One of the pluses of running your own online business is that you do get a lot of flexibility in terms of when and how much you work. However, this is really only the case when you are at home and in your normal routine. It can actually be very difficult for online business owners to take time off to go on vacation, due to the fact their businesses tend to depend very much on their presence.
Being able to take a break is an absolute essential for a healthy working life, and it is possible for online business entrepreneurs – it just takes a little more planning than for employees who can simply make a request to use their leave allowance and forget about work while they are away!
Here is how to keep three of the most common types of online businesses operating smoothly and avoid losing customers or clients while you take a planned vacation:
If you run a blog, this is actually the easiest type of business to keep going without any real drama while you’re away on vacation. You can write some extra content and schedule it to post while you are away to your normal schedule, and you can also even use services like Buffer to schedule tweets if you use Twitter to bring in traffic.
Any advertising on your blog should keep running without any intervention for a week or two, and if you normally post paid guest posts, then you can use an autoreply on your email to let people who enquire know when you’ll be back. Alternatively, you can decide to check in online every day to quickly deal with that kind of stuff instead.
An Ecommerce Site
An ecommerce business can be one of the harder ones to plan a vacation around. You will need someone to cover you if you sell physical rather than digital products, because obviously you won’t be there to send out items people order. While you can automate your marketing a lot, as with a blog, you’ll need to get someone to agree to check for new orders using your site’s admin facility, and send them out.
Luckily, with a good ecommerce site, like those developed by Eventige, this won’t take long for someone to learn, and unless you receive hundreds of orders a day, it should be something a friend could cover in just an hour a day if they have access to everything and know your procedures.
If you are a freelancer, then obviously part of your vacation plan will be that you won’t be taking on any work during that period. If you tend to mainly do one off jobs, then this is pretty simple – just create an out of office message to reply to anyone who emails you about availability.
However, if you have long term clients, it is best to let them know well in advance. Your work is probably as important to their business as the work of their in house staff, and so while they should expect that you won’t work 52 weeks a year, they’ll need notice to make other arrangements while you are not working.
While it may not be possible to take a vacation on a whim as an online business owner, unless you have staff who can cover you at short notice, a planned vacation can be very much possible.