Home-Based Business 101: Getting Started (And Staying Productive)
Growing your own business is one way to stay ahead of changes in the economy. However, Toast & Jam Community knows it can often seem daunting when you’re just getting started. Fortunately, working out of your home is easier than ever, no matter your creative specialty. All you need are a few tools and strategies to get started and stay productive in your new venture.
Forget About ‘Limits’ to Your Creativity
Whatever industry you want to break into as an entrepreneur, holding back is a mistake. Passion, in addition to a smart business plan, can help you grow your company, whether you’re running it from your living room or poolside on an exotic vacation. Gone are the days when working from home was a privilege afforded to a select few. These days, anyone and everyone enjoys creating their own schedule by building a company from the ground up.
Embrace Better Productivity at Home
The jury is in, and it’s undeniable that working from home is more productive than working in a corporate cubicle. And although the same applies to both employees and people running their own businesses, home-based business owners tend to worry about blocking out distractions in their home workspaces.
To ensure you reap the benefits of working out of your house, create a workspace in a calm and positive spot where you can clock in – and out – for work. Consider a separate business phone line for a professional vibe plus convenience. Make sure your family knows you aren’t to be disturbed while you’re on the clock – whatever working hours you keep. And of course, take measures to ensure your data is safe and sound. The last thing you want to do is have your identity stolen or your files hacked.
Many people find staying home hinders their productivity and can be tedious in many ways. When you need a workspace that’s home away from home, be sure to consider coworking and office spaces through professional communities like Toast & Jam Community. The opportunity to focus, be efficient, and network can be a boon to meeting your goals.
Determine Your Cash Flow Needs
No two businesses are alike, and with so many online-based options out there, expenses vary widely, too. Determining your cash flow needs can help you meet growth milestones – after all, your time is money, so you need to be a numbers expert. Knowing what funds you need for labor, materials, operation costs, and start-up fees like licensing paperwork is essential for your business budget, notes Inc.
Garner Customer Support First
Perfecting your product or stocking your shelves can seem essential at first. After all, what will your customers buy if your virtual or brick-and-mortar shelves are empty? But many small business owners make the mistake of creating a product and then trying to market it to an unknown audience. Instead of developing a product to sell, approach your business venture from a problem-solving perspective, notes Entrepreneur. Sell a solution, and customers will practically be knocking down your door. Of course, you still need to get your idea in front of them – so get ready to put on your marketing hat.
Develop a Solid Marketing Plan
No matter how small your business, you need a marketing plan. Your plan should include everything from how you’ll accept payments to the strategy you’ll use to appeal to customers. Without a physical storefront, you’ll need to head online for most of your marketing, however. Digital marketing involves outlining your social media and branding strategies, among other elements, so you can connect with online audiences. It might be easier than you think, though; being authentic and offering value to consumers is the number-one way to make sales.
Learn to Navigate Business Tools
If you’re tech-averse, now is the time to learn all the skills you’ll need to navigate your home-based business. Depending on your product or service, you might be able to get away with a basic website and a dedicated phone line for your company. But if you’re delivering services online, collaborating with a team, creating marketing content, and scheduling appointments, you’ll need digital tools to make things run smoothly.
Launching a home-based business is thrilling, challenging, and so rewarding. Becoming your own boss can open up countless opportunities, even if getting started involves overcoming tough obstacles. A year from now, you’ll be glad you started today.
Visit Toast & Jam Community for ideas, information, inspiration, and ideal workspaces.
By: Amy Collet
Image via Unsplash
Source: Toast and Jam