A large percentage of Baby Boomers reach retirement age feeling inadequately prepared for retirement financially. Even those with good retirement savings may feel they need to generate funds in order to be able to maintain their standard of living. Many more simply wish to continue working, even if it is part-time. The idea of starting a home business is common but the big question is “How can I create a successful home business?”
Considerations for baby boomers starting a home business
The flexibility and freedom of a successful home business appeals to many people. Do you love the idea of being able to work wherever you want to, perhaps to live a ‘laptop lifestyle’ whilst travelling? Maybe the idea of being able to sit in your backyard and work is appealing, as is the freedom of working your own hours.
You may have always had entrepreneurial inclinations. Or perhaps you have found it difficult to get a job, and are considering a business as an alternative. You’ll find there are many advantages to working in the comfort of your own home. Use the information provided in this article to help you find a way to create a successful home business.
Use your experience
The obvious way to launch a home business is to leverage one’s work experience, contacts and expertise to create an enterprise that can be run from a home office. In most cases, this is the fastest path to success. If you enjoy what you did career-wise, this approach is an easy extension of your prior job. Planning ahead, one can even establish consulting contracts with an employer or his clients. The result can be a smooth transition with minimal cash flow impact.
Stick With What You Know
If you want to stick with your current career, and there is a culture of working from home, you may not need to start your own business. Negotiate to work from home sometimes. If you love what you do, your job can be your niche. Once you have established your own working routines you will know if it is working for you and for your employer. If it is causing problems you may decide to move on, but at least you have given it a try.
A successful home business needs a strong niche
A niche is a defined portion of a market. It is a term more commonly used in relation to affiliate and internet marketing. For the purposes of this article, we are going to talk about a niche in general terms. When deciding what type of home business you want to start, you need to take inventory of your likes and dislikes. The reason behind this is, if you are going to embark on a home business, you have to know what you’re passionate about. Once you have decided on a niche, you need to work on cornering the specific portion of the market that interests you.
Looking for something different?
Many Boomers, however, wish to launch a second career in a new arena, such as opening a bed and breakfast or creating an online business This takes more investigation and planning, ideally accomplished well in advance of retirement. There are ample resources on the Internet (much of it free!) to assist with this process.
Don’t act without thought
For older Boomers who have found themselves suddenly unemployed, time is usually of the essence. Typically, they are seeking a source of income with little start-up time. Unfortunately, finding another job can be difficult for 50-plus Boomers.
Many Boomers who have lost their job compensate by putting up a quick website and trying to leverage their experience into a consultancy business, but soon realize that this road too has a start-up period while clients are procured. Others seek “instant businesses” in the form of established multi-level marketing operations or franchises, only to discover that these too are not “slam dunks.”
Plan for passive income
There is rarely an easy road to riches. Moreover, launching a home-based business is a process that can be accompanied by anxiety and financial investment or mounting credit card debt.
For those who make a successful transition to operating a home-based business, there is one more important consideration. At some point, they will want to fully retire or at least cut back on their involvement in the business. Then, it would be nice to have something that provides ongoing residual or passive income. This goal should be part of the upfront planning in establishing a home-based business.
Prepare your home business for sale…from the beginning
If a home-based business or franchise establishes a profitable, verifiable revenue stream from contented customers, it can usually be sold. The profits can then be invested for passive income during retirement. Again, the business plan must include this as an ultimate objective and be implemented accordingly. If a traditional business does not generate satisfied return customers, its “good will” value is minimal and finding a buyer or achieving a good sales price will prove difficult. Online businesses need a combination of consistent traffic, reliable income and good structure. Aim to create an asset that can be sold from the beginning of your business.
Online businesses and MLM
There are other ways to generate passive income from home-based businesses. Membership and subscription-type businesses are good ongoing revenue generators. So are royalties from self-published eBooks. And carefully-screened MLM opportunities can yield continuing income streams as well. So achieving “retirement” may be as simple as transitioning the daily operation to a buyer or someone who is hired to manage it.
Create intrinsic value in your home-based business
The lesson is clear. If you create or purchase a business, do so with the objective of creating intrinsic value that makes it possible to sell – or step back from – the operation at some point. An “exit strategy” is an important consideration for any home-based business, and older Baby Boomers should plan for this.
Write Up A Plan
Research your niche and see what other home businesses are out there. Write out a detailed plan that includes all aspects of the start up tasks. Break down your plan into projects, then set goals to accomplish them.
Dedicate The Necessary Time
A business takes time. It doesn’t matter if it’s a brick and mortar business, or a home business. You will have to designate specific time slots to work on your business. When you’re the boss you accept all the responsibility and make all the decisions. Sometimes that is difficult. ou can’t expect to be successful without a little elbow grease.
Communicate With Potential Customers Or Clients
Talk to your potential customers or clients. Find out what they need to make their lives easier. Then give them what they are looking for. You can do this in person, or on the internet. There are forums on almost every topic. Find out where your potential customers and clients hang out. LinkedIn and Facebook are other great resources.
To Create A Successful Home Business You Need To Work!
Keep on top of your work load. Set short and long-term goals. Always keep in mind that even though you are the boss, the work still has to be done.
Don’t Expect Large Profits Overnight
Don’t expect that clients will be banging down your door, or you will make product or service sales overnight. It will take time for your home business to be known. You also have to consider trust issues. Before people do business with you, they have to trust you.
Get The Right Advice
Federal and state governments all have regulations regarding setting up a home business. Go to the appropriate authorities to get advice about what needs to be done, such as how to get the appropriate business license. Also it is advisable to speak with your accountant and solicitor.
Enjoy yourself! It may sound like running a home business is all work and no play but actually this is not the case. Your own business gives you personal power and freedom, because you are in command of your destiny.You have to be dedicated to be successful. Once your home business is making you money, you will have more freedom to spend time with your family but be aware that the early months/years can be very busy.
Article updated September 2019