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Only a few years ago, aspiring entrepreneurs had no choice but to set up a new business in a rented office space or storefront. Next, they would begin hiring staff and invest in the equipment they needed. This was an expensive and sometimes time-consuming exercise. Today, however, you can choose to set up a business in your home instead.
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If you’re thinking of starting a business in your home, there’s no reason why you can’t start today. There has seldom been a better time, after all. The COVID-19 pandemic has compelled you to stay indoors anyway, and you likely have plenty of excellent reasons to establish a home-based enterprise.
What’s more, you’ll find it convenient and cost-effective to set up and manage your home business as things stand today, thanks to the availability of numerous advanced business tools and resources.
First, Invest in a Nest for Your Home-Based Business
You surely do not need an entire suite of state-of-the-art IT equipment, especially when you are just starting. Nor must you snap up every bargain deal you come across for WiFi, software applications, and workstations. However, you do need the basics.
But before you even think about making a single purchase, InternetAdvisor recommends you first designate a cozy nook in one section of your home that will serve as your business office. Ensure that your home office is large enough to accommodate whatever business equipment you will need. Next, invest in a desktop, laptop, or a tablet, depending on your working needs.
Make sure to buy a sturdy sit/stand desk that will allow you to work while standing or sitting comfortably. Such sit/stand desks usually have a pull-out/slide-in tray for holding the keyboard and mouse. They usually also come with several drawers.
Choose a top-quality ergonomically designed swivel chair that lets you sit and work for hours without causing stress. You will also probably need a quality headphones set, a webcam, and a pair of high-fidelity speakers. These will stand you in good stead when you need to attend video conferences.
Stock up on Standard Office Supplies
Naturally, you’ll want to choose cutting-edge technology tools for your home business when you can. However, keep in mind that ordinary office supplies are also indispensable. Do not be so caught up in selecting the glossy modern-day gadgets and gizmos that you forget about the everyday items. For example, you’re going to need pencils, papers, pens, markers, highlighters, envelopes, and so on. You’ll surely feel the need for these traditional office supplies when you deliver products to your clients.
Also, include a topnotch printer on your buying list. This device will come to your aid when you need to printouts of invoices and other documents.
Free Software Apps and Project Management Tools Are Must-Haves in Your Home Business, Too
Regardless of whether you’re setting up an online gift shop or a portal for retailing garments, you’ll always need to prepare bills. You’ll need to send emails and make PowerPoint presentations. In short, multiple projects will require your attention at any given time.
But as a novice entrepreneur, you’ll be amazed at the sheer variety of free tools and resources at your disposal for running your home-based business. For a start, make the most of Microsoft Office 365’s home-based edition. This powerful office suite includes MS-Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, OneDrive, Teams, and SharePoint.
On the other hand, Google’s G-Suite offers comparable products. In fact, G-Suite is ideal for home-based businesses. This is especially the case if you’re an entrepreneur who is on a shoestring budget and not very tech-savvy. The majority of Google’s offerings are either quite affordable or even free. Plus, they will enable you to manage nearly everything from video calling to emails.
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Furthermore, you can make the most of a host of free project management software. For instance, look into Google Docs/Analytics, Skype, Asana, and Slack for managing your tasks and timelines.
Hire a Virtual Assistant to Help You Run Your Home-Based Business
When you’re running a business out of your home, you may not be in a position to employ full time staff initially. Budgetary constraints and limited resources might not allow for that. Nevertheless, you can delegate tasks to virtual assistants who will help you complete your projects in a timely fashion. What’s more, you’ll pay much less to a virtual assistant than you would pay to a regular employee.
But if you’d like to go full-on AI instead, there are lots of virtual assistant software apps out there. You can harness the power of AI to build and supervise an entire team of AI assistants to help you in your work.
Some of the latest and most exciting thinking in AI development is that machines can be programmed to have a moral code. In other words, your AI bot could learn to have empathy for you and your customers as it develops over time.
Accounting Software Is Must-Have Technology Wherever You Base Your Business
You’ll have to keep a tight leash on your expenses right from the start if you want to put your limited funds to optimum use. So harness accounting software to help. For example, look into Wave Accounting, QuickBooks, Tally.ERP9, ERPNext, and Sage X3 to help you manage your budget.
Tap into CoSchedule for Streamlining Your Home-Based Business
Before you embark on your home-based startup, you’ll have to thrash out an effective online marketing strategy to promote your venture. CoSchedule offers a suite of robust marketing solutions. For example, it comes with a marketing calendar, a work organizer, and a content organizer. These tools will help you organize your marketing strategy in one accessible location.
Internet Security Matters Above All Else for Every Business
Whether you set up your business in your home or in a brick-and-mortar storefront, you’re going to need an Internet connection with built-in security protocols. This will help to safeguard your new company’s valuable information from unethical hacking. Your best and safest bet is to choose a virtual private network (VPN) that links to a private server and encrypts your Internet connection.
Laying the foundations for a home-based business is not as complicated and taxing as some might think. In fact, it is much easier than setting up a traditional business, provided you have a clear and detailed road map. Moreover, the array of technology tools and resources currently available for business owners can go a long way toward establishing your home business and allowing it to develop smoothly.
Be sure to bookmark our site to pick up more cutting-edge business ideas for entrepreneurs and owners of small businesses.