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Putting Your Successful Home Based Business Online

Aug 18, 2007
Having a successful offline business is a wonderful experience. Many businesses fail and become very frustrating and disappointing. However if you have a successful offline business then you probably feel satisfied and happy with what you have. Or do you?

Many successful offline home based businesses need to grow in order to survive. Indeed most owners of the successful offline business are always on the lookout for ways to grow the business and to make even more profits. One very possible way of doing this is to go online. Using the Internet to build your business is always a viable possibility. Certainly if you have been successful offline there is no reason why you shouldn't be even more successful having your business go online.

If you have a successful offline business chances are that you already have a very good local customer base that provides you with most of your business. Using this local customer base is a great way to expand your home based business beyond the local area into a wider community including a worldwide community of prospective customers. This will enable you to go beyond what you might otherwise consider a ceiling to your business.

While you are building your wider customer base, being online can be a real advantage to your local customer base. Being online enables your customers more freedom in finding out more about your business and going about purchasing your goods and/or services. So what are the First Steps?

Firstly, you need to decide if going online is right for you. Weigh up what the advantages of going online might be. What is your current customer base? Will your customers receive any further benefit by you going online? Will it make them easier to contact you or to buy your products? Will being online enable to contact your customer base more easily and let them know what products you have available? Will being online enable you to attract more buyers who are not local? Are you interested in selling your services and products to people outside your local community? Will you be able to properly service having an increased customer base? Will you need to take other resources or employees to assist your expanding business? Will it be worth it in the long run?

Secondly, you need to decide if you are going to maintain a website. Although most online home based businesses have a website this is not imperative. There are many who market their products online without having their own website. For example you may use the internet for advertising purposes only. You might be able to gain affiliates who will do your marketing online for you. If you decide to maintain your own website then you will need to work out how to get your website up and running. Are you going to create your own website?

This is actually a lot easier than you think. You might have to buy a website creator tool or you might decide that you will simply hire a website developer to create and get your website running for you. Although this may be expensive it may also be well worth the money.

Thirdly, if you have put your own website together either by yourself or with hired help, you will then need to have a web host. There are many good web host sites on the market. They vary in price and service. Be careful in your choice. Search the internet for a good web host, by reading what other people are saying and looking at their websites to decide if they are doing a good job and providing adequate service.

Maybe you can ask others you know who already have the site hosted. You will also have to take on a good Internet service provider.

Fourthly, decide how you are going to promote your home based business. Gain knowledge of Internet advertising and finding free places to get your business known. Perhaps the best advertising agents are Google and yahoo. although they are by no means the only adversting sources. Actually you have to be careful with your advertising budget. It is very easy to advertise in the wrong places or in the wrong way, leading to a considerable waste of money.

Personally I recommend article submissions. By this I mean writing articles of 300 to 500 words in your chosen field and giving them to article sites for publication. These articles then generate what is referred to as links to your site. Other people also read them and may click to your site. They do this by locating your details at the bottom of an article in what is referred to as the author's box or resource box.

No matter what way you decide to take your home based business it is very important to do research in to possibilities. Fortunately there are many educational or informative websites on the Internet. However be careful in doing this. Some webmasters can ask for an inordinate amount of money to become a member of their site.

Generally I have found that obtaining information freely is quite possible without paying for these. However there are some specialist sites that provide very good information and educational material and these are worth paying money for that extra knowledge and guidance. It is also important to avail yourself of a wide range of internet resources.
About the Author
Amanda King operates a fashion resources website. Obtain a free copy of Dotcomology the science of making money online. Learn more here
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