If you want to start a business, there are going to be plenty of things you’ll already have in mind about what you need to buy and what you need to know. Yet there’s so much more to starting a business than just having things in place because not to put too fine a point on it, that’s something anyone can do, and, for the most part, it’s something everyone who’s starting their own business will do.
So what does that mean? Is there any point in starting at all if everyone’s doing the same thing? The answer is, of course – there’s always a point. However, rather than just putting things in place and hoping they all work out for the best, the key is to get those things perfectly right before you start. That’s the big difference. You’re not just doing what you’re meant to do, but instead, you’re making sure you’re doing it in the right way. That’s what will put you ahead of the competition.
Yet, when you look at the list of things you need to do, it can become daunting, especially when you’re trying to ensure everything’s as good as it can be. That’s why it’s best to focus on the most important things and get them right before moving on to everything else. With that in mind, here are some of those important things to consider.
Naming Your Business
Choosing the right name for your business is crucial, and it should be at least one of the first things you think about and work on to get right – if not the first thing altogether. This isn’t something you can do on a whim without thinking things through because your business name can really have a significant impact on your success. A good business name that you’ve taken time over and looked at from all angles can create an excellent first impression, give you a better brand identity and more recognition, and really set the tone for everything you’re going to do.
To begin with, your business name needs to reflect your brand and what it’s all about, so you’ll need to pick something that tells people what it is you do and how you do it. You also need to ensure it’s a memorable name because the last thing you want is to build a great business that no one can ever find when they search because the name just doesn’t stick with them. A short, catchy name that’s easy to pronounce is your best bet. Plus, you’ll want to make sure the name is going to be something that lasts (you don’t want to have to go through a whole re-branding exercise a few years down the line).
If you’re not sure what to do and coming up with a name seems impossible, there is help. You can take all the things you want to say with your business name and work with a brand naming expert to ensure it fits perfectly.
Once you’ve come up with a name, you’ll need to check the website domains and make sure it’s available. If it’s not, you might need to re-think the name because having a website that’s even slightly different from your actual name can be confusing and will generally add to the forgetfulness of your business.
Write A Solid Business Plan
Once you’ve got your business name in place, it’s time to start writing your business plan. Although this might seem like a boring thing to do or something that isn’t really necessary (especially when you’re keen to get started), the fact is that it’s vital if you want to get things off on the right foot and continue to be successful in the future as well.
You’ll need to include a variety of different pieces of information in the business plan, and one of those is the executive summary, which gives a brief overview of your business and talks about your vision for the future. Then you’ll need to show your market research to prove that there’s a market for whatever it is you’re going to sell. As well as this, you’ll want to have financial projections that show how much money you have right now, how much you need (vital if you need to borrow to get started), and how much you estimate the business will make in the first year, three years, five years, and so on.
If you can get your business plan perfect, it will help you hugely, not just when it comes to borrowing money (although it will play a massive part in that) but also in helping to guide you through all the steps you need to work on to reach your business goals. You’ll find making decisions is a lot easier, for example, because you’ve got a plan in place that tells you where you’re meant to be heading. Without a business plan, it’s easy to get lost and possibly fail altogether.
Get Your Funding In Place
If you want your business to run smoothly and if you want to be able to do whatever you need to do and buy whatever you need to buy to make that happen, you’re going to need some money to do it. There are various ways to fund a business, and it’s going to depend on how much money you need and what your preferences are, as well as a variety of other factors that will help you decide what it is you need to do.
You can use your own money (either savings or money you raise personally) to fund your business if you want to (that’s great if you don’t want to start your business in debt), and you can look a various government or small business loans and grants that could help you as well. Something that a lot of business owners find is useful is to get an investor on board – they’ll be able to inject some money into the business, but they’ll also have the expertise to help you make important decisions or at least guide you in the right direction. You will still have to pay them back, but even with interest, their advice is sure to be worth the cost.
To make sure you’re borrowing enough money, it’s wise to make a budget so you know precisely what you have to pay out for. You can also add your expected income to your budget to help you see what you need and how best to spend the funds you have.
Make sure you also have an emergency fund in place, just in case. It’s not something you’ll ever want to have to need, but it’s far better to have one set up and to add to it regularly, just in case, than it is to get into a situation where some extra money would be vital, and not have any to access.
A Strong Team
Having a strong team behind your business is going to make a lot of difference, so this is something else you can take some time over and get right before you launch your new venture. Without a strong team, your business won’t have the right foundations to start, and if you do launch, things could crumble quite quickly.
Make a list of all the roles that need to be filled in your business so you know who to hire first. Even if you don’t want to have full-time employees, you’ll still need to know what jobs you’re not willing or able to do because you can outsource them – in either case, you’ll need to research the people you’ll be working with and make sure they’re right for your business.