When you’re running a business from the comfort of your own home, it can be rather difficult to look professional to the outside world. Running an empire from your sofa is the dream, but as you grow, clients have certain expectations of you and being professional is the most important thing that you need to project. Choosing to base your business in the spare room of your home may have been a genius move when you first started out, but what do you do now that you’re starting to grow?
You have the freedom to create your own schedule when you work in the home and you have the ability to make your schedule of meetings work for you. The flexibility of being able to choose what hours that you work and when is huge when you think how different life is when you’re working for someone else in an office all day. The biggest downside to working in the home is a loss of professional appearance. Your work will still be impeccable, meeting your own high standards and being titans in the workplace. However, your actual workplace? Not so professional. Don’t panic, though, there are plenty of things that you can do to maintain a professional exterior to your business no matter where you work. Below, you’ll find six things that you could be doing to give your business that necessary professional facelift.
A Virtual Office
You want to impress with your business, and you can’t be too impressive if you have a home address on your business website, a home telephone number that the kids might accidentally pick up and nowhere to host any meetings. The thing is, you don’t want to pay out any of your startup grant money on premises. Commercial property is pricey and it’s difficult to separate your private life with your professional life when you work in the home. The best thing that you could do for your business is think about a virtual office, like the one you can get when you visit www.yourvirtualofficelondon.co.uk. Investing in your business means investing in what makes you as professional as possible; you!
You can trust a website that is hosted, or you can buy a website that has its own domain. Free blogging sites will always offer you a free domain, but they will put their name in the address, too. As a professional business, you need to stand out without another company name on yours, and a custom domain removes the impression that your business is amateur. The web is a very saturated place, and you might find that you need to adjust your brand until you get the right website name.
UX design is going to be the best thing that you can invest in for your home business because people want consistency. If your brand is consistent, then people are going to believe that you are a professional company that ultimately thinks of their customer when they design their site. Your brand needs to be memorable, so you need to make it as stand out and attractive as possible across all website platforms.
Your Personal Email
Your Gmail address may be perfect for your private emails, but it’s not professional enough for your business. It’s considered particularly unprofessional to use private email addresses to send business emails. Make sure your branding is splashed across your email templates, so that all recipients know exactly who you are.
A Separate Phone Line
Remember earlier when I mentioned the kids accidentally picking up the phone when it rings? Well, to avoid this, you need to have a separate phone line in your home to the business phone line. It makes you look more professional, and you can pay to keep your private number as a private one, too. It’s more costly, but this is the preferred option to keep your personal life personal. There are plenty of services that can make your personal number private, so check them out.
Social Media Party
You need to liven up the party in your social media profiles but not your personal ones. You should pack your social media with scheduled posts and do whatever it is that you can do to ensure that you keep the conversation going with clients and customers. The more active you are on social media, the better you will look to the outside world.
Your business at home can be professional, just don’t let the four walls of your house stop you.