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Wednesday, July 23, 2008

How to take your small business online

…or even launch a brand new one online

Many Kenyans dismiss the Internet as being way too complex for somebody to want to dare invest in an online business.

How do you collect money, how do you makes sales or advertise to prospects? It all seems so complex and impossible to do.

Yet for a distant investor and even an existing small business, the World Wide Web offers an amazing opportunity for profit to those who understand its’ sheer power. Actually the minute you grasp the power of the web, you will go to great lengths to try and learn how best to market and do business online.

So let us try and examine this issue first.

Any experienced entrepreneur will tell you that in most businesses, the biggest headache they have is in distribution. You have a product to sell so how does it reach your customer or the end-user? If you have a simple product like some nice buns or cakes you have baked and you wanted to sell as many of them as possible, you would walk around the whole day distributing them to small shops, kiosks and other outlets where your prospective clients flock to daily. Here there are endless problems you are bound to face. Shopkeepers will Not want to pay you cash and will prefer to sell the products first and pay you later. That is where the headache starts and you will soon find yourself spending most of your time running around chasing the cash for the buns and cakes that were sold a week or two ago instead of doing the actual baking of new supplies.

In sharp contrast, doing any business online has numerous advantages. To start with you do not have a middleman and you can sell directly to your customer and still have a viable business. Indeed every day more and more Kenyans are discovering how easy and convenient it is to do business online.

Here is a simple idea to help you open up your mind to the vast opportunities available.

You are running a video library and since people are so busy these days, they hardly have time to come down to your shop and spend hours browsing around for the right movie to watch. So what you do is launch a simple site where you have a brief synopsis what every movie you’ve stocked is about. You can even make things more interesting by having giving discounts or free movies to some of your clients to write down their opinions and brief reviews of the movies they have watched. Your clients register and choose the movies they want (they can even pay for them online because it is easy to create your own online payment system) and they are then delivered to their homes or their offices within hours. Your site can also link to sites showing the trailers of some of these movies. There should be a huge demand for this kind of business in many major towns in the country. Starting and running the whole thing online I even easier because you can start without investing in any stocks and purchase the movies only as they are ordered. Or work out a rental arrangement with a major movie distributor or stockist and re-hire out your movies with a reasonable mark-up.

In fact numerous other services can benefit greatly by moving online in this way. For example a laundry service for suits and ties.

The web is very convenient because people can order things and shop while they are still in the office which saves them a lot of time and the mad rush from work to the shops to buy stuff before they close in the evenings.

If you do not have an existing offline business that can be expanded online, you can still think of a brand new business that you can launch that is exclusively online.

Want to get involved in a simple online business that will earn you cash even as you learn the ropes? Email NOW

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