When you start up a home business, it’s a great opportunity to work on something that you’re passionate about.
Perhaps something that has been a hobby but has grown to more than that but you want to avoid making mistakes that will hold you back.
To help in that aim I have discovered 6 common mistakes when starting a business that are often made. They can be made without realising it, which can make the journey to success take longer than it needs to be.
What is a niche?
A niche is the idea you want to build your business around. The first idea you have can be a broad subject that you need to narrow down to a much smaller part of that subject and that is your niche.
There are so many business niches, once you start looking.
It’s the focused part of a wider niche, like running. This is a very broad niche and popular, so you need to narrow it down to a particular aspect of it, such as the trainers. Even this may be too broad. It would be something you would need to research.
There are so many niches to choose from that it can be quite tough to decide which one to choose. Unless you already have an idea, it can be overwhelming to narrow it down to a specific niche and then possibly narrow it down further with the choice you make.
In today’s world, it is important to be knowledgeable about your chosen niche as you need to write/blog about it. On a website you blog to connect to people interested in the same thing. Over time you build trust that brings people back to read more and perhaps try your recommendations.
You become an expert by being knowledgeable about your chosen niche. The more you research and write, the more you know about your niche choice.
Mistakes to avoid.
There are a number of common mistakes that many new business entrepreneurs make when they first get started. Here are a few of the more common ones.
These are just simple things that you might not even consider if you are new to the world of business.
1. Not Taking It Seriously
Probably the biggest mistake is not taking your new business seriously. If you don’t take it seriously how can you expect others to take it and you seriously?
So many people start a home business thinking of it as only a hobby or a sideline. But if you treat your home business like a hobby/sideline, that’s all it will ever be.
If that’s what you prefer, it’s fine but then it’s not really a business.
2. Not Using The Internet Enough.
The internet is the world’s largest marketplace and if you’re not online enough, then you’re missing out on a massive potential audience. Depending upon what your business is, this can be tricky finding the right balance. If you are a crafter selling your wares, then you need plenty of time for making too. But equally it’s no good making a lot of stock with no customers to buy them.
Your home business can be trading online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The internet makes it possible to reach out to customers from all over the world. There are many easy to use platforms that can get your business online quickly and easily when you start out.
There are also many training courses, free and paid that will help you learn, everything else you need to know, as you go along.
Using the Internet Too Much
It can also be easy to get into the habit of constantly researching online rather than actually getting down to writing blog posts.
Under the guise of research it is too easy to waste time looking around and get caught up in looking at other things that aren’t related to your business.
While the internet is a great tool, it can also be a great time waster too.
3. Too Little Usage of Social Media Enough
If you want or have an internet based business then you need to utilise the internet to the full.
Yes it’s good to build your site, add content, get the keywords right, the SEO etc but that does take time to get up the ranks in google for your site to be seen.
Build a following on social media, work at it and the numbers will rise. Each of the platforms have their uses, so learn about them and utilise each one to the full.
Again this will take time but in the long run will pay dividends.
It is an excellent tool for business but can also be a great time waster if you aren’t disciplined enough.
4. Focusing Anywhere but Your Audience
This is a common mistake because when you’re starting up a home business it feels like it’s about you. After all, its your baby, your idea that you want to nurture and grow.
But it’s not.
It’s about your audience! It’s how you can provide a solution for what they need, solve a problem they might have or find something they want. Then hopefully at some point, they will realise that you are on their side and genuinely want to help regardless of whether you benefit or not.
When they do come to understand this, they will be more likely to buy from you or someone you recommend.
5. Not Doing Your Research
You may think that you’re setting up the best home business ever started, but is there a market for it? You may love it but do others?
How often are google searches made for this particular product or niche? Are there many already doing this, if so can the demand sustain it.
Is it a seasonal business? Then maybe its good as a secondary business/product/niche.
To begin with though, you want something that’s known as an evergreen niche. Something that is always popular all year round and will continue to be popular for years to come.
6. Lack of Any Marketing And Advertising
So many small businesses, home businesses and otherwise, totally overlook marketing and advertising. You can’t have a business without letting people know that it exists. You can use display advertising, email marketing, social media, pay per click, content marketing and more to promote your business.
However you do it, you have to do it or you’ll have no business.
When I started my first online craft business 10 years ago, I naively thought I would set up shop and the customers would appear by magic. Not surprisingly, I was very wrong. That was the start of a very long journey to learn all I needed to know.
Starting a new business is exciting at the start. You have the idea and want to rush to get it up and running to start earning. It’s once you get right into it that you realise it’s not as easy as that. In fact it’s hard work and earnings are looking a very long way off.
Taking the time for research and working out a plan of action is a good start. Ensuring your chosen niche is a popular one that it comes up in google search a lot is also important. Having a niche that is also a passion of yours is a major key, as you will always have something to write about.
Read blogs about starting a business, not just this one but others too. Each person will give a different angle as they have a different world view. You will find some that resonate more than others with you.
The important thing is that you go into it with your eyes wide open to the pros and cons, understand it will be hard work and have enough knowledge to avoid the basic mistakes.
I wish you all the luck in the world.
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