Black Owned Business Network

Every successful entrepreneur eventually comes to the point where they have to quit their day job to focus on their own business. Before you decide to take that big leap, make sure that you take steps to prepare yourself for your journey ahead.

  1. Stash some Cash: Have at least six months worth of living expenses saved. This is your backup plan. If you are not making enough in your business, these funds will pay the bills while you work on building your business
  2. Register a domain name: Before you choose a business name, make sure that the domain name is available.  Once you find a domain and business name, register your business. Make sure you can get a domain name that accurately reflects your business name. Once you find a domain name that works best for you, register your business name.
  3. Buy Supplies and Equipment: If you do not already have everything that you need, then purchase your supplies and equipment after you have registered your business.  Remember that the business purchases you make after you have registered your businesscan be written off as tax deductions.
  4. Get a business checking account: Having the ability to accept multiple forms of payment is essential for any thriving business.  Don't limit your clients.  Having a checking account gives you the ability to accept cash, checks, and credit cards.  Most importantly, having a separate business checking account allows you to keep you personal funds separate from you business funds.
  5. Create a website:  Yes, it's good to have a Facebook fanpage, twitter account, and to be active in other social media platforms, but consumers still want to see your website as a way to verify that you are a real business. Get a PROFESSIONAL website before you start spreading the word about your business.  Your starting website should focus on answering two main questions:
    • What do you do
    • How you can be contacted.
    The website is an essential step when launching any business and is a step that should never be skipped.  .  It not only presents your business professionally, but it validates your business.  With the internet being so easily accessible, the first thing consumers do when they hear of a business is to search for it on the internet.

What steps are you taking to prepare yourself to quit your day job?
Published in Business Tips

The main benefit of a free website is obvious.  It's FREE!!!. When it comes to your budget, nothing can beat free.  You've already invested your time and money in developing your product, creating your business cards, on some custom advertising.  Why should you have to pay for a professional website design when you can get on for free.  Nothing beats Free, Right?

WRONG.  Free website packages have only one advantage, and that is the price tag.  When it comes to EVERYTHING else, you will lose with the free website EVERY TIME.   Lets take a look at the pros and cons of a free website package vs a professional website design


Disadvantages of Free Websites:


  • UGLY - ( U-G-L-Y, You ain't got no alibi ) Like we've said before, a poor website design equates to a poor product or service
  • Limited Web Traffic (No SEO) - You want people to find your website.  They do through websites like Google and Yahoo.  If you can't be found there, then why have a website.
  • Contain banners and popup adds - These can be annoying at times.  Most importantly, you can not control the content of the banners and ads.
  • Unwanted Advertisements and pop-ups
  • Limited or no support  - When things go wrong, there are no guarantees that anyone can help you fix the problem
  • Reduced Trust - Clients are smart.  They know a free site when they see one.  Clients will wonder why you don't trust your product or service enough to invest in it.  If you don't invest in your own product, why should clients invest in you.
  • Looks like thousands of other sites.

Advantages of Free Websites:

  • FREE

Disadvantages of Professional Websites:

  • Can be costly - Though the initial costs may be more, the returns far outweigh the costs
  • Finding a good designer - All web designers are not the same.  Some are better at what they do than others.

Advantages of Professional Websites.:

  • Professional Design  - A website that truly represents your product or service.
  • SEO Friendly  - Clients will be able to find you.  More visitors = more money.
  • Ongoing support from an expert - They maintain your site so you can focus on what's important... YOUR BUSINESS!!!
  • Flexibility - Professionals know how to build sites that can be expanded in the future.  If you can not have all the features that you want now, you can add them latter.
  • Easy to use website - A professional designer will create a site that is easy for your clients.

All business owners seek to maximize profit while minimizing expenses, but don't take shortcuts when it comes to your website.  If your budget is the issue, there are several ways to minimize the design costs.

  • Be honest with your web designer regarding your budget.  If the designer knows your true budget, the designer can create a web design solution that will serve your needs and won't break your budget.
  • Have your content (photos and copy)  ready before you get a quote. The more changes your designer has to make, the higher the cost will be for you
  • Create a site with the necessities first.  Add additional features later.
  • Payment Plans.  Some designers offer payment plans to their clients to help offset the budget.

Tell us what you think about free websites vs professionally designed websites?

Published in Business Tips