Virtual businesses are here to stay. Why? Lower overhead costs, less commuting and increased productivity. We’re not saying its easy, no business is easy at first, but the benefits of having a virtual business outweigh those of the 9-5. There has been a lot of talk about remote working and according to smallbussines.co.uk half of the UK workforce will be remote by 2020. So, assuming you have an idea for your virtual business you’re probably wondering how you will successfully run it to reap the benefits we’re always talking about. We have put together a list of our top 5 tips to help you on your way.
Having a strategy in place helps keep your business on the right path. You’ll need to know how you want your business to grow and how you want to achieve that growth. For example, you decide you want to double the number of membership sales in the 6 next months so you’ll need to know how you are going to achieve that. Set your business goals out and check in on them from time to time.
If you have a team of people that work for you, you need to determine exactly what each employees purpose is and they’ll need to have weekly goals and deadlines which should be checked in on to make sure your expectations are met and that business is moving in the right direction.
Having an online presence for an online business goes without saying. Simply having a website isn’t going to be enough. People need to know your out there so you’re not forgotten. If you don’t have a viable social media presence then you should start to develop one immediately. Be consistent with quality content that benefits your followers and be available so your customers can reach you in their hour of need. Check out our blog post on What social media can do for your business.
You and your employees need a place to store important files. You’ll need to be able to access them on the move using any laptop or PC you need to. Platforms like Google G Suite and Office 365 make this extremely easy. Both Office 365 and G Suite allow you to create documents, spreadsheets and presentations. There is a generous amount of free cloud storage on each platform and both providers also provide the ability to video conference and email. It’s up to you to decide which is best for your business!
Project management tools like Freedcamp are fantastic tools that online businesses with team members should use. These tools let you assign specific tasks with due dates for individual workers and create workspaces for different teams where you can assign group projects.
Social media tools such as Hootsuite make managing your online presence easy. You can schedule posts per in advance so you have fresh content going out to your followers. You can measure the impact that your social media campaigns are having because Hootsuite stores all your accounts KPI’s in one place. And stay on trend by following the conversations that matter using keyword searches.
If your business consists of you as the sole employee then you won’t need to worry about this but most businesses tend to evolve so one day it might not just be you! Keep track of goals by scheduling in a weekly department meeting or maybe some one-to-one meetings. Get to know individuals strengths and weaknesses and discuss any hiccups or achievements.
Its easier to build trust and maintain relationships when you have a face to put to a name and thanks to technology we can video call anyone from anywhere with a wifi connection so this shouldn’t be difficult for you or your employees. We recommend Google Hangout, Skype, Zoom or FaceTime.
Virtual Office Solutions
Not everyone is keen to use their home address as there business address and with virtual office providers like W1 Virtual Office offering business addresses from as little as £240 per year you don’t need to use your home address. Virtual offices provide businesses with a number of benefits; they are cheaper than physical offices, no overhead costs such as utilities and one one of the biggest reasons our clients come to us are because we have a prestigious address in the sought after location of Mayfair. Businesses want to establish professionalism by giving their company a luxury mailing address and It also helps consumers identify you as a legitimate trader.
Here you have it, our top tips to help keep your virtual business flourishing. With hard work and persistence, your business will succeed. For more advice why not follow us on Facebook and Twitter. You can also visit our Blog for regular tips and advice.