You have a brick-and-mortar business. You have a great business idea. You are ready to open a business online, but How?
The Steps On How to Open a Business Online
|Online Business Plan||Domain Name||Web Hosting||Web Design||Web Promotion|
The process of starting your business online is no different than starting an offline business. It is simple as that!
Open A Business Online Starts With A Business Plan
You must start with a business plan just like you would with your brick-and-mortar business. Your business plan must have goals, objectives, and a budget. When building your online business plan, just ask yourself these questions: Why am I going online? What are my objectives or goals? What do I want to achieve? What is my budget? And Will I build my own website or outsource? The answer to these questions is the foundation for your online business success.
This lesson assumes the followings:
You have an existing business or an Idea for an online business.
You have a business name or will come up with one. You can use a business name generator and suggestion to find a great business name.
You have a business plan, if not then you can use this article to help you writing a Business Plan.
Let‘s start with our tutorial
Step 1. The Online Business Name = Domain Name
Must my online business name be the same as my Offline business name?
Let me put it this way if you can get the same business name for both, GET IT QUICK.
You Ask Why?
Because your online business name is your domain name and your web address. The problem is that you cannot have a duplicate domain name. Each domain name is unique. This is how people identify and find your business.
Example: Your business name is GRANDE MARKET. This might be good for a brick-and-mortar store, but online this domain name might have already been registered by someone. In this case, you cannot have this name for your online business.
Getting the name for your online business is vital. You must register for a domain name as soon as you can. This can be done with any domain registration company. Here how the registration process goes:
- First, you check with the domain name registrar to see if the name is available; if it is available,
- You pay a fee to reserve the domain name. Done! Click here to check for domain name availability
How to Choose A Name for An Online Business?
Follow this process to help you choose a great domain name for your online business:
Look for a similar word, or a synonym for your offline business’ name; if you can.
DO NOT go for a keyword name, it has no SEO value after Google updates its algorithm
Remember, the new name must be available, so please check for availability.
Step 2. A Location = A Web Host
Just like your brick-and-mortar store, you need a place to build your business online. This place is called Web hosting.
What is a Web Hosting Company?
The web hosting company will rent you space on its server to build and host your website. Yes, they will charge you monthly rent, but much cheaper than a storefront.
Not all hosting companies are equal. You must do your homework before signing up. Look around for the best one. Here are issues you must consider for your web hosting providers:
Free Trial Account
Always start with web hosting companies that offer a free hosting account. If you are planning to build the website yourself, then this feature is a must-have. Two reasons: first building a website requires a lot of times, changes, and corrections, seconds you should do all this on a free account. Upgrade only when you are ready to launch. This will save you money. Also, You want to have a chance to try out the services first before purchase a hosting plan. It is a big hassle to change hosting service. It costs money and loss of online revenue every time. So, Test Drive First Before Sign Up.
This is another important feature to look for. You will need a lot of training to maintain and update your site. You will be responsible to promote and update your own website after it launched. You will need the free training!
Download and Upload Speed
This determines your site speed, the faster the better.
Amount of Data Space
This determines the amount of data you can store. If you have an eCommerce site, data space is very important.
The site must be secured to protect customer personal information.
24 hours support is a must.
Free WordPress Web Design Platform
This is important if you are planning to design your own website. WordPress is very easy to use, and it is the most popular web design platform on the internet. Using WordPress make it easy to get free training and tutorials as you are building out your own website.
Set Up WordPress Website WordPress Website Set Up Video >>>
Step 3. Build Your Store = Web Design
It times to do some real works, build your online business. You have two options: Do It Yourself or Hire Professional. Which way to go?
Do It Yourself – DIY
It is much easier than you think. I recommend that you go DIY if you just start out, need a basic eCommerce site, or informational website. Most web hosting companies offer free web design tool, but nothing can compare to WordPress; it is free and easy to use; It comes with thousands of free web templates for you to further customize into your own. You do not need years of study and training. There are lots and lots of free training and tutorial online to walk you through the design process of a WordPress Website.
Build an E-commerce Website
You should consider this option if you have a store and are looking to sell products online. There are many e-commerce platforms available online to help you launch an entire online store in a few hours. One very popular e-commerce platform is Shopify. You can set up a complete online store to sell your products with a few clicks of a mouse. You can manage and organize your products, customize and design your storefront, accept all major credit card payments, and even track orders. Shopify is currently offering a free trial account, so you can build out your storefront. Currently, over 600,000 businesses are using Shopify’s e-commerce platform.
Example: You have a retail store with a few hundred items. Before Shopify, you have to hire professional web-developer to build an online store, but with the Shopify Automated App, you can build your own online store by selecting a professional web theme, a payment processor, a product processing app, upload pictures of inventory. Your online store is up and running with a few clicks of a mouse. Shopify makes it very easy to do so.
Step 4. Advertise Your Business = Web Marketing
Your website is now completed. You have already launched the site.
How do you get people to come?
For people to see your site, you must advertise. I do not mean calling up your local newspaper to run an ad in the Sunday paper, No! You must do web marketing or digital marketing.
12 online marketing tips Video >>>
What is web marketing?
Web marketing is the method of promoting or marketing your business online to generate traffic to your website.
There are two ways to promote website: Free promotion and Pay Promotion
Free Website Promotion
There are two ways to generate FREE traffic to your website. They are:
Traffic Exchange Programs
The concept of traffic exchange is this, you receive what you give, so individuals must browse other member websites in order to get traffic in return. Usually, the traffics are Free.
You are excited, but these programs have two major problems:
Used of Bots
Members use Bots to rack up points. These Bots click on your website and Google can detect them. This can result in manually deindex of your website. This means your website is banned from indexing.
Well, the name says it all. People join the Exchange for free traffic, not to buy anything.
If you still like to join these programs, make sure Bots are banned or not allow. You want real human traffic exchange programs such as Followlike.net or LinkCollider.com to avoid getting into trouble with Google.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
It is the marketing technique to get free traffic from Google, Bing, and Yahoo to your site. SEO requires both technical skills and creative elements to improve site rankings on the search page which in turn increase awareness of your business.
SEO requires training, practices and patient to see results. It takes six months to a year to see free organic traffics. But the free traffics are generated for as long as your website exists.
There are many FREE SEO lessons offers for beginners. I encourage you to attend one lesson to get a basic understanding of SEO and what is all about. The information offered in these free training is so valuable to business owners and entrepreneurs. You must learn to promote your site to be successful online.
Paid Website Marketing
You are purchasing traffics to your website by mean of online advertisements. You can purchase traffic from Google, Bings, and Yahoo, or from private websites networks such as Revisitors and Real Traffic Source.
Private Label Online Advertisement
You are purchasing traffic from private websites network, publishers, or news agencies. There are a few issues you must consider before purchasing traffics.
The cost is must cheaper
You can purchase website visitors in volume
The visitor can be targeted to your niche
Some private networks use Bots. Be careful, this can become a major problem for you as we have discussed above.
It cost money. Some of them are very expensive. You must budget for this.
Lack of tracking tools to know where your traffic came from.
When looking for a private online advertiser to purchase traffic, remember to sign up with real human traffic Networks. Never, never purchases from a Bot traffic generator, Bots should be free.
SEM (Search Engine Marketing)
It is the process of getting traffic to your site by purchasing ad placement on search engines such as Google Adwords and Bing Ads.
Real human traffics
Professional online marketers’ assistance
Detail tracking and reports on traffic
It required a big budget for SEM
Does not improve SEO
The terms web marketing technique and affiliate marketing technique are the same. Never confuses affiliate marketing technique with an affiliate marketing opportunity.
The affiliate marketing opportunity is a program that creates by companies to allow online marketers to earn commission by promoting their products or services. You might want to implement this program as a way of selling more products and reach more customers.
Affiliate marketing technique refers to a set of skills that online marketers use to successfully promote and sell products or services online.
This lesson introduces you to the 4 steps of Opening A Business Online. To be successful, you will have to continue learning. The real works begin after you launch your online business website.
Like your offline business, your online business also requires continuous promotion to bring traffics and customers. The good news is that you can learn online marketing skills yourself. Even if you hire professional marketers, THE MORE PROMOTIONS, THE BETTER.
The Online Entrepreneur Certification Training is a good start for you to learn the basic of running a successful business online. The program is entirely free and offered by the Wealthy Affiliate University. These lessons will provide an in-depth understanding of operating an online business, website promotion, and SEO and SEM marketing techniques beyond this guide.
Your Business Online Is Now Open!!!
That is all! I hope you enjoy reading how to open a business online guide. It is very simple, and you can do it.
If you need a business idea or want to learn more ways to earn money online, check out my Earn Money Online Blog.
Have a question or comment, just let me know here.