It may be the first time you have experienced that moment, when a great idea for business pops into your head. There is nothing like that feeling! You cannot sleep, you get excited and you begin to imagine how your future is going to be.
It is really hard to resist these entrepreneurial ideas and to keep calm and act logically.
It’s easy to start believing that nothing in this world can stop you from realising your dream. If you have a great business idea and want to convert it into a successful product, you should keep in mind a few key tips:
1. Do not keep it to yourself
If you think that you have a fantastic idea, do share it with trusted people that you are familiar with, and seek their advice. Speak to people whom you can confide in and note down their opinions and feedback, and be positive to address it. Don’t be scared that your idea might be stolen by one of them, because chances for that are minimal, whereas the benefits you obtain from them are invaluable. If in doubt get them to sign and NDA (Non Disclosure Agreement)
2. Seek the devil’s advocates
Most of the people will tell you that the business idea of yours is great. This is possible, but be sure to look out for those who are smart and brave enough to point out the flaws. You should be actually looking for this feedback and you are on the right path, if you can get good solutions to these problems.
3. Build a product that you would use
Be sure that you are going to build a product that will be used by you. You must seriously rethink your idea if it does not address your own requirements.
4. Test your idea
Since you will be spending years working on the project and rather dedicate your life to it, never skip the most essential step of testing your idea. Though it may consume a few weeks and even cost some money, but still these are very important. It’s better if you can create a dummy of your product and ask people to have a look at it and give a feedback. You must wait to see how they react and think of your idea.
5. Create a landing page
You should build a page which is decent looking with a clear call to action and it may be a form, an email input box or a shopping cart. The landing page should offer details of your product and what is required for the visitor to stay updated in the pre-launch period.
An overview of the method of creating effective landing pages has been published by Trada. There is no need to hire a designer since you will be able to find good templates and buy them only for a few bucks. Also there are some free choices if you desire to check out some initial ideas. You can create and run a Google AdWords campaign for some days or weeks. Be sure to procure sufficient data to be able to make a wise decision.
Use Mixpanel and Google Analytics for analyzing the results and understand what the actual conversion rate is. The ideal conversion rate will be above 15 percent.
When you are almost running out of money, you can still do some things only for a few bucks. You can use oDesk for finding people to help you get Twitter followers, Facebook likes and shares and backlinks to the landing page. You can always do this on your own, but taking the help of another dedicated person will yield you better results. You may also prefer to include some infographics, which are a new content of the internet. An infographic or information graphic is a visual representation of an instructive material or a data set. A picture can say a thousand words about your product.
6. Set up a website
The next step will be to set up a website to make a preliminary advertisement of your product or service. You need not be terribly complex about it. There are several web hosting companies offering free tools for building sites which will make the process of creating and running a site comparatively pain free. Hopefully it should not say that you must not use a free website as visitors will not take a free site too seriously. Due to the fact that the cost of web hosting and a domain name is quite inexpensive, this only signifies a small expenditure for testing the validity of your idea effectively.
You can choose from different options, but in case you are looking for a lower monthly imbursement instead of an upfront fee, then you must try the likes of Hostgator. All you have to do is to do some research for choosing a domain name and attempt to include appropriate keywords. An excellent guide to keyword research is provided by Moz.
7. Find your first clients
Search for at least several friends who will be your future users so that you need not run after them to even test your product. Contact some future potential clients if you are going to build a B2B product. You may tell that you are a university student conducting a test or working on a project. After giving them details regarding the product, you should ask them if they would like to use any product. The advantage for this is that if any client tells yes, then you will be able to keep in touch with them, develop the product according to their needs, and ultimately turn them into your paying clients.
8. Get out to market
You should get out to the market without wasting any time. You do not require a feature full product, only a functional one will do. Your users are your most important assets and you should learn from them.
After running all these tests, if you make a decision to move on, then do not forget that there is a long tough road in front of you and that you must stay optimistic always. You should believe in the product and never give up. You may require several attempts to get it correct, but this is the nature of business. If you have gone through the above mentioned steps to validate your business ideas and discover that the results are promising, then congratulations! If you find that there are hundreds of visitors and a decent conversion rate, it will be a wise decision to further pursue your business idea.