To set up an online business, there is so much you need to do, so many details that need to be worked out. The main task in front of you is your website; this after all is going to be your storefront, so you need to make sure that it’s properly designed to attract customers, and that they will be encouraged to buy your products.
If you think that the job is nearly all done when you finish doing your website, you are mistaken. Your customers or potential buyers may need queries answered, or advise on the use and maintenance of products and so on. They may also be interested in reading informative stuff on topics related to the products, which means you need to maintain blogs that will direct visitors to your site. You will need to handle all of this; constantly monitor and update your site, keep track of the traffic and so on. Then of course there is the job of actual delivery of the products, maintaining stock, ensuring quality, offering discounts and all other such tasks associated with any business.
Overwhelmed thinking how in blazes you’re going to handle all of this yourself? It’s daunting, no doubt, but there are ways to address the problem. One solution is to hire staff to take care of the shipping and inventory. If you’re not geeky enough or don’t have the time, it would be best to leave the website bit to someone who knows what they are doing. Rather than having someone on your payroll, I would highly recommend head hunting a freelancer. Why?
- Freelancers can do their work regardless of their location; with an internet connection at home they can work outside of office hours and get the job done in good time. You can easily assign and monitor their work through mail and video chat.
- A freelancer need not be local. If there is no specialist in your area, no problem. An ad on the internet can get you a person from the other end of the country.
- Hiring a freelancer from Asia or Africa will help you save money as they will work for lesser payment than a local person, owing to the difference in the standard of living costs.
- Another advantage of hiring such a freelancer is that their festive seasons are likely to be different; so you can get work done from them during your own holiday seasons like Christmas or Thanksgiving, when there is a race against the clock to finish projects or ship orders.
- An expert freelancer will get the work done in half the time that a beginner would; you save time, you save money.
- A freelancer knows they are getting paid for that job, and it is not a permanent employment; so they are more likely to work more sincerely.
- If you offer several projects you can get a ‘bulk deal’ benefit, and get better prices, as it will ensure a steady income for the freelancer.
- Even if the freelance designer or writer charges a higher hourly rate, if you get good quality stuff, then it will be worth it. What they write or design for you may be more likely to convert your site visitors into buyers. So in the long run, you’re making money out of a slightly expensive freelancer!
- If you have a designer/writer on your payroll, you will have to pay them even when you have no work for them. With a freelancer you only need to hire them as and when the need arises.
In addition to these, here are some other benefits of hiring a freelancer over doing it all yourself:
- You do not need to purchase a lot of equipment like computers and printers and so on; just one for your use will do.
- You need not rent out a large office space if you have minimal staff
- Save on payroll and the taxes that come with it.