With a technological climate that is currently enabling more of us to working from home, many entrepreneurs are taking advantage of the available technology and starting an internet business.   If this idea appeals to you, perhaps because you have a great idea for a business, or because working from home is desirable or because you want to expand a current business to be competitive in the internet marketplace, then here are five top tips for getting started:

1)      Draw up a business plan at the start.  This will almost certainly need adapting later on, once you find out more about aspects of the market you are trying to target, but even in its most basic form, it will be the backbone your business needs to get started.  If you are seeking financial backing to get going, your business plan will be a useful tool for explaining your research and planning to prospective investors.  Indeed, some lenders will not lend to new businesses that do not have a business plan.   Free templates are readily available on-line and, at the very least, will give you an idea of how to structure your business plan layout.

2)      Because you will be relying on the internet as the vehicle for your business, it is important that you ensure that your technology is up to the job.  No-one says you have to invest heavily in the most up to the minute hardware and software, but you should ensure that you have the best that you can afford and that it meets your needs.  For example, if you also travel as part of your business, you will need both hardware and software tools that mean you can access your business wherever you are.  It also goes without saying that your internet connection needs to be as fast and reliable as possible, so do ensure that you use a reputable and dependable service provider.

3)      Ensure that you have adequate business software to make running your actual business easier, so that you can concentrate your energies on the content and service that you are providing to your customers.  There are many brands and services  of business software available and it is worth taking the time to find one that is most closely suited to your business needs.

4)      If your enterprise relates to a service business, rather than a product, conduct some research on service business software. With the growth of both technology and privatized service industries, there is now a wealth of specialist software available that could really cut down the amount of time that you spend managing and growing your business.  Shop around and, if you

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