Among the many essential considerations an aspiring entrepreneur should take into account when barnstorming their business idea, deciding on the best business model is arguably the most important one. What’s more, this is the first thing you should settle on before moving on to your business plan and growth strategies. Why? Because your business model will define the way you do business in the competitive market, and set you up for success, or inevitable failure.
This is why researching and deciding on the best model for your business idea will prove imperative for the future of your company. Your model will define the way you create and deliver product and services, how you acquire and retain customers and clients, as well as your entire architecture and infrastructure. With all of this in mind, let’s take a closer look at the most viable business models you can adopt to achieve your goals.
The Direct Sales Model
The direct sales business model is one of the oldest models in history, and it stuck around to this very day because of its ability to cut needless business expenditure while expanding with each new employee and representative. In essence, this model doesn’t require a dedicated office space, as it works on a network of salespeople who host demonstrations and presentations of the company’s services or products. These presentations usually take place in the homes of the sales representatives.
Common examples of this business model include multi-million-dollar companies such as Herbalife, Avon, and Siberian Health, to name a few. Whether you decide to launch your own company and adopt this business model or if you decide to become a representative in an existing brand, the growth opportunities are there. You simply need to be an effective communicator to get people to join your cause.
The Freemium Model
If your business idea involves the sale of services or products in the online realm, then the freemium business model might be for you. This model has been widely adopted all across the modern business world in the digital industry, as it allows aspiring entrepreneurs to launch a company with minimal investment and reach prospective customers quickly by offering a product or a service free of charge. Of course, the freemium model still needs to make money.
In order for this model to prove lucrative, you need to develop a viable monetization strategy. The recipe here is simple: offer basic products or services for free, and then start charging for additional features and other tiers. The key here is to make the basic level valuable enough for the customer or client to join, but then make every other tier more valuable for their immediate and long-term growth. To achieve success with this model, you will need to master the art of upselling.
Buying a Franchise
One of the most successful models in the modern business world is the franchise, and for a number of compelling reasons. Aspiring entrepreneurs are increasingly buying into established and successful franchises in order to mitigate a lot of the risk that comes with the traditional startup, minimize their investments, and enjoy structural and organizational support from the franchisor.
You will need to do your research and obtain the franchise information needed to familiarize yourself with the industry and discover the most cost-effective franchise opportunities in your market. But remember, it’s not just about the cost of the franchise – it’s viability will be determined by its growth potential, the level of support it offers to franchisees, and many other factors. Once you’ve found successful franchises in your niche, you can decide whether you want to follow the traditional startup path or become an entrepreneur in an already established brand.
The Subscription Business Model
There is no denying that the future of successful business lies in customer retention rather than customer acquisition. Given the fact that acquiring a new customer can cost up to five times as much as it would cost to retain existing business over the years, entrepreneurs have begun to invest in a subscription business model in order to reduce expenditure across the board.
This business model is especially popular with business leaders who have high customer acquisition costs, which is why it aims to retain customers through recurring monthly payments in exchange for a subscription to a product or service. This is an excellent way to build a client base and keep them at your side.
Be a Distributor or Launch a Dealership
The world is full of manufacturers who are waiting for someone to sell their products. So why spend the time and resources creating proprietary products when you can distribute and sell the ones that have already been made? This is a good way for future entrepreneurs to venture into the competitive market without overinvesting capital in devising and developing products they cannot guarantee will be successful. Plus, it gives you a lot of flexibility.
You can research the most lucrative manufacturers in the field you’re interested in, paying close attention to the ones with realistic growth tendencies and projections, all the while keeping the socio-economic factors in mind. Once you have curated your list of manufacturers, you can launch your new brand as a distributor or a dealer of the most lucrative products in your niche. You have the liberty to set your own prices once you have purchased the products from the manufacturer, but keep in mind that the key to your long-term success will lie in your ability to balance your prices against the competition.
Manufacture your Own Products
On the other hand, you can choose to occupy the other side of the industry and become a manufacturer. Depending on your niche and scope of work, you will have to put forward a substantial investment capital to kick-start your manufacturing operation. Among the most immediate costs, you will have to find reliable employees, obtain the necessary equipment, and secure a manufacturing facility that fits your needs.
Be sure to take it slow and stick to a core selection of products you can make quickly and without wasting time, labor, or money. Once the revenue starts rolling in, you can start expanding into new, more lucrative product categories. And remember, modern manufacturers have the liberty of working with distributors, but they can also cut the middlemen out of the picture and decide to sell directly to the consumers – there’s your opportunity for faster financial growth.
Becoming an Investor
And finally, if you have capital to work with, you can choose to become an investor. There is no shortage of assets you can invest in nowadays, ranging from real estate to bullions, and from emerging startups to cryptocurrency. To be a successful investor, you will need to allocate your funds wisely and diversify your portfolio by investing and securing your finances in a number of strong assets.
Keep in mind that strong assets such as gold will produce steady, lower returns over the years, while high-risk assets such as cryptocurrency might produce a quick and hefty payout. Be sure to work with an experienced advisor in order to make the most cost-effective first investment.
Choosing the right business model can mean all the difference, and it will define your future as an entrepreneur. Before you invest in your business idea, be sure to consider these business models carefully in order to make a sensible decision, and ensure your long-term growth in the field.