When preparing to start a purely internet based business, it can seem like a somewhat abstract situation. There are no tangible premises to look at, in most cases, and the whole process can appear a little remote. With this type of remoteness, it becomes increasingly important to remain organised and focussed in a way that ensures that all aspects are taken care of, particularly as there are far fewer physical reminders to jog the memory!
As with any business, it is possible to purchase a going concern whereby you take over a proven business that someone has already set up. With this type of internet based going concern, at least you will have tangible evidence that the business is viable. However, when purchasing an online business, it is absolutely vital to obtain professional advice on specific aspects such as intellectual property as, essentially, you are purchasing nothing more than a website and the goodwill that has been built up within that website.
A classic example might be a portal type website that lists available companies such as hotels or restaurants, where these businesses pay to have themselves included. Alternatively, they may pay a referral fee, or advertising space may be sold on the website itself. When purchasing this type of business, it is essential that you ensure that the transfer of the website and the related contracts are drawn up in a way that guarantee all rights pass to you on completion.
Another very important factor is making sure that you understand the technical side of the process of running an internet based business. For example, it is important that you know how to add or change the website and that you have an in-depth understanding of the way that the ‘back end’ of the website works. Failure to understand the technology could lead to a sharp reduction in the profitability and desirability of your business.
For many people, creating an internet based presence is a first foray into the world of managing any type of business. This is primarily due to the generally lower set-up costs involved compared with setting up similar businesses on the high street. Also, an internet based business can be great for those who lack confidence in their marketing ideas.
By setting up a website, it is possible to monitor the number of people that enter your site, what they read, how long they stay on the site and, more importantly, how much, if anything, they order. This can be achieved in a low key way that does not require a large outlay on premises, leases or employing staff.
Initially, all you need to start an internet based business, in terms of structure, is the actual website itself and, of course, the product or service that you are going to sell. If you are not highly experienced in internet technology, then you will need to seek expert assistance. But, do ensure that you are taught how to deal with the website so that you are not forced into a situation where you are beholden to your supplier, as this can result in unnecessarily high ongoing costs.
The process of setting up an internet business is considerably simpler and quicker than a traditional high street type business;
If you are purchasing an existing internet business, make sure that you fully understand the technological aspects of the business, as this is key to the smooth running of an online business;
When starting a business from scratch, an online presence can be a great way of tentatively working out the market that you are considering entering; the initial outlay is much less than with a traditional high street store.