Creating Online Business Success
Most websites are nothing but online brochures. To create real business success requires a new approach - an Enhanced Online Business approach. Creating a successful online business is not difficult. It just involves a lot of work, an understanding of how things work on the web (which is different from how it works in the bricks and mortar world), and a steadfast conviction. The reason you need steadfast conviction is because the rewards can be substantial but it takes time to set it all in place.
1) Revenue Models
The first thing you need to ask yourself is this: “How am I going to make money with my online business?” Various revenue sources have been trail blazed and have proven themselves as viable revenue models.
Sell advertising space. Earnings from pay per click advertising are quite low, so you need a lot of traffic to generate revenue on a significant level.
Sell physical goods. This requires warehousing, shipping, returns, and customer service. You need a significant investment of time and money but product sales have the highest revenue potential.
Sell digital goods. Developing your own digital products (e.g. eBooks ) might require a significant investment of time and/or money but once completed selling the digital goods requires much less overhead than physical goods.
Promote other companies’ goods as an affiliate. Affiliate programmes require less hassle than selling your own physical products and you have lower margins, but it can extent the product offer on your site.
Sell subscriptions. This requires high quality content and high volume traffic because you would usually sell subscriptions on a low cost/high volume basis, however, with good content it is an easy sell.
Pay-per-view and pay-per-play. Again, you need high quality content and sell on a low cost/high volume basis.
Sell your services. Although selling your services is a more indirect revenue model all the same rules of a business site still applies.
2) Irresistible conversions
With a revenue model in place you need to make sure as many visitors as possible are converted to customers. It takes a lot of time and effort to attract and retain visitors so you need to make it as easy as possible for them to transition from attention, to interest, to desire, and finally to action.
It does not end there, though. For an online business it is a lot more expensive to acquire a new customer than to keep an old one because there are lots of very clever technologies around to automate and streamline customer nurturing. You need to look at things like automated reward systems, automated product recommendations, attention grabbing sales presentations, user analysis tools and intelligent checkout systems.
3) Active Communities
There are two types of visitors to your site: those you know nothing about and those who become your friends. To sell to someone you know nothing about is difficult. To sell to someone who shares his personal details, needs, preferences and whose activities you can track and analyse, is a lot easier.
The only way to gain such valuable information is if you allow people to share information about them selves. The way to do this is by creating an online community. An online community allows people to share ideas, share content, network, collaborate and participate in shared events. And while all this is going on they are sharing information, through their activities, which you can track, analyse and use to identify opportunities for irresistible conversions.
4) Effective Conversations
You cannot generate revenue, create conversions or build a community if you don’t have visitors. The cheapest and most effective way of attracting visitors to your site is for other people to do it for you. The way to pull this of is to give people a reason to talk about your site. You need to give them information, stories, entertainment, news and events that capture their imagination and get them excited enough to share it with their friends and followers.
You can also do a lot to attract people’s attention to these stories though viral marketing, search engine marketing (e.g. Google Ad Words) and online advertising.
5) Sticky Content
Creating a buzz for your website through online conversations and attracting millions of visitors is great but once they visit your site you want to make sure they stick around. You want to make sure they find more content to talk about and that they find the site interesting enough to join your community so you can guide them to your revenue model. This requires sticky content. Sticky content can be anything from captivating blogs, games, comics, e-books and videos to really useful tools, information and interesting events. You need high quality content and you need to update it regularly.
I am almost tempted to say that if you implement these five steps you are guaranteed to achieve business success. However, there is one more ingredient your need and it is at the very heart of your success story: you need to give people something they want. You need something that will capture their attention, draw their interest, boost their desire, and finally give them no choice but to take action.
With a product or service like that you have the basis to spin out content that will generate effective conversations and for you to generate sticky content on. You will have the basis to build a community. With this and the right people to help you … yes, I think success is guaranteed.
To see how GrinLock can help you develop an enhanced online business please click HERE
By Philippe Ingels
Further reading: Enhanced e-books