The Skinny on Starting an Online Business

Whether or not we’re online business owners, brick and mortar or both, being an entrepreneur can be as daunting as it is profitable and rewarding.

These recent years have seen a boom in the number of entrepreneurs, online business owners, and even home-based businesses. Both types of businesses have their advantages and disadvantages.  It is important to have a clear vision and be able to identify our needs and take inventory with regard to our abilities and resources. Starting and running a business is no minor feat; being informed is the first step on a long road towards success. Let’s weigh some of the basic pros and cons of an undertaking an online start-up.

The three most commonly stated pros of an online startup are the amazingly low startup costs and overhead, schedule independence and flexibility, and the innate ease of e-commerce. For the average person, with an average income, wanting to start a business, sources of working capital finance may be difficult or near impossible to procure. An online business allows us to begin with the resources that we have and also to control the expansion of the revenue stream closely. Also, operating an online business is typically a home-based venture. As such, it allows us to create our own schedules, literally. Creating our own schedule can ensure that we are working in optimal conditions because we work when, and in an environment, that is convenient for us. It also allows us to work at our own paces and in whatever ways nurture our creativity and productivity. Of course, the malleability of e-commerce is the final frontier in the smooth nature of running a company online. Technology lets your online store run itself. It never closes. There are no awkward customer service moments and most importantly, it leaves a paper trail that is essentially flawless and readily available.

Online businesses have an equal set of disadvantages, however as well. First and probably most, unfortunately, between the sheer volume of other businesses and the anonymity of the world wide web, the distinct possibility arises that no one will ever notice your online business.

Marketing companies and advertising costs can topple the budget of a small start-up company. Another common hindrance is the fact that because the internet is well…a free for all, it can be difficult to establish brand credibility and build up consumer trust. Essentially, it is up to you as the entrepreneur to decide what type of business is best for you and how to start.



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