The internet has made it possible for anyone to start an online business vs a Brick and Mortar business.
By Brick and Mortar business I am referring to a traditional business with a set location and all that goes with it.
For much of my life I have been a brick and mortar business owner and most times with partners. Coming online for me was not an easy transition but then starting some of the other businesses was not without some struggles along the way.
We had enormous success as well as our share of failures (or leaning experiences as I prefer to call them) in the various businesses.
My involvement in ownership of Brick and Mortar Business
My first ownership happened when I married my husband who had a Farm Machinery Dealership. That meant enormous overheads including stock, debtors, premises and staff.
At the same time I had my own Accounting Practice with way less overheads but I still had a physical location.
From there we had ownership in a financial planning dealership and later a company that marketed financial products.
My first exposure to Online Business
My first involvement in a business that was both brick and mortar and online was with a company that ran live events. We also sold books and training education online. It was here I learned the power of the internet. We also had as one of our teachers the late Corey Rudl who was one of the very first teachers of internet marketing.
Why I would not own a brick and mortar business again
One of my biggest reasons is the overheads that go with it – things like:
- Salaries to pay (we had over 70 at one time)
- Superannuation (an Australian requirement ), insurances and staff add ons
- The capital you put in to start the business
Some other reasons are that I would not like to be tied to one location and set hours.
Many traditional businesses do not have a residual income or recurring income. We did have one with the financial planning business as it was before the 2008 collapse but most businesses rely on the next sale.
My transition to doing business online was not an easy one. Even though I had been successful in business, have a business degree and understand business I was technophobic.
My only computer experience was doing email and pressing the buttons to shift power point slides at presentations. I couldn’t even make a minor change on a slide — they were done by my staff.
I was like this because I grew up in an age without computers and then had progressed to management at a young age. I had personal assistants most of my life until I came online.
My first venture online was one where we had a physical product and I soon learned I did not want to do that. I also wanted to have a business where I could build a residual income.
Of course over time I have learned the skills I needed to operate a computer.
One crazy thing I did for far too long was get caught up in the “not knowing how to use tech stuff” and forgot the amazing business experience I was bringing with me.
Advantages of an Online Business
- You are location free. As long as you have a computer and decent internet you can work pretty much anywhere in the world.
- You have time freedom. You have to work of course, especially in the beginning, but you can choose your hours.
- No staff – although I do suggest you outsource and don’t try and do everything yourself. As Robert Kiyosaki says if you do it all yourself you are self-employed and not a business owner.
- No premises
- Depending on what you are selling you may not need to carry stock. I prefer digital products for this reason.
- No debtors
Pitfalls of the online business world
If you owned a ladies clothing shop you would take it seriously and focus on getting sales and maximizing your profits.
You would not be checking other business options every second day. Hey but that is what happens to a lot of people online.
Commonly referred to as “bright shiny objects” we are constantly bombarded with what offers and promotions. We need to develop the mindset of the ladies clothing shop owner and stay focused.
I think one of the main reasons many people do not focus is the relatively low cost to get started in an online business. This of course can be a huge advantage as long as people are serious about making a business work.
Having owned brick and mortar businesses I still did my share of jumping around when I first came online. I strongly advise you to do your homework first and then stay focused.
The other thing I see online is people not educating themselves and thinking it is a get rich quick thing. It is not. There is a learning curve. Invest in your online education.
On the flip side of that there are people who are in constant learning mode and never take action on what they learn.
The transition to online from brick and mortar
It does not have to be difficult. If you are a traditional business owner or have owned businesses in the past and feel you do not have the technical skills know you will learn them. I did it.
If you want to check out what I am doing you can do that here.
The online world can give you a life of freedom if you put in the time and learn.
Please leave me your comments below – online or offline which is for you?
Make it a great day.
I have a short video I shot on my other blog which you can catch here.