5 Must-Knows for Starting a Home-Based Business


Starting a home-based business can feel overwhelming. It certainly did to me when I first started. But it doesn't have to be so overwhelming that it keeps you on the sidelines. Whether you're starting a service-oriented business like personal training, tutoring, or concierge services, an online business such as being a Virtual Assistant, or partnering with a direct sales company like Mary Kay, here are five things you must know to successful launch into your home-based business.

5 Must-Knows for Starting a Home-Based Business

1. Know Your Business.

This might sound basic, but it's amazing how many people look at their pocketbook instead of the product when it comes to determining what business to pursue. If you don't know much about the products or services your home-based business will market and sell, the income potential of that business is irrelevant because you'll sell very little.

Bottom line, when choosing a home-based business opportunity, pick something you know. Better yet, pick something you're passionate about. You're not only “marrying” this business, it's moving into your home. Don't put a ring on it unless you love it.

2. Know Your Niche.

The fastest way to get nowhere in business is to attempt to reach everyone. The most successful home-based business owners focus on specific niches in order to build quality relationships with potential customers and clients. Niching helps you strategically focus your time and energy. It allows you to get to know your customers and clients on a much deeper level so that you can gain better access to them, and it helps you discover future customers and clients who are just like them.

And here's a quick tip for you: When niching, don't focus on demographics or zip codes. Instead, focus on how people interact and build mutually rewarding relationships with one another. They usually associate with other people based on occupation, recreation, or socialization, so focus more on these areas of interests rather than on things like age, income levels, or zip codes.

3. Know Your Promise.

Can you articulate what you do for customers and clients in one sentence? For instance, I'm the president of Live It Forward and we empower direct sales professional and home-based business owners to show up and shine in life and business. This one sentence allows people to determine for themselves whether or not they are prospective customers and clients of mine. If a person is in direct sales or has a home-based business, or if he or she is interested in such an opportunity, this person will likely want to know more about what it means to “show up and shine” and how Live It Forward can help.

Here's another example for you. If you were a Mary Kay consultant, how can you develop a promise statement that would uniquely describes to your customers not only the Mary Kay products you sell, but also the special way you serve them? Here are just a few ideas:

  • Helping You Highlight Your True Beauty Inside and Out
  • Beauty Beyond Your Expectations
  • Changing the World One Face at a Time (NOTE: This promise statement is used by a Mary Kay Consultant I know.)

4. Know How to Market and Sell.

80 percent of your success as a home-based business owner will be directly tied to how well you market and sell your products and services. This is not an exaggeration for effect. It's a FACT! So here are three helpful strategies when it comes to learning how to market and sell.

  • First, if you're not an ongoing learner, become one. Read books. Listen to podcasts. Hire coaches. Put yourself on the fast track to learning and growing immediately!
  • Second, at least half of your ongoing learning should be dedicated to the topics of marketing and sales. In other words, don't just become an expert in your business, because an expert on your business.
  • Third, take the fear out of marketing and selling by embracing them as a way of serve before a sale is ever made. In other words, don't push your services or products on people. Instead, before a sale is ever made, serve people in such way that they can't help but choose to purchase from you.

5. Know How to Hustle and Over Deliver.

You've probably heard the saying: Under promise and over deliver. I've quoted this mantra often in the past, but never again! Do you really want to under promise? Instead, fully promise and then over deliver. This is a much more effective approach.

And while we're on the subject, the only way you can follow through on your commitment to fully promise and over deliver is to hustle. Really hustle! Learn to love the grind of having a home-based business as much as the glory of having one. If you do, you're guaranteed to succeed.


Questions: Which one of these five must-knows for starting your home-based business are you currently succeeding in most? Which one are you struggling with most?