3 reasons to start an online-only small business

A smiling woman typing on her laptop in a coffee shop.

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Going online could work to your advantage.


Important points

  • Starting a small business can be a lucrative endeavor.
  • You may enjoy more flexibility and lower costs by just staying online.

There are many ways you can benefit if you decide to start a small business. For one thing, you get to be the boss. That means you’re in charge, deciding what direction to take and who to hire to bring your great ideas to life.

Starting a business can also benefit you financially. The more money you earn in the course of this venture, the more you can replenish your own savings.

When it comes to starting a small business, you have a choice. You could run a physical store or limit your business to online only. Here are a few good reasons why you should consider the latter route.

1. You save money by not having to rent a physical space

In case you haven’t been following the news, rents have gotten expensive nationally. And this applies not only to apartments and houses. If you rent space for your small business, you may be paying a premium now.

But even in times when rental prices aren’t so out of control, the reality is that renting space is a big expense. And it’s one you might not want to endure. Sticking with an online-only business means you don’t have to cover the cost of renting space, and you might also save a lot of money on overheads — things like utilities and other costs that come with running a physical business.

2. You could maintain a better work-life balance

Just because you run an online-only business doesn’t mean you don’t have to put in a lot of work. But maybe you can do much of that work from home. And that alone is worth considering.

Working from home can provide a better balance when you have young children and different schedules to juggle. And if you don’t have to be constantly present at a physical store away from your home, your life overall might be easier to manage.

3. You don’t limit your customer base to a specific geographic area

If you operate a store in a physical location, you may find that the majority of your sales come from the same customer base – local people who frequent your store. Well, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Some people really like supporting local businesses and you may find that you have enough local customers to sustain your business and then some.

But if you start an online-only business and market it well, you might be able to attract customers from all over the country. And that could lead to a lot more revenue over time.

Some businesses require a physical location. But if yours isn’t one of them, it’s worth considering the benefits of an online-only presence for now. Remember, you can always start as an online business and open a physical location once your earnings are stable. But if you go the opposite way — commit to a lease and then realize you’d rather just be online — you could end up spending a small fortune and regret it.

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