Entrepreneurship is the act of being an entrepreneur, or "the owner or manager of a business enterprise who, by risk and initiative, attempts to make profits". Entrepreneurs act as managers and oversee the launch and growth of an enterprise. Entrepreneurship is the process by which either an individual or a team identifies a business opportunity and acquires and deploys the necessary resources required for its exploitation. Early-19th-century French economist Jean-Baptiste Say provided a broad definition of entrepreneurship, saying that it "shifts economic resources out of an area of lower and into an area of higher productivity and greater yield". Entrepreneurs create something new, something different—they change or transmute values. Regardless of the firm size, big or small, they can partake in entrepreneurship opportunities. The opportunity to become an entrepreneur requires four criteria. First, there must be opportunities or situations to recombine resources to generate profit. Second, entrepreneurship requires differences between people, such as preferential access to certain individuals or the ability to recognize information about opportunities. Third, taking on risk is a necessity. Fourth, the entrepreneurial process requires the organization of people and resources.
While some entrepreneurs are lone players struggling to get small businesses off the ground on a shoestring, others take on partners armed with greater access to capital and other resources. In these situations, new firms may acquire financing from venture capitalists, angel investors, hedge funds, crowdsourcing or through more traditional sources such as bank loans.
The internet changes so fast that one year online equals about five years in the real world. But the principles of how to start and grow a successful online business haven't changed at all. If you're just starting a small business online, stick to this sequence. If you've been online awhile, do a quick review and see if there's a step you're neglecting, or never got around to doing in the first place. You can't go wrong with the basics.