Girl working from home
Image credit: Pexels. CCO Licensed.

Running a small business from home makes practical sense. It can save you the costs of running an office and the commute of travelling to an office. 

Unfortunately, home businesses still have an image problem. Customers tend to view them as less professional than office-based companies. The solution to this: don’t let your customers know that you’re a home business. Below are 5 ways in which you can do this. 

Build a digital presence

Having a large digital presence will make customers think that you are a large company. A few ways in which you can achieve this include:

  • Designing a professional website.
  • Achieving high search engine rankings for your site.
  • Building a large social media following.
  • Encouraging lots of online reviews.
  • Launching continuous PPC ad campaigns.

Building a digital presence isn’t easy and may require the help of a marketing company. Make sure that none of your online platforms mention that you are a home-based business.

Set up a work phone

Work Phone
Set up a work phone. Image credit: businessinsider.com

If customers ring you on your house phone and a family member answers, it’s an instant giveaway that you’re running a business from home. It’s worth setting up a separate work phone number using a VoIP. Such phone numbers can be answered on a variety of devices, allowing you to take calls at home or on the go using the same number. You don’t have to wire up a separate landline or buy a new phone. You can read more about VoIPs here at https://www.businessinsider.com/

Use a virtual address

A virtual address is an alternative address that you can display on your website instead of your home address. You can rent these addresses out at sites such as https://physicaladdress.com. Your physical mail is then directed to this address – you can then have it redirected to your home or you can read it online. Such addresses tend to be located in prestigious commercial areas, which could help to give customers the impression that you’re a very successful business. On top of this, such an address has security and privacy benefits – you can accept mail from customers, without having to give out your personal address to them. 

Outsource a virtual receptionist

Virtual receptionist
Hire virtual receptionist. Image credit: jobtoday.com

Want customers to believe that you have your own private secretary? Outsourcing a virtual receptionist is the best way to do this. This involves outsourcing somebody to answer the phone for you. This person may be able to answer general enquiries for you, relaying only the most important calls to you. On top of making your home business appear more professional, outsourcing a virtual receptionist could save you time answering phone calls and could even reduce missed calls.

Hire space for meetings

Working in cafe
Working in cafe. Image credit: unsplach.com Photographer: Ilyuza Mingazova

Need to host a meeting with a client? Inviting them to your home is unlikely to be a professional option. A virtual meeting over video call could be an alternative solution, but what if they want to meet in person? Hiring office space for meetings could be an option. There are many corporate buildings that allow you to hire out space for a couple hours. Alternatively, you could consider meeting in a coffee shop.