Starting a business is not an easy task and it is important to keep that in mind before you decide to start your own venture. Entrepreneurship is a journey that requires a lot of time, effort, and hard work.
But still, a lot of people end up failing. Nobody succeeds in the first attempt and the key to successfully getting your business off the ground is attempting again and again.
You may have to come up with a meticulous plan and organize your materials, prioritize them properly, and stay on top of the status and performance of each one of these moving parts.
Here are few of the tips that will help you have a successful start-up business in 2017:
Every business initially starts with an idea. Most people think to turn their passion or something that they are knowledgeable about into a business or perhaps that they think they have found a way to fill a gap in the marketplace.
Thus, people are bound to turn their interests into a business.
You need to make a list of all the ideas that you have, then review your list by narrowing down to ideas you are bound to stay focused on.
Do a quick search for the existing companies in the area you are trying to enter. Learn what they are doing better in and how are they achieving it, then figure out what you can learn from them and do it better.
If your business does something that other companies do and you think your business can do it faster, better and cheaper; you have an amazing idea and you can start a business.
If you have an idea that is no other company has ever come up with then even better.
Another option you can try is by opening a franchise of an established company. The concept, brand
The concept, brand following, and business model are already in place, all you need is a good location and the means to fund your operation.
Build Business Plan
Once you are 100% sure about the idea that you have chosen, you need to focus on some important questions:
- What is the whole purpose of your business?
- Which customer base are you targeting?
- What are you setting out to achieve?
- How are you going to finance the start-up costs?
A well-written business plan that you will come up with should be able to answer all the above questions.
A business plan helps you to understand the progress of your company and how it overcome any potential risks and what resources you will need to sustain it.
Assessing Your Finance
Initially, when you start a business, you need to invest in it.
Later as your business expands or has started out, you must determine how are you going to cover those costs. Most importantly, are you going to be able to fund your startup or will you have to borrow money initially?
If your startup business is going to be your full-time job, it will be a wise decision if you wait until you have at least some money to put in your idea for it to start and for sustaining yourself in the beginning.
This investment is before you start making the profits.
As most entrepreneurs initially put their own money into their own company, it becomes necessary that they are going to need some financial assistance.
You can take a commercial loan to a bank as a starting point although they are difficult to secure. If it is impossible for you to take a bank loan you can always take a small business loan through the small business administration.
Since start-ups require a lot of funding, you may want to consider having an investor. Investors normally provide several million pounds to a company that is fledging or is bound to fledge.
The only clause they have while they provide you money is having hands-on roles in running your business.
Determine Legal Business Structure
It is important for you to decide what kind of entity your business is before you can register your company.
This business structure basically affects everything legal, from how you file your taxes and includes the personal liability if something does go wrong.
- Sole proprietorship: when you want to entirely own the business all by yourself and you plan to be held responsible for all debts and obligations, that is when you register for a sole proprietorship.
- Partnership: when two or more people are held responsible for all the debts and obligations as business owners, is when the term partnership is implied.
- Limited Liability Corporation (LLC): This is when you want to separate your personal liability from your company’s liability, you may want to consider forming one of the several different types of corporations. Thus, making a business a separate entity from its owners can let the corporation own the property, assume liability, pay taxes, enter into contracts, sue and be sued like any other individual. This structure for small business is known as the limited liability corporation (LLC).
This hybrid structure has the legal protections of a corporation while allowing for the tax benefits of a partnership. Ultimately, it is up to you to determine which type of entity is best for your current needs and future business goals.
Registering with the Government
Registering your business with the government helps you become an officially recognized business entity.
The business company may need articles of incorporation document, these articles include the name of your business, the purpose of your business, the corporate structure, stock details and other information related to your company.
If you are the sole proprietor you will just need to register your business name, this name can be your legal name or a fictitious “doing business as” name or can even be the name that you have come up with for your company.
For having some extra-legal protection, consider trademarking your business name as a former step.
After you are done with registering your business, the next thing is to obtain an employer identification number (EIN) from the government.
However, for sole proprietorships, this is not required since there are no employees there. Yet you can apply for one anyway, this is to keep your personal and business taxes separate or in other words it is to save yourself the trouble later if at all you decide to hire someone in future.
The government provides you with a checklist to determine whether you will require an EIN to run your business or not. If at all you need an EIN, you can register for it online.
Regardless of whether you need an EIN or not, you will have to fill in certain forms to fulfill your federal and state income tax obligations. The forms that you might need are determined by your business structure.
The SBA website gives a detailed information on which entity needs which kind of forms, you can also find information about state-specific tax obligations there.
In order to operate some companies may require federal or state licenses and permit. You can use the SBA’s database to search for licensing requirements by state and business type.
As technology continues to evolve, almost every business today needs a set of high technology tools and software to operate.
Depending on the industry, some will be more technologically advanced but at the very least, you might need a powerful and a reliable business laptop and smart device that will help you keep your business well organized.
Many businesses mainly function on the key factors like accounting, invoicing, point-of-sale software, presentations etc.
These key factors can now be managed using mobile applications that are compatible with your smartphones and tablets. You would need a computer or strong security features to conduct complex business functions like storage and performance speed.
For the business wanting to operate on smart devices, think about whether you’ll need a separate phone or tablet for your professional apps and data.
You need to incorporate security measures into your company, there are smart building technologies available online like key cards, CCTV, and other systems.
There are many sites that offer these services online which help you deploy sensors around your company area and within it to monitor the number of people using the entrance and compare it to the number of authorized people that should be present.
You are going to need to hire a team that will help you get off the ground unless you are planning to be your only employee.
You need a team to build your product, so having a foundation team and making them understand the existing gaps and how they target it should be your top priority.
You need to know how are you going to make your team work together and define their roles and responsibilities.
Branding and Advertising
You need to build your brand in such a way that the people following your business updates are ready to jump when to launch your product finally.
For creating this scenario, you need to create a logo that helps people identify your brand and that is consistent across all the platforms including the company’s website.
Branding can be done using social media to spread the word about your new business and its product. Be sure to also keep these digital assets up to date with relevant, interesting content about your business and industry.