Business basics – simple things online SMEs tend to forget

Basics such as marketing, security and potential copyright issues are often overlooked but this can be detrimental to your business

Technology is a wonderful thing. It’s enabled thousands of businesses to set up, operate and expand, exclusively online. However, while it’s certainly become easier to set up a small online business, there are still some pretty tough challenges you’ll face when it comes to running one.
Here, we’ll look at some of the simple things online SMEs tend to forget which could have a detrimental impact on their business.
Marketing is a never-ending process
Many SME’s forget the importance of continually marketing their services. No matter what type of business you’re running, marketing plays a key part in your success. There are literally thousands of online businesses and in order to stand out, you need to be consistently ensuring your brand name is out there.
You can’t just set up your business, market it a little and then sit back and wait for clients to come to you. Instead, you need to be consistently marketing your business, researching your target market and monitoring what is and isn’t working. It can feel like marketing is a job within itself, which is why many companies choose to hire a digital marketing professional. They can take care of the marketing side for you if you simply don’t have the time to dedicate to it yourself.
Security is extremely important
Think just because you’re a small business you don’t have to worry about cyber-attacks? Think again! The majority of cyber-attacks are actually targeted at small online businesses. This is because it’s well-known small businesses don’t often have the same level, if any, security as larger companies.
If you store information on your clients and customers, you absolutely need to have a good level of security in place. If you don’t and that information is compromised, not only is it going to have serious financial consequences, but it can also ruin your reputation.
It’s not enough to have the latest anti-virus software installed however. If you really want to make sure your business and its clients are protected, you’re going to need to take extensive security measures. If you’re not sure what measures you need to take or where any current weaknesses in the system lie, you may find a SOC monitor service, helpful.
This type of service doesn’t just identify potential security threats, but it also monitors your security and alerts you to any threats as and when they arise.
Potential copyright issues
Another thing online SME’s tend to forget about is copyright. While there are internet laws in place, they typically aren’t as extensive as offline copyright laws. This means, your logo, written content, slogans and product ideas may not be fully protected.
You’ll want to familiarise yourself with internet copyright laws and determine what steps you need to take to protect your company and its materials.
Overall, there’s a lot of things you can easily forget when you’re running an online business. The three factors above are just some of the most important things you should pay attention to if you want to avoid potentially serious issues.
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Neil Buckland is a Leeds Business School University graduate who has been working in the digital industry for the last five years. With a particular interest in business and tech-related topics, he has been writing content for various publications since graduating. When he is not writing, you can find him on the pitch for 5-a-side, reading or enjoying the occasional online video game challenge.