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Is Running a Home-Based Business Right For You?

Running a business from home is the easiest way to compete with the big boys without spending as much as they do and make a killing doing it. If you decide to run a business from home, you’ll want weigh the pros and cons before you take the big plunge.

Home Business Disadvantages

The Time Factor

If you want this home based business to be successful, you’ll find yourself spending a lot of time doing it. If you’re married with kids this will take some maneuvering, but it is still possible to run a business from home. If you’re single and/or you live alone, this will be a lot easier, but you still have to focus most of your free time to running this business.

Learning Curve

You’re going to need to spend some time learning about your new business. This research is actually the same kind of research that businesses do before they roll out a new product or start a new venture. If you can answer the following questions, you are well on your way to running a successful home business.

  • What costs are involved?
  • How much will you charge?
  • What kind of competition will you face?
  • How will you deliver the product?
  • What about customer care

The type of business you choose will determine the answers to some of these questions and possibly add some new questions to the list.

Support

Running a business out of the home means that it will impact your home life. If this is the case, your home has to be a conducive environment. If you’re single, living by yourself, this will be easy, but it you’re married with children, your spouse and kids will have to understand what you’re doing. You’ll need to get them on board with you. This means communication. You’ll have to be completely transparent about your business or this may fall flat on it’s face. Once you get the family on board, your business may actually explode, in a good way.

Home Business Advantages

Low Cost of Doing Business

You can start a home business with zero cash. If you’re running the business online, you don’t even have to make a website. It is absolutely true. If you’re doing business out of your home, there may be some costs involved (i.e. travel expense, business cards, networking luncheons, etc.), but they are nothing compared to what running a brick and mortar storefront would cost. It is a good idea to register your business as either a sole proprietorship, corporation, LLC, or partnership for tax purposes. Whatever money you make before creating/registering your business could be counted in your adjusted gross income. Please consult with an accountant.

Unlimited Money Potential

Yes, you really can make boat loads of money working from home. Think about it this way, if you’re running a business, you will make what the marketplace is willing to pay for your product. If the marketplace prefers your product over your competitor’s product, the marketplace will pay you handsomely. You are no longer in the employer/employee relationship that will pay you based on a pay scale. So keep this in mind when you’re figuring out what you will charge for your services. Don’t be scared of charging too much. Just make sure you don’t short change yourself.

Time Freedom

When you start running your home business, you’ll find yourself spending a lot of time trying to make it work, tinkering and tweaking your business. But once you figure it out, you will find yourself spending less time working and more time with the family and friends. Hopefully sooner than later, you’ll be able to quit your day job.

A Few More Things

Regardless of what you’re doing for your home based business, you’ll need to find a niche of some sort. Your niche will be based on what you know, or your skill-sets. Your niche can be your marketing strategy. Your niche can also be how you package your product or it can be your ability to deliver your product to the customer in a unique way. You’ll want to check out your competition because that will help you figure out if your niche will work or it may help you fine tune your niche.

Think Like a Customer

It’s very easy to forget how consumer thinks when you’re running a business. So you’ll need to be deliberate about selling for your consumer. How is your product going to benefit your costumer? One mistake a lot people make is that they confuse features and benefits. Features are nice, but benefits are what sells the product. For example, a feature can be be the variety colors that a product comes in. A benefit is how the product makes the consumer’s life better.

Another thing to think about is why is the consumer buying. The products that consumers buy solve a specific problem that the consumer has. One of my marketing professors said once that when the consumer buys a drill, they really don’t want the drill. The consumer wants the hole that the drill will make.

The Time is Now

You have to see urgency in everything that you do in your business or else you’ll procrastinate. Not seeing urgency in your business is the difference between being successful and failing. This is urgent! Everything has to happen now. I’ve been involved in some businesses where the people that I dealt with did not act urgently.

I can not stress to you how nerve racking this can be. When you are dealing with a customer that is waiting for his/her product, you can get stuck in the middle if your team doesn’t act urgently. Your customers don’t care about your supply chain or your vendors. All they care about is what they are buying. You’ll need to put together a team that understands urgency. This will speak to your credibility and integrity and will ultimately determine your success. Good luck!