Right now we’re experiencing a bit of a contraction in the tech ecosystem, as many companies announce layoffs and venture capitalists slow down their investing.
In my opinion this is just a natural, appropriate reaction to a lack of strong business fundamentals among some companies and not a precursor to a major collapse of some sort.
Even though investor enthusiasm seems to have waned, there are still industries with such an upside that they will probably be expanding for years to come.
Apart from providing new market opportunities for investors, industries set for lots of growth are also often favoured by lending institutions, which want to provide affordable business loans to smart business people with their finger on the pulse of industry growth potential (and a detailed plan in place).
Related: It’s Not Magic, It’s Technology
With technologies changing and introducing sectors across the globe, it’s clear to see that the booming businesses of the next decade are likely to be quite different from what we’ve seen over the past 20 years.
If you’re keen to build a company that leads the pack, these three growing industries are worth considering investing your time, money, passion, and energy into today.
1. Online food purchasing
You might already buy your music, books, clothes, accessories, gifts and other items online, but in the coming years you will likely also purchase more and more of your food that way too. Although online food sales have been growing consistently for the last few years, the trend is set to rapidly increase over the coming decade.
A number of different reasons are causing the growth in the amount of food sold online. Entrepreneurs that are aware of these changes in online shopping habits can be the first to benefit from new market growth.
The first factor is that buyers are busier than ever and working longer hours, making the purchase of groceries online an easier, more feasible option.
In addition, consumers are increasingly comfortable with purchasing items via e-commerce sites, so they have more trust in having them delivered straight to their door.
Health services provided by companies that use digital technology to remotely administer education and different types of medical support are known as “telehealth.”
This strongly growing field is projected to become one of the biggest industries in coming years, driven largely by aging populations around the world.
More and more people will need care, but it’s not entirely sure there will be enough hospital beds and practitioners available to provide it. As a result, technology will be used to bridge the gap.
The growth in this area also stems from the rise in the number of people with chronic health conditions like heart disease and diabetes who can be advised and monitored remotely rather than in person.
Many advances in technology are making telehealth services more cost effective and feasible to deliver in large numbers. Also, a big bump in support provided for health services in many countries may be used to set up telehealth programs.
The telehealth industry covers a wide range of different medical services. The most common types of services so far though are things like monitoring patients remotely for changes in health or lifestyle choices; video conference consultations; and the digital transmission and storage of medical data (such as X-rays, other scans, and patient files).
3. Relaxation beverages
Over the years you have likely tried some sort of energy drink, or at least know a number of people who have. While these types of beverages have been popular for more than a decade, “relaxation beverages” are becoming more popular.
This sector of the food and drink market is already on the rise and is likely to become a very familiar term soon as the name suggests, relaxation drinks are supposed to be the opposite of energy beverages. Instead of being full of caffeine to keep consumers alert and awake, relaxation drinks will be sold for their calming effect.
These new types of beverages will be marketed for their sleep-promotion and relaxation benefits, as they can help consumers rest more thoroughly and switch off.
The types of beverages created in the sector often contain active ingredients like melatonin or I-theanine, and come in the form of carbonated drinks, dairy-based beverages or ready-to-drink teas.
The new industry is still in early stages, but the consumer backlash against some commonly-reported side effects of energy drinks (such as gastrointestinal upsets, tremors, palpitations, dizziness, chest pain, and insomnia) will probably help move sentiment towards relaxation-based recipes instead.
Research firm IBIS World released a report that shows the relaxation drink market grew 23 percent in 2014, and is expected to increase to a value of over R3 Billion over the coming few years.
This article was originally posted here on Entrepreneur.com.
6 Steps To Building A Million-Dollar Ecommerce Site In 60 Days
Jared Goetz spent only 30 minutes a day and built a colossal Shopify sales machine.
Jared Goetz, serial entrepreneur and member of The Oracles, always had a knack for reaching an audience. At 26 years old, he’s co-founded four multimillion-dollar companies.
Whether he’s throwing the world’s largest foam party with fire breathers and circus acts (“Electric Flurry”) or selling inflatables to college students via viral campaigns (“Dumbo Lounge Sacks”), this serial entrepreneur knows how to turn an audience into a profit machine.
His latest venture, The Gadget Snob, is no different. An ecommerce store that supplies everything from jet-flamed pencils to laser keyboards, Goetz took his business from zero to $2 million in 60 days by plugging into the right audience. That’s no small feat in a competitive industry forecast to surpass $4 trillion in sales by 2020.
Goetz’s secret sauce to reaching the masses? Experimentation. As he explains, “You don’t know what people will respond to until you try a lot of things. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box.”
Goetz shares six key components to building his million-dollar ecommerce store and turning profits in less than a business quarter.
1. Don’t reinvent the merchandise wheel
“Many owners think they have to reinvent the wheel with the merchandise they sell,” Goetz explained. Instead, he suggests focusing on products with a proven track record of success. “An easy way to spot a market trend is gauging how a product performs on social media. If an item is getting 10,000 Facebook Likes in less than a few hours, that’s a tell.”
When choosing merchandise, it’s also crucial to differentiate between commoditised and unique products. Commoditised products are widely available. Unique products are less accessible handmade or niche products that aren’t mass produced.
“If you go niche, gauge demand first. Observe what people are looking for. You might be surprised to see what’s selling.”
2. Create a formula, then rewrite it
Ecommerce comes down to a formula, Goetz says, and the outcome is affected by different variables: Product, advertisement, landing page optimisation, and customer lifetime value.
“Once you figure out what produces the best margin, copy that. Most who fail in ecommerce are 90 percent there but haven’t worked out all the variables in their formula,” Goetz shares.
For Goetz, a pivotal variable was drop shipping. “I spent a lot of time bootstrapping my earlier companies. Drop shipping was a game-changer because it allowed me to advertise before securing the inventory, yielding greater outcomes.”
3. Build a legit Shopify store
A successful Shopify store must win confidence. “In the sometimes-fraudulent digital ecosystem, you have to earn a consumer’s trust,” Goetz says. “A money-back guarantee and free shipping guarantee are great places to start.”
Goetz also suggests choosing a theme that’s congruent with your industry. “With branding, you want to look professional, not spammy or creepy.” Gadgets are fun and technical, so his site has bright colours and precise language. “If I were running a men’s fashion store or toy store, I’d change my theme to match the merchandise and brand. Branding is key to converting customer views into sales.”
4. Find winning ads with huge ROI and scale
For Goetz, marketing comes down to one word: testing. “The only way to find out what works is to test it many times,” he says. “Test 10 audiences on each product, so you know where to invest your energy.” For The Gadget Snob, Goetz hired an ad manager to optimise Facebook campaigns. “When you strike gold with a successful ad, replicate it, but scale incrementally to ensure you’re staying targeted.” He suggests increasing ad spend 20 percent per day, not 500 percent.
When building campaigns, it’s also vital to use language that’s shareable and creative. Sales psychology is your friend. From his perspective, classic scarcity techniques have been around for centuries for a reason. “Try incorporating a quantity incentive: if you buy one, it’s full price; if you buy two, it’s 50 percent off and so forth.”
“Creating an email list is also vital. Email campaigns have a higher conversion rate than cold Facebook campaigns, and you can incentivise email campaigns with rewards. You can make money by merely pushing ‘send.’”
5. Hire a VA, then specialists
For Goetz, hiring a virtual assistant was essential to scaling. “At first, my VA helped with everything,” he says. Once his site got off the ground, Goetz hired people with specialised jobs for specific tasks.
He also stresses the importance of universal procedures. “Having clear onboarding processes and procedures is key to growth. Make your systems as easy as possible because while you might have 100 orders today, tomorrow you’ll have quadruple that.”
6. Get your customer support airtight
For a store to operate at full throttle, Goetz stresses the importance of customer support to maximise your profits. “You need your customer support to be airtight and available 24/7,” he says. “Online shopping goes all night and people place orders at all hours.”
To support questions and concerns, Goetz says that live chat and around-the-clock customer service is a must. “In our era of Amazon Prime, customer service expectations have never been higher, he says. “The last thing you want is a minute hiccup or technical goof obstructing a sale.”
Ultimately, ecommerce allows entrepreneurs to reach untapped markets and reap the rewards. As Goetz puts it: “My ecommerce site affords me ultimate freedom.” By following a few basic steps, you, too, can build a Shopify store to run from anywhere in the world, and perhaps even create your own million-dollar sales machine.
This article was originally posted here on Entrepreneur.com.
10 Businesses You Can Start Part-Time
Find your perfect match for a successful part-time start-up.
Start your part-time business today
- Public Relations
- Freelance Photography
- Corporate Videos
- Small Business Advertising Agency
- Writing, Editing and Proofreading Services
- Internet Marketing Consultant
- Web Design
- Tax Accountant
- Business Consultant
- Business Plan Consultant
Launching a company – even if it’s operated part-time – is all about drawing on your skills, talents and interests to create a viable business. What you know and what you’re good at form a good basis for a part-time business because these companies either become an extension of what you enjoy doing most or they are based on your strengths.
Working part-time while still maintaining a permanent job is time consuming and often exhausting, so choosing what you take pleasure in or are good at can keep you focused and motivated. The right fit is important when it comes to launching a part-time business. Selling a service rather than a product does not require large start-up costs, which means you can grow your business without financing until it becomes self-sustaining.
Are you looking for a business that you can launch in next to no time?
Corporate Communications & Promotions
Corporate communications covers a host of areas, mainly because this is the sector that takes care of how companies look to the outside world – something that is very definitely a service, but also that is not often taken care of in-house.
If you can write, edit, have a knack for advertising, can take photographs or create promotional and corporate videos, you can offer your services part-time to companies both large and small that are in need of these services.
10 Business Ideas Ready To Launch!
Where do you find a good business idea? Right here. Here you’ll find several innovative business ideas that are ripe for plucking.
Where do you find a brilliant business idea?
It’s not as hard as it may seem at first. In fact, the idea is arguably not all that important. There’s a reason investors talk about backing the jockey and not the horse: It’s often not about the idea, but the execution.
A great entrepreneur can turn even a mediocre idea into a success; all that’s needed is a USP and great customer service.
That said, some ideas are undoubtedly better than others. And some businesses are easier to get off the ground. In the following pages you’ll find a curated list of business ideas that have reached a point where they’re just waiting to be exploited.
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