The advantages of working from home are mostly self-evident. All that arbitrary rules, oversight, and restrictions that make a typical job a chore are eradicated when you work from home. You make your own hours. You can take your work outside and enjoy the weather. You wake up when your body is ready and not at the command of your alarm clock. There are no traffic jams or self-asphyxiating neckties. When you work from home, you are in control. Nevertheless, this is not always the best thing.
As your income is directly tied to how hard you work, it is important that you take advantage of your freedom but never abuse it. In order to make working from home a success, you must balance your new flexibility with the focus typical of a more demanding job.
Create a Strong Work Environment
The first step in making your home business a success is creating an environment conducive to working. This does not imply you should follow the same dress code and routine as you would with a regular job. Simply creating a separate office space away from distractions and entertainment devices will help your mind focus on business. If you don’t have a dedicated space, try taking your work to a library, many of which have free wireless internet available for use.
Utilize Mobile Technology
The modern home business is almost a misnomer, as business no longer has to be done inside the home. A laptop or tablet computer with a 4G wireless connection will allow you to access the internet and do work outside of your home office. However, make sure that any device you purchase is equipped with the proper software and peripherals.
An integrated camera combined with Skype or any other video chat program will allow you to speak to clients directly. Many open source office programs are available that let you read documents, but as a business you may need to be able to edit and write as well. For individuals who work in graphics and rendering, having the processing power and memory to handle these tasks is imperative.
Depending on your business, you may also wish to invest in a cheap fax machine and printer. Many older clients will prefer sending documents through these channels, and an all-in-one device can typically be found for cheap.
Segregate Work and Home
Keep a separate cell phone or land line for your business. It is highly unprofessional to receive a business call and have it answered by your children. Furthermore, having a separate bank account with the company name written on the checks projects an additional air of credibility with customers.
While you may lack the prestige of a business office, you can replicate that professionalism in the virtual world with a strong website. Contact a graphic designer to help create a website that is both contemporary but easy to use. Many websites make the mistake of loading their site with fancy animations that only make it more difficult to get information.
Develop Marketing Strategies
It doesn’t matter how impressive a business is if no one is aware it exists. Once you have created a website, you must attract traffic by utilizing online promotional tools, particularly social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. Hashtags are an excellent way to find potential customers looking for services in your area.
Modern technology allows businesses to connect with their clients, receive direct feedback, and provide the kind of personal service that was logistically impossible before the internet. Employing these tools will help you build your customer base and use the customers to drive expansion without having to incur the expense of advertising.
Jamie Richards is a writer for EmployersLiabilityInsurance.com an online resource for business owners offering employers liability insurance quote.