Short Route to Online Business – Starting Up and Finding the Right Market

In actual fact, the items in this title are probably back to front. The key to starting any business, online business or not, is finding a target market first.

This is because an existing market means you have a ready-made customer base, which will be willing and happy to buy your product or your service if they can find you. That’s what an entrepreneur looks for when he or she invests in a project: something that people will already want to be provided they know it’s there. Otherwise, your business is no more than a potentially good idea sitting alone in a corner of the internet.

1. Start With the Online Business Idea that Works

So the key to online business is to start with the idea that works. Where this comes from is anyone’s guess. Some ideas strike as you are walking the dog, or wondering why it is no-one has ever invented a service for whatever it is you’re trying to do and can’t get done.

The best ideas are always the simple ones. It’s a trite observation because it has been made so many times before – but then you tend to find that observations repeatedly made are generally true. They end up being called clichés – but no-one has ever told you that a cliché is a lie.

2. Is There a Target Market for Your Online Business Idea?

So – you’ve got your great idea and you know there’s a target market out there for it. The next question is: how do you know? Do you just think you have a target market because you personally believe the idea is a good one – or have you done the research that an investor would need to see in order to persuade him or her to give you some money?

3. Start Developing the Plan for Your Online Business Idea

In broad and basic terms, taking your business idea through the process of developing a plan and doing some research is always good. You don’t actually have to persuade an investor to help you, particularly if you already have the money and the technology to star up your company: but going through the process of researching and developing your idea will give you a much better idea of whether or not it will really work.

online business

4. Consider Your Online Image

It is at this point that you have to consider your online image.

Online business requires a website. If you are selling something, that site has to have the capacity to display what you sell in an intelligible fashion and to let your target market buy it. These, though, are the absolute basics of your online home.

Look around you. Online and off, successful businesses aren’t just businesses. They are brands. The difference between a brand and a business is that customers, consumers, recognize it. They talk about it and evangelize it. They may even think of it as a real person, or at least align aspects of their own personality (dress style, for example) with what they perceive to be its trends and its values.

To make an online business stand out from the frankly huge numbers of competitors, it’s necessary to design a site that reflects the personality of your brand, its verve, the thing that makes it different to all the other people who are basically trying to sell the same things as you. Which means, of course, that you must first develop a brand personality and work out what it is that sets you apart from the competition.

Dragan Sutevski

Posted by Dragan Sutevski

Dragan Sutevski is a founder and CEO of Sutevski Consulting, creating business excellence through innovative thinking. Get more from Dragan on Twitter. Contact Dragan