Everyone talks about setting up a business, but what do you really need to get started? We have put together 5 steps to start your new business.
You need to have a business name and finding the right one, can be an overwhelming, frustrating and exhausting experience. First step is to brainstorm some simple ideas of names, you probably have already got a few in mind. If you don’t, go to Pinterest.com - we find it always gets the brain working with its inspirational content. If you are still lost, research a few competitors and companies you admire, form a vision of what you would like.
If you still do not have a clue open your browser and head over to bust a name. It is a brilliant tool that will leave you with some great names as well as doing a simple domain name search for you at the same time.
Your Business Plan
A business plan is a detailed document, which features how you will run your business. It includes everything; from how you will promote your business, to how you will pay your business outgoings. Business plans help provide fundamental information such as cashflow forecasts detailing how much money your business will need at any given time. You can even use these plans to get investment, if that’s what you want. A detailed business plan will be the backbone of your business.
Having a business plan is one of the most vital documents for starting up your business and there are a variety of ways you can produce one. There are lots of tools available and even ready-made business plan templates. You can find these if you perform a simple search on Google for “free business plan templates”.
Creating a web presence
Getting your domain name, and setting up your email and website will start to make your business become a reality. People can now find you on the World Wide Web and via email ensuring you look like a professional business to your potential customers. Having a domain name and email address that are the same also gives you credence within the web world, so wherever possible use an email address associated with your domain name.
Creating a website that works across all devices is a must. So think about mobile and desktop version of the site from the offset. You will need to make a choice about creating a website yourself or outsourcing the job to a third party. There are so many options available and you will have to weigh up the pros and cons. Ask yourself some simple questions: Do I have time? Do I have the budget? Is this something I can revisit and get created once I have the funds? A major benefit of creating the site yourself using a tool is you are able to edit the site yourself, so no maintenance fees. But if you have the cash then a professionally designed site might be the best option.
The Paperwork… Accounting and Legal
When starting a new business and selling goods or services it’s important you reflect a professional image. Not only on your website or marketing material but also on your invoices. It’s good to think about using an accounting tool to monitor and control your business accounts.
Setting up a professional invoice template, and accounting spreadsheets will really help to manage your finances when creating a startup business as controlling cashflow can be the making of a successful startup. You can do this using a simple template or you can use some online accounting software like the one available in Smarta Business Builder. Using software is really beneficial as the tools available are vast and can help with array of tasks to help managing your accounts as a small business. But a simple professional branded invoice can also be enough to get your business up and running.
You may also want to think about legal documentation for your business. For example if you require business legal advice or legal contracts, Smarta Business Builder has a feature to create contracts and legal documentation, as do some other websites, just Google “free business contracts” for some examples.
Set all of your social media channels up with your business name and details, even if you are not going to use the social media channel, it’s good to have your branding in place and some representation on that channel. The more professional you look the more likely people will approach you. You can use something like NameChk to check all of the various social media platforms for your business name.
It would then be great to select at least one channel to start using. Think about how you would use it for your business how the platform can fit with your brand. A lipstick brand would not work well on LinkedIn but would be great for Instagram. Read our recent blogs on creating a business with instagram or our other recent one about creating a business Facebook page.
Now it is time to take the next steps and create the business you have always wanted.
By Fay Jackson - Mrs Mopit