculation:
1) Calculate the number of clicks based on a Click through rate (CTR) assumption (e.g. 15%)
2) Calculate number of sales: based on sales conversion rate (e.g. 15%)
3) Calculate gross profit = Sales X gross profit per sale
4) Total pay-per-click (PPC) = Number of clicks X average PPC
5) Net profit = Gross profit – Total PPC
After determining the product or service, you can proceed to design your website and blog. It is important to register a distinct URL (an internet address for search engine to find) that easy to remember and related to the product or service. It is also crucial to find a web host that has fast and secure servers with sufficient memory to allow many people to access your website at the same time. There are many ways to build your website. You can design your own website using HTML editor software or to buy a website template and modify yourself. Alternatively, you can engage a free-lance designer or to hire a professional web design company to design your website.
In your website, you should have a background description about yourself and a contact page to promote credibility. Your website should also have a clear navigation bar and supplemented with strong sales headlines and powerful graphics. Your sales copy should identify the problems that the potential buyers are facing before highlighting the benefits of your product or service and the solution that it brings. It is best that the solution of your product or service is supported by testimonies from previous satisfied clients to establish further credibility.
The next important thing to do is to drive traffic to your website. One method is to boast link popularity by linking to complimentary websites with high traffic. Another way is to advertise on free classified ad sites or to pay for traffic through search engines. Alternatively, you can join an affiliate programmed to sell your product or service. You may also wish to search for backlinks via Google blog alert.
Finally, you need to build a relationship with the prospects by forwarding related and valuable information to them on a regular basis until they become your clients eventually.