If you’ve decided to start an online business, the first decision you will make is whether to sell products or services to your customers. Arguably, selling a tangible product is easier, as it can be stored and shipped according to demand. However, there are limits to your time as a service provider, which dictates the amount of work you can take on.
There are many advantages to selling your services online. You don’t usually acquire startup costs, and you can use your talent, skills and previous experience to earn money remotely and work more flexibly. So, if you’re looking to sell your services online, here are five tips to help you get started.
Invest In Your Website
Your website is essentially the face of your business, so it needs to be professional, smart and easy to navigate. If you don’t spend time and money on your website, why should your customers invest time and money in you? Similarly, if your page is full of ads or poorly organized content, your site visitors aren’t going to stick around, so make sure it looks the part and serves its fundamental purpose.
Selling your services as opposed to a tangible product is more challenging than it sounds. Your customers need to know that you can deliver what you promise reliably, accurately and on time. Online selling is a fickle business, so you need to stay ahead of the competition. No matter whether you’re selling your hairstyling skills, your writing finesse or your lawn-mowing services, you need to market yourself as the best in the business.
Work out the “Where”
Before you start selling your services, you need to work out where you will advertise and deliver them. Are you selling location-specific services like gardening or mobile hairdressing? If so, you should advertise locally as well as online.
If your services are digital, then you should consider where you will advertise. Sites like Upwork and Fiverr are great platforms that enable freelancers to find paid work and build contacts. However, you can also utilize social media platforms and search engine optimization to drive more traffic to your website.
Work Out the “How”
How will you deliver the service you’re offering? Your customers will want to know these details before they make an order with you. If you’re selling a physical product, then you need to factor in delivery cost and method. You could either use a courier service or deliver locally by finding low-cost commercial trucks for sale online.
If you’re a selling service like content writing, web design or photo editing, you will probably work from home (or anywhere you can get an Internet connection). Working for yourself isn’t always easy, so you should work out in advance how you will manage your time and organize your workload.
Know Your Limits
Contrary to what people think, being self-employed or running a business doesn’t grant you full autonomy over your time. In fact, many business-owners end up working fifty to eight hours per week, so don’t view self-employment as an easy moneymaking scheme. To avoid burnout and ensure growth and longevity for your business, it’s vital that you recognize your time constraints and organize your workload accordingly.