You have had the business idea, so what’s next? It’s time to set up and start your business, it’s time to build that empire. Starting a business involves thorough planning, making financial decisions, and many more.
Note, every business is unique and you may need to refine this list as you go. Here are the steps that you will find helpful when you are ready to start your business:
- Conduct a market research: When starting your business, it is crucial you to carry out a market research as it helps you to find customers for your business. It’s very key to understand your customer base from the starting point. Assess the strengths and weaknesses of your potential customers.
To have a good sense of your business, answer some of these questions:
What is the income range and employment rate?
How many people would be interested in your offering?
Is there a desire for your product or service?
Where do your customers live and where can your business reach?
How many similar options are already available to consumers?
What do potential customers pay for these alternatives?
- Have a business plan: This is a written document describing the nature of your business, the sales and marketing strategy, and the financial background, and containing a projected profit and loss statement. Creating and having a business plan is a key part of starting any business and it is also foundation of your business.
A business plan may have these sections;
- Executive summary: This section tells your reader what your business is, your mission statement, your product or service, and basic information about your company’s leadership team, employees, and location.
- Company description: In this section, give a detailed information about your business and the problems it solves.
- Market analysis: In this market analysis section, carry out a competitive research which shows you the strengths of other businesses and what they are doing.
- Organization and management: This section shows your reader the structure of your business, and the relationships and relative ranks of its parts and positions/jobs.
- Service: Talk about the services you offer and the benefits to your customers.
- Marketing and sales: This basically is your marketing strategy. The goal is to tell your reader how you plan to capture the attention of potential customers and retain them.
- Appendix: This section includes any additional documents that you want to use to give your reader a feel for your product, marketing, services.
- Fund your business: You need money (capital) to start any business venture. Take out time to carefully calculate the costs. You can raise a capital by self-funding, investors or taking a loan.
- Pick your business location: This is a crucial part of starting a business. Consider your customers’ proximity to your location. When your business is located must be easily accessible and motorable. You might also need to consider the costs.
- Choose a business structure: This defines how activities such as task allocation, coordination, and supervision are directed toward the achievement of organizational aims. The different types of business structures are; Sole proprietorship, Partnership, Corporation, Limited Liability Company, and many more. When selecting a business structure, choose the one that provides the most benefits and legal protections.
- Choose and register your business name: Choose a name that you are sure best describes your business and protect it by registering it with the right agencies.
- Get federal and state tax IDs: This is an essential document. You will need to file income taxes for your business. The Internal Revenue Service uses Tax Identification Numbers to distinguish between individuals, business, and nonprofit organization. Make sure you apply.
- Apply for business permits and licenses: Get necessary permits and licenses for your business from federal and state agencies in order to be able to operate.
- Open a business bank account: Open a business bank account as soon as you start accepting or spending money.
- Business insurance: Starting a business is a smart risk, hence, get a business insurance to protect your business from losses due to events that may occur during normal course of business.
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