If you’re starting a brand new business, it can be tough to find the right starting point. The to do list is a long one, that’s for sure. But if you’re reading this blog, you’ve taken the first step, so congrats! Here at Wix, we’re proud to have helped more than 100 million people create a website and manage their online presence, many of whom are small business owners who bravely went out on their own.
Want to know how to launch your own biz? Kick things off with these seven crucial steps and you’ll be up and running in no time.
To set yourself up for success in your new endeavor, take the time do a bit of research before you embark on your journey. You want to get a good sense of the market you’re diving into. Try to understand who the big players are in your field, what competition you have and who your customers might be. As you research, think about how you can find a unique angle or niche. What is missing from existing businesses in your market? How can you set yourself apart, offer added value or provide a little something different to a certain segment of customers? This special ingredient is often the secret to success.
Once you’ve done the research, you should have a clear sense of what your business will look like and who you will be targeting. The next step? Planning your time. Whether you are opening a store and need to find a rental space or you’re developing a new product that needs to be created and tested, you should list all of your ‘to-dos’ in order to launch. Write everything down and mark your deadlines on a calendar; this will be your roadmap.
Once your roadmap is complete, you’re ready to set a budget. Do enough research to be accurate in your financial estimates, but give yourself a little bit of a cushion where you can. It can be tough to stick to very tight budgets and it’s always better to have more money than you planned! Want to know the secret to launching your business on a budget? Get the full scoop.
Taken together, your roadmap and your budget form a basic business plan. If you are launching a business that needs investors, this information will be invaluable when it’s time to pitch them your idea. If you’re on your own, your calendar and budget will help keep you focused and on schedule.
No business is legit if they don’t have a website to prove it! An online presence is a great way to share your idea with potential customers, partners, investors and even your family and friends. Creating a website – did you say Wix? – can be a great way to fine-tune your idea and make sure you’ve thought about all the important details.
Ready to open your doors? Whether you have a physical storefront, an online business or both, you want to announce your launch officially to the masses. Cut that proverbial red ribbon by sharing your new business (with a link to your awesome site) on Facebook and Twitter. Write a fun, brief blog post explaining your venture and tell your story. Another great tip is to create a newsletter about your new biz, something Wix ShoutOut makes remarkably easy to do.
You want to tell as many people as possible about your business and that means, going offline as well. (Remember: fine tune that elevator pitch and practice on everyone who will listen!) Even if someone isn’t a potential customer, they may be just the right person to link you to a future client, a business partner or someone important in your industry. Take advantage of every communication tool to help you get the word out.
Once you’ve been up and running for a month or two, carve out time to take a step back and assess your performance. It can be hard to look at the big picture, but doing so can make all the difference. You can use Google Analytics to understand the behavior of your site’s visitors and discover their preferences. On the offline side, ask yourself, your staff or your partner what’s working and what isn’t. Where are your customers coming from and how can you reach more of them? Are they satisfied with your business, your products or your service? Answering these questions and optimizing your business accordingly is essential.
Just as the Internet can be a great tool for spreading the word, it can also be invaluable for engaging with your customers. Today, more than ever before, you can find out what your customers like and dislike about your business. Interact with them in person, on social media, over email or in a forum on your website. Then, use their feedback to improve what you do.
Ready to show that you’re really in business? Start by creating a website!
Get The Wix Blog
Get the latest and freshest content on creating
& marketing your Wix website.