How to Make the Most of Home Business Opportunities

9 min. read
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Have you ever dreamed of running your own business? You're not alone.

Many people fantasize about it, but for most, it stays just that - a fantasy.

The good news? Starting a business is now easier than ever.

In fact, nearly 70% of those who do take the plunge start their businesses from home. And there's a good reason for that.

You get to set your own hours, work in your pajamas, and create a work environment that suits you best. It also significantly reduces overhead costs, which is a huge advantage when you’re just starting out.

That’s why 59% of successful home-based businesses that have been around for three years or more continue to operate from home.

But there are challenges with running a business from your sofa.

Often, entrepreneurs hit a plateau and don’t push beyond it. Whether it’s fear of change or just a bit of laziness, there's usually more potential to tap into. If you’re running a dropshipping store or any other type of business, there's always room for growth.

In this guide, we’re going to reveal actionable strategies you can use to make the most of your home business opportunities. You might be surprised at what a little extra effort can achieve.

Create a dedicated workspace

Having a dedicated workspace is essential for running a successful home business. It’s about creating an environment that promotes productivity and professionalism.

Choose a specific area in your home that will serve as your office. In a recent survey, 28% of home workers said they worked in their study:

You could also use a spare room, a section of your living room, or a well-organized corner in your bedroom.

The key is to have a consistent place where you go to work every day. This helps you switch into "work mode" and separate your work life from your personal life.

That can be a big issue when working from home. A recent study found that 30% of home workers find it difficult to separate their home lives from their work lives.

Equip your workspace with everything you need to run your business efficiently. That includes a comfortable chair, a sturdy desk, and good lighting.

Keep your workspace clutter-free. Use shelves, filing cabinets, and organizers to keep everything in order.

Use online tools and technology

Using online tools can save you a ton of time and enhance your home business operations.

First, consider using project management tools like Trello and Asana. These tools help you keep track of tasks, deadlines, and progress. You can assign tasks, set due dates, and track each project’s status.

If you’re using social media marketing (you should be), tools like Hootsuite and Buffer let you schedule posts across multiple platforms. This helps you keep up your posting frequency.

According to a Hootsuite study, you should be looking to post at least 1-2 times per day on most platforms to maximize engagement:

Social media management tools allow you to plan your content calendar, write posts, and set them to publish at optimal times, even when you’re not online.

If you’re running a dropshipping business, you can use tools like SaleHoo Dropship to grow your business faster with one-click selling. You can quickly source vetted, high-profit products and start selling with the click of a button.

All you need to do is connect your Shopify store, select from thousands of trending products, and import your chosen products with one click.

Every product featured in SaleHoo Dropship has a high-profit margin. It can save you hours of research.

Establish a system

Flying by the seat of your pants may seem exciting, and the rush of pulling off what may have been an impossible feat is incomparable, but it is not sustainable. You need to establish a system for everything you do, from selecting products to using customer information and increasing sales.

Yes, it does mean doing a lot of documentation and research before you can develop workable and repeatable systems for your business. However, it will pay off in efficiency and sales in the long run. At the very least, having a system will help you avoid problems with the tax man.

With your systems in place, you can streamline operations and organize data easily to run your business more efficiently. When expanding, you'll need a system to keep up with the ever-increasing onslaught of consumer data. It's a self-propagating activity.

For example, if you have a dropshipping business, establishing the parameters for products you'll be selling will narrow down your choices to those that are salable at any particular period to avoid seasonal fluctuations.

Once you've chosen products, you need a system for listing. This will help you get the work done quickly. You also need a fulfillment system to handle processing orders, coordinating with suppliers and customers, tracking deliveries, and documenting sales and expenses. Your system will also need to note which products sell well and what moves slowly.

You can also establish systems for marketing your products. For example, you can send emails to past customers with offers and promos for similar or related products they have bought before.

Be disciplined

Many home-based entrepreneurs tend to work when they feel like it. While this is one of the perks of a home business, it can lead to a lack of discipline that will eventually manifest in the quality of service.

You should establish a regular work schedule to keep you focused. In addition, people you do business with need to know when you are available and when not to bother you during personal time.

Having a set time to manage your business gives you a sense of purpose. You will find that you achieve more and have less stress overall.

Set goals

Taking it one day at a time may work when you're trying to quit smoking, but not when you are running a business. Aside from getting day-to-day tasks done, you should also establish long-term goals as well as shorter ones that will get you there.

According to a recent study, people who set goals outperform those who don’t 90% of the time:

For example, if you sell on eBay, you can improve your exposure and credibility with customers by becoming a Power Seller. That can be the long-term goal. Only about 4 percent of eBay sellers attain this status. Those who do make the grade get exclusive discounts and perks.

One of the requirements to become a Power Seller is to generate $1,000 in sales in one month. That can be one short-term goal. Another requirement is to have a minimum of 98% positive feedback. Customer satisfaction can be a parallel ongoing goal. After three months, you could be eligible for Power Seller status if you satisfy all of eBay's requirements.

Build a strong professional and business network

Networking opens up opportunities for collaboration, learning, and finding new clients or customers.

Join online communities and forums related to your industry. Platforms like LinkedIn and Reddit are great places to connect with peers and professionals.

The SaleHoo community can be a great resource if you’re in the dropshipping or eCommerce space. You can interact with other sellers, share insights, and get advice on running your business.

Local networking is also important. Join local business groups, chambers of commerce, and networking meetups to connect with business owners and professionals in your area. Building local connections can help you find clients and partners.

Customer service

Providing excellent customer service is crucial for any business. It builds trust, encourages repeat business, and generates positive word-of-mouth.

However, offering an excellent service can be difficult for a small team or solo entrepreneur. So, you need to make sure you’re using the right tools.

A recent HubSpot survey revealed the most used customer service technologies:

A knowledge base or FAQ page is super important here. You can create content that answers common customer questions. It’s a win-win: Your customer gets a fast answer, and you don’t have to deal with endless emails and messages.

When a customer does reach out, make sure you respond quickly. Timely responses show customers that you value their time and are committed to resolving their issues.

You can use a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) to keep track of customer interactions and preferences. This allows you to provide more personalized service. You’ll also be able to automate replies to some routine inquiries.

Organize your finances

Many home business owners struggle with keeping their finances in order. Instead of a regular paycheck, you must juggle fluctuating income, track every expense, and set aside enough for taxes and unexpected costs.

It can be a lot to handle. But getting your finances in shape is crucial for your business's success.

First, think about bookkeeping. You need to keep accurate records of all your financial transactions, including income, expenses, invoices, and receipts. The easiest way to do that is with accounting software like QuickBooks or Xero. These tools help you track everything so you always have a clear picture of your financial health.

You also need to think about cash flow. Create a budget that outlines your expected income and expenses for a specific period. This helps you plan for future spending and ensures you don’t overspend. And make sure you set aside some money for taxes.

Try to build up some savings

A common mistake is failing to plan for the future. Many entrepreneurs tend to spend as much as they earn, or worse, they spend in anticipation of what they will earn. Spending beyond your means is always bad, but it can be very damaging for someone who owns their own business.

You need to establish a savings fund that you can use as a fallback in times when you don't do as well. According to Square, 47.8% of businesses save for taxes, and 22% put aside money for a rainy day fund:

You can also use the money you save to buy additional stock, upgrade your equipment, or expand your business in other ways.

Establish a business identity

Unless you plan to keep your home business a mere side gig, you need to think about your business structure in anticipation of expansion. This can have significant consequences, especially taxation.

Most startups keep it simple by registering the business as a sole proprietorship. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, 86.% of non-employer businesses use this type of legal registration:

It is easy to upgrade a sole proprietorship to a corporation, but choosing the right type of corporation will determine what tax benefits you can reap.

Business and tax laws can be complex. You're more likely to make a costly mistake if you try to do it on your own. Consult with a lawyer specializing in business and taxation in your state to help you establish your business structure, just to be safe. Having any legal documents drawn up by a professional would also be advisable.

In terms of getting professional help, you should also get an accountant to help you prepare your tax returns. You don't want to pay any fines or get into tax trouble. At the same time, a tax professional will know of any tax benefits you can take advantage of.

How can you grow your home business?

Home business opportunities abound, but the follow-through is much more important. Making the most of your home business depends on extensive planning and preparation.

It's a pain in the behind when you're all fired up and feeling euphoric about how well things are going, but it can all come crashing down in a hurry if you don't get organized and plan for contingencies. You need to plan for success; it just doesn't happen by itself.

Ready to take your home business to the next level? Skip the confusion and costly mistakes with expert guidance from SaleHoo Educate. Discover how to build, launch, and grow a successful online store with exclusive courses taught by six and seven-figure sellers.

Sign up for SaleHoo Educate!

If you have any questions about starting an eCommerce store or dropshipping business, our 24/7 customer support team is here to help.


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