Week 1 – Idea Generation, Business Models, Demand and Competition

Join me as I reflect on my educational journey in creating my own online business.  I will be reflecting on the information I have gained in my business class on a weekly basis.  This week my focus has been on idea generation, business models, demand and competition.  I know it sounds exciting to jump right into the actual creation, but some planning is required.

First things first you must decide what you will sell and how you will sell it.  You do not have to decide on a product first, but this is how I have decided to go about it.  Also when I say product it doesn’t mean it must be a tangible object that you are selling.  It can be anything really, an idea, digital content, consulting, etc.  If you’re having a hard time coming up with ideas this website has great ideas for brainstorming new products.  I like the “Mix & Match” method and the “Problems and Solutions” method.

After you’ve decided on a product do some research to see how competitive the product might be and it’s potential.  Go to Google Adword: Keyword tool to find out.  Type in keywords you think might drive someone to your site to see how often those words are searched globally and locally.  It will also show you its competition level.  Try researching several ideas to see how they compare.  I compared two ideas (LEGO flash drives and Autism resources) and found that one was very competitive with generally low searches per month and the other had a low competition with generally high searches per month.  The product choice for me was clear.

Once you have a product, or at least an idea for one you must choose an appropriate business model.  Here is a site that offers common business models and their descriptions. I will be making and selling products that assist with Autism so I decided to go with the “Merchant Model”.

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