Following last weeks IGAP finale, this is a guest post from IGAP 1 participant Alan O’Rourke of Spoiltchild, creators of the Toddle business newsletter tool. Alan talks candidly about the 10 biggest mistakes he’s made in online business.
The following are all assumptions / mistakes I made over the years.
1. It costs nothing to start a business online.
It is true that infrastructure costs have come way down. With the right technical knowledge you could set up an online shop or simple web application for about €50 and a little time. With no technical knowledge, costs are closer to €10,000 and up. For you reading this, it is probably somewhere in the middle. Compared to setting up a physical business on the high-street it is still a pittance.
But your website only gets you about 10% of the way. Now you need to start building a business. Time, marketing, advertising, sales guy(s), running costs, legal …did I mention time? Without upfront investment to hire the above resources, expect 2-3 years of hard work before your business starts supporting its self. Can you support yourself for that long?
2. Build it and they will come.
Why would they? How do they know you exist out of the trillions of websites out there? If they do happen across your site why will they remember to come back when they actually need what you sell?
3. The website must be perfect / fully featured before you launch. (more…)