By Zeeshan Khalid
While every entrepreneur wants to be a boss, just the desire of it does not mean you can be successful. Web entrepreneurship requires a great degree of patience and fortitude to turn an innovation into a running business. Such ventures enact a significant effort from the entrepreneur and the chances of failure are always higher than success.
From securing a startup capital and establishing an office space, to building an online presence and conducting e-commerce operations, every stage requires thorough decision making and careful management to proceed onto the next. A misstep at any of the stages can prove catastrophic and could even cost you your entire business’s worth. This article will read you exactly why such incidents occur.
Lack of Patience
In startups, there are no shortcuts and get-rich-quick schemes. Each successive step requires a significant deal of work, patience and time before you can move onto the other. Even large multinationals don’t have the privilege of guaranteed success when it comes to online startups.
Jack Ma, a Chinese Business Magnate and co-founder of the multi-billion-dollar e-commerce juggernaut Alibaba has stressed the imperative of patience as one of the key reasons behind his success. In his own word he says,
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Sadly, impatience has become a common byproduct of today’s entrepreneurial mindset and has spiraled many ventures from “en-route to success”, to “costly catastrophes”. Without patience, you cannot determine the success potential of your business and not on how strong and profitable your business idea is.
By making patience your virtue, you not only learn from mistakes and come back harder but enhance the overall possibility and probability of your online startup’s success.
Absence of Vision
Web-based startups are quite competitive and demand on-the-spot creative thinking to identify problems and develop solutions. Whichever sector, activity, product or service you belong to, as the startup founder there will be a lot more expected from you than just signing legal documents and approving leaves.
As a CEO you will be responsible for many things outside your financial and administrative duties. You will have to step up and motivate your team with realistic optimism, allocate your resources to improve efficiency, promote collaboration, and build response plans and strategies when a competitor emerges. Above all, you must possess the utmost willingness to take calculated risks when the time comes.
Effective leadership is among the key aspects of a successful venture but becoming a good CEO takes a great deed of hard work and dedication and certainly is not for the faint of heart.
To me, sky diving and entrepreneurship are oddly similar. Quitting your job and diving into the world of startup has the same risks when you jump out of an airplane and free-fall. In the startup, your optimism will become a test of faith whereas in skydiving you’re wondering if the parachute will open to save you or not. In both circumstances, opportunity cost becomes a determinant.
Although, keeping a job on the side may help you stay financially afloat, it will eventually prove detrimental to your startup’s progress when things begin to pick steam. Besides, a true relationship with your start-up can be reflected from how much you are willing to put yourself into it.
While there are numerous debates made on it, many that contest on the idea of leaving a soundly pleasant and steady career for a business pursuit that is full of uncertainties. While there may be many risks associated with running a startup, a Hobson’s Choice has to be made, taking into account how one of the choices will benefit you from the other in the future.
Bad Financing Choices
Securing an appropriate sum to fund your startup always comes with a fair share of challenges. The most common mistake between new entrepreneurs is they waste a disproportionate amount of time on schemes than focusing their efforts on PR and marketing to bring investors.
While crowdfunding has been one of the most successful and fastest means to secure startup capital, its saturation in the market, continuous misuse and growing distrust between crowd funders has given a bad rap to new entrepreneurs. Similarly, incubators and accelerators are established with good intentions and clear goals, but end up excluding entrepreneurs who need their help the most. Loans and credit schemes are equally distressing and are mostly built around the idea of exploiting the investee. Government grants are quite rare and require a ton of paperwork and legal procedures.
Unlike experienced entrepreneurs who already have a pool of capital from previously sold ventures or a reliable investor backing, as a newcomer, you must go the extra mile to finance your venture, establish client connections, gather investment contacts and conduct other PR efforts to bring attention towards your idea.
Weak Digital Presence
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As an online startup, digital has to be your strong sides. This means you must put extra effort to build a robust digital foot print for your brand in order to achieve your business goals. 90% of ecommerce startups that fail have either completely ignored to create an online presence or have neglected in their efforts to deploy effective online marketing strategies to achieve their KPIs. An ecommerce startup requires a fast, functional and visually appealing website that can be optimized for Search Engines. Search Engine Optimizing (SEO) is one of the deciding factors for your ecommerce website’s success. Without SEO you may never achieve a good ranking on Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs) and produce conversions your products or services need. Moreover, poor web security, bad layout, non-responsive design and high shipping rates can also contribute to the ultimate failure of your online startup.
In my own personal experience, most entrepreneurs who stumble as they face the trials and struggles of their startup is because they fail to foresee how their efforts will fare in the future. Experiencing a slight bit of failure in the beginning and in the middle is fine, but that does not mean you will have to entertain it to the end. When I started FME extensions I understood a great deal of blood and sweat had to be put to see my startup bloom one day. To take your chances in ecommerce you must be able to set bigger targets knowing you will achieve at least the mid-tier ones.
However, biting off more than you can chew won’t necessarily teach you how to eat a bigger piece, but might as force you to choke. With these 5 reasons that I’ve shared, I am confident it will educate today’s budding entrepreneurs to learn from mistakes others have made and come back bigger and stronger for their next ventures.
About the Author
Zeeshan Khalid is the Founder & CEO of UnitedSol (Pvt) Ltd – A Leading IT Company in Pakistan. Under the umbrella of UnitedSol, he has established well known international brands like FMEExtensions, Extendons and FMEModules that serves over 30,000 customers with 250+ products and eCommerce solutions.
UnitedSol is also the only PrestaShop Partner in Pakistan and first in line to become a Premier Magento Extension Partner as well. The company is also credited with several digital marketing partnerships with renowned brands such as Shifa International Hospital, Tehzeeb Bakers, ICCI and more.
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Infographic by – Fme Extensions