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3 Mistakes a Local Small Business Makes Getting Their First Website

Having a website for your local small business today is no longer an option. Few folks have the yellow pages around any more and are looking to find local businesses on their smart phone, iPad, and laptop. If your business doesn’t have an online home then you’re losing valuable potential income.

In my experience, local small businesses struggle with 3 mistakes once they decide to get a website.

First business website mistake #1:

Get your website designed by a part-time teenager or relative who has little experience and will even complete (maybe some day) your website for free.

When your vintage Ford Mustang is needing repairs, you don’t take it over take it to the kid next door because he is taking a mechanics class in high school. The same is true with your valuable website. You’re going to be offering and showing your precious local small business to the entire online community. You want your online representation of your business to shine.

What to do instead:

Choose carefully. Find a web designer who has experience designing websites. And more importantly designing websites you LIKE. Ask other local business owners who they used for their websites.

As a local business owner, you want to make sure your business image is reflected professionally. While it might seem like a simple process to throw a website together, a professional can share and guide you with the best options for your business. They may also help you skip over some of the pitfalls that may come from poor planning, poor design and poor SEO (search engine optimization – think Google).

First business website mistake #2:

Building the website yourself.

You are smart enough to build your own local small business so developing a great website can’t be that hard. Whether you spend late nights learning how to design and code your own website from scratch or you bought into one of the “free”website options being advertised everywhere, you’ve invested your valuable time and effort into an ever-changing and technically challenging marketing tool. You have to climb the steep learning curve of whatever website system you are learning. It can be very frustrating!

What to do instead:

Instead of investing your creative talents into something outside your local small business expertise, hire a website designer to do your website for you. Use the time you would have spent on the website creating and serving in your local small business – where you are the expert. Only you can lead and build your local small business, but a professional website designer can easily build a great website for you without the huge time expenditure on your part.

Having someone else develop your website frees you from keeping up with all the latest technical and design changes and updates, too. Wouldn’t you rather call someone to figure out why Google crashed your website overnight and losing a day of money making work on your local small business.

First business website mistake # 3:

Going overboard and insisting on using a high end PR firm (or the most expensive marketing company in town) to make sure you have every imaginable bell and whistle on your small business website.

Adding factors like music and moving actions or Flash throughout the site as well as insisting on a lot of complex content upfront distracts your website visitor from the primary purpose of your website – to make more profit. Eventually you get so bogged down in the perfect and huge website, that nothing happens.

What to do instead:

Consider what results from your website would make it successful. Is it more traffic through your front door? More leads to your sales force? Better attendance at your next show?

Keep your initial website as simple as possible. You can always add to and improve it, but first you need to have a website live.

Talk to a few different website designers recommended by fellow local businesses. Interview them and compare their pricing. Give them the marching orders and get the website live.

Bottomline:

If you’ve made some of these mistakes, don’t despair. There are a lot of qualified, reasonably priced website designers ready to help you create the website you need.

How To Survive At Your Lowest Point In Your Life and Business

Even though starting your own business is one way to achieve your financial freedom that you want, we should realize that everything in the world is bound by natural laws that govern it.

As well as our business.

A few weeks ago, when I was bringing a business training, I received an important message on my mobile phone.

A message that describes the struggles, desires, and inner struggles of a business owner which is currently facing the lowest point in his business.

With all the fears of bankruptcy and the possibility of losing everything, I really appreciate his willingness to contact me.

It intrigued me to write this for you that is facing the same challenge

Life Cycle:

One of the largest natural laws which we must always understand is that “everything in the earth has a life cycle”.

Humans, have life cycles, from infants, toddlers, children, adults, grow old, and then finally returned to his/ her Creator.

There is nothing we can do to prevent the cycle of our lives to keep rolling!

But we should realize that we are the only creatures who were given “the power to choose and think” by Our God – The Almighty, to be able to do the best in this life in order to minimize the negative effects that can shorten our life cycle.

We can choose and lead a healthy lifestyle, eating nutritious foods, do not smoke, do not drink alcohol, even when we become more advanced in technology and science, we can find a variety of medications to help us when we are experiencing an illness.

Similarly, in business, life, career, and even our products and services that we have, they will always have the “life cycle”.

And for sure, we all will experience “a point” where we feel that it was the lowest moment in our business lives.

However, as long as we do not give up and always focus on a solution to achieve our goals, we will have the “power” to minimize the negative effects of that point and we will be able to improve it.

In my vocabulary, there is no word “surrender”!

I, personally, have been through many trials and challenges.

I have been given “a second chance” to get up from my very difficult past, that makes me struggling, live a falter life, I even tried two times to leave this worlds.

I have faced many challenges that now I am grateful for, because all of these challenges have shaped me into the person as I am today.

I can handle all of these challenges because I believe that:

“The causes of man’s greatest failure are to give up too early and do not have a commitment.” (Napoleon Hill)

Here are some simple tips to help you survive in your lowest point of your life or your business:

1. Have a New Attitude toward The Problems You Face:

The attitude that we show in our lives always represents the FOCUS of our thoughts on something that we are facing.

We should be grateful that the focus of our mind is something that can be set and be able to influence.

How to do it?

It’s simple, make a decision “TODAY” to never follow the thoughts that lead to negative feelings inside of you!

What I mean with “negative” is not about right or wrong, but rather whether the feelings generated by the focus of your mind makes you moving away from the goals you want to accomplish or not.

Build new networks, change the communities in which you often take time with, surround yourself with the right people, read books, listen to audio CD and watch Video CD that gives positive feelings or emotions in you! Something that causes you to move toward, the drive to resolve the existing problems and pushing yourself towards the goal that you want to accomplish.

Look at this lowest point of your lives as the “Three Feet From Gold” point.

(The term “Three Feet From Gold” was popularized by Napoleon Hill)

Our “Three Feet From Gold” position should be something that is very exciting and should make us more persevering and committed, because we believe that “we are in the right track” and soon we will DEFINITELY get a “reward” for all that we have committed to do.

Like digging for gold, three feet further away, we will surely find the gold line!

So hang in there and keep digging, monitor the feedback of your action, and adjust your strategy to get the results that lead to your goal.

Do a “review and learning” process from every results you get from your action.

Learn from the right people, people who have successfully passed the challenge you are facing today. Adjust your strategy, take a new decision and act immediately.

In each situation, a decision with measurable and planned actions will always be better than just sit and remain silent to accept our fate.

Remember that perseverance is not just doing the same thing over and over again, but to persevere is to committed to doing something that make us move closer to the goal we want to achieve. This is includes your courage to change the level of knowledge, skills, attitudes, habits, and your network, that will help you to resolve the problem you are facing.

2. Have a Commitment not just an Interest:

There is a big difference between commitment and interest!

As in marriage, this is the way we should treat our business!

If we marry someone, we are not just interested or attracted to her or him only, but it does mean we have committed to be with her or him, in joy and sorrow, for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health.

Likewise in our business!

When we are committed, it means we have closed the door and the possibility of failure in it!

Challenges will always come and go, it will always be present.

But when our challenges come, we “MUST” looking for a way to solve it instead of running to leave or avoid it!

Meet mentors, read books, follow the workshop on the challenges you are facing and learn new things to solve the challenge you. Grow bigger than your challenges.

For every successful people I met, I have found similarity.

They are not trying to avoid or shrink the challenges they met, but they put focus to grow themselves bigger than the challenges.

Imagine a scale of 1 to 10, 1 is the lowest and 10 is the highest. If your challenge is level 6, and you only have level 1 for your knowledge, skill, attitude, habit and network, what is it look like?

Off course the challenges is really a big problem for you.

But if you grow yourself become level 9 in term of your knowledge, skill, attitude, habit and network, would the same level 6 challenge be a big problem or little problem for you?

Yes, it become a little problem for you! Perhaps it was seen not as a challenge for you, it doesn’t even seen as a challenge in your brain.

It looks like a normal thing that you have to handle everyday, like brushing your teeth.

Remember, what have made us achieve our current level of success, will never be able to take us to reach our next level of success.

We always need a higher level of knowledge, skills, attitudes, habits, and even a new network to take us to achieve the next level of success in our lives.

Make a commitment, focus on your goal and do whatever you need to do as long as it is a positive thing to overcome your challenges and keep your life and business success!

Interestingly, by solving the challenges we met in our life and our business, automatically our quality and competence will grow!

You will always find new challenges to force yourself to keep growing.

When we stop growing, we die…

Congratulations, you have reached your “Three Feet From Gold” point!

Three feet further away, definitely you will reap your success!

Want To Start Your Own Business? Consider These 4 Questions First

4 QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER BEFORE YOU START YOUR OWN BUSINESS

I know how it can be to think of an idea or solution to a problem and want to go out and tell the world about it. That would be the right thing to do if you have a non-profit or if you just want to do a good deed for the day, but if you want to earn a profit for your great idea or passion then here are four things you should consider before you start your own business .

Question 1: Do You Intend To Work Full-Time or Part-Time?

If you already have a full-time job you have to think about how much to time you plan to devote to starting your own business . If you just “get to it when you get to it” then you should consider this new project a hobby and not a business.

Starting your own business part-time is usually less risky, because you are being realistic about how much time you can spend getting your business into profit.

You also need to be certain that the business can be done in the hours that you have available. If you want to start a dog walking business, but you can only walk dogs between 9-11pm at night, then you may need to start a different business.

Whether you work full-time or part-time you need to treat the new business you’re starting as a job. Don’t think because you’re the boss that you don’t have to do any work. When you’re starting your own business it is important to remember that you will most likely be working harder than if you were working for someone else.

When you’re writing your schedule based on the hours you decide to work ask yourself in the back of your mind “if my employee did what I did today would I be happy?”

Question 2: Do You Want To Stay In A Familiar Field?

When you first get the idea to start your own business it may not come from something work related, but from you coming up with an ingenious solution to a problem that you have personally; a field that you know nothing about.

If you go into a field that you don’t know much about be prepared for a learning curve and get your mind set on building relationships with a new group of people. In order to be successful in a new field you have to know what is going on in that field and you shouldn’t beat yourself up if you’re not an expert in that field in the first 30 days.

Question 3: Do You Need A Change or Want To Do Something More Enjoyable?

If one of the reasons you want to start your own business is because you hate your job; you’re tired of being stressed out; or you want more free time to do something you actually enjoy doing than this would be part of your reason why you want to start your own business.

My wife majored in her major because that was the same major her mother had in college and even though she puts the knowledge she gained to good use in our home business doesn’t mean she would have enjoyed doing it for another company.

I know plenty of people who have jobs that are not related to their degree and you would be surprised how many people start a business that has nothing to do with the field they have been working in for years.

“Find a job you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” -Confucius

In order to reach your definition of success you have to stay persistent; and in order to stay persistent you have to stay motivated; and in order to stay motivated you have to enjoy what you’re doing.

Question 4: Do You Consider Yourself A Hard Worker & Enjoy Solving Problems?

If it ever seemed like there would be a lot to consider to start your own business it is because there is a lot to consider.

If you want to make this dream a reality it is going to take Hard Work. It is going to take some fortitude to go to work (if you have a job) do your family duties if you have them (pick up kids, cook dinner, help with homework, give baths, clean up, etc) and then use the time you use to spend relaxing on your business.

When you’re first starting your own business you are going to run into situations that you don’t have a contingency plan for and that’s perfectly normal. That is actually a great thing. Do you know why?

It is great because it means that you are trying!! There are valuable lessons to be learned from failures and mistakes, so embrace them.

“Failure is the mother of success.” -Unknown

I want to commend you for being open to earning a living by working for yourself. Many of the people in our society don’t have the courage to step outside the norm and don’t want to try anything new because of fear that they’ll be ridiculed or based out of their need for certainty.

I personally believe the world would be a better place if people did what they love or are passionate about instead of working solely for money. And besides, the majority of our GDP comes from small business, so keep that in mind the next time a naysayer tells you that you can’t start your own business.