When you run a business on the internet, you are working 24/7/365. Maybe not specifically yourself, but most definitely your web site, ad campaigns and the core infrastructure of your business. But what happens when unexpected disaster strikes? This can be anything from health issues, inability to access the internet and most importantly uncontrollable world events like we are currently seeing with the massive “Frankenstorm” Sandy that is currently headed towards the North East and looking to make a historical mess.
As of right now (early Sunday morning) all is well in NJ, but who knows what may come in the next few hours and days. The state is already in a “State of Emergency” and Atlantic City has even shut down their casinos for at least one day, which is only the second time ever this has happened.
Even if the storm wipes out all of the electricity and internet access for days, it’s still important for me to have a business plan set in stone. There is no excuse for you to ever have to shut down your business, especially one that is internet based. There are just too many options in place to keep the day to day operations going and means for you to automate your process or have others take over the helm for a few days.
Affiliate Marketer / Internet Entrepreneur Disaster Plan!
The following points are things that you should be thinking about, or already have in place for those times when disaster strikes. If you can’t access the internet, what are you going to do? Is your business going to fail, ad campaigns turn negative or have a set plan in place to make it seem like nothing ever changed.
Set Daily Budget Limits
Internet marketers are always talking about ad spend and daily budgets. It’s easy to manage your ad campaigns when you can check on them every few hours, but what if you were unable to access your campaign and stats for a few days. Knowing before hand and setting your daily limits at a low rate can drastically improve your chances of not having your campaigns turn negative and kill your monthly gains in just a few days.
Have a Business Partner
The majority of affiliate marketers and entrepreneurs online will start their businesses on their own. Should they find success or the right people to team up with, not only will this provide a lot of potential for growth and focus, but also the ability to have someone else at the helm while you might be away.
Pre-Schedule Blog Posts
For any blog owners out there, the ability to pre-schedule content for your blog is a must have. Instead of waiting to write a new post on your blog every day, spend a few days a week writing new content articles and spreading them out over time. It’s also a great idea to have a few content articles laying around that you can schedule in, should there be any unforeseen circumstances to keep you away from your daily/weekly blogging activities.
Hire a Virtual Assistant
Almost like having a business partner, but without the long term commitment and ownership issues, anyone can hire a virtual assistant to handle virtually any task you might need. Anything from SEO work, content writing, marketing and even managing your email and daily activities. Having a virtual assistant will also allow you to keep less of a busy work load on yourself, while allowing you to focus on what matters most.
Automate Your Business
One of the most amazing things about running a business on the internet is that you can automate many things. Some businesses are almost completely automated and just need people to make sure the stats are looking right and that site and business is up and running. From running constant media buys and ppc marketing, to leads process through web sites and emails and autoresponders going out, and even ecommerce sites that can process and ship orders almost without any manual work, it’s all possible through the power of the internet. Your job is to take the time to try and find the best ways that you can automate your business and have less of a hands on requirement.
Don’t Be a Hostage to Your Hard Drive
There is no reason why you should be restricted to accessing your data and business activities from anywhere in the world at any given time. It’s now easier than ever to access computer sharing, cloud hosting and data sharing with computers, services and people through out the world. The last thing you want it is to have the inability to run your business simply because your computer can’t be powered or even worse, it gets hacked or wiped out. Always have backups and accessibility from anywhere!
Your Options for Immediate Internet Access
All of these examples are great, but with if you simply need to access the internet? You have a few options. If your electricity is down, but you still have a laptop or mobile device handy, you can use your wireless carrier to access the internet… but you will still have the power issue when your laptop runs out of battery. Local hotels usually have backup generators and are likely to get connectivity before small businesses and homes in your area, this is always another option. There are also many retail locations such as Barnes and Noble that offer free wireless, though all connectivity and location issues will vary based on the individual situation.
Planning Ahead Will Keep Your Business Safe
No one knows what tomorrow will bring, but having a solid business model and backup plan in place is best for everyone. Look at the current day to day operations of your business and ask yourself what would happen if you weren’t there to keep things running for a day or even a week. Write down what would happen, then put all of the necessary actions in place to make sure if anything ever does happen, that your business will continue to run smoothly without you.