E-commerce offers a multitude of benefits that brick-and-mortar setups can’t capitalize on, but it also comes with its own set of challenges: namely, the struggle to stand out. These obstacles can make it difficult to attract customers and maximize their value, particularly for small businesses with limited budgets.
But by recognizing these challenges from the start, you’ll be better equipped to enhance your user experience, build customer relationships, and capitalize on customer potential.
Challenge 1: High Competition
Only so many brick-and-mortar retailers fit on a city block — but online, the possibilities are endless. You can find an online specialty store for anything from bowties to dog food, and competition is fierce. Competing brands aggressively seek out each other’s target market through social media, advertising, SEO, SEM, and more. This makes it harder to reel the customer in and keep his or her attention.
Many people place a negative spin on the notion of accountability. For them it’s something that only comes up when something goes wrong or expected results just don’t happen. But accountability is really much broader than that and encompasses the good as well as the bad. For example, people are also accountable for successes.
Accountability is essential to a successful business. Someone must be responsible or “answerable” for everything that happens, in one way or another. If nobody’s responsible, then nothing really gets done, problems can’t be fixed and innovation can certainly never happen.
Pinpointing ways to save money for your business is a good thing. It helps you instill a lean operating mentality and creates discipline to put every dollar to work in the most efficient manner.
Anyone who’s ever bootstrapped a business knows all about the art of doing more with less. Stretching budgets can be a survival skill that keeps you always looking for ways to save a buck.
Connections. Everyone in business knows they’re important – even vital to success. And everybody has connections of one kind of another. The key is to put those connections to work in ways and places that really count.
One thing that sets the most successful small businesses and startups apart from all the others is their ability to connect. If you can build strong relationships and connect with clients and customers, your business will almost certainly grow.
If you are passionate about improving your community or desire to make a difference in the world, then forming a nonprofit corporation could be the right choice for you. A nonprofit is just that—not for profit, which means any extra profit and income may not be divided up and distributed amongst members at the end of the fiscal year. While your nonprofit organization can most certainly have employees, all leftover revenue is meant to support the cause for which the nonprofit was formed. So if the nonprofit corporation had a net income at the end of the year of $100,000, it would pay federal and possibly state corporate income tax rates for that $100,000 because it has no shareholders for that profit to be distributed among. This is why many nonprofit corporations that have a tax-exempt purpose utilize a 501c3 designation with the IRS, becoming exempt from paying taxes on that $100,000, so they can keep as much of the money they collect as possible and use it to further their organizational purpose.
When you decide to form a nonprofit, be aware that there are changing factors from state to state for nonprofit corporations. Each state is different and it is highly important that you contact the correct offices, obtain the right registrations, and make sure that you are operating in compliance with your state’s specific rules. These steps below, however, will get those who are passionate about a cause either in their community or beyond on the right track to making a difference by way of a nonprofit corporation:
Name your nonprofit.
To many people, the idea of earning an income from a nonprofit organization seems absurd. However, many successful, tax-exempt nonprofits have paid staffs. Some nonprofits even offer executive salaries and benefit packages that rival those of big for-profit corporations. If this seems counterintuitive to you, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Below, we’ll take a closer look at how all this works.
The Nonprofit Structure
Religious nonprofit organizations are created at the state level like any other nonprofit; the difference being that they are formed for religious purposes. Generally, religious nonprofits are exempt from certain taxes—such as the income tax—and most religious organizations can file for and obtain 501c3 tax exempt status from the IRS, as by default, most churches are classified as public charities.
Is there a difference between a church and a religious organization?
A church is a place of worship, such as a synagogue, mosque, or temple. Churches are automatically considered 501c3 charities, as long as they meet the criteria required by the IRS, and continually adhere to 501c3 requirements.
A religious organization is not automatically a place of worship like a church is. A religious organization is generally a nondenominational or interdenominational organization and has a principal purpose of advancing religion.
A public benefit nonprofit corporation is what people think of when they think nonprofit. It is a charity that is advantageous to the public at large, meaning that anyone could benefit from the actions of the nonprofit.
What is a Public Benefit Nonprofit?
The relationship between your nonprofit and the state starts as soon as you file your articles of incorporation with the secretary of state, and continues on throughout the duration of your nonprofit’s life. Here are the ways in which your nonprofit corporation will need to interact with the state throughout its life:
Incorporation and filing
:This is the very beginning of a nonprofit’s relationship with the state. It begins when you file your nonprofit’s formation documents with the secretary of state, or similar business division. After submitting your formation documents, the state will file them and then, in most cases, alert you that your nonprofit is registered with the state. The amount of time that it takes to file and process your nonprofit’s formation documents will vary by state.
A mutual benefit nonprofit corporation is formed solely to benefit its own members. Unlike religious or public benefit nonprofits, the purpose of the mutual benefit nonprofit is not to benefit the public at large, but rather a very specific group. The other major difference is that the revenue for the nonprofit is generated via the members. Money comes primarily from member’s fees, dues, and other member-related charges. Mutual benefit corporations usually include homeowner’s associations, trade associations, automobile clubs, social groups, and athletic or sport clubs. A country club is an example of a mutual benefit nonprofit: individual people pay to join the club, and then they must continue to pay a membership fee annually. Memberships can be bought and sold, and therefore any assets or property owned by the country club may be distributed among members in the case that the club should dissolve.
Why is a mutual benefit corporation considered a nonprofit?
It is not a rule that all nonprofits must benefit the general public, as not all nonprofits are charities. All revenue that is generated by a mutual benefit nonprofit organization is to go back to the benefit of the members, and the revenue generally comes from the members alone, not from the public. Mutual benefit corporations exist to benefit their members, providing services, insurance, and welfare for their members alone.
How is a mutual benefit nonprofit formed?