If you’re a savvy entrepreneur, chances are you’re not just looking at the daily tasks you need to complete, but at what your future holds. You want something that will serve your family well – a way for you to provide for those you love and contribute to your personal satisfaction, too.
It doesn’t matter if you’ve been an online entrepreneur for 1 month or a decade or longer – your goal is probably to continue experiencing growth along the way. But how should you go about it – and when is the right time to try?
Should You Expand or Switch Gears?
Many online marketers, regardless of whether they are a newbie or an advanced entrepreneur, decide that they want to expand their business so that they can rake and more profits and have better success.
But expansion isn’t right for everyone in every situation. The first thing you need to do is understand the difference between expanding your business and merely suffering from shiny new object syndrome.
Many people claim to be working on expanding their business, but the reality is that they simply want something new to hold their interest, or they fail to follow through on their existing projects to the point where it becomes financially sustainable, so the shame of that causes them to change course.
For those who actually do realize a good deal of success with one business branch, then it makes sense that they would want to add on to their business with more profit opportunities.
Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs get bored and want to chase the next best thing. They read about or hear about some great new opportunity, and instantly want to abandon the current project they’re working on to pursue something that sounds better.
What often happens is both projects will then fail, because this type of entrepreneur never experiences completion. Instead, they’re always chasing something. Sometimes they do this because they’re burdened with self-doubt.
The further you get on a business journey, the more you begin to question whether or not you’ve made the right decision. You may also be trying to forecast the results, even though you haven’t crossed the finish line.
However, if you have completed a particular business branch and are seeing success with it, then you may want to expand your business by adding on different business models or by expanding the current one that you are working on.
This makes good business sense because you never want your business to remain stagnant when it has growth potential. If you’re working on the Internet, it’s also never a good idea to put all of your eggs in one basket.
There are too many things that could go wrong. There are many aspects of an online business that are out of your control. Others are in charge, and you could see your profits come to a grinding halt in an instant.
For example, if you’re driving traffic with a social media account, it could be shut down without explanation. You wake up one day relying on your Facebook ads to bring in revenue, but you’re banned from the platform.
Or you have all of your recurring membership sales running through PayPal but one day you log in and find that your account has been limited. There are other platforms that can make profits difficult, too.
YouTube has shut down accounts of marketers who used it to drive hordes of traffic to their sites. You can try to find out why or what happened, but often, you’re met with a closed door and no way of recovering all of that hard work.
Twitter, Pinterest, and even Amazon have all shut marketers’ accounts down on a whim. Very rarely is there any real recourse to fight back against an unjust accusation. You just have to live with the loss.
Because this is a potential hazard for any online marketer, it’s vital that you diversify your income. You don’t want to just be an Amazon affiliate if you could be in danger losing that revenue stream any day.
You want to use different social platforms, a variety of payment processors, and have many business branches operating that could sustain you if and when one or more business branches goes under.
Once you’ve begun toying with the idea of expanding your online business, you have to decide when the right time for that transition and growth would be. You can’t do it on a whim.
It needs to be a calculated decision that merges smoothly and without incident so that you don’t jeopardize your current income. If you do things quickly, without thinking them through, you could suffer even bigger losses that are more difficult to recover from.
Getting Ready to Take It to the Next Level
Once you know it’s not a matter of shiny new object syndrome and you’re truly ready to expand your online business, you’ll want to ready yourself to level up. It’s not as easy as snapping your fingers and having it come to fruition – it requires planning and thought.
The first thing you need to do is develop the right mindset to handle multiple business branches. If you thought getting one underway was difficult, then it stands to reason that more than one would be doubly stressful.
You need to wear the hat of employer and employee for both businesses each and every day. You’ll have to prioritize both businesses in your mind, taking care not to let one be neglected as the other thrives.
You’ll need to be strategic whenever you’re making decisions about the path your business will take. Will you give each one equal time and effort to grow? Or will one be slowly nurtured to profitability while the other continues on the fast track to success?
One thing that might creep into your thought process is a comparison between the two business branches. You might be tempted to abandon the new branch because it’s not giving you identical results right off the bat.
But be careful not to try to measure two different branches against each other. Some businesses online, such as high ticket coaching, may not result in much monetary success until you’ve had time to develop a training program and build a reputation for quality.
Other business branches, such as affiliate marketing, may give you a return almost immediately. But they’re two very different strategies that will require a unique set of skills and effort.
Each one may deliver very different results in terms of money and personal satisfaction. You may make more initially with affiliate marketing, but find you work fewer hours and enjoy private coaching more.
You’ll have to work hard at managing your stress during times of growth. Whether you’re adding on your second or fifth business branch, any time you’re expanding to the next level, there are bound to be some growing pains.
Make sure you’re not trying to rush the process. If you’re under financial strain, get a job offline to take the pressure off while you work on the growth of your online business. Some people get stress just because they want to see results, regardless of whether or not there’s money involved.
When you’re putting forth great effort to build an empire online, it makes sense that you’d want to see it pay off for you. But being patient and determined to make the right moves will be a bigger benefit for you than just seeing a quick return of what could possibly be short-term money if you don’t approach it right.
Take time to carefully analyze your options and if something goes wrong, don’t throw in the towel. Instead, look over your actions, steps an the results and see what you could tweak or change to get the outcome you desire.
Remember that doubling your business either means many more working hours or cutting back on the first branch so that you can devote more time to the new one. If you burden yourself with too much work and not enough down time, it defeats the purpose of choosing this career, which is to give you the kind of life you deserve.
You have to enjoy your day and night, so make sure you’re choosing business branches, niches and strategies that make you happy. For example, if you choose to pursue the depression niche and you feel weighted down by the interaction of extremely stressed individuals, that may not be the best choice for you.
Don’t forget that this journey of leveling up and expanding your business may require an investment of more money. Depending on which business branch you choose, you might have to pay for more training, different (or better) tools, outsourced services and more.
Yes, you can begin the expansion on a shoestring budget, but you don’t want to get too far into it before you start applying the right measures to your business. It’s not worth it if you have to set it up on a free social platform that puts your new branch at risk of being shut down on a whim.
You want total control of your website, the content and products you’ll be selling or promoting to your niche audience. You won’t want to simply read freebie blogs to learn the ins and outs of the new business.
You’ll want the best training available. That doesn’t always mean the most expensive. Value isn’t determined by a dollar amount, but by what benefits it brings to your business.
You might invest in a cheaper course that provides one rich piece of data that transforms your business. Or, spend a small fortune on a course that makes it difficult for you to find any nuggets from.
Before you make any firm decisions about this process, make sure your head is on straight, your stress level is low and consistent, and your finances are prepared to take on the burden of what another business may require.