Know your facts! 10 questions to ask before starting your home business

Perhaps you are one of the many motivated individuals researching various home business opportunities. While there is a wide selection of products and services to choose from, careful research is key to your satisfaction and success.

The following is a series of questions that I believe should be answered before entering into any contractual agreement with any business corporation.

Is this a legitimate company?

Whether we like to believe it or not, there are businesses that are deceptive. Protect yourself. Do your research ahead of time and find out if the company is a member of the Direct Selling Association or the Better Business Bureau. A little homework up front can say a lot for your future.

Is there a demand for the products or services being offered?

Of course you want to offer something that people want to buy. Look for quality and be selective when making your decision. We all know that we can buy almost anything, anywhere. Look for something that is unique and of value. Consumable products are a wonderful option because people will use the product and contact you for additional purchases after the product has been consumed.

Can you get excited about the products?

Don’t try to sell kitchen utensils if you hate cooking. Find a product or service that has changed your life and motivates you to advertise it to the world. People will know when you are being genuine and if you can find a product that practically sells itself, that’s even better!

What are the start-up costs?

I would suggest being wary of businesses that require more than $ 500.00 as an initial investment to start their business. This initial start-up fee should always be in exchange for products and training materials. Look for businesses that require a low initial fee and do not require you to have a lot of inventory in your possession to be successful in sales.

Are there established territories?

Some companies will set limits on how much you can sell outside of your home location. If you hope to be able to travel and sell your product without territorial limitations, then you will want to make sure that the company allows you to do so.

Is there a residual income plan in place?

Training and team building can be one of the most rewarding and financially lucrative ways to establish a long-term income. Find out if this home business offers a residual income plan and research potential financial growth. Realistically, you can expect to spend 3-5 years if you are being intentional in training and building your team. Don’t be fooled by “get rich quick” scams.

Will the company buy back the unsold inventory?

This is a very important question to answer if you are researching a business that requires you to have a lot of inventory on hand to be successful. For those who are members of the Direct Selling Association, any resale inventory will be bought back from you if you decide not to keep your membership. Be sure to research the specific terms and conditions.

Are there monthly fees?

Some companies will require you to meet a monthly fee to maintain an active status. Depending on how much time you can invest in the business on a weekly and monthly basis, you may want to ask yourself if this sales goal is reasonable for what you are trying to achieve.

What are the perimeters to market your business?

Ask how others market the products and services. Are they limited to home shows and Christmas bazaars? Does the company allow the product to be retailed in store windows? Does the company have a policy on online marketing and, if so, do they allow their distributors to take advantage of one of the most effective ways to market today?

How can I choose not to participate if I decide to stop being part of the company?

Find out if there are hidden costs or penalties for leaving the company’s distribution team. A clean and easy opt-out is always preferred.

The answers to these questions are critical and can greatly affect the outcome of your business success when combined with your vision for your future. Take the time to choose the right business for your personality and lifestyle. Patience is a virtue.

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