There are a number of considerations when trying to decide whether you are going to add an online component…so I wanted to help you decide if you should.
Here are reasons to and no to go online…but I’ll start with the ‘reasons against’ so we don’t ignore them.
Reasons Against Going Online:
- If you think going online equates to passive income, you shouldn’t do it. Creating a product and doing nothing to market it is similar to offering supplements by sticking them on the shelf and never mentioning them to your clients. You might sell a couple…but it will never amount to enough business to matter.
- Your offline business is struggling and you think this will be easier. It won’t. Achieving success offline or online requires strategic effort. You won’t find an easy path to big results.
- Your offline business is struggling. Because of that you need to put time in there first. Get it to a point of stable success before you look to add a new project.
- If you just want to offer something general and basic. To succeed online you need a niche, a specific target market or a compelling hook. Offline you already have narrowed your market by geography…we need to narrow online somehow too. (Think of me specially working with fitness entrepreneurs).
- You don’t want to market. Building a good business online (more than just having a product) will require marketing. If you’re not willing to do that you’ll never have more than a product.
- You are resistant to anything new or any change. This is different than what you’re probably doing now…so you’d have to adapt a bit.
Reasons For Going Online:
- You’ve got something really valuable to share. If so…why would you want to limit that exclusively to people who live 5-7 miles from you?
- You want more flexibility. Entrepreneurs who run online businesses and do it well still do plenty of work…but it’s flexible. I’m typing this while sitting on my couch…and next week I’ll still be running my business just as effectively from California.
- You want to expand but don’t want the same risk or overhead. One of the best reasons to go online from my perspective is to do it as a means of adding a Virtual 2nd Location. There will still be expenses and monthly overhead…but it is less expensive than opening a second facility and it can be done without 3 year leases, tens or thousands in equipment and a full time staff. You still will have costs and want help…but the cost and risk is much lower.
- Growth without spreading you thin. Once you get into multiple locations you discover that you can’t be two places at once. This was one of the mindset shifts that drove me to commit more time online rather than adding a 3rd location. You can still be more present in your main facility without limiting your ability to grow,
- Better margins. If you do it right, an online business will have much better margins. The fixed costs are just much lower.
- Something to sell your unconverted leads. If you have an email list of 2000 and 200 clients…you’ve got 1800 who aren’t in your gym. While you’ll still want to try to get them in the gym…you want to get an ROI from those leads and having something else to offer can provide that.
- Positioning. Having online offerings works like writing a book in some ways. People will do research before making purchases locally…and having products will make you more of an authority.
- It’s part of what you’d consider your Ideal Business. If that’s the case, then you need to act on it rather than just dream about it.
So there are a few things to think about when you’re considering adding an online component to your business. Look them over to help you when it comes to to make that decision so that you choose the route that’s best for you.
By Pat Rigsby
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