No Picture
Small Business Ideas

How to Do Market Research of Small Business Ideas

Even though you have a great business idea, you need to make sure there is a market for it. Advisers, like myself, will tell you to do market research but you may wonder how (without hiring a research firm to do sample testing or focus groups for you which can be very expensive). All of these tools allow you, the entrepreneur, the ability to test and research your business idea to see if there is a viable market for it.
Forums. Forums and user groups are far from dead. People are discussing virtually everything on some forum somewhere. You can do a Google search for forums by typing in your topic name (i.e. “business” plus vbulletin plus forums). So, in this instance your search would be business vbulletin forums. Look for forums with lots of activity and then check out some of the most common questions to find what users are looking for.
Twitter search is a phenomenal way to see what’s being discussed in real time. There are a variety of ways and companion sites to do a a search of topics on Twitter. However, I prefer TweetGrid because you can do up to 9 keyword searches at once to monitor conversations on those topics. You can also broadcast questions about a topic to your Twitter followers if you want feedback on a topic.
Do a Facebook search. Facebook now allows a search of topics, though it isn’t as user friendly as Twitter or LinkedIn. You search will bring up people, fan pages, business pages and some status updates. You can search age groups, cities, industries and more.
LinkedIn questions are a great way to see what business people have concerns about. They are divided into topics so you can search more easily. Like forums, if you are scanning for business ideas, check for topics with the most questions. Always be willing to answer a question or two while you are there.
Check out Yahoo Answers. You can expect a hodge podge of questions on Yahoo’s Q&A site, but that can be a good thing depending on your current or potential business. Categories include Arts and Humanities, Computer and Internet, Consumer Electronics and Home and Garden. If you have a product to sell, Yahoo Answers can give you a pretty good cross-section of concerns of the general population.
Create a poll or or survey to investigate ideas. You can add polls/surveys to Facebook and LinkedIn. You can also set up a survey at Survey Monkey and email it to a target group. For small surveys (up to 100 responders, 10 questions on the survey) it is free and goes up from there. Even 10 questions to 100 responders can give you some really solid information to use in developing your business idea.

No Picture
Small Business Ideas

Advice For Dads Starting an Online Business in 2013

Play to your strengths:
Are you a Dad who throws himself in at the deep-end with new ventures? If so, people are probably always telling you to slow down and look before you leap. However, you are what is known as a quick starter and this is how you could achieve your best results: by following your instincts.
Are you a Dad who needs to research things heavily and read lots of books before you begin? If so, people probably assume you’re a procrastinator, when in fact you are simply driven by the facts and need to know the details before attempting something new. Be true to yourself, as this is your best way of achieving success. If so, find a niche, research what people want, what they are prepared to spend money on and create a product (or three!) that will add value to people’s lives by giving them great solutions and highly valuable information.
Are you a dad who likes to seek expert advice and tuition before starting something and only then can proceed? If so, get a coach, follow a successful proven to work programme and use the internet to set you free!
As with any business model, it makes sense to start a business that you have an established skill set in, as well as one that you will wholly enjoy being involved in. We all know that some businesses are borne purely from a passion and often that is all that is needed to see you through, but some business acumen is always going to be necessary unless you have enough financial backing to outsource to professionals immediately. However, a mixture of both skill and passion means a strong starting point in starting up your business. We all hear about people who love what they do for a living, and we all quietly envy the fact that they do, unless you are one of the fortunate ones who is in their perfect role. But by choosing an online business where you are honestly over excited about what it is about, minimises the risk of you not enjoying it by vast amounts.
Whilst of course trends, methodology and preferences can vary vastly from country to country, there certainly exists a strong element of overlap. Not only does this mean that potentially you may be able to take a business model or idea that has become a proven success in another country and be among the first to bring it to your own nation, but it also works the other way around too. You may well discover a market for your business in another country, and even potentially sell or franchise your business idea abroad also. However, bear in mind that your business will have to prove its worth, profit potential and future longevity first. Always take one step at a time.

No Picture
Small Business Ideas

Home Business Ideas For Men

Home business ideas for men tend to be ideas that focus around a physical ability or a traditionally male interest. One of the most fulfilling and common home business ideas for men is the idea of starting a wood working shop from your home. There are many men who love working with their hands, and of course they appreciate their work being admired and praised. If you are one of these men, then you should take your passion, and use it to break your financial shackles. Chances are, if this is already your hobby, than you most likely have a good amount of woodworking tools in your garage. Start small, but be passionate and willing to talk to anyone, and everyone, about your new business and your excitement about your projects. That excitement will catch on, and you’ll find yourself catching a few orders here and there. When you think you are ready, take some profits, and invest in creating a website to expand your customer reach, and partner up with a shipping company to assist you with distribution. The sky’s the limit from that point on!
Sports tutoring is also one of the more common home business ideas for men. Traditionally, men love playing and talking sports, and passing that information on to younger generations. Becoming a sports tutor is a great way to implement that passion, and is very fulfilling in the form of being a mentor. You get to develop a closer relationship with your community, and you can see your results as athletes improve. This home business idea may require some investment in a few spare workout tools, or, depending on your preferred sport, some equipment. However, if you get a pulse on your community, and get a buzz going, you can get a feel for how much of a customer base is out there, and how quickly you can recoup your investment.
Another home business idea for men, especially if you already have a job and are looking to supplement your income, is to look into starting an online business. There are many options out there. Some examples are affiliate marketing, video marketing, and blogging. Do a little research and find something that fits your interests and personality. These internet jobs can be started for very little money and allow you to grow as your knowledge and experience grows.
For any of these examples of home business ideas for men, the key ingredients are a passion and a willingness to promote yourself and work hard. Running any business on your own is a daunting task, but with enough determination and use of appropriate skills, any man who wants it enough can succeed.

No Picture
Small Business Ideas

The Top Secret of Moving From Employment to Self Employment

Due to the raising problem on unemployment the world over, a lot of people are now seeking for self employment. As many firms lay off their employees in order to increase profitability, many productive people are now finding themselves without a job. The labor market is suddenly overcrowded owing to the increased number of skilled labor being retrenched.
A huge number of qualified workers will find their way into entrepreneurship. Therefore, I find it prudent to provide sound advice to this group of people. An entrepreneur who will seek to fulfill a need in society will have to make use of the available and ideal resources. The first thing would be to identify a gap in the market, and then determine whether it’s worth the investment and establish if it will bring reasonable profits. From there he can decide to take up the project depending on its prospective productivity.
The one thing an entrepreneur must be ready to face, is taking a risk. An entrepreneur should be ready to risk his time, energy and money in order to propel his business towards productivity. A bold risk taker, while facing failure of his business plan will come up with ways of turning the situation into a business opportunity.
The major challenge being faced by people seeking to venture into self employment is mainly lack of a business idea. Having a business idea is what distinguishes between an entrepreneur and a small business owner. An entrepreneur uses his imaginative creativity to conjure a new business idea while the small business owner will prefer tried and tested methods of making money. Thus the latter will always remain small because of joining an already saturated market.
A typical entrepreneur turns challenges into opportunities in order to make money, as opposed to a small business owner. Finally, research more on ways of becoming a successful business person.