The first thing you must do is decide what kind of business you want to start. There are limitless businesses for you to choose from. Only you can decide which business is best for you. A hobby could easily be turned into a prosperous business. Never underestimate the value of your worth. What comes easy to you may be a struggle for others. One of the major mistakes many new entrepreneurs make is pricing their product too low. Don’t be afraid to set a price for your service or product. This is also one of the main reasons many small businesses fail. You are more likely to endure the difficult times if you have a passion for the service that you provide. Customers will pay for services that either save them time or fulfill a need. Once you make a final decision on what type of business you will have you can then begin to plan a structure for your business.
The best small business is one with low or minimal overhead costs. If possible you should seek to sell information. For example, if you make dolls then you will have to purchase material. On the other hand, if you sell a service then you don’t have to purchase as much material. For example, if you’re an event coordinator you will provide information and plan the event but you don’t have to purchase a lot of material.
If you don’t have a lot of capital (money) to start a business then you might want to consider starting a business that sells information. Instead of making dolls and selling them you could host doll making workshops and charge a fee to teach others how to make dolls. You can use revenue from the workshops to fund your original business venture. This is how you keep yourself from getting into debt. You can get your feet wet and also use that opportunity to promote your business and establish a client base.
You might decide to continue to teach workshops as well as sell dolls. Don’t be afraid to try different things. You never know what you might discover. You could start out providing one service and later discover that your clients are also willing to pay for other services. As an entrepreneur it is your responsibility to stay in tune with your customers otherwise you could miss out on a lot of opportunities and revenue.
Now that you’ve decided what type of business you want to start you need to research your business. Researching your business will be essential to building a solid foundation for your business. This can be done in several ways. You can visit your local chamber of commerce, local library, or other businesses in the same field (your direct competitors).
It is important that you know your competition. What can you offer that they can’t? What will you charge for your product or services? What products or services will you provide? What type of equipment will you need to run your business efficiently? Can you run this business alone or will you need employees? What type of license, education, or credentials will you need? Is this a profitable business? What are the down and peak seasons for this business? How much should you charge? You must obtain the answers to all of these questions in order to be thoroughly knowledgeable of your business. This will determine whether you become an expert in your field or merely just another business owner in your field. If you’re serious about your business then you should do your research.
Your local library is an excellent source for finding detailed information about your area of interest. You can review books, magazines and journals that will give you a broader view of all of the different aspects of your area of interest. If you’re not sure where to begin simply refer to a librarian in the reference area of the library who can point you in the right direction. Your local Small Business Administration is another great source of information.
The Chamber of Commerce is also a great place to research starting your business. You can find a lot of useful tools on their website. There are electronic tool-kits and discussions that you can join. The great part is you don’t have to leave the comfort of your home. Some business owners literally hate their competition but they can be your best source for information. Don’t reinvent the wheel, improve it. If their business is successful you need to find out why. What are they doing that’s making their customers happy or unhappy? Remember to always play fair. Don’t steal information from your competitors. Never do something that will cause customers to question your integrity. If you properly do your research you will feel more confident about starting your business. It’s always better to go in informed rather than uninformed. Now that you’ve done your research you now need to refer to yourself as a business owner.
Be sure to obtain the proper licensing and permits to legally operate your business. License requirements will vary from state to state. For example, if you are running a business selling food, at the minimum you will need to have at least a Food Handler’s Card from your local Health Department. For city business licenses contact your local City Hall. (There is a fee involved.) For State licenses you can find out information from your local government office or library. Your license will have an expiration date and will need to be renewed as necessary.
It is important that you set up a bank account for your business. What are you going to do with all of that money you are about to make? Depending on the size of your business you can either use a personal account or an actual business account. Contact your local banks for account balance and deposit requirements. Many banks have online banking so that you can also make transactions online. You may get a better offer from your current financial institution. You may want to start with them first. Don’t forget to compare several different banks in order to receive the best deal.
Don’t let the bank talk you into buying a lot of unnecessary extras that you really don’t need. Be sure to be clear on what types of fees they charge. It is important that you know what type of banking services your business will need. If you want to start small and you’re good with managing your money then you might be able to use a personal account to get started. Set a goal or a date when you will transfer funds into a business account.
You will need a business plan. Many business owners avoid preparing a business plan because it is time consuming. A business plan is like a map of your business. Every aspect of your business is covered. Where would you like to see your business in the future? Your business plan is not etched in stone. You can make changes as you need to but you need to set goals. It’s a good idea to set a time to periodically review your business plan. Your business plan can allow you to see where your strengths and weaknesses lie. It can help with organizing your thoughts. Its primary function is to assist you in receiving funding for your business. You will need a business plan if you will be applying for a business loan. If you want to review some business plan templates visit the SBA’s business plan template on their website or you can visit your local library.
If your business requires startup capital that you do not have, then there are several ways to obtain short term cash for your business. First, it is best if you don’t have to borrow. If for some reason your business doesn’t make a profit then you will be in debt. Review your business plan and make a list of items you will need and expenses you will incur in order to start your business. Once you have a set figure that you need for startup capital add $500 to that amount. For example, if it will take $1500 for you to start a cake catering business then your target amount for startup capital should be $2,000. The extra money is cushion money in case you run into an unexpected expense.
Raising capital for your business can be fun. You can reach your funding goals by being creative. Make a list of all items that you don’t need and that you can sell. Decide on a price for each item. You can have a garage sale or take out an ad in your local newspaper. You can have a bake sale, work a part time or temporary job. You can post items for sell on Craigslist for free on their website. Sell items that you no longer need. There’s plenty of money lying around the house.
Here is the link for your funding
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