Thanks to the global recession and an ethos that it is ecologically sound to want to save money and cut down on waste, green or sustainable businesses are the way to go for today’s entrepreneurs. Such businesses may offer many benefits besides being good for the planet, including flexible working hours and requiring very little capital to set up.
Doing business online
Starting any business online is a shrewd move because the company can be managed from a home study or office – in fact, anywhere that has a reliable internet connection. Costs involved are incredibly low, requiring just a mid-range computer, an internet connection and a telephone, with perhaps a little more money being spent on printers and stationery.
Starting a business can be, and usually is, a very stressful thing to embark upon, though many startup owners would argue that the freedom of being one’s own boss is compensation enough. It requires responsibility and a working knowledge of how 21st century businesses operate. This means ensuring the company has a good online presence, establishing a brand image and getting to grips with social media platforms, and most of all, learning how to market and promote the business. For the sole trader attempting to do this all by themselves, it means reading a lot of books and practising to see what works and what doesn’t, or else outsourcing to someone who can do it for them. However, for the entrepreneur, it is these very challenges that are exciting.
For example, Robert Bonnier is an entrepreneur who determined to make his company a global concern within ten years of starting up, and he did. He started an online business to rival market leader Yellow Pages. The company was originally called Freepages, but this was rebranded to Scoot.com five years later, and helped with the online shopping revolution. Scoot.com was valued at £200m, making Mr Bonnier £20m. He had the vision and the determination to make his business a success, and that is what every entrepreneur needs.
If you want to start a business that is eco-based, there are a few more challenges in store for you; however, these can be overcome with a little creativity and research. There are plenty of openings for the entrepreneur who wants to build a sustainable online business. One such opening is a fashion company that makes use of organic or recycled fabrics; these are a great selling point for many such retailers. The research comes in with making sure that all supplies are from genuine organic or recycling providers. If you have a talent for technology, you could start a green app company so that users can discover how they can become greener in their day-to-day lives. If you are good at organising, you could enter into sustainable event planning, helping others arrange meetings that are low on waste.
For the eco-conscious, there are plenty of opportunities to make a living satisfying customer needs while operating in a sustainable and ethical manner.