Starting a business is a time of great fun, of adventure and risk. However, while you do recognize the fact that your startup business has its own share of risks, you’ve got to have a solid idea on what risks are worth taking and not.
Here then are the Top 5 things you should never do as an online startup entrepreneur:
1. You Delay the Launch of Your Product/ Service Too Much
Online, there’s no such thing as final or perfect. Sure, your product has bugs. You want to capture the market, you want everything to be ‘just right’ before you launch your product—that it’s the ‘the best of its kind, the first, the ultimate’ product in of all in its generation.
But are you postponing it too much? Perfection in every detail is great, but only when you can make this happen within a given time-frame. To have the perfect product or service but have it so long in development that by the time you launch it, the market has already moved on to bigger and better things, is going to be such as waste.
Online, there’s no such thing as final or perfect.
Remember that the first rule of the game is to get the service or product out there. You can always adjust and improve on anything. You could also launch a beta-version—if this is a site—and have people come to your site and give you their comments on what areas of the user experience you need to enhance or improve on.
2. You Disregard Your Market
You don’t ask for feedback. And you should. You should do enough of your market research to know what kind of market or audience you’re targeting. You should know what things motivate them to buy or spend money. So if you’re not asking for feedback, you’re not really taking advantage of the resources you have. It’s a bit like the idea of crowdsourcing—you make an entire group of people do the work so you save on time, effort and money.
Yes, you and your team can ensure good, great—even excellent—performance of the service or product. But not asking for help from your market is an opportunity to improve, to be better, and you are throwing that opportunity out the window.
3. You Aren’t Unique
Competition is everywhere. Because of the many different trends of technology and growing demands of online consumers, your business will need to compete on different platforms with many other companies offering the same product or service.
Find the one thing, that one advantage you have, above everyone else.
You have to put your value proposition way ahead of all the others. How do you do that? Find the one thing, that one advantage you have, against everyone else. Don’t have one? Find one.
One of the first basic qualities a winning product or service must have is uniqueness—it has to offer something that’s never been offered before or offers it in a completely different way that consumers will have no choice but to say ‘yes.’
4. You Plan Too Much and Don’t Act Enough
Yes, plans are good. We wouldn’t really get anywhere far if we don’t have any. Plans help us prepare and keep track of a lot of things, of everything we need to see to. However, there is such a thing as too much planning. If you’ve been planning to launch or even work on the business model of your online startup for years now, maybe it’s time you stopped and just did something about it.
Think you still haven’t planned enough? The truth is: you never will. You won’t be able to plan for everything, for every instance or emergency or mistake. Expect that you will make them—all of them. The only important thing is to be able to know which ones you can prevent.
Some people set 80 percent of the timeframe for their thinking time and leave the remaining 20 to the execution stage. Of course, this doesn’t allot ample time or leeway to finish the project. Not enough time could mean that there are details or areas of the project that need to be rushed, which could bode ill for the project since it increases the risk of mistakes. So learn to keep a lid on the planning time. Stick to a realistic timetable.
5. You Don’t Save
Learning how to save money as a startup is one of the most important qualities that you need to learn first thing. It’s inevitable to spend on your business, to invest in infrastructure, tools, the right people. That, of course, costs money.
So it would be prudent if you learned to cut corners where you can, to cut off unnecessary expenses. Keep your business lean so even if the money is tight, you wouldn’t have to compromise on your services or products just to shave money off your bills.
It is admittedly difficult to save while you’re a startup—you have to spend on plenty of things just to get the business running. But it is equally important to save while you’re a startup—it takes planning, skill and determination.
There are a lot of ways on how to save money for your small enterprise. You should have an effective and efficient internet access so you can perform what your small enterprise demands. Get valuable insight into how you could save plenty while you’re still building your business from the ground up.
Israel Defeo is a writer for CompareHero, the leading financial comparison website in Malaysia. He is active in promoting the guides that help visitors find the best deals with their budget.