Do you remember the .com boom? The late 1990s was a great time to be an entrepreneur. Venture capital money was being handed out like candy, and it seemed as though everyone with an idea, no matter how half-baked it was, had the opportunity to start a business, and get rich. Of course, the boom didn’t last long, and it was soon followed by a bust. Today, investors are more cautious, but there are still opportunities for people with good ideas to start their own business.
There’s a Whole World Out There
The Internet enables you to work with, buy from, and sell to people from anywhere in the world. From a business point of view, this is brilliant. If your country is stuck in a recession, broaden your horizons and look for clients in countries that have slightly healthier economies.
Thanks to unified communications, you don’t need to limit yourself to working with people in your own country. You can use specialist forums to recruit people from anywhere in the world, and use Skype, IM, and email to discuss job requirements and stay in touch. Many unified communications suites also feature sophisticated groupware tools that allow you to collaborate with your remote colleagues on documents in real time.
Cheap, Fast and Reliable
It’s possible for entrepreneurs to get started with minimal expenditure. In theory, a home connection, free email account, and some cheap hosting is all you need to test out an idea. However, once it’s off the ground, you’ll want to make sure that your website is robust, and that your internet connection will always work. It’s a good idea to upgrade to a leased line as soon as possible, and invest in business hosting or your own server.
Supporting The Economy
Online entrepreneurship is something that should be encouraged. It’s likely that most online businesses won’t get past the “small business” stage, but that doesn’t matter. Success doesn’t have to be measured in billions of dollars. Each entrepreneur that manages to start up a business that supports themselves and their families is an entrepreneur that has gotten themselves off the unemployment line. Their contribution to big business many be little more than the ownership of a business bank account and a leased line, but they are tax paying citizens that will be giving back to their local economies by buying food, running their car, using public transport, and generally living their lives.
Each small business involves trade in one form or another, and that means money changing hands. This can only be good for the economy.
The Future Holds Opportunities
The Internet is a great leveller, and gives people the opportunity to compete with big businesses on an even footing. All it takes is a good idea, and some determination, and a single person working out of their spare room can start a successful small business. The people who are buying from them need not know that the business is run by a single person. All they see is a professional looking online shop front.