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15 Questions to Ask When Selecting a Profitable Market for Your Ecommerce Business

There’s a lot of information out there about how to choose a profitable market. The simplest explanation I’ve found from a resource I trust is a 15-point checklist from ecommerce marketing expert Ezra Firestone. I’ve excerpted parts of it here with his permission. Keep these tips in mind when you are thinking about your ecommerce business in relation to profit margin, risk, and income potential: 1. Average order value $75 to $200? You want your average order value to be between $75 and $200. This is different from the average profit per order. You don’t really know yet what your …

6 Things to Know Before Turning Your Freelance Business Into an Agency

There are no limits to the type of branding agency you can create. You can build a full-scale digital marketing agency like mine that provides most services a company needs for marketing their business online. Or you can specialize in one area and have a graphic design agency or a social media agency, for instance. Deciding to scale up into an agency is a huge undertaking, and you’ll only know if it’s right for you by experiencing the journey that leads you in that direction. But if you’d like some advice to help you decide whether you should turn your …

6 Popular Services to Sell as a Brand Consultant

1. Website audit Most companies looking to hire an SEO/marketing consultant aren’t getting the results they’re hoping for with their website. This could be because they’re not ranking well, their offers aren’t structured properly, or any number of other problems. A very beneficial service you can offer is to perform a website audit. This is where you take a “look under the hood” to figure out what can be improved on their website to help them achieve their goals. Common on-site optimization areas you’ll evaluate are: Content pages that should be added or modified to match the intent of their …

Do You Have What It Takes to Start an Online Business? Ask Yourself These 6 Questions.

1. Do you want to work for yourself or own your own business? While working for yourself does mean having your own business, the distinction is that you’re relying on your skills, talents, or resources for your monetization. A great example of this is being a freelance writer. You’re writing content for money, and your income is dependent on your ability to write quality content. By contrast, if you were to choose to try your hand at ecommerce, you’d be developing channels online to sell products, either digital or physical. So you’re definitely still working for yourself, especially in the …

The Pros and Cons of Starting an Online Freelancing Business

Although Dictionary.com defines a freelancer this way: Freelancer: A person who works as a writer, designer, performer, or the like, selling work or services by the hour, day, job, etc., rather than working on a regular salary basis for one employer. I simply define freelancing as selling your own skills without ties to any one company with full freedom to choose what, who, and how you want to work with your clients. In a nutshell, freelancing is successfully earning income with your own skills. Freelancing is ideal if the idea of working for yourself resonates with you and you have …

Getting and Managing Clients for Your Freelance Writing Business

As a freelance writer, especially a new one, one of the hurdles you have to get past on a fairly regular basis is finding new clients to keep yourself busy and profitable. Although there are a number of mainstream websites that freelancers of all types can frequent to find jobs, such as Elance or Freelancer, here are a handful of sites you can visit to specifically locate freelance writing jobs. Content Divas Pros: You get a wide diversity of projects on this site, so you can build a better resume. Writers also get direct access to editors, clients, and a …

Attention Graphic Designers: Tips for Finding Clients and Pricing Your Services

When you’re first staring out as a freelance graphic designer, you won’t have the valuable resource of referrals. So let’s talk about how to get your foot in the door and start building a client base who can refer you to others. There are many ways to drum up business online, but here are some that have been proven effective over time. Compete for Work Sites One of my favorites is 99designs. I had logos for both my companies done here. Other sites I haven’t used but that get good reviews are: crowdSPRING – crowdSPRING is a tra­ditional crowdsource site for graphic …

How to Manage Clients When You Own a Freelance Graphic Design Business

An initial consultation with a freelance graphic design client is extremely important and, in most cases, it will be your first contact with the client. The consultation allows you to hear directly from the client about their needs, which will not only help ensure your final product is in line with what they’re looking for but will also help you determine how much work the project will involve. Next step: creating your proposal. This project proposal is essentially your sales pitch and should clearly convey three important items: First, your proposal needs to convince your prospect that you thoroughly understand …

How To Successfully Hire Outsourcers For Consistent Results – Part 2 of 2

Outsourcing Success is creating Win/Win Scenarios Hiring an individual or a company to do some work for you is never fool-proof. There isn’t really a way to 100% mitigate your risk that is a win/win for everyone involved. Some people say, “Well, I’ll only hire outsourcers if we don’t have to pay them until after they have successfully completed a job.” That school of thought may seem great at first, but actually it’s terrible and most highly qualified outsourcers will not work for you. A good outsourced Solution is a reasonable balance of risk/reward ratio for both sides. If you …