|Copyright 2005 Craig Friesen
I know it is better to be positive than negative. But speaking from experience sometimes you can do things that are bad for your home business without realizing it. You might even think you are doing the right thing when in fact you are hurting your online business. So here are some "top 5" ways you can throw your work-from-home opportunity down the drain (and how to avoid doing so):
1) Have no plan, vision or goals.
Sure, you may find success in your home business by accident. But you are more likely to keep your online business alive (and have it grow) by setting some direction. Besides, without a plan and destination how would you even know if you achieved success? Do some dreaming about what you would like your home based business to be in 2 years. Then set some attainable but challenging goals based on your vision. With your goals in mind, chart a plan for your home business.
2) Do nothing.
"If you build it, they will come." Wrong - who told you that? One of the most frequent mistakes made by newcomers to online business is the belief that if they can just build a nice looking website then they will earn money. Of course some marketing ploys feed on that assumption, luring Internet marketing rookies to purchase the only website they will ever need. Just like an offline business, your online opportunity does not usually sell itself. You need to somehow bring potential customers or clients to your business website. This takes hard work, consistency and determination to succeed.
3) Do too much.
You can't do too much of the right things. But please do not mistake activity for progress! I hear this all the time: "I spend xx hours a week at my computer and not one sale!" Quality not quantity, people. There are some promotional activities such as writing home business articles (hey, like I'm doing here!) and networking politely in business forums that you can never do too much of. But some marketing tools can be over used and actually harm your home based business. Examples: submitting too frequently to some search engines or blasting customer support with an endless line of similar requests.
4) Join everything.
If it is free to join, why not? Affiliate marketers especially are always on the lookout for the next great business opportunity. What happens, however, is that unless the business opportunity somehow compliments your primary home based business then you are going to end up spreading your efforts thin. Choose programs to join that provide you with marketing leverage or which will enhance what you are offering without providing unwanted competition. The other danger with free progams is that once you join there may very well be an "upgrade opportunity" that you will find difficult to pass up. Be sure that this is what you want before you click on the payment button...all those free programs upgraded adds up soon!
5) Spend lots of money on advertising.
This is a tough one. You would think that the people who spend the most money get the most traffic to their websites and therefore earn the most money. While this may be true, how much are you willing to spend to have the kind of traffic volume to your business opportunity that is going to pay off? It is really hard to tell. The best advice I can give you is to take it slow. Track the results of every advertising campaign so that you can assess how effective the method or ad itself is. If you do not track your marketing then you might just be throwing money down the drain. Spend too much too fast and you might soon find it difficult to keep your home based business running. You might even adversely affect your current lifestyle by piling up bills that you can't pay because the website advertising you chose is not bringing you a good return on investment.
There are other things that can help your home business become successful or kill it. And these may not be the "top 5" for you. Just listing these made me think of another 5 that have probably hurt my own home business. Time to make some adjustments!
About the author:
Craig Friesen is a freelance writer and home business entrepreneur. Find other articles, ideas, resources and opportunities for home business or subscribe to the free newsletter.
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