Dec 18, 2008

Online [checklist] Businesses

The Internet offers a canvas that is as wide as one wants and as versatile as one would wish. Its possibilities are now being explored to the hilt with people from any number of diverse places, cultures, professions, tastes and skills trying their hand at creating for themselves an exclusive space.

They build it, design it, stretch it and use it in any way possible to suit their outlooks, their creativity, their vocations, businesses and what not. So, in short, the internet provides us with a whole new surreal galaxy where any entity, individual or corporate structure is free to carve out a niche for itself; the only limitation being affordability.

You may create your website, a virtual home to suit your dreams, imagination, requirement or purpose and use it as the ultimate instrument for effective communication of your opinions, skills, products, interests, ideologies, beliefs, theories and almost anything you wish.

The lure of e-commerce is indeed hard to resist. Developing a business over the Internet calls for the same, if not, a greater amount of efforts as starting any other normal direct business. You may need funding to get your business going. You will require an endless list of things starting from customers, marketing materials, a strong customer service and, an equally efficient system to manage purchases by customers, finances, staff and other resources.

Here's a checklist of things you need to have with you before jumping onto the online business bandwagon and planning to stay on till the end.

• Do plenty of exploring- a thorough knowledge of the happenings on the net is an essential prerequisite for starting e-business. To keep ahead of the pack, always keep yourself updated about the net. Explore the net and gain a proper knowledge of what exactly you are getting into. No one knows your business better than you do. This itself is reason enough to make you find a thousand ways to promote your business that probably no consultant or provider would ever think of.

• Be a resource- what really counts in e-business is to be a real storehouse of information. Therefore, you need to be a valuable resource of information and provide valuable information about your industry and area of expertise and specialization. Being an excellent resource always pays and helps in drawing potential customers near you.

• Avoid sending out unsolicited e-mail marketing messages- if you are a constant e-mail user, you would probably know how annoying those unsolicited e-mail advertisements that cram your mail box are. In fact they are not going to do any good except for irritating the customer. Moreover, an electronic mail message can sometimes cost the recipient money. Why go for such measures when you can think of innovative methods to market your business.

• Make use of online discussion groups for soft-selling- e-mail discussion groups can really help out to market your business, but for this you need to be a real active participant. Lurk and listen, voice your opinions and give and take suggestions without barging into hype and brag about your product. Try this and you are sure to be surprised to see how leads start pouring in from potential clients and customers.

• Check your e-mail regularly- e-business largely depends on quick and prompt business. A quick response speaks volumes about your care and commitment. It also reflects your serious approach towards your business.

• Accept and implement changes- do not design your site as you like it without considering the usefulness and functionality. Make sure that you site communicates well to the users and gives them the required value. Change adds essence to your e-business. Treat your customers with something different so that they feel like returning to your site. Repeat visitors stand a great chance of becoming regular clients. Make good use of the technology and always keep updating you material adding new features, resources and information.

• Concentrate on spelling, grammar and sentence construction- there is nothing like a poorly written web copy to turn off your customers. A clearly written error-free writing reflects a professional image and enhances your selling prospects. Always make it a point to double check for typos or vague messages.

• Include a clear call to action in your message- Always be clear while communicating. A vague ambiguous message can confuse the reader and put you in trouble. Convey whatever you want to say in clear direct terms. Let them know what you want them to do, and ask them to do it directly. A response mechanism can be set up so that it is easy for them to respond. It can be anything such as a direct e-mail link, a form to fill out, or a button to click. The more direct and immediate, the better. Remember to add a phone number or a fax number. A postal mail address is a second choice but better than nothing.

Promote your Internet presence through offline channels- just ensuring your online presence is not enough. You also need to let your customers and the public know about it. Promote yourself in all possible ways; put your e-mail address and URL on your business cards, stationery, ads, brochures, packaging, and signage. Do anything you can think of to get the word out. Send out press releases. Marketing over the Internet and the World-Wide Web can bring results in the form of leads, direct sales, publicity, and image-boosting. Get to know the medium. Work up a sound strategy. Hunt for appropriate online marketing methods that will get your selling message across while respecting other Internet users.

Source : ArticleAlley

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Ditulis Oleh : Alessandro Sitompul Hari: 2:35 PM Kategori:

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