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How To Set Up A Virtual Office Service: A Guide For The Uninitiated

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Despite the economic doom and gloom these days, more of us are starting up their own businesses. A lot of people do so by starting small and building their enterprises from home.

As you can appreciate, it’s a lot cheaper to use your home as an office. It keeps those all-important startup costs down. Plus, it also allows people to run their new businesses on a part-time basis. That’s crucial for those that run them alongside a part or full-time job.

A disadvantage of running a business from home is that it doesn’t look professional. What happens if your intended clients are going to comprise of other businesses? They might think you aren’t going to offer a decent service. And they may even assume that you aren’t going to stick around for long.

So, how can such micro-enterprises get around this problem? Well, one obvious solution is to use virtual office services. They allow those people to use a commercial address as their own. Plus, they can even have deliveries received at that address for them. And, they book meeting rooms when they have a client visiting.

From a customer’s perspective, it looks as though they are a “bigger” business than they are! Virtual office services is a lucrative industry. If you want to get in on the action, here’s how to become a provider:

Lease attractive business premises

The first thing you need to do is lease some premises. You will need physical space to manage each client’s mail. Plus, you’ll need an office that you can rent out as a meeting room. It goes without saying that first impressions count.

One thing you shouldn’t do is lease unattractive premises. I’m talking about places that are unsafe or in a bad neighborhood. I recommend sticking to central locations with modern buildings that are “up to code”.

Set up a price plan

Next, you will need to work out how much to charge your clients. The basic service you should offer is the use of your business address. You could charge for add-on services such as locked physical mailboxes and 24-hour access.

You will also need to consider how to charge your clients. One option is to invoice them each month and receive bank payments. Another is to offer credit card payment facilities. The good news is that any business can set up such facilities. Especially with the plethora of high risk credit card processing merchants around.

You may wish to offer a discount to clients that pre-pay for 12 months of virtual office services. Or you could even offer free meeting room usage for an hour a month, for example.

Hire the right staff

Last, but not least, you need employees to manage your enterprise. For example, if you offer answering services, you’ll need to hire a receptionist. You’ll also need to hire people to manage client accounts and payments.

Be sure only to hire the right people for your new business. Otherwise, you could end up ruining your startup before it’s even had a chance to grow! I hope you’ve found this article useful today. Be sure to share it with your friends!

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