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im8 820x410 - 6 Reasons Why You Should Consider Going It Alone

6 Reasons Why You Should Consider Going It Alone

As a young entrepreneur, you might need to get help in the form of funding or even cofounders to ensure you get your business up and running. But what if this was not necessary? Of course, it is possible to run a one-person show, but would it mean more work? More stress? More responsibility?

Here we discuss all the amazing benefits you can expect when you decide to do your own thing.

#1 You Are in Control

You call all the shots. No one can override you when it comes to making the big decisions for your company. This includes everything, from your logo design, fonts, brand image, and products and services. It’s all in your capable hands.

#2 No Drama

In many partnerships and office environments you will have to deal with minor issues, office politics and unnecessary drama. Not only does this impact productivity, but it has a negative impact on your business as a whole. When you do everything by yourself, you immediately cut out any room for disagreements and petty politics.

#3 Bigger Community

You might think doing everything on your own could be a bit lonely. This is completely untrue. You will be able to outsource work and include a bigger community in your business endeavors. You’ll also be in control of setting up work systems that works for you and those you employ.

#4 Greater Satisfaction

This goes without saying. Once you enjoy success, you’ll be able to appreciate how far you’ve come and experience true satisfaction with your accomplishments. You’ll also be responsible for everything, which adds to that awesome feeling of achievement.

#5 Time is On Your Side

You won’t have to stick to certain office hours and you will be able to make your schedule and stick to it. No more dull 9-5 clock-ins, you’ll be able to work out a schedule and routine that suits your needs. You’ll even be able to be a true workaholic if that is what you desire. Holidays will depend on your need and your schedule completely.

#6 Adrenalin Rush

Being in control of everything will give you complete ownership of everything you do and achieve. This is sure to afford you loads of adventure and adrenalin. You will have absolute uncertainty about whether or not you’ll make it from one day to the next, excitement you won’t find anywhere else!

Having pointed out all these great benefits, with great power comes great responsibility, but we’re sure you know this. Keep in mind that there are differences between solopreneurs and entrepreneurs who work alone.

We bet you are pretty amped to start your own business. Good luck!

nn2 820x410 - 5 Fail-Safe Strategies to Become a Successful Entrepreneur

5 Fail-Safe Strategies to Become a Successful Entrepreneur

Anything in life runs on trial and error. Sometimes you have to go through the process a couple of times before you get it right, almost like making a great lasagna. But, with a little advice and help from us, you can apply our five fail-safe strategies and taste the fruits of your labor.

1 – Obey thy Customer

As the saying goes, the customer is always right. Be open-minded when you receive feedback from clients and customers and take their experience of your product or service into account. Always remember that these are the people who spend their money on your product or service, and if they feel that a certain improvement can be made, perhaps there is a way you can keep them happy.

Keep your ears to the ground and find out what the majority of customers are saying about your company, products, and services.

2 – Do Some Research

Whether you want to add a new service or product, you’ll need to put in some time and do the research. For the most part it’s not fun and games, but it will be worth it in the end. You need to ascertain whether or not the product is viable, whether your customers would buy it, and if it offers any value to your brand as well as your loyal customers.

nn1 - 5 Fail-Safe Strategies to Become a Successful Entrepreneur

This goes for any product or program or new way of work you wish to implement in your operations. Before going in blindly, know what you are getting yourself into and whether or not it will be a change for the better or worse.

3 – Know thy Frenemy

It’s always good to be one step ahead of the competition. Know the ins and outs of their tactics and research them a little. This will give your company an edge and advantage. By familiarizing yourself with the competition’s products and marketing, you can have deeper insights as to how you should go about marketing your product or even improve it.

4 – Save Some Cash

Even if you are experiencing rapid growth, and making a killing, you should always put away some cash for a rainy day. Be prepared for times get tough and save money to ensure you will be able to pull yourself back together again.

Not that this would be the case, but it is better to be prepared than not at all. If you want to celebrate a sale or offer your employees an incentive, do so sparingly. Always put some money away.

5 – Be Flexible

Change is inevitable, and you should be ready to adapt no matter what. The market can change, your product can become obsolete, whatever the case may be, anything can happen. As a successful entrepreneur, you should be flexible and able to adapt to anything that is thrown your way.

We trust that these strategies will help you on your way to becoming a successful entrepreneur. For some inspiration, read this entrepreneurial success stories article.a

p 820x410 - 6 Strategies to Increase Online Sales Immediately

6 Strategies to Increase Online Sales Immediately

So, your online shop is getting a lot of traffic but not enough sales? Running a successful online store takes some time, know-how, and effort. There are loads of strategies out there that you can easily try out to start boosting sales, but we’ve found some of the best out there.

1. Opt-Ins are King

Does your website have an opt-in feature? If not, now is the time to start developing one. Opt-ins usually turn leads into conversions, and gently encourage shoppers to take an action. Make sure your opt-in is eye-catching and that you offer your potential client something that they can’t refuse, and you’re golden!

2. Paid Ads Drive Results

Have you tried AdWords yet? What about Facebook ads? These are essential tools in your marketing arsenal that you can easily set-up and run yourself. Make sure you have a digital ad budget and that your imagery and copy get the message across. The great thing about paid online ads is the fact that you can stipulate targeted audience. If you know who your audience is or your best potential buyer, you can bet your bottom dollar that you’ll see some results.

3. Have Product Images that Pop

And a professional website for that matter. Your user design must be perfect and leave visitors clicking and staying for longer. Professional product images will be a great finishing touch for your brand. Not only will these elements impress your potential clients, but they will be more drawn to the brand and product.

4. A Streamlined Buyer’s Process is Essential

As mentioned earlier, your website should be professional and easy to navigate. This includes the buyer’s process. Avoid having too many fields and obstacles for buyers to jump through as you may find that this is the spot where you lose them. A streamlined buyer’s process is essential in making a sale quickly and effortlessly.

5. The More Payment Options the Better

There are loads of payment options out there, and not all your customers will be able to pay with credit card. You cannot assume anything and should give them as many options to choose from to ensure they can select a payment option that suits them best. If you don’t have a payment option that suits your customers, you may well lose them altogether.

6. Mobile for Buying on the Go

One cannot have an online shop with a site that is not responsive. This is uncalled for and if you do not have a mobile-friendly site, best to get it done as soon as possible. The majority of people access online shops and social media sites via their smart phones and other devices. This might be their first point of contact with your brand and if they can’t navigate or your site is not compatible with mobile, you’ll lose their interest.

Remember to engage your customers and utilize some creative ways of increasing your sales. Promotions are always great to grab potential buyers’ attention, as is copy that speaks to them. We trust that you’ll find your online sales to increase soon with the strategies we’ve discussed.

ex1 820x410 - Balance Your Lifestyle with these 4 Greatest Tips

Balance Your Lifestyle with these 4 Greatest Tips

Running your own business is a stressful affair. Not only are you responsible for the success of your company and the salaries of your employees, but you also have to juggle that with a family life and still have time for yourself. Sometimes it may seem as if there aren’t enough hours in a day and that you have to compromise on something, somewhere.

No more! Make sure you live a healthy and balanced life that makes time for getting around to everything, even yourself. We’ve rounded up four great tips to get you started.

#1 Incorporate a Healthy Diet

A healthy diet will not only be beneficial to your body’s overall health, but also to your mind. Ensure your diet includes fresh fruit and vegetables, whole grains and some protein for a healthier, stronger body and mind. Following a healthy diet will also ensure your risk for getting serious or chronic illnesses are decreased.

exercise - Balance Your Lifestyle with these 4 Greatest Tips

#2 Exercise Regularly

Who has the time for that, right? Well, if you want to make sure your body and mind is sharp to get through all the paperwork and phone calls and other duties of the day, you’ll make some time. Whether you get up a bit earlier or sneak in a workout during lunch time, it is very important to stick to an exercise plan. Experts reckon that exercising in the morning prepares us to deal with obstacles in the day and makes us happier in general.

#3 Cope with Stress

Stress can be detrimental to your business. Not only can it negatively impact your physical health, but it can create barriers between clients and employees. Stress influences the way in which we approach and perceive certain circumstances and should therefore be managed accordingly. Make sure you have a coping strategy at hand to ensure you are ready to deal with stress in the best possible way. Whether you need to take a time-out or practice some breathing exercises, find whatever works for you best and apply it in your day-to-day.

ex2 - Balance Your Lifestyle with these 4 Greatest Tips

#4 Get into Routine

Even though a lot of people dread routine and the mundane, following a routine is essential for any entrepreneur’s success. This will shape your day and you will be well-prepared for whatever you need to get done. This will also lead to better time management and create a sense of being in control of your day, no matter what.

#5 Make Time for Yourself

Do you find yourself still busy with phone calls till late at night? Stop doing that. You should always make some time for yourself and your loved ones. Not only is this good for the goose but it is good for the gander. You can relax and unwind, recuperate and give your body and mind the rest it needs after another tough day at work.

Even though your business is important, so is your health. It won’t be any good if you are ill or cannot run it due to poor health. Take care of yourself and the rest should fall into place.

cc1 820x410 - How To: Top Tips to Nurture Cofounder Relations

How To: Top Tips to Nurture Cofounder Relations

Ensuring you have a healthy work relationship with your cofounders is crucial for your business’ success. Let’s face it, no one is the same and people differ. You might feel that hiring a certain employee will be a bad fit while your cofounder feels otherwise. It can get tricky to nurture a healthy relationship with a cofounder and yet it is important for the success of your business.

Here, we take a look at just how you can ensure your relationship with your cofounders are shipshape and that your business thrives.

1. Keep Your Eyes on the Prize

Even though you may not see eye-to-eye, you’ll have plenty of things you need to focus on as does your cofounder. Ensure you stay focused on your priorities and get them done. Your cofounder also has a string of things to do, and as a vested partner will focus on those things. By focusing on taking care of each task on your to-do list, both of you can work together in harmony.

2. Agree to Disagree When Necessary

You don’t always have to agree with your partner. Having healthy debates and disagreements are necessary. Even though some people might shy away from conflict, you will be surprised to find that disagreements might be the best source for great solutions otherwise unknown. Whether you don’t agree with your partner or vice versa, both of you should feel free to voice their opinion.

mm1 - How To: Top Tips to Nurture Cofounder Relations

3. Communication is a Two-Way Street

As in any relationship, communication is of utmost importance to ensure you have a great working relationship with your cofounder. Make time for meeting up at least once a week to discuss current tasks and just touch-base. Keeping the lines of communication erases any room for misunderstandings and leads to greater chances to succeed.

4. Get Up Close and Personal

It’s completely okay to share personal stories with your cofounder. Not only will this strengthen your relationship, but it will also build trust. Make time to socialize outside of work hours and catch up on things not related to work. For your business to succeed, you need to have some downtime and build a lasting relationship of trust with your cofounder.

5. Take a Load Off

You don’t have to be serious all the time. Running a business can be very stressful, and you need to ensure you can relax and laugh now and then too. Not only is this good for your soul and improves your relationship with your cofounder, but it is good for the company as a whole.

And, as with any relationship, you might also have to face conflict situations with your cofounder. Be sure you are prepared on how to face these situations beforehand professionally.

We trust that you and your partner will enjoy massive success in business.

vv 820x410 - 5 Tips to Increase Traffic to Your Online Shop

5 Tips to Increase Traffic to Your Online Shop

Running an online shop can be stressful, and ensuring you attract enough as well as the right kind of traffic can easily be a full-time job. But, it doesn’t have to be! Ensuring you employ the right strategies to attract more traffic to your online shop is not a hard science and can be easily learnt.

With our top five tips you’ll be getting loads of traffic to leverage sales and your online shop will be booming in no-time!

1 – Sharing is Caring

Word of mouth remains the most powerful marketing tool, even in the tech age. You need to get your family and crew onboard to start sharing your content and sharing your shop far and wide. The more people share, the more people it would reach, and the more traffic your site will attract. Start with everyone you know and see how slowly but surely your traffic starts to increase.

2 – Keep Updated Lists

Whether you have a fan base on social media, or you pick up some traffic that stumbles onto your site only to drift off, keeping lists is important. Make sure you update the lists you have regularly and keep an eye out for any new details you can capture. The next step would be to contact these hits and attract them back to your site.

vv1 - 5 Tips to Increase Traffic to Your Online Shop

3 – Crate Eye-catching CATs

Make sure you have some eye-catching call to actions on your ecommerce site. Whether visitors are prompted to complete a form, or subscribe to a newsletter, make sure there is something that catches their eye. Even though this might be a fail-safe tactic to gather email addresses, be sure to make the pop-up as little invasive as possible as some visitors might be put off by it altogether.

4 – Create Engaging Content

If your ecommerce site does not have one as of yet, it’s time you start a blog. Writing, publishing and distributing engaging content is key to attract people to your shop. Make sure you have a content marketing plan in place and that your content is distributed on all the relevant channels to reach your ideal customer.

5 – Run Promotions

Who doesn’t love a give-away or a freebie? Grab your ideal customer’s attention by running a promotion they cannot say no to. You can run paid ads on social to ensure you reach the ideal audience and gather likes and encourage people to visit your shop. Remember, you are trying to increase your traffic, so part of the promotion must involve the entrants to visit the site.

And there you have it! If you follow these five easy tips, you should see more and more traffic visiting your ecommerce site daily. Once you’ve mastered these, you’ll probably want to ensure the success of the shop and increase sales.

We wish you all the best in increasing traffic to your online shop!

img7 820x410 - 6 Essential Skills for Entrepreneurial Success

6 Essential Skills for Entrepreneurial Success

Being a successful entrepreneur is no easy feat. In fact, it takes a whole lot of dedication, hard work and sacrifice. While we have already discussed the characteristics of successful entrepreneurs, there are basic skills coupled with entrepreneurship too.

If you are thinking of starting your own business, it would be best if you get cracking and start sharpening your skillset. Here are some of the essential skills you’ll need to pull your new business through.

#1 Financial Savvy

You need to know how to work with finances. Not only how to spend money, but how to raise funds, sell your service or product, price your service or product, pay suppliers and employees, the works! Even though this might be difficult if you are not great with numbers, it is completely possible to learn. Even if you only learn the basics and hire a professional accountant later on, you’ll need to understand the books to be on top of things at all times.

#2 Time Management

As an entrepreneur, you’ll have very little time of your own. You’ll need to be a master at proper time management to ensure you get through your daily to-dos. This means balancing the responsibilities of running your own business and your home life, while making time for yourself to relax too. If you can master time management and get the most of the time you have in a day, you’ll do just fine.

#3 Get Things Done

This goes hand-in-hand with time management. Being productive is essential, but you’ll have to be able to identify when the best times for productivity is for you personally. Make a list of what you need to accomplish in the day, stick to it when you are in your zone, and get it done.

#4 Social Networking

Socializing and networking is a big part of being an entrepreneur. Some people are naturals at it, while the introverts might struggle a bit. Developing this skill is however important for your company’s success, as networking and socializing with potential investors and clients is paramount for the success of your business.

#5 Facing Failure

Nothing is going to be perfect. As Murphy’s law states, everything that can go wrong will go wrong. The key to facing any failures is to be prepared. While it can be difficult to cope with failing, as an entrepreneur you’ll need to have the confidence to dust yourself off and get right back to the drawing board.

#6 Coping with Stress

Being an entrepreneur is not a walk in the park. You will be facing loads of obstacles along the way which can be very trying and stressful. The difference between the successful entrepreneur and the one that failed? The former could cope with stress. If you don’t have a coping strategy, try exercise or meditation. Making time for yourself is important to unwind and remain calm, even in the face of adversity.

These skills are essential for your company’s success, and even though you may not possess some of them, you can still work on it. Entrepreneurship is nothing if it isn’t a learning school. Just remember to work hard and stay confident with your eyes on the prize. Need some inspiration to get you going? Read these inspirational quotes taken from Batman.

mk 820x410 - Hire Top Talent for Your Startup with These 5 Strategies

Hire Top Talent for Your Startup with These 5 Strategies

Your business is like your baby, and you want to get talent who will take care of it as if it were their own. Question is, how do you hire the right kind of people to be on your team? Hiring the wrong type of people can be detrimental to your business’ success, while hiring the right people can take it to new heights.

Here, we take a look at some fail-safe strategies on how to find the right people to work for your startup.

m2 - Hire Top Talent for Your Startup with These 5 Strategies

1. Network, network, network!

While networking is great for your business in general, it will also allow you to scout for the best talent. If you attend conferences and talks on a regular basis, you’ll be in a setting where likeminded people abound. This will inevitably place you smack bang in the middle of a gold mine of potential employees.

2. Be Brand-Conscious

It goes without saying, but you need to get your brand on from the get-go. We’re not talking logos and company name alone, we’re talking marketing. Get your brand out there and in front of potential employees who would love the opportunity to grow with a new up and coming business. This entails digital marketing efforts, social media channels, and of course a fantastic website and blog.

m1 - Hire Top Talent for Your Startup with These 5 Strategies

3. Hire People Who Love Your Brand

If you have an existing fan-base, it won’t hurt delving in there to scout for hot talent to join your team. Hiring someone who already loves your brand means you’ll get someone on your side who is as passionate about your business as you are. Loyalty in employees goes a long way and will ensure that they spread the word about your amazing company.

4. Have a Clear Mission, Vision, and Values

As far as startups go, this is the starting point. Your company should have a strong and relatable mission statement, vision, and values. Get these aspects sorted once you start your company and ensure you embody them, whatever they are. If your company’s mission, vision and values are something potential employees want to be associated with, you won’t have a hard time finding ideal candidates.

mk2 - Hire Top Talent for Your Startup with These 5 Strategies

5. Have an Online Presence

As mentioned earlier, marketing and digital marketing specifically is key to finding top talent in this day and age. You should have a bold and identifiable online presence on all the relevant channels and platforms. Create a company profile on LinkedIn where potential employees can find out more about you and your company, publish fresh and inspiring content regularly, and create a buzz.

Now that you’ve got you’re a-game on and you’re ready to find great employees to complement your fantastic new business, you’ll probably need some ideas on how to interview them during the next step of recruitment.

We wish you all the luck in finding the best employees for your startup!

kk1 820x410 - Take Any of These 5 Courses to Boost your Entrepreneurial Skills

Take Any of These 5 Courses to Boost your Entrepreneurial Skills

Apart from having some entrepreneurial characteristics to succeed in business, you’ll need some sick skills too. A big part of being a successful entrepreneur is the hunger and continuous chase for knowledge.

The more you know, the more you’ll grow. Here, we’ll discuss some of the best online courses directed to entrepreneurs like you. These are all geared to equip you with the necessary skills to running a successful business.

1 – Y Combinator: Startup School

The content here is completely free of charge and you will gain some valuable insights on how to start your own business. The duration of the startup school class is ten weeks, but you can complete it at your own pace as well. Course material includes everything about starting your business, from the how and why to creating and selling a product.

2 – Berkley Online: Creativity & Entrepreneurship

This course combines the fluidity of creativity with the more rigid rules of entrepreneurship and take a look at how these two come together and is applied in the real world. The course takes about four weeks to complete and is completely free. Should you wish to grab the certificate, you’ll have to pay $49. Learn how you can apply your creative skills to your entrepreneurial instincts and start your business successfully.

kk2 - Take Any of These 5 Courses to Boost your Entrepreneurial Skills

3 – Babson Online: Financial Analysis for Decision Making

Owning a business can be fun but scary at the same time. If you are not familiar with the intricacies of the financial side of things, this course is an absolute must! From funding to buying and investing in products, you’ll be confident in making financial decisions by the end of the course. This 4-week course is free, but a certificate will cost you $49.

4 – Guy Kawasaki: The Essential Guide to Entrepreneurship

With Guy Kawasaki’s course you’ll know you’ll cover all the need-to-know basics of starting and running your own business. The course can be completed at your own pace and consists of 4 hours of video content, articles and some supplementary content. It’ll cost you a mere $10.99 and you will receive a certificate once you have completed it.

5 – Udemy: The Complete Product Management Course

If you are planning to make and sell your products, this course is crucial for your success, especially if you have no prior experience in product management. They take you from concept to design and manufacturing, carefully dissecting each step. You’ll also be able to go through case studies based on Google and Zappos, which makes the material come to life. This course will cost you $10.99 and you’ll get a certificate.

Are you ready to upskill yourself and get cracking with one of these fantastic entrepreneurial courses? We trust that they will guide you on your way to entrepreneurial success.

img6 820x410 - Do You Have What It Takes? Here are the Top 4 Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs

Do You Have What It Takes? Here are the Top 4 Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs

Either you have it or you don’t. Being an entrepreneur takes a lot of dedication and hard work, and only a few lucky ones get to make it to the top. Do you have what it takes to make your business flourish, or are you going to run it to the ground? You can avoid the latter if you start cultivating and nurturing the characteristics discussed below.

1. They Are Driven and Passionate

Any successful entrepreneur will tell you that it’s all about having drive and being passionate about what you do. No matter the number of times you fail, you get up and try again. Without failure, there can be success. If you can push through and believe in your vision, commit to it and you will soon reap the rewards.

img4 - Do You Have What It Takes? Here are the Top 4 Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs

2. They Know Where They are Headed

To be a successful entrepreneur you need to have a vision. Start by mapping out how you envision your next five years will progress. Make a physical goal board if you have to. This will ensure you are reminded on a daily basis of your goals and dreams and that you remain focused on where you are headed no matter what.

3. They are Tenacious

A little perseverance can go a long way if you are an up and coming entrepreneur. Never give up on your dreams, continue to pursue them no matter the outcome. If you have a vision of owning your own successful business, being dedicated to achieving this is what will make it happen. Believe in your dream and believe in yourself without hesitation, and you’ll have the tenacity to keep going.

img5 - Do You Have What It Takes? Here are the Top 4 Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs

4. They Have Integrity

Doing business requires building and nurturing relationships. The success of your company will rest on your ability to keep your word and build trust with prospective clients and founding members. Trust and honor goes hand in hand, and without integrity, you will have a hard time gaining the trust and love from people who work with and for you.

If you possess any of these top 4 traits, you can rest assured you’ll be able to succeed. If not, these are all traits that you can cultivate and work towards. If you doubt yourself and your abilities, focus on positive reinforcement and start believing that you can do it. Here’s another insightful article on things successful entrepreneurs do not tolerate.

We wish you all the best in your entrepreneurial endeavors.