Preparation for business success can come in many ways.
Some follow a regimented career path through college and possibly graduate school to learn the art and science of becoming a business owner.
Others choose to get their education from home study courses, books, tapes, and other media presentations.
Most businesses are started by folks that don’t have formal training in business.
The school of “hard knocks” is their educational backdrop.
Over the years I have observed many new business startups and I have seen how entrepreneurs choose to present themselves and their businesses to the public.
Some do their homework, prepare in advance, and unfold or launch their company in a professional, business-like manner.
Once the doors are open to the public (in our particular type of business that means the web site is up and ready to transact sales), a very professional and “classy” appearance is presented so that the customer can feel at ease that this is a real, serious, honest-to-goodness small business that can be trusted to take money and deliver the goods (whatever they are.)
At the opposite end of the spectrum are those business owners that don’t have a clue about business professionalism, web site usability, customer service, and all the other little details that make a business professional.
These business owners have not taken the time to learn what a professional business looks like, acts like, and must become if customers are to take the company seriously.
Over the next few submissions, I am going to spend some time discussing the steps that the small business owner can take to ensure that his/her business becomes a legitimate and “real” business . . . not just some ill-advised or haphazard idea thrown online to see if it can succor a few naïave souls into parting with their money.
These steps or actions can be accomplished either before opening the business for customers, or in the early stages of the business in operation.
You will be able to understand when they are most important for your business as we discuss each step in a little more detail.
Remember, anyone can create a simple business online in very short order.
But just being able to claim you have a business does not put money in your pocket.
Once your business is operating, you will need to consistently work at growing and developing your business so that your customer base grows and your product offerings grow.
First impressions about a particular business are extremely important, especially to those businesses that are based online.
You will have only a few seconds to convince your prospects that they ought to consider doing business with you.
If your business appearance and products look sloppy, unprofessional, hastily thrown together, or suspect in any way, you will not be successful.
To your online business success,