Going Digital-Establishing Your Online Business
A simple fact that is slowly becoming accepted by the general public is that going digital is indeed the way to go these days, especially when it comes to doing business.
As trends in recent years indicate, technological advancements have allowed for enhanced and more frequent interactions between businesses, as well as interactions with customers. The COVID-19 pandemic, and its resultant restrictions on public movement only served to hasten the growth of online business ventures. For some who have to stay put and entertain themselves from home, online shopping and food delivery services have become a refuge to them, making online businesses all the more relevant.
It’s time to get with the times – keep scrolling for three steps to establish your business online!
1. Plan & Prepare Your Business Essentials.
Ask yourself, what is your business about? What is its purpose?
You will need to decide on whether your business will be
- Delivering/providing a product;
- Providing a service; or
- Delivering both products and services.
Once you have established this, you then have to ask yourself: what kind of product or service? On asking yourself this, you will need to do your market research to determine:
- what the needs and wants of the market are;
- if there are pre-existing products or services already available; and
- potential competitors in the same line as you.
Part of your market research includes determining your potential customer base & determining how your product or service is going to reach them. Once you have those sorted out, define your brand! Also, you might want to look out for any online business laws you need to abide by such as licenses, copyright and trademarks, shipping, restrictions, etc.
2. Establish Your Presence Online
This is a crucial step. An online presence is one of the key essentials to a business in terms of accessibility to customers and other prospects for contact details or more information. This can be done by building a website and creating social media pages for your business.
Worrying about building a website? There's no need to! Website-builder sites such as Wix.com and GoDaddy have made the process a much simpler one. Just drag and drop segments and elements, customise them, fill in relevant content and information, and you are good to go! Also, it will be good to add a payment gateway such as PayPal, iPay88, or RAZERPAY to your website so that customers can directly purchase or subscribe to your business.
As for social media pages, the most common platforms for businesses to reach out to customers are Facebook and Instagram. Just create a new page on Facebook or account on Instagram, fill in the relevant details of your business, upload content, and you are done.
3. Grow Your Business
Now you can get down to business (pun intended)! For your business to grow, it needs to build up revenue and expand beyond your initial business plans. One way to do so is to engage customers and drive up sales. This can be done by designing content for your website and social media pages to advertise your product or service, host sales and promotions, or even by organising a social media competition.
Another way to grow your business is to establish connections with other businesses or with the media. For example, another business is hosting an event, and your business is invited to collaborate and provide your services or products for their event, in turn giving your business a platform for it to shine. Another instance is when your product or service is good and deserving of more engagement, media opportunities such as being interviewed on television, radio, podcast, video, online or printed news will help your business gain attention and increase popularity.
In conclusion, there is really no denying that going digital is the way to go when it comes to business. Utilising all means necessary, including cyberspace, has become essential to businesses especially in the context of a post-pandemic society. With internet and media technology’s ease of access, businesses are still able to operate while also benefiting the customers and their various needs.