"Entrepreneurs are individuals who see failure as a stepping stone towards their goals."
It's 2021, and we no longer are strangers to the term entrepreneur. It's only recently that people are considering entrepreneurship as a career option. Otherwise, a few years ago, if a person would say that he is an entrepreneur, then people around him would see him as a jobless, good-for-nothing individual. In fact, people would eagerly discourage anyone in their circle to avoid falling for entrepreneurship and instead suggest them take up a job that will warrant financial security.
I think it would be harsh to blame their thought processes back. Don't you feel the same? I mean, even though people started entrepreneurship way back in 17000 BC, it was still a new thing for the masses to digest that included our family and friends. But thanks to people, now icons and legends, like Bill Gates, Henry Ford, Steve Jobs, and Elon Musk, etc., the perception around taking up entrepreneurship as a career eventually changed and how? Today, entrepreneurs are dominating the world and, almost every other day, you can read about a new guy who made it big through entrepreneurship.
What more? From the traditional forms of entrepreneurship, today's world moved on to the era of online entrepreneurs. So, who are they exactly?
Now, before I tell you anything about online entrepreneurs, allow me to tell you about who entrepreneurs are? Yes, many of you might only know who entrepreneurs are, but there are maybe still many who must be trying to understand who they are. Besides, starting from the beginning isn't what all entrepreneurs do? So, here we go – The literal definition constitutes any individual who has started or led the foundation of any form of business or work. They are commonly known as "risk-takers" who foray into competitive markets with an idea they believe could transform their lives and the others working with them. They are the torchbearers for change, innovation, and progress. They also excel in discovering problems and then finding a solution for them. You can even term them as an advocate of the "Never Say Die" attitude.
Coming to online entrepreneurs, it is a popular term for entrepreneurs whose businesses are typically running online through the internet. Also, their primary source of income comes from the product or services they sell online. An example to understand online entrepreneurship would be e-commerce. The entire social media space can be considered their market domain to make sales and even grow their business for online entrepreneurs. But do you know, despite the power of the internet backing online entrepreneurs, they still have to deal with many worries and struggles timely. Let's have a look at some of the biggest worries and struggles of online entrepreneurs with online businesses.
Building the E-commerce Site
For an online entrepreneur, the default and the first step is to take their business online. The best way to accomplish this goal is to create a website. Now, when it comes to having a website for your products and services, there are many crucial things that an online entrepreneur must consider. Some of the website design problems are:
- Not having enough knowledge about suitable website creation.
- Coming up with the right team to design your e-commerce site.
- Selection of the right technology software for your website's inventory and shopping cart, etc.
- Ensuring compelling UX/UI features to keep the customers engaged.
- To have the content in your website look original and appealing to the target customers.
- To make sure the website is mobile-friendly, as most online customers are known to purchase through their mobile phones.
Apart from these, you must be careful with even the smallest of details, such as the page loading time. Even a one-second delay can cost you a potential buyer. Also, an online entrepreneur needs to redesign their website or make necessary changes to stay relevant to the current trends. After all, the first impression is the last, which fits right for any e-commerce site.
Digital marketing has been booming in the "so called" digital era. It turns out that even for online entrepreneurs, digital marketing has become an important aspect to look after. It is a constantly evolving market where retailers and consumers no longer rely on just one type of channel to drive traffic to their e-commerce site or make purchases.
Digital marketing also offers various tools such as SEO, Online Advertising, Email Marketing, and Social Media Marketing that can get your website ranked on Google. Now, getting ranked on Google is exceptionally critical for online entrepreneurs as the better their websites rank on Google, the better they will perform against their competitors.
Finding the Perfect Product or Service
As I have mentioned several times already, be it traditional entrepreneurship or online entrepreneurship, both are mainly dependent on the product or service you have to offer. A unique product that needs the market is ideal where an online entrepreneur will have fewer things to worry about. However, if your product is already on the market, then they will have to worry. Such as:
- Quality of the product or service
- Price of the product or service
- Branding of the product or service
Besides, you will be under constant threat of being overshadowed by a well-established competitor despite the quality, price, and branding. It is due to the customer loyalty that every business tends to focus upon since the beginning. Customer loyalty comes through customer retention that comes with adequate quality backed with services offered side by side.
Customer acquisition refers to the addition of new customers to your business. It is an intrinsic factor that determines the state of any business. Simply put, the more customers buy from you, the more your business will grow and vice versa. It is always more difficult for online entrepreneurs to acquire more customers as people are still more used to the traditional face-to-face buying methods. Not to mention, the constant news of online fraud has only made it more challenging for online customers to convince more customers to buy from them. As a result, it is destiny for online entrepreneurs to struggle a lot when it comes to customer acquisition as long as they don't come up with unique methods of convincing the customers and making sales, such as the sales funnel technique.
For every online entrepreneur, cybersecurity remains a big concern. Even the slightest lapse in the safety and security of their e-commerce sites can potentially bring the whole business down and even negate all the profits made so far. The reason e-commerce sites such as Amazon and eBay have remained unaffected by cyberattacks and problems is because they pay a lot of attention to ensuring that their cybersecurity remains top-notch. Now, if you have that kind of money, it will be easier to afford high levels of cybersecurity. However, small online entrepreneurs and business owners often struggle to keep their businesses floating. As a result, they have less or are limited to investing in cybersecurity, leaving them worrying often.
Return and Refund Policies
One of the reasons the online market has peaked is how convenient the return and refund policies are in many places. The return and refund policies are amongst the most looked upon the subject by many customers before making an order. Apart from this, customers also take note of delivery dates. According to several surveys, most online shoppers consider five days as the ideal time for both delivery and refund processes. Anything more than that can be considered a red-herring. So, it is evident that unless online entrepreneurs can adhere to or adapt to such standards, they will struggle to gain more customers or even make sales.
The Trust Factor
If you look at some of the most known brands, such as Apple and Google, you will notice they have constantly remained profitable year after year. Yes, there may have been times, where the profit was underwhelming or below expectation. But then it mainly happens when the product has some issues, or there has been a competitor who excelled in that year. After all, for any product, there comes the point where its markets become saturated. It means there isn't much scope for the market to grow significantly anymore. In such cases, it is a competitor that undercuts profits to their names from their competition.
However, companies like Apple and Google barely get affected anymore by any levels of competition as they have placed themselves as dominant players in their market. Also, they dominate the market because of the goodwill and trust they have gained over customers throughout the years. So, it becomes imperative and challenging because of the competition. It is crucial that online entrepreneurs establish the trust factor with their customers and even maintain them throughout.
While online entrepreneurs' shortcomings, worries, and struggles will be a lot and probably never-ending, it must be known if they cannot find a solution to their problems – nobody else can. So, while you identify yourself with these online entrepreneur problems, hopefully, you will read this article with ideas to tackle them.
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