By Gina Kershaw
So, you’ve started your online business. You’re all in. You’ve looked at websites and products and all the other stuff you may need to get your business going. You’ve been watching the videos and reading the blogs. You are walking the walk and pretending that you know what you are doing. Fake it ‘til you make it, right?
As you explore Google and YouTube to learn what you have to learn, the more experienced people creating the content might be using words you have never heard in your life, and using them as though you should already know what they are talking about. So, you just nod your head and pretend you understand.
I’m not knocking it – I’ve done that plenty of times. That said, it really is helpful to know some of what these people are talking about, and understand some of the terms that are commonly thrown around. Not only will you feel better about yourself and able to hold a conversation when these terms are brought up in real life, but since you understand what they are saying, you will be able to use their advice better.
To get started, here is a list of the top 10 things that every new entrepreneur needs to know.
- ABOVE THE FOLD
“Above the fold” is a term used in web design. It is the part of your website that shows on your screen when the page has just loaded, and before the user scrolls down.
The idea is to put your most compelling material (and a button encouraging the user to learn more or engage further) “above the fold,” to push the viewer to visit your next page or at least scroll down.
Evergreen is a term used a lot in online courses, but it can apply to regular product sales too!
When you launch your product or course, you will usually make it live and run it for a certain range of time (like 5-7 days). When the cart is closed, your customer will have to wait until you reopen the cart. If your course or product is “evergreen,” it is always available and not contingent on launches or carts that open and close. In effect, your customer can make purchases whenever they want.
Business owners usually start with the launch system, but after the product has been out there a while, they switch to evergreen. This way, it is consistently bringing in income without needing extra pre-launch promotion.
The ultimate goal is to be able to get to a point where you can “scale” your business. This is when the exciting stuff happens. If you have started your business and have found that you’re selling a successful product, you can scale that product by advertising and promoting it as much as possible.
In order to scale your business, you take revenue and put it all back into more advertising and marketing. When you do this right, you can grow your business exponentially and it can make a ton of money.
Don’t let this term throw you. Ecommerce is just a fancy way of saying that you sell something “online”–as in, “with your computer,” or using the “Internet. When you shop on Amazon, you are using ecommerce. Easy.
- BRICK AND MORTAR
This is the opposite of ecommerce. A “brick and mortar” store is one you actually walk into.
People have been saying for years that “brick and mortar” stores are dying, and ecommerce will completely take over eventually. Sure, some large malls have died off, but these kinds of statements will only be true when we stop enjoying walking around and physically going into beautiful places. This is unlikely to happen anytime soon.
Many businesses are starting ecommerce stores, but they are also keeping their brick and mortar stores. Why? Because lots of us still want to see or try things on in person before we buy them.
- CTA – CALL TO ACTION
All of the lessons and videos you watch will encourage you to put a CTA or “call to action” on your website, blog, podcast, video, etc. This is critical.
The call to action is how you will be able to connect with your potential customers. The CTA asks your reader to click on a link to take them to a new page, sign up for your newsletter, or grab a freebie. When you get them to click, you can capture their email. This is golden.
- LEAD MAGNET
A lead magnet is a freebie that you offer to your potential customers in exchange for their email. It can be a helpful pdf, a book, or some other gift.
The lead magnet is your good-faith offer to provide value. It helps your customers get to know you and the services you can provide them. When someone has intentionally asked for more information from you, you have a warm “lead” for whatever you may want to promote next.
A funnel is a series of steps to move a customer from the initial contact into a sale. The most basic type of funnel is a “squeeze page,” which is just a way to capture the customer’s email. It looks something like this:
- Offer your “LEAD MAGNET”
- Get the customer’s email
- Put their email into your list so you can send them information
Here is another type of funnel. It is called The Webinar Funnel. It looks like this:
- Webinar Registration Page
- Webinar Confirmation Page and email
- Webinar Broadcast
- Webinar Order Form
- Order Confirmation
There are tons of different kinds of funnels, but they all do the same thing. The goal is to turn a lead into a customer. The best part is, you don’t even have to figure these out on your own! There are some great funnel programs that can design awesome funnels for you. Examples are clickfunnels.com and funnelgorgeous.com.
Your niche is your specialized area or customer. The marketing gurus all agree that in order to have a successful business, you have to narrow down your focus to a particular niche or customer.
An example of a specialized niche is: Marketing for Female Dentists that Work With Children.
Your business avatar goes with your niche. It is your ideal customer within the segment you’ve identified.
You should probably even give your avatar a name. If you are working with the female dentist niche then your avatar may be defined like this:
Her name is Amanda. She is a 35-year-old dentist who loves to work with children. She is looking for better ways to reach out to parents of children who want to provide a playful/fun experience at the dentist. She has her own practice and wants to expand into other markets.
If you can get into the mind of your avatar, you will be able to sell to them better, because everything you create will be with this particular person in mind.
Now that you know these key terms, you can discuss your business better, and understand some of the skills you will need to acquire as you start your entrepreneurial life.
About the Author
Gina Kershaw is an influencer strategy coach based in Newport Beach, California, USA. She teaches bloggers and social media influencers how to build their businesses smart by adding their own online stores. She can be found at .