While I was growing up, all I ever heard about the internet was bad. Being brought up by 19th-century parents was a different story. All they wanted was to be safe, hide away from that hacker, keep their children from bad information on the internet. So much bad about the internet, we were told!
This could have been the same story for you. “John, don’t you dare use my credit card to buy anything on the internet” grandmother shouting her head off – if your grandmother knew about being hacked…or your mother slapping you off that video; probably pornographic video. I mean we have all seen this. We have all grown up with a bad mentality and bad attitude towards the internet because of what our parents knew. I am not trying to say the internet is heaven on earth but trying to bring out the fact that there is also a lot of advantages to it.
Today you could start a business and have it on autopilot all because of the help of online resources. If you want to do serious business, change your attitude concerning the internet. While it is very good to take protective measures (OH yes; it is very important) it’s also very good to embrace the many positives.
The black dot story
A story is told of a teacher who entered the class and gave his students a surprise test. He distributed plain papers with a black dot in the middle. He asked them to write about what they see on the paper. They all described the black dot and forgot about the large white space. You can read the full story for yourself. Don’t let all the negatives you have heard ( and probably you never experienced personally) stop you from seeing the many opportunities the internet has made available.
Advantages of the internet – in relation to your business.
1. You can almost learn anything online today.
Say you want to start a blog and have no idea how to even build one,you can now simply search google or any other search engine for available courses or even google step by step guides from blogs like this one. I have personally written an easy step by step guide on how to start a blog or build your own website.
2. You can get a lot done in less time.
Think about how difficult it was to build a business years ago. If you had to set up a store, you had to go all the way to the manufacturer and order for the goods. Imagine you had to go all the way to China every time you wanted to put in an order. Today you can even sell goods without creating a physical store (drop shipping).
3. It makes marketing your products a lot easier.
Today over 4 billion people are active users of the internet according to statistica. This means the internet is their new home, where you will bring your products to them. So many tools available for example facebook ads, google adwords and so many others. Best of all, you can sell anything right from your home. All you have to do is list it on sites like eBay or Amazon.
4. Reduced Marketing Costs.
With the rise of the internet, there has been a huge increase in various social media platforms. These platforms that are designed to connect people with one another become powerful, relatively low-cost marketing channels that can be utilized by both large and small enterprises. This means that you can put your products and services right in front of your target market without using the help of a formal marketing agency.
5. You can reach thousands of people in a click.
With the internet, reaching out to people with the product you are offering is easy. You can reach countless people in just a matter of clicks when you set up a campaign. This wan’t possible with the very expensive roadside banners that only very well established businesses can afford.
6. Meetings can be organized online.
Even though this does not remove the necessity of having on-site meetings, it still helps businesses that are working with international partners and associates.In other words, it will help you save plenty of time especially when you are starting a business. Saving you the time means it saved you the money.
Disadvantages to using the internet.
1. Customer information and other data could be at risk.
You have to apply the right measures to protect your business against theft of information as this can lead to prosecution.
2. It can be addictive.
When you start out in business, you have to work on your focus especially if your business is online because of the tendency to diverge into social media and other addictive platforms that can waste plenty of work time. Time management is very important if you are running your own business.
The pros of using the internet especially for business are way much more than what I have laid out. The advantages are endless. It will, however, be problematic for young children and teenagers. A lot of parental guidance is advised.