5 Mistakes You Are Making with Your Home-Based Business (And What to do About Them)

Great ideas of things to look out for when starting and running a home based business.  You will be familiar with these if you have been in the business for a while.  If you are new or looking to start a business for the first time, make sure you read these and pay attention.  It could make a big difference between success and failure.


reprinted from Huffington Post

Home-based businesses have proven the best alternative to white collar jobs or for supplementing one’s income.

Companies like Apple, Hallmark, and even Facebook, began in garages or dorm rooms. Over the years, these companies have grown to become international businesses worth billions of dollars.

Luckily, starting a home-based business is not rocket science. Whether it is hairdressing, fitness coaching, graphic designing or freelance writing, there are a lot of free resources to help you do that.

However, there are a few common mistakes that you may be making which could be why you are still stuttering between paltry profits and survival mode.

Five of such mistakes are:

1. You have got your mind and your space all muddled up.

As a home-based business owner, the absence of an active working environment can make you passive towards your role. You may sleep a little longer, take longer breaks, and spend way too much time tending to your family.

What you should rather do, is to create mental compartments.

Find a way to separate your work time from your family or lecture time. Similarly, you must seek to separate your role as a parent or student from your role as a business owner.

After that, you should also create a working environment. For instance, you can carve out an office space for your business. It could be a clean corner in a room where you place a table and your computer or an adjourning structure to your building.

The aim is to create a place where your mind switches easily to work mode.

2. You still don’t do it professionally

Let’s assume I called a home-based affiliate marketer. And during the call, she interrupts the call too many times to shout at her kids playing in the background. Naturally I will get uncomfortable, and may look for another marketer.

As a home-based business owner, your meeting point with your clients are your phone and email. This means your phone must be with you always and you should have regular access to your email.

Secondly, you must answer your calls in a professional manner. And if for any reason you cannot get to the phone, then you should make use of a voicemail with a professional touch like other companies do.

In the same vein, you should have a file for your business. This is where you will keep records of all your transactions. And if you don’t have a personal computer, get a specific folder for your business. Then let other people who share the computer with you know that your folder is not to be tampered with.

Professionalism will also mean getting a line for the business separate from your home line. And for businesses that involve personal contact, your dressing must portray the professionalism with which you do your work.

Lastly, you should equally get a separate account for your business. You should not mix up family accounts with business accounts.

This way you will still succeed in your home-based business despite the odds.

3. You failed to plan for contingencies.

So what if you fall sick? What if your kid falls sick? What if you have exams or have to take a long trip out of town?

These contingencies require planning. If your clients notice that you are always giving excuses, they may not return.

What you should do is to outsource work to people who can deliver the same quality and who can do it in your stead.

4. You neglect Tax laws, Accreditation laws and Registration laws.

Conventionally, most clients tend to take registered businesses more seriously than unregistered ones.

It is not enough to put up a shingle or a sign in front of your home to attract clients. You should equally check in with the local authorities to know if there are laws restricting that, or payments to be made.

Many businesses have been ended by a single lawsuit because they neglected this simple detail.
To be on the safe side of the law, consult a business lawyer for counsel.

5. Your home-based business lacks an e-presence.

The internet is presently the most potent means of advertising your services. A prominent shingle may reach your neighborhood, but a simple facebook advert can literally reach the globe.

For instance, a friend of mine makes pencil sketches of people and delivers to their emails. He lives in Africa and has thousands of clients in Asia, North America, and Africa.

Luckily, it takes very little to set up a website and get it registered. As simple as it seems, the prospects are unlimited. This singular factor can turn your home based business to a large conglomerate.

In conclusion, your home-based business can grow beyond your bedroom. Even if you choose to remain a home based business, there is simply no reason why you cannot begin raking in much more than you already do. All you need to do is avoid these mistakes.