How to Become a Successful Internet Entrepreneur
These days, the internet is a major part of both small and big business. With extensive traffic on the web, from social media advertising to new methods of merchandising online, a new generation of business people is growing up: the internet entrepreneur is someone who is looking at the vast power of the internet to start or grow a business. Whether it’s a physical merchandising business or a play on innovative modern services, someone who wants to become a successful internet entrepreneur will often pay attention to some startup basics involving blending this new technology with classic good business sense.
Take courses in business and management. You need business training before you can hope to succeed as an entrepreneur. Enroll in business courses, preferably at a four year college. You may choose to get an MBA sooner or later, as this is a great way to learn more successful business practices. However, you will be your own boss if you start an internet-based business, so you may not need it to move up the ladder.
Get training in technology. The ability to write code or develop websites is optimal. If you have colleagues starting the business with you, you may be able to focus on the business aspect of your website. Nonetheless, you will need a basic level of computer competence to successfully maintain, trouble shoot, and do damage control for your business.
Do an internship. Look for internships in internet marketing or search engine optimization (SEO) to get more interaction with internet businesses. When applying, you don’t have to sound like you have the same resume as Steve Jobs. But make sure you have a concrete reason for applying, and that something about the specific business interests you,
Decide what you will do. You need to have an idea to have a business. Figure out what parts of the economy are doing well and focus on them. You could, on the one hand, provide a physical service for people, like arranging for the local purchase and delivery of groceries. Or, on the other hand, you could provide a virtual service like consultation or editing.
Do market research. Your idea may seem like something profitable, but until you see who else is doing it, you won’t know how you will fit in. Use statistical data offered by government agencies such as the Bureau of Labor Statistics as well as third party sources to find similar businesses. Do your own word-of-mouth interviews, surveys and tests to see what people would spend money on. See this for a detailed guide to the process.
Have a concrete business plan. Just as in traditional business, internet businesses can profit greatly from a well thought out business plan that will help attract capital, guide leaders in starting and growing a business, and present this fledgling enterprise to the outside world as something legitimate with great potential
Look at the little details too. A detailed business plan should help present viable finance for a business. It should also attract interest and enthusiasm by offering investors and others a vibrant look at the potential for what the business is offering. A business plan gives new businesses what they need to survive: attention and the presentation of potential success.
Register your domain name. The first step to creating an online presence for your business is reserving that catchy domain name. You may not get your first choice, since so many have been reserved already. Look around at different domain registrars to see what domain names you can purchase cheaply
Get a web host. Many domain registrars are also web hosts, meaning that they lease space for your domain name on their server. This also comes with many basic services that allow for the continued accessibility of your website on the internet. Unless you have a large amount of startup money, you will need to go with a less expensive web host. Although this may mean sacrificing some security and reliability, you can move up later.
Register your online business. One business license you have to have is for your online operations. You have to register with the IRS to be legitimate in the eyes of the federal government. This application simultaneously registers you on the state level in some states, but not in others. Look at your state’s laws to see if you have to fill out another application
Make your website. An important step for internet startups is making sure your website is easy to use for you and your customers. Design it so that the basic functions run smoothly, even if you can’t get the fancier features yet. Those will come later. For now, worry about having a website that people can navigate without getting error messages, and that tells them all the information about your business that they need to know.