Digital Business, is the application of information and communication technologies in support of all the activities of business. And with Commerce this constitutes the exchange of products and services between businesses, groups and individuals and can be seen as one of the essential activities of any business today. e-business or e-commerce are only a fraction of what constitutes the overall Digital Business arena today. Some sell physical products and services whilst others will sell virtually, as this is now a growing area with the info age we live in.
The truth is – from now on and into the future experts and business leaders will need digital business skills. And this includes leadership. Leaders will need to learn and develop digital skills and understand technology capabilities in order to understand how to execute a digital strategy. By 2019, digital skills will be required for almost all business and will be just as important as other major business skills, and new roles will exist in this ever changing environment.
FACT: Those who do not respond to the digital business skills needs by 2019 will fall by the wayside.
Digital Business, ecommerce and e-business
Electronic commerce focuses on enabling customers to buy with ease and with convenience as is expected today. This may include anything from a simple ebay store to a huge company or corporation which has e-commerce built into its structure. Anywhere where there is an online transaction made. The external activities and relationships of the business with individuals, groups and other businesses or e business refers to business with help of internet i.e. doing business with the help of internet network. The term “e-business” was coined by IBM’s marketing and Internet team in 1996. E-commerce (short for “electronic commerce”) is trading in products or services using computer networks, such as the Internet. Electronic commerce draws on technologies such as mobile commerce, electronic funds transfer, supply chain management, Internet marketing, online transaction processing, electronic data interchange (EDI), inventory management systems, and automated data collection. Modern electronic commerce typically uses the World Wide Web for at least one part of the transaction’s life cycle, although it may also use other technologies such as e-mail.
So – the distinct difference is that e-business is ALL business online as a kind of blanket subject unlike Digital Business which can mean any technology enhanced structure or system in business. where as e-commerce is the buying and selling specifically of goods and services. Most businesses today have some kind of Digital Business or e-business section to their operation due to the demand of such features by consumers and customers and market trends. So, remember that, an information website or e-commerce site houses information for customers whilst they may also still have a physical store or traditional bricks and mortar business. In My business this is coaching and writing so all of what I do surrounds me speaking and writing. I house and promote all of my information on this blog and my website plus I write and coach. But you may just prefer to run a type of store selling either digital products or physical products. If you take e-bay or amazon they are typical examples of e-commerce stores. So they sell physical products and one will buy ‘only’ online from them.
Fancy A Tech Startup?: I highly recommend you study the Stanford Business School Free Online training – I have been throug it extensively and there are amazing talks, audios and pdf’s you can download and study. I have this installed this on my i-phone in my iTunes U app and look for Sam Altman trainings on Starting a Startup CLICK HERE FOR THAT. This covers just about every area of Tech Startups you could ever need and is hosted by many millionaires and Billionaires and from the Y Combinator success of many of the greatest brands we see today. Go here to the Y Combinator site if you wish to become a Start up founder http://www.ycombinator.com/
Coaching or Consulting
Whether you are starting a coaching business, a bricks and mortar shop or an e-bay business or Amazon business you still have to know a few things about Digital Business these days in order to get started on the right foot. I began my ebay business many years ago and once I had built it I learned to scale it up and create an ecommerce store which is very popular now to do so however, I moved from this area to Coaching as I preferred Coaching and writing. As a Digital Business entrepreneur I may apply any number of Digital Business tools or resources and promotional products under this umbrella so, for me, Digital Business is the kost powerful and flexible area to be in today. Why? Because there is so much scope with it and it may be applied to most business sectors.
Let’s just break down some business types so you can see what may resonate with you most:
1) Digital selling which is a vast arena in itself now, Coaching, writing business, blogging = All virtual business and online transactions (may include over the phone transactions)
2) e-bay, Amazon, ETSY, store = e-store selling physical products online either wholesale or dropshipping
3) Bricks and Mortar business i.e shop or van = selling physical products offline and/or online You can look at starting a Bricks and Mortar SHOP HERE
My advice is always start with looking at CORE PASSIONS. Combine them with Skills, talents strength areas and then look at a market need. From here you will start to formulate ‘what type of business’ you may be best suited to and what your role could be. We all need a ROLE defined so we can excel in this area and allow our teams to excel at what they are best at. Have a think about the various business models out there whilst looking at what you may wish to sell. Look at your passions, skills, experiences, where others complain, what other say you are great at etc. And Market needs and demands. For me it was about finding my passions and working from that point. If you wish to sell on ebay and/or amazon or ETSY then get used to selling this way with a basic store initially as it may be a great place to begin if you wish to sell physical goods. This way you can get used to the business model and how transactions work and use all of the tools ebay and other provide you . From here you might start a niche store of some kind. This is so that you can gain invaluable experience selling and understanding how selling works on these platforms.
This will give you the edge and the knowledge and ability to succeed way faster with an online store.
As a small business coach who has over 10 years experience in building businesses Growth – I help passionate committed people all around the globe to create sustainable business models whether it is online or offline incorporating Digital Business or e-business into the system which is exactly what I have talked about here.
There are many many business models these days and some examples are..
An INFO DEALS WEBSiTE – such as ‘Go Compare’
An Ecommmerce website – such as E-bay or Amazon Store and using Shopify or Big commerce to set up your own store
Selling online courses – such as Tony Robbins or other entrepreneurs sell
Coaching, training, consulting – such as I do
Writing – such as I do
Offline business with e-commerce list building and online prescence – such as almost all stores today
Shops, stores and stalls
Whatever business you intend to look at deeper you must also look at list building. I won’t get into that here and now but jst know that ALL business will grow much healthier with a list building presence. Just subscribe to some lists to get an idea of what they offer you so you can see how they operate.
The key is to start by establishing where you wish to focus and if it is Digital Business model of some form then look at where your skills and worth will be best spent. In other words find your role in the business and hire others to help you with your weaker areas. Such as with Tech startups and innovation you will notice that teams have to work with a shared vision and message in order to be most effective.
With the e-bay business model you can literally start right now by selling things around the home and build up your experience so that you know what you are doing and as you are building your ebay business you can start researching niche markets that you may wish to work in. Some markets are saturated these days so it takes some work to understand how to be a dominant seller in a popular area OR branch off into a sub-niche maybe. This all comes with taking consistent action and non stop learning as with all business areas.
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READ THIS ARTICLE ABOUT WORDPRESS VERSUS SHOPIFY If you are thinking of starting an online shop
What will you sell if you start a Digital Business?
You have to know ‘what to sell’ and what area you can most excel in. And you have to know WHO YOU ARE SELLING TO. 8 out of 10 businesses fail because they don’t know WHO they are selling to and they have not applied enough research deep and narrow into their niche market. You will also need to know how you will create repeat custom as loyal buyers/customers is crucial to a bouyant and growing enterprise. Now, for example, if you sell consumable goods then you will want customers coming back to you time after time as they like you and trust you. If you sell digital goods, you have to bear in mind that things can go wrong so you have ensure that you are covered and you are prepared for returns and how to deal with them. The profit margin with consumables will be alot less than a digital item for example but, there are good points with both of these areas. And there are many other areas but generally I wanted to show you examples of the two major areas of selling online.
Remember that – Digital Goods do not constitute for ALL Digital Business. Digital Goods means selling physical goods, Digital Business in general covers all Digital business meaning that – in any business there may be a tech or digital need in order to enhance or improve on a current system or piece of software for example. So, there really is a huge area to explore here.
If you are passionate about selling digital products but don’t wish to create your own the you may consider a franchise opportunity such as CEX. This company is considered to be a recession proof business model because of the fact that, technology is always changing and thus there will always be people selling tech goods which CEX buy for a good margin. Franchises will vary in price but, for one of these stores you may be looking at around £250k.
Whatever you chose to do – SIMPLY GET TO KNOW YOUR MARKET!
Quick story: Recently I had a dictaphone by Panasonic and I nearly threw it away. As it turned out it was a VERY RARE ITEM. It was worth around £1000. Most of these items are usually around £20-£50. Was I shocked? YEAH OF COURSE! What I am saying is it pays to know what you can make money with and what the WORTH OF ITEMS ARE. YOU MUST KNOW what your items are WORTH and you can then start looking at volume versus value. You could sell in volume so many items to create good margins OR you could sell more rare or exclusive items and sell less for the same margins.
So, What Would Your Ideal E-Commerce Store Look Like?
What can you imagine yourself selling? WHY?
Ask yourself questions such as:
1) WHAT WILL MY ROI or RETURN ON INVESTMENT FOR EACH ITEM?
2) IS THAT ITEM IN A HIGHLY COMPETITIVE MARKET? TOO COMPETITIVE?
3) WHAT NICHE IS MY PASSION, SKILLS, INTERESTS ETC?
4) WHERE WILL I SOURCE THE STOCK FROM IF NEEDED? UK OR ASIA OR BOTH?
5) WHAT HAPPENS IF I NEED TO RETURN ITEMS?
6) DO I DROPSHIP OR HOLD STOCK – Dropshipping is a great way to get started with little costs as you will receive a percentage of what you sell without holding stock
7) IS WHAT I SELL IN TREND/ SEASONAL/ DOES IT MATTER?
8) DO I HAVE MY OWN PRODUCTS?
9) COULD I CREATE THINGS TO SELL?
10) Or Would I prefer a Tech startup model, or some other Digital Business model?
11) Perhaps a Franchise or Traditional business is more suited to me?
You have to consider many things and I suggest that you explore all business niches and types but certainly bear in mind that – the Digital Business is a major growing area.
DID YOU KNOW: With ebay – On average – most people have around £3000 of stuff in their home ‘that they don’t need’ So GET RID of some stuff and build up a great rating to start with. You also really want to get 100% record from buyers/reviewers on your site to build trust and to associate you with trust and quality. Customer service is VITAL AND KEY TO YOUR FUTURE SUCCESS in all business. Always be sure to refund people and keep them happy so that you keep a clean record. I cannot tell you how important it is to start off with a 100% record in your ebay business. With all areas of ebusiness you will have people complain and this is a part of life, but you can learn from this and seek to improve. So, it really pays to learn how to improve as it can help you to work with the customer.
DID YOU KNOW: You can create around $10k+ of sales every month in a Coaching, ebook sales or consulting business by being the ‘go to’ person in your niche?
DID YOU KNOW: 8 out of 10 business fail and 70% of people never create their dream career. 97% of students who take online course never finish them. Why is this good to know? Because firstly you don’t want to be a business failure, you don’t want to be un-happy in your career, nor do you want to fail in a course before you have even started.
That’s why I have created a $10k per month Passions To Profits Course Here which is designed to help you succeed in ANY SMALL BUSINESS
TIP: Now I mentioned before that you can begin to either CREATE YOUR OWN Digital Business PRODUCTS or outsource items. So my advice would be to research other experts and see what they are selling now so you can get an idea of what to you may wish to do. Connect with those who are creative and successful and see what they are doing. You may even be able to find other Digital Business experts and share their revenue. You can create JV partnerships and leverage other experts knowledge.
Your goal is to create your own small business or Digital Business which is highly it trusted and respected and of course has a great brand message and vision and where you can earn a monthly income to replace your job.
Digital Business Startup
WHAT TO DO NOW ABOUT Digital Business?
1) First off start by studying other successful experts and ask questions
2) Research your ultimate niche market and what you and where you will be the AUTHORITY IN!
3) Explore other sellers and see what they are doing exactly and look at Great WebSites
4) GET HELP! IF YOU NEED BUSINESS COACHING ON this FIND AN EXPERT.
5) CHECK OUT trends and growing markets AND LOOK AT WHAT’S HOT. FIND A NICHE THAT YOU CAN DOMINATE
6) MAYBE MOST IMPORTANT! TAKE ACTION TODAY! NOTHING HAPPENS BY READING ALONE
SALEHOO MAY HELP YOU SOURCE PRODUCTS TO SELL
CLICK HERE TO SOURCE PRODUCTS WITH SALEHOO
I do teach career and small business clients niche discovery training and setting up a brand you can be passionate about as a part of my coaching, so if you are considering a new career online then I can help. In The MEANTIME GOOD LUCK WITH YOUR NEW Digital Business VENTURE.
Want an E-commerce store? Here are some RESOURCES:
TRY ALIBABA.COM FOR A HUGE VARIETY OF GOODS TO SELL
> STUDY EXPERTS IN SELLING e-COMMERCE GOODS
> LOOK AT THE WHOLESALE FORUM FOR TIPS AND TRICKS
> LOOK UP TERAPEAK AN EXPERT IN SOURCING POPULAR PRODUCTS
> STUDY AMANDA O’BRIEN AN E-BAY AND AMAZON EXPERT
> LOOK AT SALEHOO FOR SOURCING PRODUCTS
> Start a FREE SHOPIFY OR BIG COMMERCE ACCOUNT
Remember also that you can find many Digital Business resources at my web site and with my coaching.
Hopefully now you have some better awareness of which kind of Digital Business, area or business model you may wish to look at deeper. If you need some help with all of this then consider getting my help as I have already helped thousands of clients from all over the world to create sustainable and fast growing online businesses and scale them up fast with minimal costs. I teach everything from turning passions into profits including, niche discovery, building a brand, Scaling, Measuring growth and metrics, knowing your customers, building a loyal following,
FOR 1ON1 Small Business training COACHING WITH GREG DE TISI CLICK HERE