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The statistics about small business failure make it look like there’s no hope if you choose to start a business online. Data like over 50% of small businesses failing within the first four years or only a third of them existing past a 10-year mark shows that your chances of success are small, especially if you are planning to grow the company eventually. However, as FitSmallBusiness was fast to note, these devastating numbers don’t paint a real picture. They come from a variety of limited studies which assess only a small portion of small companies united by some specific factor, like type of funding.
This means that despite the depressing stats, you have a good chance of succeeding as an entrepreneur. But to do this you’ll need to avoid some common mistakes that people make when starting a business online.
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5 Considerations to Make When You Start a Business Online
1. Keep Track of the Big Picture at All Times
One of the main mistakes people make when starting an online business is focusing on the details so much that they lose track of adhering to their 2-year business plan. Details like ads, business cards, or logo design are important, but they cannot be your priorities.
To set your priorities straight, write down a detailed list of tasks your business has to accomplish in order to achieve your long-term goals. Then evaluate each point objectively and rate it depending on how much it will contribute to that result. This is your priorities chart that you should look at before making any important business decisions.
2. Know Where You Can’t Afford to Skimp
Running out of cash is the most common reason for small business failure, says BusinessInsider. However, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be using premium-quality services. What this does mean is that you need to choose those carefully and save a bit more on the others.
As you plan to start a business online, you cannot skimp on your website, especially the hosting. Choose the provider carefully and read some detailed comparisons like HostGator vs BlueHost. There pay attention to the points that matter most. For example, BlueHost has great plan flexibility and more affordable rates then HostGator. Both providers also offer high-quality reliable servers. However, HostGator’s uptime is a tiny bit better and its customer support is instant instead of the five-minute wait with BlueHost.
As you can see, the differences are minimal and both companies are ultimately good. However, the tiny edge you get with HostGator will give you a greater chance of succeeding in the competitive online business. It’s definitely worth the extra cost involved.
3. Insure Your Office Within the Home
When running a home business you need to remember that your home insurance might not cover some of the equipment you bought and use for it. This can lead to huge losses in case of an emergency.
What you need to do is to review your current insurance policy and check out the options available for home businesses. These offers vary greatly, so you should be able to find something that offers maximum protection for your exact business configuration. But this will require a lot of research and comparison, so don’t rush.
4. Don’t Expect to Make Much Money at the Start
When you start a business online you have to be realistic. This means accepting that for the first few months your company won’t bring you profit. In the best-case scenario, it will make enough money to meet its running costs.
That’s why it’s essential to have a fund that will cover your living expenses for at least six months before you start building a company.
If you are one of the few lucky ones who manage to make a break right off the bat, use that money wisely. Invest it in ensuring your company’s stability before thinking of growth.
5. Monitor All Feedback Through All Channels
Set up alerts that will notify you every time your business’s name is mentioned. Reply to any comments as fast as you can. It’s important to address both positive and negative reviews.
Be sure to pay close attention to any negative feedback and use it to improve your service. Bear in mind that 88% of consumers trust online reviews as they would personal recommendations from a friend. So you need to try and turn even negative reviews into a positive experience.