Pretty much everyone loves the idea of being their own boss. You get to set your own schedule, your pay, and just generally be more in charge of your life. Of course, when it comes to actually starting a business of your own, some people find that they are more intimidated by the idea than empowered by it. It’s a pretty big undertaking, and certainly isn’t without risk. That said, it’s also important to note that it is easier than ever before to start a business these days.
Businesses require plenty of things in order to be successful. One of the most obvious ones is establishing a customer base. That can be pretty tricky for startups. No one knows who you are yet, so you’ll need to do some serious work to get the word out about your business. That means marketing. Marketing means spending money. A general guideline would be to plan to spend between 20-25% of your revenue on marketing as a startup. Because you don’t have much revenue, however, that isn’t going to be a lot of money yet. The good news here is that there are plenty of free marketing tools that you can use to help attract more consumers to your business. At some point you’ll probably want to graduate to more sophisticated tools that you’ll pay money for, but if you’re just getting started, it’s hard to beat the price of something that’s free.
Starting a business usually requires an upfront investment of some sort, even if it’s just a few hundred dollars for a laptop that you use to run your business. Of course most businesses will require more than just a simple laptop, and startup costs can easily run anywhere from $100-$10,000 per month. If you don’t have that sort of money just lying around, the good news is that you may be able to take out a business line of credit. A business line of credit is a revolving loan that functions similarly to a credit card. It allows you to handle short-term business needs. If you have a credit score of at least 500, you can also land a business loan that can really help you get your new business off the ground. Considering that a credit score of 500 is below average, access to credit may be easier than you might think.
Unless you already have experience in business management, there’s a good chance that it’s something that will be pretty new to you, especially on the level that you’ll be as the owner of your own business. There are a ton of things to keep track of, and dropping the ball on any of them can cause serious problems for your business. The good news here is that there are plenty of options in terms of business management software that is available to help you. The right software can make it so much easier to keep tabs on the different aspects of your business and manage it effectively. It can also automate a lot of your business processes, freeing up time that can then be spent on tasks that require a more personal touch, such as meeting with potential investors, partners, and clients.
Unless you intend to perpetually be a business of me, myself, and I, you’re going to want to hire people at some point. If your business model allows for remote work, your pool of potential applicants just got so much bigger. You could potentially hire anyone from anywhere online. Setting up and conducting virtual interviews is easier than ever, thanks to tools like Zoom. Pretty much all onboarding paperwork can be done digitally now too. There isn’t really any part of the hiring process that requires you to meet in person anymore. You’ll need to sort out your state tax withholding responsibilities, but that’s nothing that a tax attorney can’t help you work out.
Just like you can hire employees from anywhere (assuming remote work is something that works for your business), you can also run your business out of your home (again, assuming that works for your business). This can be a great option for anyone doing web copy freelance work, a dropshipping business, digital marketing work, or even someone with a craft-related business. DIY products can be made at home and range from bath bombs to jewelry. Running your business out of your home can really save you money since you won’t have to rent out a physical location. It also means that you don’t really have a commute.
Running a business out of your home can work some of the time, but it’s not always the best option. Sometimes there are too many distractions or you may want a more professional location in which you can meet with clients, investors, and partners. Then there’s the issue of wanting to take a vacation but not wanting to totally abandon your business during that time. Coworking spaces offer you a place to work outside of the house, while virtual offices offer a professional setting when you need it. Remember, first impressions matter, and having a more professional looking office space can really make a difference in how your business comes across to others. Even just having an address for your business that is connected to an office building can be enough to give others a more professional impression. Then there’s technology. Thanks to technology, especially mobile tech, it’s easier than ever to keep tabs on your business and manage it from anywhere where you have internet access. You’ll have access to real-time information at your fingertips whenever you need it. Want to work on the beach? Have internet access? Go for it.
Did you know that some states are way more business-friendly than others? If you live in California, Rhode Island, or Illinois, you might find that you have a lot more challenges in making your business successful. States like Utah, Idaho, and Texas, on the other hand, are generally pretty friendly to businesses and start-ups. But what if you live in a state that isn’t so friendly to businesses? The good news is that it’s actually possible to have your business’s home state be different from the one it operates in. That may be helpful when it comes to paying for taxes, but only if you do it right. Incidentally, that’s why Delaware is a pretty popular state for businesses to incorporate themselves. The process for incorporating your business out of state can be complicated, so you’ll want to consult with experts on this before making your final decision regarding the matter.
In today’s increasingly digital world, you have more access to consumers than ever before. Having an online presence for your business means that you can reach out to a global economy. There is enormous potential in ecommerce when it comes to getting your business in front of more consumers. Of course, that also means that you need to be pretty specific about who your target market is. Otherwise you run the risk of not using your marketing resources as efficiently as you should.
Pretty much what all of these points boil down to is that you have way more opportunities to save money on starting up your business. When you have lower startup costs, the barrier to entry is much easier to overcome. Lower startup costs means less debt you’ll be taking on. Some business debt can be good, but only if you’re able to manage it properly. Spending less money getting your business off the ground means that you can put it towards other uses, including investing in the business itself. If you want to create a successful business, that’s one of the things that should be at the top of your list of priorities.
If you’ve ever wanted to start your own business, there’s no time like the present. There are a ton of resources out there that make starting up your own business easier than it’s ever been before. That doesn’t get rid of some of the risks inherent to starting your own business. It’s important to remember that there are no guarantees. Lowering the barrier of entry, however, does make becoming a business owner more accessible, along with all of the benefits that come from successful business endeavors. Doesn’t that make it worth at least giving yourself the opportunity to succeed?
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