It's given that the internet is the future. More so than ever, the internet is serving as the backbone of the world as the most important infrastructure in a time of uncertainty. The default way of our lives has been thrown out the window, so much so that even massive corporations are opting to use alternative methods like working from home or remotely. On the other side of the spectrum, if you're an SME owner, it's relatively simpler to transfer your business to the world wide web. 

Why Take Your Business Online?

There are inherent benefits to taking your business online. You instantly have exposure to newer and more leads, and you get to discover a brand new frontier. What's more, is that you'll have brand new challenges that will fuel your entrepreneurial spirits! We've been working from home here at JoomShaper, and I think we've gotten pretty good at it. Our updates go live on time, our members share stories of how we're keeping ourselves productive, and we keep connected through video conferences.  

These are very challenging times for everyone, but even now businesses like eCommerce, delivery services, and eLearning have spiked. So, I think it's the best time for you to hop onto this trend and start building your online empire!

How Do You Communicate with Your Team?

A major obstacle to this adaptation process is communication. Even the biggest most successful companies have issues with it, and mastering this will be difficult. But that shouldn't discourage you in the least! Fortunately, there are a few amazing tools to help you attain these goals.

Slack: It’s a collaborative business platform for optimizing communications between small and medium-sized firms. Slack’s features include sharing files, screen videos, creating unique threads, maintaining team channels. It's fast, affordable, and works great on all devices. You also get the added benefit of making VoIP calls and video conferences that are remarkably necessary to preserve synergy.

Trello: Mostly a product management and coordination tool than a communication tool, but it has a very important role to play as a team-wide communication platform. You can keep track of backlog, on-going, and completed tasks quite effectively.

Facebook Messenger: It may seem a little unconventional, but a messenger group along with Slack is very useful for online communication. No instant messaging service will ever exceed Facebook Messenger's accessibility. A messenger group is rather efficient for company-wide updates, emergencies, and alerts.

Adapting New Practices for Online Operation

When developing an online component for your business, you need to adapt your platform to the challenges of an online company. A few main elements of any online company are:

Reliable Hosting: After all, an online company isn't worth its name if the user can't access it. Studies have shown that even a 0.5 second shorter load times will increase the visitor retention rate by 10%. And these load times are significantly up to the hosting provider. Picking the best hosting provider for your business will be a balancing act between high-grade hosting, and options that make economic sense.

Brandable Domain Name: The domain name shouldn't be an issue if you already have an existing but limited website. If you don't, here are a few pointers on how to select a proper domain name:  

    1. Precision is key
    2. Easy to pronounce names are more attractive
    3. Avoid hyphens
    4. Buy one ASAP

CMS: Using a CMS for your business website is a very viable option as CMSs have evolved beyond their initial use cases. Now you can effortlessly use Joomla for all your business needs. Our templates, as well as extensions, will help you create the website of your dreams!

Website Security: Protecting your website is a vital part of an online presence. To shield your business & the users from security failures, take a look at how you can defend your Joomla website from malicious attacks.

Adapting your Monetization Plans

Normally, the monetization strategy should differ between offline and online businesses. eCommerce plans and models differ a lot, and you can fine-tune them to make the most benefit, depending on your needs as well as your product. There are a few models:

  • Freemium products: There are two variations of the same product in this model. The free version has minimal functionality and performs only basic tasks while the premium version unlocks all of the advanced features of the product. Only the premium edition has to be bought. Eg: SP Page Builder Pro.
  • Subscription-based products: This model gives the consumer limited-time access to your product. After the time has expired (usually created as monthly or annual cycles) the customer must pay more to retain access to your service. It's also not uncommon for these models to include a trial period when a potential customer can try out the product before paying for it. For example Netflix or Spotify subscriptions.
  • Creating custom products for a client: This model is very free-flowing and has very few "rules." Simply put, the client asks you what they want, you design and develop it, and if it works well, you get paid for it.

Creating Your Business’s Social Image 

A very rewarding way to build an online presence is to promote your company through social and professional networking. There are a few items that should be in your checklist:

There are tons of more social networks you could be on but these are the most crucial ones that are practically a necessity to have an online existence.

Increase Visitor Count Using SEO

A robust SEO plan will serve the overall visibility of your website. As your customers search for your products, search engines are one of the biggest factors in your website visitor count. As such, following good SEO practices is crucial. 

Joomla has always been the trail-blazer for SEO and will always give you the most tools when it comes to best practices. We have a post on how to optimize your Joomla web page for search engines that goes into the technical details, be sure to check it out!

Slowly, as you build your online presence, the site's visitors will grow, and so will its authority. Remember to keep your texts clear, SEO friendly, and precise. 

Final Words

Once you've gotten the basics ready, try to look at some in-depth ideologies that we think are very important to run an online business website with Joomla.

If recent events are any indication, relying less and less on physical attributes and adding an online dimension to your business is the way to go. This adds a layer of contingency as well as expanding your business without a lot of effort. 

So, what are you waiting for? Press Cmd+T, create a new tab on your browser, and start taking your business online!