Businesses that are strictly online have their appeal. Unlike businesses that offer in-person services, you never have to work out in the hot sun (like you would, say, with mowing lawns), pick up poop (dog walker) or deal with screaming children (babysitter).

Digital businesses are not always easy but, for many, they are the way to go.

Are you interested in becoming a digital entrepreneur? Here’s some things to think about if you want to go that route.

What does a digital entrepreneur do?

A digital entrepreneur starts an online-only business that sells products or services. Digital businesses can include e-commerce (such as Etsy or Shopify stores), blogs, and YouTube channels.

Three Tips for Starting a Digital Business

1. You can start slowly.
The great thing about digital businesses is that you don’t have to start off selling all of the products and services that you plan to offer. A brick-and-mortar business would look a little weird if it sold only one product. (It would be like that comedy sketch on “Saturday Night Live” where a store in the mall sold only scotch tape; confused customers insisted they must sell more than that.) But online customers may be searching for only one product from your website.

There are many choices for which products and services you can sell online. These choices can feel overwhelming. Just start by picking one type of online business and sell one type of product or service. Starting small will help you learn more about what you like and what you don’t like about a certain kind of online business.

You can expand when and if you are able to do so.

2. You don’t have to be an expert in every form of social media.

Yes, a digital entrepreneur needs to be on social media. But your business doesn’t need to be on every social media site.

You can start with the platform that you know best. If your favorite platform is TikTok, you can start out marketing your business there. But be aware that your customers might also like TikTok only if they’re your age or slightly older than you.

If your ideal customers are closer to your parent’s age, they might be on other social media sites like Instagram or Facebook. You can expand to other platforms as you become familiar with them.

3. Have an email list.

You already have a digital business tool that you know how to use – email. Social media is a big help for digital entrepreneurs but you can’t completely control how others use it.

With email, you have a group of potential customers. When people give you their email addresses, they are giving you permission to contact them. (Unless they ask you not to send emails about your business — you should be sure to keep track of and honor such requests.)

You can use email list tools/sites such as Mailchimp or ConvertKit, which offer free ways to set up your email list to contact your customers.

Final Thoughts on being a digital entrepreneur

Being a digital entrepreneur is a great way to start a business, especially if you don’t have a lot of money to invest. But remember these tips for starting a digital business.

  1. Don’t try to do everything right away.
  2. Promote your digital business on your customers’ fave social media site(s).
  3. Set up an email list of your customers.

Getting started in an online business might be easier than you think. But don’t get discouraged if your business is not an overnight success.

Be patient and give yourself some time to learn about your industry and grow your digital business.

Photo by Rodion Kutsaev on Unsplash

Join the discussion