Looking for online business advice from successful Internet marketers and business people?
I asked full-time online business owners what they would do differently if they had to start over again, knowing what they know now. This is what 7 of them had to say…
*** Wasted 4 Months Trying To Do Everything! ***
“I started my ecommerce consultancy company 7 months ago after quitting my job to go all in. I wasted the first four months trying to do everything on my own to take control of my baby. If I were to do it again, I would certainly hire out and build a small team abroad to help me out with some of the small tasks that require too much time.
“My time is used better on bigger level aspects that can create business opportunities.”
Ricardo Martinez, Perconvly
*** I’d Do These 4 Things Differently In My Online Business ***
“If I had a chance to start over again, here are my thoughts:
“1) I would put far, far more weight on marketing – I mean, from day one. So far, I have focused on development, and then, when a site has been up and running, started thinking about how to promote it. Turns out, gaining some visibility may take even longer than the development phase.
“2) I would start with talking to potential customers at first. At least a dozen or two. Only, and only if it looks promising, I would continue with putting together a team, developing the application etc. In other words: one shall test the demand first.
“3) I would go with a so called MVP – Minimal Viable Product. I have made mistakes by creating a highly functional software just to recon that a great number of functions are obsolete. I.e. avoid “nice-to-have” approach on product development.
“4) I would seek more opportunities on corporate sector (i.e. vs small business). This is where the money flows. In case you can offer something truly valuable that brings tangible ROI, orders will follow.”
Armin Laidre, e-Estonia
*** GET THE RIGHT TEAM ON BOARD!!!! ***
“As a trained architect, I had no idea what I was getting into building a business. After coming up with the idea, I walked around in circles for over a year trying to figure out how to build my business and 2 guys came on board to help me (I couldn’t have made a worse choice of a team in my life).
“They both had the same skill set, are no longer involved in my business and they owned nearly 20% equity. If I’d known what I know now… Team is EVERYTHING.
“I just wish someone had told me the importance of having the right team surrounding me. The technical aspect of my business has been one of the bigger challenges I’ve faced and it’s the one thing I definitely would have approached differently from day one.
“I needed a CTO. Four years later and a little shuffling around equity, I found the missing link from years before… I’ve gotten a CTO on board who’s helped facilitate and finance the new face and technology behind the new Cheekd. The newly launched dating app allows users to solve missed connections with a new technology that was not available when the patented Cheekd idea was launched in 2010.”
Lori Cheek, Founder/ CEO – Cheekd
*** I’d Focus on Engaging with Every Single Member of our Community (Excellent Online Business Advice) ***
“I’m Daisy Jing, a YouTube vlogger and a young entrepreneur who founded and bootstrapped a now multi-million beauty product line named Banish. I think if would start my community from scratch, I would have stopped focusing on the numbers and really focused on engaging with every single member of our community.
“In the beginning, I wanted to get as many members as possible. What happened is, you just get a lot of followers, but not a lot of engaging moments. If given the chance, I would have worked on focusing on the “connected moments” and looking at it as a metric than the actual followers.
“5 years ago, I started my business from just my laptop! I had bad acne and did everything to help clear it up. I’ve tried hundreds of different beauty products then I review them and share with my followers who are also suffering with the same problem as mine.
“In turn, I developed a following of over 50M views in YouTube and became a trusted source of information in the realm of skin problems.
“At that time, I was able to make my own natural skin care line focused on combating skin blemishes. Eventually, my followers saw great results on my skin and encouraged me to launch my own business. Now we are a team of 13+ women, inspiring confidence in others.”
Daisy Jing, CEO and Founder of Banish
*** Clarify our Target Customer and Better Define our Niche ***
“Hi John! Here’s my online business advice…
“If we had to start over again, I would take more time to clarify our target customer and better define our niche. We started with too wide of a focus and subsequently spent time and money trying to please accommodate persons who were not within our sphere of influence.
“Likewise, I would have kept a tighter, more narrow product line in order to work more efficiently and effectively.”
Carrie Seibert, Owner/Founder – Soap Commander
*** Be More Selective of My Customers ***
“I would be more selective of my customers if I had to start again. Too often in the past was the progress of my business hampered by clients who expected services that I could not provide.
“Once I became more selective, my business began to thrive and my client base has been exceptional.”
Ajay Prasad, President of GMR Web Team
*** My Online Business Advice… Get Good Legal Counsel ***
“This mistake was more annoying that anything but it was something that I wish I would have known…
“*-Inappropriate Council and formed incorrect company ($12K mistake)* –if you plan taking your company public, make sure you form the correct corporation. We were improperly informed that we didn’t need to set up a C-Corp in Delaware even though they have the most tax favorable state for this. Even though we are far from going public, its good to know that most investors will only invest in c-corps structured this way.
“Even though this didn’t cost us any time, we wasted a lot of money forming the incorrect corporation and then even more fixing it.”
Gene Caballero / Co-Founder – GreenPal
John’s Online Business Advice
After 9 years full-time online, if I had to start over again, knowing what I know now, I would:
1. Spend more time mastering and using paid traffic over free traffic
2. Create a recurring billing business model from the beginning
Is there any online business advice you like to give to budding entrepreneurs? Leave a comment below!