Who are my competitors?
As you begin your business, you need to not only understand your competitors so that you know the market but also be capable of tracking their operations and activities. For example, if you intend to open an e-commerce business, you should identify your competitors and see what they are doing and their markets. Stay aware of direct and indirect competitors because they can also affect your operations. While your indirect competitors might not offer similar products or services as you, they can still affect your market share. Analyzing your competition can put you in a better position to succeed in a competitive environment.
How is the market in this industry?
Doing market research is important in making your business successful by understanding the economy and estimating the possibility of success in a given niche. You need to understand the demographic and the potential customers for your product or service. With this knowledge, you will have the right information and insights for targeting a specific group of people.
How unique is my product/service from my competitors?
Even if there is a big market for your niche, it does not guarantee instant success. You need to understand the difference that your products bring if you are to compete favourably. Even with a large customer base, you are not guaranteed instant success. You need to understand the processes, what your competitors offer and know how unique your product is from the rest. Without such knowledge, you will be doing what those who came before you do, and you will have a low chance of succeeding.
Who is my ideal customer?
You will understand who your customer is by answering some key demographic questions. The questions include: What gender is my product/service targeted at? What is their income level? Why do they need my product? Understanding your customers means gathering more than their basic information but going deeper to know their motivations, personalities and pains. This can help you develop products that meet their needs and market them in the best way possible.
What is the best marketing strategy for my business?
After knowing your target audience, you must understand the best way to reach them and market your product. For instance, you may try social media channels to reach younger customers. Snapchat, Instagram and Facebook are examples of platforms allowing people to respond to your products faster. Before starting your business, understand where and how you will market your product. Develop a value proposition strategy.
How will I fund my business idea?
You can explore various options for funding your business. There is self-funding which involves building your business using your own money. Investor-funded businesses are where you find investors or people interested in your business to provide money to start operations. However, in most instances, most entrepreneurs use a mix of their own money and money from investors. You can also borrow a loan from a financial institution if you are capable of repaying it later. All these funding methods have pros and cons. Therefore, you need to choose wisely the method that suits you well.