Working from home and being self-employed is one of the best ways to life the life you want. If you have a knack for research, being an internet researcher may be the ideal entrepreneurial opportunity. It’s also one of the easiest businesses to start. Here’s how:
What You Need to Know
To be successful as an internet researcher you’ll need to know how to maneuver online quickly and effectively. You’ll want to know how to get online and have a solid understanding of search engines and online research tools. You’ll also want to know a good amount about a particular industry or type of research. Many marketers, for example, have a need to understand their target audience and need market research. If you understand market research, demographics, psychographics and keyword research then you’ll be a valuable asset to this industry.
Create Your Office
To get started as an internet researcher you’ll need a home office. Essentially, you’ll need a computer with a good internet connection. You’ll also need some way to document the hours you work, bill your customers, pay your taxes and store your information. Because research generates quite a volume of content and memory, it’s advised to have some sort of backup. You can purchase an external hard drive or use online storage solutions. Create a system to regularly back up your computer, and organize your information in a manner that makes it quick and easy to access.
For example, ask yourself “How would I find a client project I did 5 years ago?”
This is helpful if a client comes back to you later wanting more information or if your research projects overlap.
Get a Website
Because you’re going to be researching online, it’s important to establish yourself online as well to demonstrate your ease working online. Additionally, many of your clients will find you online. Websites can be created quite easily and for very little expense. You’ll need a domain name that represents your business, not your name, and will help people find you online. You’ll also need a website host.
Finally, it’s time to start marketing your services. Ask yourself the following questions:
* What type of internet researcher are you?
* Do you do market research, informational research or both?
* Do you charge by the hour or by the project?
* How much do you charge?
* Do you specialize in an industry or niche topic? If so, what is it?
* Why should they hire you? What makes you unique and what benefit do you offer businesses?
* How will you tell people about your business? Options include but are not limited to:
o Social networking
o Online advertising
o Press release
o Search engine optimization
o Article marketing
o Flyers, brochures and print ads
o Partnering with relevant businesses to cross promote
A Few Additional Considerations
You’ll also want to make a few decisions about your work from home life. For example, how many hours will you work each day/week? How will you bill clients, for example do you require a deposit? Will you use PayPal? Will you accept checks? You’ll also want to decide where you’re going to open your business checking/savings account and what type of business entity you’re going to have – LLC, Sole proprietorship. And you’ll need to register your business with the proper local authorities.
Becoming an internet researcher can be an amazing opportunity. What other industry allows you to learn as you earn? What other industry allows you the ability to provide valuable information to people, potentially making a difference in the world, and life the lifestyle you desire.
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