As a solopreneur, there’s a lot riding on your shoulders. You are a staff of one, so how many clients you have, how many hours you work, and how much revenue you generate is completely up to you. You are your own boss. You set the rules and reap the rewards.
But those rewards only come after putting in the time and effort to set your business up for success. After all, creating a full-time, long-term business involves more than just having a couple of clients from time to time. Being a successful solopreneur requires planning, follow through, and having reliable partners and services like VSP® Individual Vision Plans on your side.
Here are a few challenges that solopreneurs often face and some helpful suggestions for how to overcome them.
1. Forgetting business basics.
As a solopreneur, your business is based on the skill you’ve honed over many years. Maybe you’ve worked in that industry for another company, and you’ve decided to venture out and start your own business for yourself. If so, it’s possible that you already have a few clients lined up from your contact list. That means you’re off to a solid start. Congratulations!
But what happens when it’s time to scale? This venture you’ve started is your full-time gig now. When you want to generate more revenue, you’ll need to find more customers. That might prove to be difficult if you’ve spent all your time catering to only a handful of clients and not much else.
Like other businesses, solopreneurs should take basic business fundamentals to heart. Perhaps most important is the need to market yourself. With so much research about brands and services being done online, even solopreneurs benefit from the exposure of having a website.
A solopreneur’s website should accomplish a number of things:
- Clearly articulate the service/products you offer and your level of expertise
- Provide examples of your work
- Explain what sets you apart from the competition
- Offer a simple way for potential customers to contact you
And with basic search engine optimization tactics in place, your website will ideally turn up in the search engine results pages, giving you the exposure your business needs to grow.
2. Being financially prepared for the unknown.
What happens when, say, you’re a landscaper and a warm winter means a shortfall of snow-plowing revenue? What happens if you’re a graphic designer and your biggest client suddenly no longer requires your services?
No matter your profession, unforeseen circumstances happen all of the time. While you’re focused on starting and growing your business, the last thing you need is to experience a personal financial crisis because your revenue takes a hit.
Having a financial safety net is a smart plan for solopreneurs. Determine a schedule that’s comfortable to you — weekly, monthly, several times a year — to put aside a portion of your profits. It’ll take time, but the goal is to eventually have enough money in reserve to cover several months of your expenses should something unexpected happen.
3. Protecting your most valuable asset.
As a solopreneur, your most valuable asset is yourself. Sure, you can always outsource specific tasks or projects, but you and your skills are the face and foundation of your brand. As such, if anything unexpected should happen to you, your business would likely suffer as well.
Beyond an injury or illness, another important aspect to consider is your vision — it affects virtually everything you do. Right now, you might think your vision is perfect and not even notice warning signs that you need an eye exam, or more.
As a solopreneur, you want a cost-effective plan that covers your needs without having to pay for services you won’t use. Your time is limited, so of course you need a provider with a simple contract and surprisingly great customer service. It might sound impossible to find, but it’s not. That’s where VSP Individual Vision Plans come in.
Designed specifically so the self-employed can buy vision coverage on their own at affordable prices, VSP’s plans start as low as $13 per month and provide an average savings of more than $200 per year.
What’s more, with VSP Individual Vision Plans you get access to the largest network of independent eye doctors and customizable benefits options such as a comprehensive eye exam, prescription lenses with covered lens enhancements, and more. There’s also no single enrollment period with VSP so anyone can sign up for an Individual Vision Plan at any time.
Click here to learn more about how VSP’s flexible and affordable Individual Vision Plans help solopreneurs do their best work without stress or hassle.