Whether starting a new business for a hobby or a full time venture, it's common for many SMEs to start their journey in a home office. However, building awareness and trust can often be the biggest hurdles a home business will face. So what can you do to grow your SME from home?
Here are some tips that can help you generate home business success.
Embrace local directories
Every business has to start somewhere and it's common for home businesses to try and build awareness on a non-existent marketing budget.
Local directories are a great option for SMEs trying to promote themselves on a shoe-string budget, but it's important not to limit yourself to the White Pages or Yellow Pages as there are a range of online directories such as True Local and Gumtree that can help you advertise your business in a cost effective fashion.
Expand your networks
If you're just starting out you should try and identify events that will allow you to network and develop potential prospects.
Networking could be as easy as making yourself visible to the local community and initially providing services for free. You willl also find organisations which regularly host networking events, if you have the money to pay for a ticket to attend.
Set up a website
Today most customers will try to fulfill a need via Google, so it's a good idea to get a website up and running as soon as possible. Even if your website doesn't feature on the first page of Google, if you've handed out a business card or sent an email recently potential customers will be able to visit your website and see recent examples of your work and the service your provide.
Jump on social media
If don't have time to attend community or networking events then social media could work for you. Social media is a great option if you intend to run the business purely from home as it allows you to interact with customers from the convenience of your home office.
With that in mind, commitment is still a key requirement for successful social media interaction so don't enter this marketing initiative halfheartedly. Remember, there are a range of different social media options that can work for your business so try and find one that fits for you.
Expand to a different location
Although this isn't a marketing method it may be a requirement if your business continues to grow. Business growth can lead to new employees and further client liaison, and often the home office isn't the ideal location to run these operations from.
However, just because you're moving doesn't mean you have to splash out for an office. Start off small and try sourcing shared locations to start out and see if your new location works for you before making a long term commitment.