Many people think that if you want to run an internet based business from the comfort of your own home or small office, that you are going to need to bring in employees, file for a corporation and even write off a section of your house to take off for tax purposes. While each of these components are possible, in most cases they simply aren’t needed — especially for anyone who is starting or running a blog of their own.
This article is going to give you a run down of some of the best ways to run your blog based business from your home or small office, while also being applicable to startups as well. To help with this process, we took the time to reach out and get guidance from many different internet service providers from around the world. Whether you are located in the United States, Germany or India, as long as you have access to the internet — you are golden!
Depending on your location in the world, you will need to find the right provider that fits your needs. Bloggers within the United States and Canada have plenty of options to choose from, while Australian business solutions available such as iiNet make it easy for kiwis to connect to the internet as well.
Once you’ve found a reliable internet service provider in your area, it’s time to consider your options on what service plan you would go with. In the screenshot below you can see how internet solutions vary basis on if you would like to add in-house phone systems or run a mobile office.
No matter which option you choose, always make sure to go with the right plan and software in the beginning so you don’t need to change everything a few weeks or months down the road. To help with this process, we’ve listed a few more options to consider as well.
In this day and age, you just have to be online, which means that you need to decide on an internet package for your business. The most basic type of internet is broadband, then you have the new NBNs, SHDSL and top of the range Fibre connections.
- Broadband: This might be the type of internet communications you are most familiar with at home. Business broadband bundles include local and standard national calls, as well as mobile and international calls.
- NBNs: Not yet available everywhere in Australia, the new NBN communications networks will give you faster loading times and are well worth investigating for your startup business.
- SHDL: This option gives you high speed connectivity at an affordable rate and is great when you have IP telephony, virtual private networks and video conferencing.
- Fibre: If you require even more broadband speed and connectivity than can be provided by the three previous options and if the internet is critical to your business, then Fibre is your best choice.
Choosing the right internet access speed for your home business will greatly influence how fast you can upload and download content from your office, web site or blog.
One of the best phone solutions for small startup businesses is to use Lync desk phones, which are designed to be used within Microsoft Lync environments. With a Lync handset, you have voice and video conferencing, desktop sharing and instant messaging, as well as local and national calls – and it will expand easily as your business grows.
With a Lync handset, you can make voice and video calls, send files, schedule meetings from your contacts list and let people know your status – busy, offline, available etc. If you are not ready to use Microsoft Lync in your business, then you can simply check out a regular business phone plan.
Not all bloggers need to rely on a heavy phone communication service, as email is the contact form of choice — however, it’s also an option that is bundled into many internet service packages.
If you have more than one employee, to save costs from having multiple mobile broadband accounts, you might want to investigate mobile Fleet plans. With these you can either use your existing mobile phones or include handsets in your bundle as well.
For Microsoft Lync users, all mobile devices will be included in your one single plan, so that makes it easy. Another option is to look for a plan which includes a business tablet, so you can do more work on the go and save money at the same time.
For small startups, it is worthwhile finding a communications solution that not only includes the internet, phone and mobile options, but also hosting for your website. Cloud computing is also a growing trend and is a great strategy for starting a small business on a limited budget.
Getting Your Internet and Blog Business Online
As seen from the breakdown above, choosing an internet solution is a big decision in the beginning, but once you find the right service and level of access — you are good to go!
When making the decision to bring your online business in-house, take the time to consider all of your options and make sure your upload and download speeds are as fast as possible. Consider upgrading to a premium level of service, as the last thing you want to do is sit around in your home office waiting for files to transfer!