Research – Just Do It – Or Don’t Bother With An Online Or Offline Business

There are really only four steps to owning and running a business and they are

1. RESEARCH
2. PLANNING
3. EXECUTION
4. EXIT STRATEGY

They are all important but the most important is research for without it you will be lucky to make it a success.

Incidentally and probably to most people’s surprise the second most important is the exit strategy – how are you going to leave the business? Why build it up only to just close it down when you want to retire which is what a lot of business owners do? Having an exit strategy means you have an end goal in mind and focuses you on building your business for a specific reason other than being your own boss.

However this article is about the importance of research so let’s focus on that.

You think you have a great idea about a certain problem and you think a certain type of widget book or even a specialist shop will solve it and make you millions!

So you steam ahead but neglect to do the proper research to see if there is indeed a need or more importantly a want for it and you just plow straight ahead spending your hard earned money producing this fantastic product that you are sure is a winner.

Unfortunately it isn’t and all your dreams disappear along with your investment and possibly more. This could have been avoided with the proper research which is why it is so important.

Research is where your business actually starts – you need to know if what you offer is actually needed or wanted and there is a BIG difference between the two.

People need food to live but what sort of food do they want? See the difference? You could try and sell all kinds of different exotic foods because you like the idea of it but if nobody wants to eat them you will fail in that business.

Your research will tell you what foods people want and this principle applies to virtually all successful businesses.

So how do you start? Well who do you want to sell to? Men, women, parents, couples, singles, teenagers, sports people (men /women/both!), the elderly, the disabled – who? You must decide your who your market is.

Most people start with Google to find out what size of market there is ( if any ) but be very specific about what you are looking for.

For example if you’re looking at the fishing market ( a huge one ) when you type in your product or market into the search bar instead of saying “fishing” say fishing rods or bait or whatever it is you are thinking of offering. If it’s fly-fishing state that but be specific, what sort of fly are you offering, what sort of fish do your customers want to catch – trout or salmon?

You can also look on Amazon and eBay for ideas, especially for products proven to sell.

However if there’s only one thing you take away from this article then make it this:

• It’s much easier to sell into a market that’s already buying than it is to create a new product and find a market for it.

Again your research will tell you what is hot and what is not.

Quite often a personal experience of adversity will make you look more closely at it and maybe see an opportunity in that particular market. For example I have a friend whose daughter became very ill which eventually led to partial amputation. This greatly affected her as you can imagine.

One thing that became very apparent when she was recovering was how limited her choices were for travel or holidays. The UK has specific regulations concerning hotels and facilities for wheelchair users or people with physical disabilities but there are still problems and even more so in other countries.

This makes finding suitable accommodation quite difficult. My friend decided that there was a business opportunity in this area so he researched the possibility of setting up a travel business catering specifically for the physically challenged.

By that I don’t mean just wheelchair users (according to his research only 7% of the people labeled “disabled” are actually wheelchair bound) far from it.

He discovered that the elderly who are a bit unsteady on their feet are often labeled “disabled” and they really don’t like it. It is however, a huge market, one which without the requisite research wouldn’t have been noticed. The elderly often have the same needs such as no steps or level resorts. Now that they have this information they can formulate the best way of marketing the business to accommodate both types of customer.

If you’re looking to be an affiliate you should look in ClickBank and see what’s in the top 50 selling products or if you have a certain interest and there’s a product related to it investigate it more.
There are two areas to look at in particular when choosing a product.

1. The gravity reading. This is the number of affiliates promoting the product – anywhere between 60 – 100 is ideal.

• Below 60 – product not popular enough = low sales
• Above 100 – product too popular – unless you have a large list already and are able to get in on the trend or fad then it’s best to ignore it.

2. Future $ – This signifies the amount paid on a monthly recurring basis – this is the best product to sell as it means regular passive income.

Once you’ve decided on who you’re going to sell to you need to know where to find them. If your market is selling information marketing products and your ideal customer is male, aged 40 – 65 then Pinterest probably isn’t for you!

According to a recent survey 42% of adult users are women with only 13% being men. This means 45% of users are under the age of 18!

LinkedIn however probably is. Of all internet users, the number of adult men using LinkedIn is 28% and 61% of LinkedIn users are aged 30-69.

Perhaps a more interesting number is the 44% of all LinkedIn users earn $75000 or more per year! If you have a high priced product LinkedIn would seem a very good place to sell it.

Of course Facebook and – perhaps surprisingly to some people – YouTube are also excellent sources for researching your chosen market.

If you are thinking of selling information products try Udemy and for crafts and such try Etsy.

One very important area worth looking at to see what people are buying is Warrior Forum. People here are buyers as well and you can find valuable information on what people want.

If you are thinking of starting a business or just selling online part time I hope this article gives you some food for thought. There’s an old saying ” fools rush in where angels fear to tread “.
Don’t be a fool – research!

Here’s How to Start Your Business While Working Full-Time

You want to stand on your feet, kick-start your own business and be that Entrepreneur you’ve always dreamed of. You’ve probably been told several time that the only way you can succeed as an Entrepreneur is to jump into the business world with both feet.

Before you think of quitting that job, consider this: A paper appearing in an issue of the Academy of Management Journal finds that entrepreneurs who start off by working part-time on their new ventures-holding on to their day jobs while they launch their new companies-cut their risk of failure by a full third.

Working part-time at a new company gives you a chance to see if your idea, and chances to execute on it, are any good before you leap in. You also get a learning experience about the enterprise in question and get to know if you’re suitable for it.

As a first time Entrepreneur, you also cannot guarantee if the small business venture will succeed, so the best option is to minimise the financial risk by initially keeping your full-time job and working on you startup during your free time.

Even successful Entrepreneurs had at one time of their Entrepreneurship journey being at this stage where they had to work full-time and work on their startup. Pierre Omidyar launched eBay while at another software development company. Henry Ford founded the Detroit Automobile Company while employed by the Edison Illuminating Company.

Keeping your full-time job while starting your business will almost certainly be the busiest periods in your professional life, but it’s worth it. You maintain a stable income while building a future.

Here are a few strategies to making it work:

Validate Your Business Idea.

The #1 reason why most businesses fail is lack of market need for their product. You should validate your business idea, to avoid creating a product that nobody needs, or one that doesn’t work. Validating your idea involves getting honest feedback from potential customers before you start building, creating, and spending money.

As humans, it’s normal to think that we are right and our ideas are amazing. It’s easy to take off with an exciting new project in mind and work inside of your little bubble without ever involving anyone else for feedback during the process.

Channel your excitement into a positive, calculated direction, and intelligently test your way into assumptions about your potential new business before jumping aboard and setting sail.

Set Goals.

In setting your goals, consider your business plan and make sure your goals are detailed, measurable and realistic. If you want to turn your business into a full-time venture, come up with a rough idea of when you’ll like to begin this transition.

Create a schedule by mapping out yearly, monthly, and weekly goals, and keep track of them along the way. Making and meeting goals will help you stay on your timeline, which will help ensure your business’ success. On the other hand, if you don’t intend to leave your full-time job, determine how much time you’re willing to put into it on a daily and weekly basis, and then create a plan to help you stick with it.

Do a Lot of Outsourcing.

This one is all about focus. Look for opportunities to outsource every possible part of your business creation that you can. Could you hire someone to do it better, faster and, ultimately, break even or make more money during that time? If so, do it.

Entrepreneurs know how to make the most of every situation and resource they have. It’s the best skill you can hone, and you don’t need to make a major change to start. Figure out today what you could do to better to maximize your time, get rid of dead weight and take care of both kinds of business.

See Your Job as an Advantage.

No matter what kind of job you have, make sure you consider it as a blessing, not a curse. It isn’t holding you back, it’s keeping you afloat. You need that paycheck because otherwise you won’t have enough money to live on while you get things going. You’re lucky, because capital from your current job is there every couple of weeks. Most investors want to see that entrepreneurs are investing in themselves first, and you need a paycheck or savings (preferably both) to make that happen.

Plan Your Days Well.

It might sound impressive when someone works 36 hours straight, but you’re definitely not managing your time or your health with that approach. Actually, few businesses are built on that strategy. It’s the little, consistent daily things you do that add up to make or break a startup. Stop the busy work, get rid of distractions and give both your job and your venture the laser focused attention they deserve.

If your job takes up 40 hours of your time each week (give or take), account for it and figure out how to maximize all those other hours. Sleep should still be a priority, as should some daily exercise. Still, there are 72 hours in a week to do with as you wish beyond your 40 hours of work, so spend them well. Successful entrepreneurs manage their time, they don’t wish for more of it.

Interiorscape Trends for Businesses

The interiorscape trend is taking the business world by storm today. More and more businesses are paying attention to their employees’ environment, and as a result, interiorscape trends have become a hot topic in the world of business and space planning. Workspace environment has come to mean so much more than just the furniture and the room’s layout. Through interiorscaping, businesses help employees become more productive, feel less stress and enjoy their jobs more.

What Is Interiorscaping?

Interiorscaping is bringing natural elements indoors. This can include letting in more natural light as well as using living plants as décor elements. It is certainly not a new concept, as people have been trying to bring the outdoors inside for many years. It is the way that it is being done today that is revolutionary.

Interiorscape Trends in the Business World

Savvy business owners and managers understand the value of interiorscape trends and incorporating them into interior redesign projects. By paying attention to employee well-being, productivity and atmosphere, companies can increase their bottom lines. Improvements in the work environment boost employee retention rates, make for happier employees, and in return, staff that is willing to work longer and harder at their jobs. So, what interiorscape trends are businesses implementing?

Water features: The sound of water is soothing and peaceful. It helps reduce stress and makes people feel calm. When water features are added to a business’s décor, employees are able to make better decisions because they feel less pressured. People communicate better because tempers do not rise so easily.

Feature walls: Both Google and Twitter have implemented large feature walls that are alive with green plants. These walls make the air cleaner and make employees feel more emotionally balanced. Not only do they look great, but it has been estimated that spaces with more greenery help increase productivity by as much as 12 percent.

Natural walls: Instead of building walls with man-made materials, businesses are creating divisions with natural elements like wood, grass and other materials that are normally seen outside.

More windows: Natural light decreases the need for other lighting that can cause headaches and stress. More windows have been shown to improve mood and energy levels, thus increasing everyone’s productivity and engagement.

Professional Installation and Maintenance

Natural elements do require more maintenance than synthetic elements. Certain plants will require specific temperatures to thrive. The right amount of moisture must be present in the air. The correct lighting is also a consideration. And of course, plants need someone to care for them. For this reason, any business that plans to implement interiorscape trends in their facility design should consult a professional. Those who specialize in interiorscaping can advise you on the best plants to include. They will also be able to inform you of the costs of upkeep to ensure that your environment stays healthy. A professional interior plant service can even do the design for you and help you manage your natural environment. This will save you money now and in the future. Contact a professional today who can help you implement these concepts in your company, to ensure that you get the best value for your interiorscape investment.