Whether you have an existing brick and mortar business and are expanding you business online, starting a new business and want to build a website, or want to start a new online only business, you should approach the planning of your website the same, it is a business unto itself, a completely new venture.

If you were starting or planning a new business, what are some of the things you would need to consider?

  1. Why do I want to start a business?
  2. What do I want to name my business?
  3. Do I have the knowledge and resources to start and run my new business?
  4. Do I have enough money or investors to help me get started?  What is my budget for different aspects of my business?
  5. What exactly is my business going to do and why will it be better than my competition?  Do I have any competition?  Who are they?
  6. How am I going to market my new business and what do I want to say about the business and our products or services?
  7. What do I want my business to look like when potential clients come to visit?
  8. Do I have a logo or color scheme that I like?
  9. Can I do the work myself, or do I need a staff to help me get things done?
  10. How much time can I dedicate to my business?  Is that enough time to make my business successful?

I have planned several businesses, and if you have planned a business before, you know that this list of questions is just the start of the hundreds of questions that you will ask and answer yourself.  The key to a successful web presence is to approach it in the same manner.  Ask yourself these kind of questions, try to answer them.

The trick is to write them all down, answer what you can, ask others when you can’t.  The next step in developing your online business is to establish an Online Business Plan.  If you’re comfortable doing your own we’d be happy to review it with you, or help you when you get stuck.  If you have no idea how to get this done, put together a list of your questions, answer what you can, and we’ll build your Online Business Plan with youJust ask, we’re happy to help.

Having a successful online presence can be difficult.  Don’t think that it’s going to be easy, or that you’re just going to give us some money to build your site and be rich and famous next month.  It is a business, all by itself.  It will require just as much dedication on your part, as it will on ours.

Imagine that you had a business that was a partnership.  If you came up with the idea but tried to make your partner do all the work, how successful would your business be?  How good would your relationship be with your partner?  Eventually, hopefully, you would realize that your business isn’t as successful as you thought it should be, that you’re paying your partner a bunch of money, and that you’re not rich and famous yet!  Would you blame this on the partner or would you realize that maybe you didn’t do your part towards that success?  Your web project should be approached in the same way.

We know what it takes to be successful online.  We’ve done it for many people. We are more than happy to help you be successful online, to be your business partner.

We also appreciate your business, we like getting paychecks around here.  But mostly?  We love helping people succeed in their new business.  Your success is our success.  But what are you bringing to the table besides your checkbook?  Do you know what you’re trying to do?  Do you know why you want a website?  Are you approaching it as a new business or as just some thing that businesses do?

Your website is a new business or a satellite location of your existing business.  Instead of being on a street somewhere, it is everywhere. Accessible to most of the world.  It’s in every home, in every business, on every corner.  What are you going to do with it and why?  Think on it some and when you’re ready to get started, give us a shout.

This article is part of a series about doing business online.  View the rest of the series here.

2 Responses to Planning your Online Business

  1. Website Budget, Online Business Plan, Building an Online Business | Trademark Productions Blog

  2. Great post Dean.

    I hope this illustrates to our current clients and those considering TM for the digital agency the caliber of talent, honesty and dedication we possess.

    DZ | August 23, 2008at 12:58 am

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