One career to look into if you are planning on starting an online business is that of a software developer. If you have the training in software development and the programs you need to do it, many companies would be willing to hire you to work from home doing freelance work.
Training and Certifications
As a software developer has a different approach to computer programming, it is important for you to have the training needed to get the job done. Some companies (who are doing minor adjustments to software) may hire someone with very little experience and train them, but in most cases, it is important that you know a great deal about software development before applying for a job.
If you do not know anything about software development, take a few trainings at a local or online university. Some offer short programs, which give the good hands-on experience you need to get ready.
Unless you are designing your own software to market, you will almost always be working for someone else, which means you may have schedules, deadlines and some sort of supervision.
If you are working independently from a company and more as a freelancer, it is still important to give yourself deadlines to keep you focused and on track. This is especially important if you are working for individual clients to ensure customer service and receive renewals. Advertise online or in local newspapers and make business cards to hand out to people you encounter.
Many software developers work under a "lead developer" who has the whole picture of what the software should be like and is assigning different developers to work on different tasks. If this is your case, you must be very aware of exactly what your assignment is and how the developer wants it completed, so that it fits in together with the rest of the work. You may have to submit your progress before it is completed several times to ensure compatibility with additional work.
The equipment you will need when developing software includes a personal computer system and software development software such as C++.
If you are uploading graphics into your software, you may need a graphic designing software, such as Adobe Illustrator, or a scanner to scan physical graphics.
When developing your business, it is important to establish how you will charge your clients. Most software developers make anywhere between $45,000 to $100,000 a year depending on their experience, but there are two ways you can charge your customer.
You can charge your customer hourly. This is a sure way to make the amount of money that you want. Make sure you are charging a similar amount to what other software developers with your experience are charging.
If you think you work a little faster than most developers, you can charge per project and per update. Charge what you think a person working hourly would charge and you will make a little more money per hour.
Some software developers may write in computer codes such as HTML, but this is not necessarily the case for all developers. Other responsibilities for some developers may include analyzing the requirements of the software, designing the overall concept and maintaining and testing the software.
Larger companies may have different employees to do each step in the development process, many of which could be done in a home environment. It would be beneficial for you to know how to process or complete many of the tasks to ensure you are always working.
Advertise your business with word of moth through your friends and family, but also in local publications and magazines. Make sure you have a business license, which will cause your city center to recognize you as a business and refer city members to you as well. Contact local businesses and let them know you are a local software developer (and that they could call you if they needed business software developed). Local businesses generally like to work with other local businesses before looking elsewhere.
Have a website detailing your skills and prices with clear contact information. Advertise online through an online ad agency.
Treat your customers with courtesy and respect and get their job done on time. This will not only make them return to you if they need more work done, but they will also be more likely to tell your friends about you, and you will get more business from them as well. If there is a problem with the software you are developing, let them know immediately and let them be involved in your work.
Even though you are working at home, it is important to have a place that you can call your office. Even if you own a laptop and often take it out of your office area, you will have a place to store any information and tools you need to keep your business going.
Keep the location organized, but ensure it's a place you would enjoy working.