The Easiest Way To Test If Your Business Idea Will Bring Home The Bacon
Have you considered self-employment as an option? Do you have a great idea that you are sure is going to make big bucks? Are you planning to throw in the towel at your current job and launch your business idea?
If the answer is Yes, I’m behind you 100% but you may want to read the rest of this post before you dive in because it may just save you massive time and effort. As soon as my daughter was born I knew that self-employment was going to be my dream. I wanted the flexibility to stay home with her if she was sick and basically be available for all her mini milestones. Now you may think that the most obvious choice was to start my employment consultancy straight off the bat but after so much time in the industry I really wanted a bit of a break so the first business idea I came up with had nothing to do with employment services.
Originally I wanted to start my own astrology site and teach people to DIY astrology (I LOVE ASTROLOGY). I spent my money building a site, paying for advertising and promoting, promoting, promoting. I chased publicity and got a number of columns in a number of newspapers. I spent hundreds of hours trying to get my site out there and in the first 12 months of its operation made exactly $75.
My second venture went slightly better. I love to tie dye clothes so I started tie dying cute little baby clothes and selling them. I probably made $100 a week doing this, despite a proper website, marketing materials, advertising etc.
You probably already know that it was my third venture that turned into an actual profitable business. My employment consultancy! The difference was that I tested this idea first. I tested that this idea was actually going to make me money before spending a single cent and when the test came back positive, then I spent money and put time into launching it.
Now if you are totally passionate about your business idea, disregard this. I truly believe that if I had stuck with my first idea for 10 years, it would have eventually turned a profit. But…………..if you want to make sure that your business idea is actually going to make money, do this first:
- Sign up for some free Google advertising credit. I got a voucher because I signed up and then chickened out so they sent me the $50 credit.
- Set up a simple one page website. You can create free websites at www.webs.com and www.wix.com. I prefer Webs but Wix is the easiest to use. You don’t need to know code, it’s really simple.
- Write a really simple sales page advertising your product for sale. If you are not sure how to do this, just google it. This is what goes on your website.
- Make sure your page has a contact form and make sure your page tells potential customers that to order they need to fill in the contact form.
- Set up your advertising campaign with Google Adwords (you may want to read Adwords for Dummies first) and advertise your product/service – linking it to the website
- Set your advertising budget to the free $50
- Count how many people fill in the contact form. If you can actually create the product or provide the service, you just got your first customer. If not, a simple email letting them know you are out of stock is fine.
Now obviously if you got paying customers from this experiment you know you are on to a winning idea so it’s time to create a great site, get business cards and all the rest of that jazz. If you didn’t get any paying customers have a look at your sales copy and tweak that to perfection before having another go. If you still don’t get any hits, you might want to try a different idea instead. Now again, I do not want to discourage anyone from pursuing their dream. There would be thousands of examples of businesses that made money anyway regardless of if this experience flopped on them. If you are passionate about your idea, go for it anyway! But……………….if your goal is simply self-employment, start testing those ideas out and save yourself the hassle and frustration of making $75 for the year.