In the usual course of events, it can take some time for a web-based business to establish a successful, profitable online presence. On occasion, though, Lady Luck gets involved: maybe you entered a new market at just the right time, or you caught the eye of a popular online influencer, or other, external market trends have made the demand for your products/services soar. Perhaps none of these things have happened, but all your hard work, investment, and connections just quickly came together without hitch.
Now you are suddenly hearing the phone ring off the hook; your inbox is filled up with customer orders and other requests; your work just went viral… Now what?
The real work has just begun.
Now is The Time to Get Frugal
This is the time when you should start investing in your business for the long term. Now that you know that it has a chance at real success, you should start making plans to ensure that it will continue to thrive. That money that you’re earning through your new business may not be coming your way forever; it could stop just as quickly as it started. A significant portion (as much as you can) of the profits you earn from your business should be earmarked to go directly back into growing the business further and expanding its appeal. Buy more advertising space, maybe give your interface a makeover—anything to make your business more successful in the long run.
Find Out What’s Working… And Maximize It
Though the saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” you also don’t want to ignore those parts of your business that are already working. You first need to try to identify what exactly is working and why it is working. Do you know where the bulk of your customers come from? What is motivating them to buy from your business or share your content?
After you figure this out, you may be able to make some small tweaks and increase your reach or your revenues; you also need to maximize this current traffic and interest. For example, if the video you put on YouTube just went viral then make sure you are doing all you can to get those viewers on to your site and subscribing to your email list or RSS so they can see more of your work. It wouldn’t hurt to also monetize those videos. Once you’ve identified the secret sauce, you may be able to apply what you’re seeing to other areas of your business as well.
Start Planning Your Next Step
This is not the time to rest. If you are seeing a surge in traffic or interest in your business, you need to analyze it and start planning your next moves. Right now you’re exited and so are your customers or your visitors. Take advantage of the momentum that is being generated to bring your business to the next level. All that buzz and PR will amplify any moves you make. You’ll also have more people to ask for feedback so you can make sure your efforts are going in the right direction.
Success doesn’t always happen when you expect it, but at least you can maximize it when it does.
Aniya Wells is a freelance writer and blogger whose writing interests are decidedly consumer-focused. In an age in which consumers have access to unprecedented amounts of information, Anita hopes to help her readers decode this information to make better decisions about online degree programs, personal finance, parenting, health, and more. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.