Year 2020 is almost ending and it was a very difficult year for most of the businesses. Good amount of people lost their jobs this year because of the slowdown due to COVID pandemic. Well, the good news is, Internet usage was spiked by more than 50% in lockdown.
More than 4.6 Billion people across the globe accessed Internet this year. In India, this number is almost 700 Million. More and more new users are coming to Internet everyday and that’s why year 2021 is going to be the perfect year to start online business from home.
If you are planning to start eCommerce Business, Online Consultancy Firm, Cloud Kitchen, Professional Blogging Business (I made $50,000 with blogging), Product Review Channel on YouTube etc. then 2021 is the best time start one.
Planning an Online Business in 2021
To start an online business, first thing is to come up with the idea. There are many options available to start an online business. As I mentioned earlier, eCommerce or Dropshipping is one option to consider. Apart from that, you can also think of some ideas requiring less amount of investments.
Once you list down the ideas, now start with the execution.
So let’s take out some points to set up an online business in 2021 in order to reach more customers
Step 1. Keyword research
After getting clarity on the idea, it’s time to do some research related to the same. By using the tools like Google Trends, you can get some information about the product or services that you are looking forward to pitch. Try to see how many people are searching for that kind of service or product. Some Keyword Research Tools will also help you understand what exactly the potential buyer is typing on search engine like Google while searching.
The keyword is a big aspect of search engine optimisation and also it plays a major role in content marketing. Therefore, using the proper keywords while planning a content strategy will help a lot. Keyword not only gives the idea of what people are searching but it also gives the picture of how people are searching for the same thing in different ways by using different words. Use tools like similarweb.com and blex.com to track the competitors.
Step 2. Get a domain name
For online businesses, website is not always compulsory but is very important & powerful tool. To create a website, you may need to buy a domain name. For example, my website is having domain name sanjeevmishra.com and I created my presence using the same. You can buy a domain with different TLDs like .com .org .net. .co .co.in .in .club .store etc.
You may think about having 1 or 2 keywords in domain name, that helps in SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) of website. For example, instantdomainsearch.com is having their popular keyword in domain name itself.
In case you are serious about the brand name and don’t want any keyword inside the domain name, that’s okay. For example, godaddy.com or staenz.com are not having keywords in their domain name still ranks on search engine.
Step 3. Managed Hosting Services
To store the data including webpage files, images, videos etc. of your website, you need a good hosting server.
Always opt for managed hosting services in order to have a streamlined process. Taking up managed hosting lowers your costs and it also does server monitoring. The main thing is that it has backups so you don’t have to worry at all about anything.
Step 4. Grab Social Media Handles and Start Using
After getting the domain name, it’s time to grab your social media usernames. Depending on the business type, you can build presence on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin etc.
With social media, your business can reach more people and may start getting early customers too. Millions or people are using social media platforms that’s why it’s very important to be there. Start using tools like Buffer or Zoho Social to manage multiple social media channels at one place. It will save time and effort of handling accounts.
Step 5. Create Website or/and Landing Pages
To create a dynamic website with blog and other features, I recommend WordPress. It’s a FREE Content Management Software that allows creating a website in no time. For eCommerce website, you can use WooCommerce or Easy Digital Download Plugins in WordPress.
sanjeevmishra.com is also using WordPress CMS only. It powers approx. 40% of the web.
In case you just want a page to grab leads for your business, I recommend landing page tools like Leadpages or Unbounce. To create a full fledged sales funnel, you can use Clickfunnels too.
Step 6. Always be Ready for Retargeting
Retargeting is to show an advertisement to people who already engaged with your business. Either they visited your website or a particular page or gave you their email ID or liked a posts on Facebook. To retarget on Facebook and Instagram, you need to install Facebook Pixel code on the website.
Similarly, you need to install Google Retargeting tag (Google Analytics tracking code also works) on website too.
Step 7. Capture Email leads
Start capturing email IDs of visitors or prospects from day 1 of your online business. Use tools like Mailchimp, Aweber or Zoho Campaign to capture the email IDs of subscribers. For more effective pop ups, I recommend OptinMonster as they provide Exit-Intent forms.
Step 8. Have a Blog
When planning to start an online business, you need to work a lot on copywriting. Blog allows you to build presence in many ways and it also allows you to cover various topics in your business niche via the same. While setting up your website, make sure you have kept a space for blog and that’s why I recommend building your website using WordPress.
Setting up a blog is very easy with WordPress. Once it is up, you can start publishing updates, stories and how-tos related to your business. Don’t forget to share those blog posts on social media sites.
Step 19. Social Proof
To grow your online business 10 times, you need to show client testimonials or reviews via website or social media. Well, text format testimonials are not that much helpful as people won’t believe the same. I recommend to use social proof e.g. screenshot taken from Facebook about good things said by a client OR WhatsApp screenshot or DMs screenshots will help.
Tools like TruePulse will also help in building trust about your business as it keep showing “XYZ just purchased” from your store.
Try to get video testimonial (if possible) from clients or users and spread that via social media or through website. You can also try for audio testimonial too even that one is better than just text.
Step 10. Paid Ads
Organic reach is good but if you want to scale faster, choose Paid Advertisements. Platforms like Facebook, Google, Instagram, Linkedin allows you to reach more people instantly via paid ad options.
I recommend paid advertisements including re-targeting ads via Google & Facebook for better conversion and branding.
But before running paid ads, it’s very important that the goal is clear and the pages (landing page or website) is properly set. You need to double check the form and the text if everything is aligned properly and in working condition.
If you want to step into online business, year 2021 is the best time to do the same. The kind of growth digital platforms have received is crazy. Opportunity is big for everybody but the most important thing is, you need to spend some time in learning the online marketing part. Once you have understanding of the verticals in practical way, life will be easier.
If you want to fasten the learning process and that too in organised manner, I recommend 3 Months Online Marketing Course at STAENZ. It’s a 360 degree Instructor Led digital marketing course with focus on practical learnings and implementations.
Let me know via comment that what business you are planning to start in year 2021. How do you see the growth of online portals and platforms in coming year?
Have a great year ahead.