To start a business successfully, you will need to undertake careful research, make savvy investments and devise a business idea that works, to name just a few of the essentials. Below are some more of the things that you will require.
A willingness to ‘test the water’
Before you jump headfirst into the world of business, you need to be sure that your business idea is a viable one. Carry out your own field research, pitch your idea to friends and family and analyse the market to see what kind of demand there is for the given product or service.
If you’re still confident about your business idea, apply it to a series of business structures to determine what seems the most viable. Limited company, partnership or sole trader – find the structure that will best help you to achieve your goals.
A name and logo
Next, you need to come up with a name and logo that best represent the values and aims of your business. It’s certainly important that your name and logo are memorable, if you are to both attract and retain customers. Try to come up with something distinctive, but don’t overcomplicate it.
It may seem shallow to make this point, and of course, the top priority of your business should always be to provide excellence to your customers, but first impressions do count. As the Houston Chronicle’s Small Business site explains, a great business logo can be a significant contributor to your firm’s success.
Strong financial foundations
Figure out where your money is going to come from before you start buying supplies or online domains. Consider researching and applying for start-up loans with participating banks to help get your business off the ground.
However, if you do decide to take out a start-up loan, we would also urge you to check your eligibility before making any phone calls. Sites like Start Up Loans provide useful information on whether you may be eligible for a start-up loan.
For additional support, you may also reach out to investors at different business events or even online. LinkedIn is a great resource for business insight and provides a direct line to experienced entrepreneurs and business owners.
A base of operations
Look into getting yourself some dedicated office space so that you can create a constructive environment in which you and your staff will be able to work peacefully and productively. Save yourself some money by considering how much space you will realistically need. If all that you require is space for two desks and computers, there’s little point in renting out a huge office.
You will also need to set up means of contacting your place of work, before advertising your address, contact email and phone number. Your business phone number can even become a key part of your brand, with companies like Planet Numbers offering cheap, memorable business phone numbers that cost nothing for customers or clients to call, which helps to give a positive impression of your company.
Hardware and software
You should also consider what tools you’re going to need to provide your customers with the best service and to help your staff to provide that service. Computers are easy enough to research and purchase, but you must also consider the specific software that you will need.
This can cost you a great amount of money straight away. One way to lower the cost of software is to use apps and programs that are delivered online, as opposed to those that you need to purchase and then install on your own computers.
Google, for instance, supplies a plethora of handy online applications for businesses, with the likes of Drive and Docs great for sharing information through the cloud, while Analytics enables you to closely monitor the progress of your young firm.