So you’ve dedicated a portion of your life to the road, but don’t want to give up your dreams of launching a startup? No fear. Fortunately, there are many ways you can still follow your passion of travel and freedom while taking care of business. Being a digital nomad isn’t a lifestyle for everyone, but if you work hard and dedicate yourself to your craft, you can truly reap some rewards.
Digital work also provides you with a sense of purpose; many entrepreneurs who choose to free themselves of the traditional 9-5 feel very fulfilled in their ability to work on their own terms, and contribute to the world in some way. It might be an emotional rollercoaster to start, but it will work itself out through hard work and perseverance. Here’s how you can launch a startup company as a digital nomad:
Take Advantage of Coworking Spaces
Coworking spaces are sprouting up all around the world, giving freelancers and entrepreneurs alike the ability to work from a proper office environment, each complete with their own set of unique perks. Over the past few years, there’s been a rise of coworking spaces. As a digital nomad, though, you need versatile space that can accommodate you on the road. One way to achieve this is by taking a manual approach: search the term “coworking spaces in [insert country here]”. For most major cities, you’ll get a handful of results. Many coworking spaces offer daily, weekly, and monthly passes depending on your needs.
You should also sign up for Croissant, an app that lets users sign up for memberships to have access to coworking spaces around the world. Pick the package with the amount of hours that works for you, and use the app to sign into any coworking space directly from the portal. This flexibility allows you to work on case-by-case basis without having to commit to anything. Furthermore, many coworking spaces hosts events that could be useful to you and your startup. You’ll be able to meet new people, learn new things, and network for the future.
Start A Website
Every business needs a website, and when you’re on the road, you need to be able to make fast, easy changes to your design and content. WordPress is one of the easier platforms to learn. Conduct a search for the best WordPress guides and e-books to learn more about how to get set up. If you want something even easier, try drag-and-drop platforms like Wix and Weebly. You can set them up quickly, but keep in mind you’re more limited in terms of design.
Having a website helps your startup look much more professional. Even if you’re still in the growing stages, it helps to have a landing page where visitors can request more information or sign up to be informed when the site officially launches. Otherwise, you might use your site as a blog as your building the business. Blogs will never grow out of style, and having a blog is one of the most importants aspects of your content marketing strategies.
Take Advantage of Free Housing
There are a handful of ways to get free housing on the road, with the two primary options being Workaway and WWOOF (Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms). Both offer housing in exchange for a few hours per day during the work week. Typically, this consists of just 4-5 hours. Some hosts will include meals, and others even offer a stipend. While you won’t necessarily be getting paid, it’s a great way to offset accommodation while traveling, which is one of the largest expenses. You’ll still have the majority of the day to work on your own projects, and can put more money towards longer travel and business expenses.
Even more, these platforms offer ample opportunity to experience countries unlike ever before. Help a meditation center with their marketing; assist guests at a reception in Ireland; build a glamping site from scratch in Portugal. There are thousands of options, all around the world. You may even learn more about starting a business from the businesses you help. Try to choose opportunities that are on the same trajectory as your startup, or that allows you to strengthen skills that you’ll need for your own business.
Don’t Count On Early Cash Flow
Many entrepreneurs make the mistake of believing their great idea will start making money as soon as it launches. The truth is, many startup founders experience revenue losses for the first two years. By preparing yourself to lose money, you’re better positioned to keep propelling forward, and to not lose sight of your cause.
With that in mind, you should prepare your lifestyle based on your business goals. This will be much easier if you put together the foundation while you’re still at home, such as becoming a legal business and filing any necessary paperwork. Once the bare bones are in place, you can continue working on other milestones. You should also have enough money saved up to support the revenue losses you may encounter.