Tips on Starting A
Small business have many challenges to stay afloat. Many budding entrepreneurs think that all they need is an idea or product and a bit of work and the money will come rolling in. If you have ever run a small business - even a home based business - you will know there's much more to it than that! Here I outline some of the preparations that need to be taken before a new business can be successful.
Small businesses have many challenges to stay afloat. Many budding entrepreneurs think that all they need is an idea or product, a name for their small business, and a bit of work and the product will sell itself and money will come rolling in. If you have ever run a small business - even a home based business - you will know there's much more to it than that!
The first thing you, as a potential small business owner must always do, is research your market. Then research your competition, then the available supply for your product or service, and find your unique selling position. This alone can take weeks often months.
Once you are satisfied that there is a market for your product or service then you need to sort out your business plan and cash flow projections.
Small businesses may appear low cost but many suck up substantial capital before they turn a profit so now, unless you are very fortunate, you must sort out how to finance your small business. Do you remortgage your house? look for investment partners? borrow from friends or family? or approach the bank? Whichever you choose you need to convince others that your small business will be profitable and they will get a return on their money.
Once finances are in place the hard work starts. You may have premises to arrange, suppliers to sort out, staff to recruit and mangage, accounts to keep, products to design or source, lawyers to consult, accountants to hire and we must not forget in all of this market and get the all important customers to look at and purchase your products.
To do that you have to advertise your small business, but where and at what cost? Don't forget you have to provide customer support and accept returns. Then there's waste disposal ... and on and on.
Who's paying for all of this - in simple terms you, and your friends, investors and/or your bank are paying, until you are selling sufficient product or service to cover the costs - usually many months or even years away.
New small businesses rarely return a profit in the first year and frequently not for two or three years. Make sure you can finance it properly.
Is it worth doing it? That's your decision but every year tens of thousands of people do start their own business and many are succesful and reap the rewards of all that hard work. But many also fail, and all too often it's due to lack of preparation
If you're about to set off on your new business venture prepare well and Good Luck. With good planning, persistence and a lot of hard work you too can build a profitable small business.
Starting A Small
Business In Less Than 24 Hours
In today's high tech world, it no longer has to take extensive amounts of time to start a small business. Many of the business startup steps can be handled quickly via the Internet
Starting A Small Business
In today's high tech world, it no longer has to take extensive amounts of time to start a small business. Many of the business startup steps can be handled quickly via the Internet, including the ability to incorporate online, apply for a tax ID number, and apply for a small business loan.
To begin with, it is beneficial to incorporate your small business for many reasons. The main advantage is the protection of personal assets that is offered. Under this setup, business owners property cannot be a target of lawsuits or creditors. Also, corporations are taxed at a lower rate and credit ratings are established for the corporation, not based on the individuals rating.
There are websites that offer secure application forms for incorporating your business in as little as 10 minutes. The information you will typically need in order to complete the form are the state you are incorporating in and what type of corporation you will be establishing (e.g. Basic Corporation, S-corp, or LLC).
Tax ID Number
Next it is necessary for new business owners to apply for a Tax ID number, also known as EIN (employer identification number). This is the nine digit number that is assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to any type of business entity (corporation, sole proprietorship, partnership, etc.). The Tax ID number is used for tax filing, business, and banking purposes, as well as for the identification of your business by various federal agencies. Again, this is a quick process online – it can be done in about 5 minutes.
Small Business Loan
If you need funding for your small business, you will want to consider applying for a small business loan online. The process is simple and quick. For this type of loan, there is not usually extensive documentation required and reputable firms do not charge application fees. Also, you can typically find out if you qualify for an unsecured loan (no collateral) or a line of credit usually within a day or two. If you do not want to risk your personal assets and are in the market for a funding between $10,000 and $100,000, this is the avenue to take. It is however important that you have a good credit history and also be sure to apply with a trustworthy company.
All in all not only are these processes simple and quick, but they greatly reduce since margin of error since you are filling out your applications directly online.
Starting a Small Business?
It takes a unique individual to run a successful small business. What characteristics do successful entrepreneurs share?
starting a small business, entrepreneur, successful entrepreneurs
There are lots of people out there thinking about starting a small business, and tons of great ideas, but few people actually go out and do it. So many people think and think about it until all of a sudden they’re fifty-something, still with that great idea, but no business.
There’s no doubt it takes a special type of person to be an entrepreneur. It’s definitely not for the faint of heart. It takes desire to succeed, courage, perseverance and a great deal of will power to continue to work at it in the face of the setbacks you’ll inevitably have to deal with. But what else does it take to be a successful small business owner?
Of course, it takes technical skills. That goes without saying. And, you can’t just be good at what you do. You need to be very good at it before you even think about starting your small business. So, assuming you have those technical skills, what else do successful entrepreneurs have in common?
I would think being decisive, self-disciplined and a self-starter have to be a couple of the top traits. If you want to own a business so you can stay in bed in the morning or you think you might not have to work forty hours a week, you might want to stick with your 9 to 5 job. The truth is, you’ll be working far more than forty hours a week for quite awhile, and most often with very little money to show for it.
There won’t be anyone telling you what to do, how to do it and when it needs to be done (except for your clients of course, and it seems to me they often want things done now!). So, you’ll need to be able to make decisions, and be disciplined enough to work at it every day, no matter how discouraged you might be.
And, the fact that you’re your own boss means you should be self-directing too. It also means you should be able to prioritize and plan well, meet deadlines and be able to work until the job is done, whether that takes fifteen minutes or eighteen hours a day.
How well do you deal with stress? How do you deal with uncertainty? Successful entrepreneurs need to deal with both well. Running a business is stressful at the best of times, and can be extremely stressful when things aren’t going well. And things are rarely certain. That big client you have that you think is so loyal could simply decide to go elsewhere for no reason that’s apparent to you.
Are you able to make short term sacrifice for long term gain? It might be really tempting, for example to take the first thousand dollars your companies earns and spend it on clothes or on your house or your car, but is that necessarily the best thing for your small business? Or should you be leaving the money in the company and using it to build your business?
Along with those technical skills we talked about earlier, most entrepreneurs have to be a jack of all trades, at least from the beginning. Let’s say you build the best darn widget in the country. Assuming you already leased space and have all your tools, the first thing you might want to do is find suppliers for the parts you’ll need to put it together. Then you’ll have to negotiate terms with them, so now you’re a purchasing agent as well as a manufacturer.
Customers aren’t going to come and find you, so you have to figure out ways to let people know who you are, where you are and what you can do for them. That means you also need to know something about marketing. You’re required to keep proper records, so you’re a bookkeeper too. And you're responsible for all your small business' financial decisions, so you're going to have to know something about finance. You’ll probably have to answer the phones and make appointments, which means you’re also a secretary.
Since you probably won’t possess all those skills and you probably can’t afford to hire someone to do most of those jobs, you’re going to have to be willing to learn new things and be able to pick them up quickly. You won’t see any direct money for these jobs either. Are you willing to put in the hours it takes to learn these skills and perform them without seeing immediate results?
Finally, procrastination and owning a business don’t seem to go well together. If you’re the type of person who tends to put off until tomorrow what can be done today, you might not be suited to owning your own business.
Nobody is going to be the perfect entrepreneur. I doubt there’s anyone who has all the personality traits we’ve talked about. But, you should be willing to take an honest look at yourself. You should have some of the traits I’ve mentioned and you need to know how to compensate for areas where you’re weak, but that’s a subject for another day.
Robert Browning said "The critical ingredient is getting off your butt and doing something. It's as simple as that. A lot of people have ideas, but there are few who decide to do something about them now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. But today. The true entrepreneur is a doer, not a dreamer."
I think he’s probably right, so what are you waiting for? The first step is making the decision. Stop just thinking about it and just do it. Don’t wait for tomorrow or next week or next year. Do it today.