brand ,” “ marketing ,” “ sales ,” “ finances ,” “ B u s i n e s s F i n a n c e
An online or e-start-up is basically a startup and, as such, must consider all the issues faced by a physical start-up. The literature on the process and guidelines for building a successful start-up is growing. The Internet is contributing to what has been called “America’s love affair with entrepreneurship.” Several centers for information technology start-ups exist, some sponsored by major software companies. For example, the Microsoft Startup Center offers free step-by-step guidance, tips, and resources for starting a business, including an e-business. A wealth of information is provided under eight general headings: “The Rules,” “Office Setup,” “Your Brand,” “Marketing,” “Sales,” “Finances,” “The Details,” and, last but not the least, “Employees.” The Startup Center provides links to the IRS (tax), the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Startup Nation, and other resources, including Bank of America’s Small Business Resource Center, which also offers valuable step-by-step tips. From furniture resources to how to jumpstart marketing with a free Web site from Office Live, the Microsoft Startup Center is worth viewing. Remember, new business owners should always seek the guidance of a professional tax consultant, accountant, and/or attorney to verify that all legal requirements have been met before starting and operating a business. For more information.
One of the major steps in launching any start-up is to find a viable product (service). This may take a long time, because the concept comes first, followed by a prototype, and then a market test. Also, finding the correct business model is critical. Aspiring e-business entrepreneurs should carefully follow available guidelines to avoid dot-com failures. Specifically, they should consider: (1) the growth rate of the intended market, (2) the timing of market entry, (3) revenue flow, and (4) what part of the cycle a market is in. For a free 14-session guide to starting a business, see