Starting an Online Business Checklist: 11 Essential Steps

Are you ready to take the plunge and start your own online business? If so, you’ve come to the right place! Starting a business can be a challenging but rewarding journey. In this article, we’ll provide you with an actionable and practical starting an online business checklist to help you make it a success.

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Table of Contents

Starting an Online Business Checklist

Generating & Evaluating Your Business Idea

What are the steps to starting an online business? The first step is to develop a great idea. Think about what skills you have, what products or services you can offer, and what problems you can solve. Consider the market you’ll be entering and evaluate the potential competition.

Once you have a few online business ideas, do your research to ensure there’s a need for what you’re offering and that it’s something you can provide.

Brainstorming and research tools like Google Trends can help you generate ideas and do market research.

Building an Online Presence

Having a professional online presence is essential for any business. Start by creating a website and setting up social media accounts. Make sure your website is easy to use and looks good, and optimise it for search engines.

You can use tools like WordPress, Squarespace, and Wix to create a website quickly and easily.

Setting Up an E-commerce Store

Starting an ecommerce store and setting up a webshop to sell products and offer payment is a great way to earn money. There are a variety of leading tools available to help you get started.

Shopify, BigCommerce, and WooCommerce are popular e-commerce platforms that allow you to create an online store quickly and easily. They provide features such as product management, payment processing, and shipping integration.

Square, Stripe, and PayPal are popular payment processors that can be integrated into your webshop. They provide secure payment processing and customer data protection.

Setting Up Your Business Structure

Once you have your online presence set up, you need to decide on a business structure. This will depend on your type of business but could include a sole proprietorship, limited liability company, or corporation.

Consider the tax implications of each option and consult with a legal or tax professional to make sure you’re making the right choice for you.

Getting the Right Insurance for Your Online Business

When starting an online business, it’s important to get the right insurance in place. This will help protect your business and your personal assets in the event of a claim.

Depending on the type of business you’re running, you may need to get general business liability insurance, product liability insurance, or professional liability insurance.

You may also need to get workers’ compensation insurance, health insurance, or property insurance. Consult with an insurance broker to determine which type of insurance is right for your business.

Financing Your Business

You’ll need to figure out how to finance your business. Consider the possibility of self-funding aka bootstrapping, venture capital, crowdfunding, angel investors, or bank loans. Research the different options and make sure you’re familiar with the legal, financial, and tax implications of each.

We recommend starting with your own runway and then earning as quickly as possible. This will allow you to use early revenue to fund your business without being in debt right from the start.

Crafting a Business Plan

A business plan is an essential document for entrepreneurs that outlines the goals, strategies, and tactics of the business. It serves as a blueprint for launching and running a successful business.

It typically covers all aspects of the business, from the product or service to the financials, operations, marketing plan, and more.

Having a proper business plan is crucial because it helps you to stay organised, plan and budget for the future, and set achievable goals.

Developing Your Products or Services

Once you’ve decided on your business idea, you need to figure out how to develop your product or service. Consider the cost of development, the materials and tools you’ll need, and the people you’ll need to hire.

If you’re offering services, consider how you’ll train your staff and what processes you’ll need to put in place.

👩🏼‍💻 If you want to build an app but don’t know how to code, don’t worry, we got you!

Pricing and Marketing Strategies

Now it’s time to think about how you’ll price your products or services and how you’ll market them. There are a lot of options to choose from, from

It’s important that you consider your target market and your potential customers’ willingness to pay.

👉 We’ve written an in-depth guide on how to choose the right pricing strategy and pricing model.

Managing Your Business

Managing your business is an important part of running a successful online business. You’ll need to figure out how to keep track of customers, manage customer service, monitor inventory, and handle accounting and taxes.

Tools like QuickBooks and Zoho Books can help you keep your finances in order.

Growing Your Business

This is the final point of our starting an online business checklist. Once your business is up and running, you’ll want to focus on growth. Consider expanding your product line, developing new marketing strategies, or investing in advertising. You may also want to explore partnerships or joint ventures with other businesses.

Explore different marketing channels such as social media, email, search engine optimization (SEO), and paid advertising. You may also want to look into affiliate marketing and influencer marketing.

👉 Check out our article where we explore the key channels and strategies to grow your business.

Starting an online business can be a daunting task, but with the right mindset, strategy and tools, you can make it! By following the steps outlined in this article, we hope you’ll be well on your way to launching your own online business.

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