With the proliferation of the internet and the series of lockdowns, businesses have discovered fresh markets, according to a recent study, hundreds of billions of dollars changed hands over the internet. This has given entrepreneurs new avenues to do business online. Like a traditional brick and mortar business, doing business online has its merits and demerits. These include;
Starting an online business has lower start up and operational costs, all an entrepreneur has to pay for is web design, web hosting, domain name and an internet connection. This makes it simple to get a professionally designed website, optimize it to suit your target audience and use it to effectively market your business.
Hiring a professional web designer does not cost a lot of money as some people are led to believe, their services also yield high returns on your initial investment. Compared to traditional brick and mortar establishments which require rental costs, staff, product displays among other essentials, an online business saves you money from the word go.
Online businesses give entrepreneurs the advantage of choosing their own working hours and get more time to spend with family and friends. Product based businesses can set up online and allow 24 hour purchases by customers. In essence, as long as you fulfill orders and promptly reply to customer queries, you can choose when and for how long you will work.
3. Global reach
Doing business online means that your products and services can be accessed by a vast range of people all over the world. It also allows you to collaborate with business partners globally.
1. Ease of distraction
If you work from home, it is quite easy to get distracted by duties in the house or even begin browsing the internet for things unrelated to your business.
Every Tom, Dick and Harry seems to be going online nowadays. This makes it important to carefully choose a niche where you are guaranteed to stand out or risk being overshadowed by competition.
3. Technical issues
Your website can crash due to a viral attack or overloading as a result of too many sales. This can effectively ground your business thus making you lose clients and transaction records.
4. SEO costs
To get you website listed on the first page of a top search engine like Google, you may have to budget a lot of cash for search engine optimization.
5. Minimal customer contact
Some customers are of the opinion that online purchases are not returnable, while others like to physically touch and try on purchases. When doing business online, you are unable to engage customers face to face in order to strengthen brand loyalty.