Today we have a guest post from Alex Papa a serial entrepreneur and publisher of “What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Starting a Business & Schools Do Not“
Have you ever wanted to build a website that is worth a lot of money? Have you ever dreamed of setting up an online business that can be sold for millions of dollars?
Your online business may be an asset of a great value if it is providing a service, creating and then filling a need, serving a niche market and most importantly, producing passive income on a weekly or monthly basis.
If this is the case, you may be able to do one of three things with your website:
You might be able to sell it and gain a profit. If you choose to keep your online business, you may be able to incorporate your site in order to “sell” shares and raise capital. Finally, you can have the value of your site measured by a financial institution and borrow against the equity in order to invest back into your company or an entirely different venture.
There are a number of ways to increase the equity value of a website. Whatever path you choose to take your online business development requires certain key steps. This article outlines these steps in order to help you turn your website or blog into a valuable web asset:
1. Automate Your Business
One of the great benefits of a website or blog is that it carries less overhead than a traditional business. As a result, certain aspects of an online enterprise can be put on auto-pilot and essentially run themselves. These aspects may include automatic product delivery, automatic responses to customer enquiries, automatic update of content. Make the most of such tools and try to streamline your own work to ensure your focus remains on business automation. Potential buyers of your online business will want to buy a ready-made system that has been fully optimized.
2. Increase the Revenue Streams
Decide early on how your website is going to make money both in the long and the short term. Try to establish a revenue baseline by exploring various revenue streams. This can include selling ad space on your site; marketing and selling products and services; attaching your site’s brand to various products. The more cashflow streams your business has, the more attractive it will be to investors or venture capitalists.
3. Incorporate Your Online Business
Treat your blog or website as a company from the start by incorporating it or establishing it as a Limited Liability company. Trademark your business name and domain name. If your business relates to yourself make sure you brand your own name. Consider your website earnings as business income, not personal income. Have a separate business bank account and a business check book. Maintain evidence of earnings and expenditure. Establish a company tax ID and separate personal assets from company assets. Ensure that annual tax returns as well as relevant financial statements are available.
4. Outsource Strategically
Today the amount of help available to online ventures is astounding. There are hundreds of virtual assistant services and offshore subcontracting companies who can do your work for a few cents to a dollar. The first thing you must delegate is the routine work. You don’t need experts to answer your emails or respond to your customer questions. However, invest in expert help when it comes to website automation and establishing your marketing campaign. Treat your good service suppliers as valuable team members or employees. Future buyers of your online business will want to walk in to a complete business with a sound employee structure.
Your website can become a “valuable asset” with monetary value only if you treat it as such rather than a side project or a hobby. Recognize that you will have to invest time, effort and money in your online enterprise.
Alex Papa is a serial entrepreneur and founder of many online and offline businesses built in the last 10 years. Alex often speaks in business seminars showing people how they can start their own online business and enjoy the lifestyle they desire. In his new website you will find one of his business start-up audio courses and in his blog Alex offers the latest Norton discount code.