The internet offers exciting opportunities to reach a bigger customer base. But building a new online business can be a challenge. In this article, we’ll look at some of the key steps you’ll need to take – from building a website, to using digital marketing to attract new customers.
What is an Online Business?
We believe that every business should have a website. But there’s a difference between a business with a website, and an online business. A true online business uses the internet as a major source of revenue.
The classic example is an e-commerce store – which sells products online for delivery to its customers’ homes. Online businesses can also provide services, not products. Our own business, tasjeel.ae, is a perfect example of an online business selling services (in our case, website hosting and domain registration services).
Finally, you could build an online business that profits from adverts placed on your website. Or even sign up to an affiliate marketing plan – meaning you’ll earn money by sending customers to another website which you’re affiliated with.
Building a Website
Whichever option you choose, the first step is to build a website. There are plenty of ways to do this. You could hire a web developer, or you could try building your own website using a Content Management System (CMS), like WordPress. If you find web developers’ fees too high, or WordPress too complex, you could use a drag-and-drop website builder instead.
Building an E-Commerce Website
Building an e-commerce website will enable your customers to buy from you online. Remember, when you sell online, you’re responsible for looking after your customers’ data – like their credit card details. With that in mind, you should ensure that you use SSL encryption on your new website. Buying a web hosting plan with a free SSL certificate makes this easy and affordable.
Great website = great business online – right? Unfortunately, it’s not quite that simple. To build a successful business online, you’ll need to use digital marketing techniques. Popular options include Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), email marketing campaigns and Social Media Marketing (SMM). The aim of digital marketing is to increase traffic to your website– and ultimately, to boost your sales.
Building a new online business takes time, focus and commitment – but the rewards can be huge. By building a website and using powerful digital marketing techniques, you could start selling globally, and skyrocket your profits. Hopefully, this guide has inspired you to get started!