Copyright (c) 2009 Ajay Prasad
With the unprecedented growth explosion of e-commerce, retailing and the expansion of the internet marketplace, an overwhelming number of opportunities for starting an online business have emerged. Yet, the question remains: should you take up a job or start an online business? A working job requires less responsibility than owning an online business, solely because the business’s future is not in your hands as an employee, but does not necessarily allow you to do what you want within the business. A steady income is always welcomed as an employee, for it allows you to map out your future with relative ease, yet a successful business may provide multiple streams of income.
Although starting an online business does not guarantee a steady income, it does allow you to do what you enjoy doing, or what you are interested in. Plus, running your own online business allows for more flexibility in terms of times and working hours as compared to the strict, rigid work hours employees must abide by. But because of the modern-era internet boom, starting an online business has never been more lucrative.
Ever since the advent of the internet, it has been evolving at an exponential pace and has attracted more and more people every year. As of March 31, 2009, approximately 6,710,029,070 users access the internet on a regular basis – over 99% of the world’s population. This drastic figure only emphasizes the innumerable opportunities that have emerged for starting an online business since the dawn of the internet, and marks a time of a more technological and computer savvy world that relies on the computer more than ever before. But before you click your mouse and begin building your online business, you should know that researching is vital and essential to having a successful business; you must become intimately familiar with whatever facet of business you envision. This requires dedication, commitment, and passion on your part. Books, e-books, magazine articles, and online articles are among the plethora of resources that can and will help jump start your business and allow it to compete in the real world. On the other hand, self-employment offers you more chances to explore and challenge your limits, without having to deal with the pressures of running your own business.
In a way, to become self-employed successfully you must adopt a system, a sort of scientific approach to your job: hypothesizing, researching, testing, re-testing, analyzing, drawing a conclusion, and finally and most importantly, communicating that conclusion with the rest of the world. To become self-employed successfully, you must learn the advantages of becoming self-employed, and weigh that with the other options you have and choose which is best for you. Only then will you be on your way to becoming a successful individual.
What most people fail to recognize is that you can be self-employed and own your own business, simultaneously. Owning your own business while at the same time working for someone is a beneficial way to gain valuable experience that will assist you in establishing your business. There are several tools that you can utilize to help automate your online business, thus taking a major workload off you so you can manage your own business as well as be self-employed satisfactorily. The first is the auto-responder. This nifty program will automatically reply to en e-mail that is sent to a certain e-mail address. It can be programmed in such a way that it sends one e-mail the first day, a different e-mail a second day, and so on. This resourceful program will allow you, the owner, to salvage valuable time spent on responding to the same e-mails that would normally fritter away hours of precious time.
Another handy way of taking a workload off of you is by hiring drop-shippers. In a nut shell, drop-shippers hold products that are being sold through your website in a warehouse and when purchased, ship it directly to the customer. This way, your company does not have to be the retailer and the manufacturer, thus reducing expenses and increases profits. Your only job is to pay the drop-shipper for the shipping costs and they will do the dirty work for you. In addition to auto-responders and drop-shippers, if properly executed, search engine optimization (SEO) will attract customers to your site, without you having to go to them. Ideally, you want your company’s web page to appear in the first page of a search engine’s page when a certain term(s) (the broader the better) is entered into the search engine. These simple tools will drastically improve the amount of clients you have, while still allowing you to focus on something more important than responding to e-mails, shipping to clients, and having to physically go to a potential client to get them to commit.