Making the decision to start a business is a big step to make as it’s essentially saying to the world that you’re tired of working for someone else and you want to take control of your life. There are many things to consider before you start a business; some esoteric, some aesthetic, others practical, and of course, rules and regulations. So if you want to create a business then take a look at these 10 Things To Research Before Starting Your Own Business and at least you’ll find yourself on the right path.
1. Type of Company?
There are various company structures to consider. All of these could be the right structure for you, and that’s why you have to research them thoroughly. Do you want to go it alone as a sole trader, be in a partnership or set up a limited company? Each will be governed by various legal and financial requirements.
The most important thing when it comes to any business is how many people are going to be involved in it. Ideally, it would be best to simply have one person involved for now, but later on when employees start being employed it will get a whole lot more complicated. Those who want to start a business usually find it easier to start alone as it saves on all the paperwork and regulations.
3. What is the Business?
One of the most important things you need to decide on is exactly what your business is going to do. This will obviously determine exactly how you do things and how you are going to make your money. Some people will already have a great business idea that needs to be brought to fruition, others may have an entrepreneurial spirit but lack an idea. Don’t forget, there are businesses for sale and there’s always the Internet, where businesses of every flavour can find a home.
If you are looking to start a business but you are also worried about all the paperwork then consider engaging an accountant. An accountant can steer you through any regulatory requirements at start-up and can also help with the creation of a business plan, should you be looking for funding. Then when you’re up and running, they can handle your financial needs.
5. Marketing Plan
Small businesses don’t usually have a great deal of capital to spend on marketing, but it’s still something that has to be acknowledged. No matter how great your idea, if you don’t give serious thought to how you will market your product you will not be giving your new business much chance.
6. Acknowledge the Competition
As part of your research, look at your competition. Identify anything that you think they don’t do very well and formulate a plan for your business to do those things differently. Look at why customers go to them and understand the attraction – to succeed against them you need to be different whether that be in the way of price, product range, the way you sell, opening times etc …
The name for anything has to be thought about for a long time. If it’s time to start a business, one of the most important considerations is the name. Ideally, it should be catchy and memorable. This means that it shouldn’t be too generic and it shouldn’t be too long.
8. Web Presence
It might be that your new business idea is web-based but if it isn’t you still need to consider whether you will have a website tie-in. It is becoming de rigeur that every commercial enterprise has a website, even if it is only a single page advertising their existence. Don’t be put off thinking there’s no way you can afford to build a website – if you can type and follow simple instructions, you can create a webpage.
This is the most important thing of all. The question you have to be asking is where are you going to be getting your seed money from? If you are like most small businesses then you have to prepare to make almost nothing for the first few years. This means your savings are what will be keeping you afloat. If you have engaged an accountant get them to prepare a cash flow based on your business plan. When you start a business, you really have to know exactly how you will not only fund your venture but how you earn enough money for your living expenses.
Where are you going to work? This might seem like an obvious question but it’s one you need to think about now. Are you going to be working from home? Are you going to be renting an office? This is something that has to be decided early on as it will determine your costs, marketing, and insurance plans.
These are just 10 things to research before starting your own business. There are plenty more considerations and it’s not to be entered into lightly, but don’t be deterred. Ambition takes you a long way.
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