There are 11 points on this checklist for starting a new online business. The more points you hit, the more success you will have.
1. Create the Business Plan and Evaluate Business Viability
The first step is to create a solid business plan
. This is an organized and concise plan that will outline your company's every detail. For example, it will describe your company, its goals, the opportunities, etc.
You'll discuss your financials, management structure, marketing, sales tactics, etc. Every aspect of your business needs to be included in this business plan.
This is essential for getting new investors. Entrepreneurs with an in-depth business plan have a 260% higher chance of turning an idea into a profitable business.
Once you have your business plan, look to see how viable your business really is.
Then, ask yourself whether or not people will buy what you are selling.
Moreover, would you buy your own product? Finally, do you think you sell products and services that customers will tell their friends about? Again, you would be on the right track if you answered yes to these questions.
2. Take Stock of Your Financial Situation
Once you have created your business plan, take stock of your financial situation. This includes the financial projections you made within your business plan.
First, ensure that you have enough money to pay the bills for at least the first year; we're talking about being able to pay the bills without turning a profit.
This is, of course, the worst-case scenario, but you do need to be prepared. Although operating an online business won't have as many overhead costs as a physical location, there are still costs.
You cannot rely on your online business to turn a profit to pay your bills, especially during the first year. Therefore, you need to be financially stable before starting an online business.
3. Choose Your Business Name
Next, choose a good business name. A tip is to choose a unique business name that stands out from the competition.
However, the business name must be relevant to what you are doing. This business name should be short, concise, and memorable. Many guides online can help budding entrepreneurs choose a business name.
4. Purchase a Domain
Once you have chosen the name of your business, you will purchase a domain—the URL or address your website will be listed under. You might need to be flexible because many domain names may be taken.
There might be businesses that have similar names to yours. You want to choose a business name with a unique and available domain.
Moreover, you should put some effort into choosing secondary domain names. Again, this concerns marketing and creating a brand image and awareness.
You need secondary domain names for blogs and landing pages. These secondary domain names and other sites will redirect customers to your main website.
If your website does not have a unique and memorable domain name, people will not find it. Even worse would be confusing your site for a competitor's, an easy way to lose customers to your competition.
If you are having trouble, great tools are available to help you choose a good domain name.