Top tips for getting your business off the ground
Are you considering opening a business of your own? If so, have you sought advice on tips for starting up your new business?
Starting a new business can be a little frightening. You face many uncertainties when opening a new business. You may even be dealing with the fear of failing. What will happen if your business fails? Or there’s the fear of success—what happens if your business actually takes off in a big way?
These are some of the questions we all ask when considering opening our business. We’ve put together some tips and advice on important decisions that can help get your business off on the right foot.
1). Just get started
Excuses can keep you from every starting out on your entrepreneurial journey. In fact, the fear of failure keeps many people from ever reaching their dreams. Excuses can include lack of funds & time, there are too many other responsibilities, and more.
Failure is a real issue that faces anyone opening a new business. According to Small Business Trends, about half of all startups survive to their 4th year; however, about 44 percent of those will fail. Those odds are not numbers that make you feel good about starting your own business. However, if you look at the statistics from another perspective, you just over a 50 percent chance to succeed.
Still, it’s scary to start your own business. Excuses will only get in the way of achieving your dreams. If you’re serious about starting a business, then face your excuses and fears head on. Analyse why you’re having these thoughts and try to find a solution to overcome these issues.
2). Collect Advice & Insight from Others
It’s always helpful to bounce your ideas off others, especially those who are knowledgeable and experienced with starting a business. Look within your family, friends, and network to see if there are people who could offer you insights and advice. Experts in your field can also be helpful sources of guidance.
As you reach out to those who have advice, be sure to record what they share. You can write down notes from conversations, use your smartphone to record their insights, etc. And be sure to keep a list of references you’ve used—this can include resources such as business blogs & websites, books, podcasts—anything you find helpful. Chances are you’ll want to refer back to these at some point, so keeping notes and recording resources will help you find information again.
When you’re sharing your business idea with others, watch how they respond. Do they seem to be excited about your idea? Do they think the business is not the best option for you? Let people know you appreciate and embrace their honesty. The opinions and advice you receive will be invaluable.
3). Offer a Solution
When it comes to starting a business, you need to consider what solution you’ll be offering to clients or customers. In other words, what problems can your business solve for others? Rather than looking to sell the best gadget or service, look to see what pain points your business can ease for customers.
Not only is this an exercise in creating your brand and deciding on the target audience. You have an opportunity to help others with the knowledge, services/products you promote. Your company has a chance to actually make the world a better place for others, by solving their problems.
4). Keep Your Business Idea Simple
An overcomplicated business idea can quickly lead to failure. You may have a great business idea, a great product or service only to find no one’s interested. This is why it’s important to test your business idea.
The best business idea is one that’s simple, where it’s easy for the business to start small. Keep the service or product simple, but high-quality. You want to make sure your idea solves that problem your customers have in the last point we covered.
If you find that the idea is too complicated, then don’t be afraid to cut out anything that seems useless or unnecessary. You’ll keep your business simple and keep costs down at the same time. It’s a lot easier to scale your business if it’s successful, than to start out with several ideas that take your business nowhere.
5). Consider Business Expenses
Now that you’ve developed a simple business idea, it’s time to consider how much it will cost to start the business. It’s important to cover all expenses that will be needed to start and launch the company. You’ll need to consider:
- Type of lease
- Salary for employees (if you employ others)
- Business insurance (if any is required—what type is needed, how much does it cost, etc.)
- Certifications (if required)
You may need to do some research to come up with some realistic figures. Do the best you can. Once you’ve come up with a number, then multiple it by four. There will always be some costs that are unexpected and it’s better to come up with budget that’s over the amount needed. Coming up short could set you up for failure before you even begin.
And remember to include your personal expenses, too. You’ll still need to pay for where you live, food, transportation, health insurance, and more.
Once you have all these factors, then put them into a spreadsheet. You’ll want to see how much it may be necessary to borrow to get your business up and running.
6). What Happens If the Business Earns No Revenue?
We hate to bring this to your attention, but it’s necessary to consider what you’ll do if the business brings in no revenue. This is a reality many new businesses face. How will you manage expenses if you don’t have an income?
You’ll need to come up with a plan just in case your business doesn’t make it. Review all your current income sources. Do you have savings? If so, then how long could these last if you quit your current job? What types of emergencies could come up (your car breaking down, health issues, etc.).
Come up with a list of ways you can cover expenses if your business fails. Then you’ll be ready if the time comes.
7). What are the Legal Requirements for Starting a New Business?
You’ll need to research the laws in your area regarding setting up a business. Laws will vary, so make sure to find the information on laws in your region, county, city, etc.
It will be necessary to register your business where you live. You’ll also need to set up an accounting system and consider the taxes the company will need to pay. And if you have employees, there will be employer laws you’ll need to know.
These are some of the tips to help get your business started off in the right direction. Do your homework, find that pain point for your target customers, and know the laws on how to set up your business. With all of this information, your new business will have a better chance of succeeding.
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