Is it possible for an online business to exist with no physical presence anywhere at all? I’m not talking about running a business from home; I mean with pretty much nothing. It is a challenge, but it might just be possible with all the online services available these days. Being virtual would only be suitable for businesses that offer a service, such as tutors or computer programmers. Let’s take a look at the logistics of attempting to make this happen.
Make Use of Social Media
With no physical presence, the online community is where we will do all of our work. A website is fine, but many businesses find the bulk of their communication is done on Social Media these days. If used well, you can find a ready-made audience willing to see your messages. Platforms such as Facebook hold so much demographic data on their users that you can target particular groups. If you were offering university tuition, you could search for students under 25 in a specific town or area. There are various types of posts on social media, videos on YouTube, short messages on Twitter, and longer messages through Facebook.
It’s one thing getting your message out there. It’s another being able to capitalize on it. When you get a message or communication through any of your social media channels, it’s essential to make a quick response. The chances are that any customer searching social media has taken the time to contact more than one company. It can be advantageous to be the first respondent in this situation, as you can set the tone, and subsequent firms will be judged against your opening offer. They can even communicate in a variety of ways, such as Voice Tweet Messages.
Use Outside Services.
With no physical resources, a business like this will need to rely on outside agencies heavily. This is not to say you could not produce or use physical products. Suppose you wanted to create and distribute leaflets to promote your business. In that case, you could design them remotely and send the copy to a local printer. Then book a Miami to Orlando courier if that’s the destination. This can all be done from your smartphone anywhere in the world.
Virtual Office & Phone-Line
If you need to look like you have a base of operations in a particular city, there are ways to achieve this. You can rent a virtual office; this usually gives you a postal address and a phone number. The phone number can be forwarded to any other number. If you don’t have the time to answer the calls yourself, you can even pay for an answering service.
These days you don’t even need to have a physical PC to work. You can create, edit, access, and send files without ever using anything more than a simple smartphone. So when we said a business could be run with no physical assets, that’s almost true. A phone with an internet connection is all we need. But that’s pretty close.