Creating a remote business could be a sharp move when you recognize the world has made a big shift into conducting more business online over the past year. As of 2021, 16% of businesses worldwide operate with only a remote workforce and 18% of all employees work remotely.
So the odds are that if you want to run a successful business, you’ll have to operate remotely at least in part. The question becomes what kind of business should you create, and how do you make that operation a success?
Achieving success is simple, but it’s not easy. The formula that leads to success is not difficult to follow, but hard work is the main ingredient, along with commitment.
Whether you’re starting from scratch or you’ve already launched a remote business, the following five steps will make it a success.
1. Brainstorm ideas
The first step toward creating a successful remote business is brainstorming ideas. Even if you already know the general type of company you’d like to create, you’ll still have to brainstorm the specifics.
For example, if you want to sell warm socks, start thinking about the material to use, whether your product will be ankle or crew socks, the colors and designs you’d prefer, and so on.
If you haven’t decided on a business yet, here are some general ideas you could start with:
- A custom T-shirt shop
- Social media manager
- Providing advice/consultation in your area of expertise
- Teaching English or any other language
- Music instruction
- A tech company that’s based on an innovative application
These are just some ideas to get you going. For further remote business ideas, check out the list of 15 concepts published on Under30CEO. They’ve got some great ideas that run from translation and transcription services, tutoring, and coaching to personal shopping.
2. Get your paperwork in order
Operating any kind of business will require some kind of paperwork. Check with your municipality to establish whether you need a business license to run your type of firm. If a license is not required, you’ll probably want to get a DBA.
With a DBA, you can do business under the name of your choice, which means you can open a bank account in your company’s name and advise people to send mail addressed to your business.
Another worthwhile move to consider is registering your company as a corporation or an LLC. There are benefits and drawbacks to both, and the one you choose will have significant consequences.
For example, if you form a C-corporation and you don’t actually need the benefits, you’ll end up getting double taxed for no reason. For most small businesses, it’s enough to form an LLC.
You can always change your mind later and form a corporation.
3. Know the laws that apply to your business and industry
Knowing which laws apply to your specific outfit and field is critical to your success. The risk of violating laws and regulations is accompanied by the potential for getting sued and fined.
Let’s say you start a web hosting company and resell shared server space to a healthcare client. Then you’re required to comply with HIPAA regulations.
Before your official launch, identify all the laws you’re supposed to observe and connect with an attorney to make sure you’re covered.
4. Hire a professional marketing firm
Unless you’re a seasoned self-promoter, you should hire a professional marketing firm to handle your marketing needs. Marketing isn’t a DIY profession, although you can learn quite a bit online.
The catch is that you can only go so far on your own, and to be effective you’ll need to invest hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars to learn the high-level strategies recommended by professionals.
Also, if you jump into PPC advertising, you’ll probably waste thousands of dollars without realizing you’re doing anything wrong.
5. Hire only A-players from the start
Whether you hire an all-remote team, or you wish to maintain an office, it’s critical to hire only A-players from the beginning. Staffing your business this way will entail additional effort to screen applicants and verify their work history, but it will be worth the effort.
Hiring A-players alone will prevent you from wasting time and money on workers who don’t perform optimally. For example, if it costs your company $300 to train each new employee, and you train people who turn out to be unreliable, you’ve wasted that $300.
Never settle for an employee you’re not sure about. Hire only the ones who are most likely to be high performers and reliable, dedicated members of the team.
Success depends on your reputation
At the end of the day, your success depends on your reputation. Build a strong one by being great with your customers, clients, and staff. Go the extra mile to create satisfied customers and employees who rave about your business.