So you’ve worked hard at building up your WordPress business. You’ve reached a steady stream of website traffic and new customers, and you have plans in motion for future products and overall business growth.
However, you still haven’t taken the full plunge; you’re still hanging on to a part-time job doing something that you never truly enjoyed. WordPress is what you love, and now, you’re wondering if it is time to go full-time with your business.
But unfortunately, you don’t know how or where to start. You don’t know if you’ll be able to support yourself, and your family, solely on your business’s profit.
If you’re finding yourself in this situation, then you’re in the right place. Here are five things you must consider before going full-time with WordPress.
Assess Your Lifestyle
How do you live – and, more specifically – how much does it take to support your lifestyle?
Are you free-spending, with a liking for fine food, various luxurious items, and modern conveniences? Or are you frugal with your money, willing to sacrifice comfort for more money in the bank?
Your answers to those questions will have a lot to do with determining how much money you need every month from your business to live as you live now.
On the other hand, if you answered “yes” to free-spending, go ahead and ask yourself another question: are you willing to change your lifestyle to a more spartan one as you make the shift to full-time WordPress?
I know many successful entrepreneurs who’ve given up formerly extravagant lifestyles just so that they can be their own boss as their business grows out of its early stages and starts to make more substantial money. Are you ready and able to do the same?
Evaluate the Current State of Your Business
When deciding between part-time and full-time, the current state of your business is astronomically important.
You’ll have to look at and assess the average monthly income (remember to deduct business expenses, taxes, etc.) and then compare it to your personal expenditure.
Is the amount enough for that expenditure, plus a decent amount of savings? Or is it still not enough?
If your business income is less than your monthly expenditure, stop right there and come back in a few months. If your income does allow for your expenses plus savings, continue forward.
Your business’s growth is just as important as its current state. If you’ve been on a steady decline for the past few months, then there’s no way that you can be confident about supporting yourself.
On the other hand, if you’re able to look back and say that growth has increased steadily and reliably, then you could be ready to take it to next level.
The potential of a business is slightly harder to estimate because it isn’t quite tangible — there are no hard metrics for you to go by.
However, there are a few key factors on which potential can be based:
- The size of the market vs. the competition
- The quality of your product vs. competing products
- The level of independence of your business from variables you can’t control (e.g. how reliant is your website on organic traffic from Google?)
- Customer feedback
When you’re calculating potential, it’s also good to seek outside help. It’s easy to be biased towards yourself — particularly when appraising the quality of your product in comparison to the quality of a competitor’s product.
Remember: you don’t have to do this alone. You also aren’t the first person ever to leave a part-time job in favor of a WordPress business.
Seek advice from the experts. Talk to people who’ve made the shift before. Get your business judged by a third party. Consult your financial planner or accountant.
Don’t forget to consider one thing: it might be harder to leave your day job than you’ve been thinking. Some people get attached to the daily routine and even their colleagues.
Can you see yourself working with WordPress day in and day out? Can you see yourself loving it?
Is your family ready — financially, emotionally, and situationally — for you to give up a high-paying corporate job.
If you’ve answered yes to all those questions, then you might just be ready to do this thing for a living.
What advice would you give to those going full-time with their WordPress business?
Jonathan John is a WordPress enthusiast and freelance blogger. He loves comparing WordPress plugins and themes, sharing the latest Automattic news, and helping non-techies get the most out of the world’s favorite CMS.