Success online depends on having a plan, or more specifically a business plan. Often, very often actually, clients contact a designer with a burning passion to have a new web site online and fast. Success takes more than waking up bug-eyed at 2:00 am with the brainstorm of the century. You need to outline (and fill in) a real business plan and make adjustments before the official launch.
Citing an actual case for an online eBook business, I advised the aspiring entrepreneur to provide more information. Thinking through the questions and answers is a vital step towards developing a good business plan.
- Do you have a logo for your company?
- If no logo, what colour scheme do you like?
- How many products (eBooks) will you offer?
- Are they all written and ready to go?
- Do you have cover art for your books?
- What system of e-commerce do you intend to use?
- Will you offer just pdf or exe formats, or both?
- Do you have the domain, plus registration and hosting?
- Do you have a projected launch date scheduled?
- How many affiliate products do you have to offer?
Defining what you do, your market, and how you intend to be different are vital considerations. You only get one chance to make a good first impression.
For an eBook online business, the competition is fierce and filled with some shady characters. When you begin the process of planning before jumping in, consider your image first and then answer “How will I establish credibility upfront?”. Weave this into your business plan and you should do well. Don’t act before thinking or you may be perceived as just another online marketer.
- Your Image – Have a stunning set of graphics for your corporate image to make a favourable first impression. Hire a pro if it’s in your budget.
- Establishing Credibility – solicit opinions from trusted people to give honest feedback about first impression and credibility, good or bad.
- The Plan – Outlines or templates for creating a business plan are available free online. Get one. Use it. Be flexible, and change as you go.
In closing and from experience, I know that many startup online entrepreneurs neglect creating a business plan. Selling eBooks online without physical inventory except bits and bytes seems so easy. Your chance for success will improve with a real business plan.