How To Start a Business?
There’s a certain allure to the idea of being your own boss. Every day, people all over the world dream of giving up their day job and starting their own business, where they can do what they love and forge their own path forward. We have to admit – It’s tempting. But it’s not always as easy as it sounds. A huge proportion of start-up businesses fail before they can gain any traction and the cost of getting set up can be a challenge all on its own. If you’re thinking of joining the entrepreneurial workforce, it’s probably wise to ask yourself a couple of questions before you get started. For instance – Do you need money to start a business? What are the requirements? And what can I do to improve it once it gets going?
Each business is unique and, as such, it’s impossible to give a step-by-step guide that will cover all eventualities. That said, there are a few tips and tricks which can help regardless of your choice.
If you fail to plan, you’re planning to fail – Benjamin Franklin.
Tips for Starting a Business
|Do your Research – Obviously, we’d all like to sell a service or commodity that we love, but, depending on the market, that may not be the best idea. Unless you’ve got something to offer that the others don’t, you probably won’t have too much success in a sector that is dominated by a bigger, or more familiar company. Spend some time looking for a gap in the market, or find something that you can do better, quicker, or cheaper than anyone else before you begin. |
|Create a Business Plan – Don’t just jump into this venture with vague, undefined plans. Try to figure out the specifics with regards to your product/service, your target audience/customer base, etc. For example, instead of saying, “I’m going to sell food to people,” try to frame your idea with more detail and say, “I’m going to cater weddings within a certain area of the city.” |
|Create a Financial Plan – Just like an individual budget, you need to be hyper-specific when it comes to your income and your expenses. For example, how can you know if you’re making a profit if you don’t know how much money you’re spending?|
Before you start your business, try to work out how much money you’ll need for things like employees, materials, travel, etc. Then, analyse the market and try to figure out how much money you’ll be making back at the end of the month.
|Get some Capital – Not many people can fund a new business from scratch. More often than not, you’ll need to receive some funding from a bank or a potential investor. If you do end up getting a loan though, make sure that the terms are favourable and don’t just take the first offer that gets sent your way.|
|Sort out the Paperwork – There are generally quite a few legal hoops to jump through when you want to start your own business. This can include everything from registering with SARS to obtaining a specific operating licence. Regardless of the prerequisites, make sure that you’ve ticked all the necessary boxes before you begin. You may even want to consult a lawyer or expert in the field to ensure that everything’s on the up and up. |
Perhaps the most important requirement for any burgeoning entrepreneur is the ability to investigate their potential market and make the right call based on their findings. Don’t just rush into a new business idea. Take it slow and get it right the first time around.
How can I Start a Business With No Money?
There are many different ways to fund a new business, even if you don’t have any cash yourself. The most prominent of these methods are –
- Approach a bank for a loan
- Look for potential investors and partners who can bankroll the idea
- Try crowdfunding. There are a lot of useful tools online which can help you to get in touch with investors around the world
- Seek out angel investors who can get you started
- Try your hand at some low-cost business ideas. If, for example, you already have a computer and the necessary IT skills, you may be able to create an online business with next to no money
Once again, it’s important to remember that unfavourable loans can come back to bite you in the long run. Read the fine print and ensure that you aren’t signing up for anything that you can’t pay back.
How can a Beginner Start a Business?
Many of the points we’ve discussed so far can apply to both amateur and professional entrepreneurs. If though, you’re looking for some specific tips, consider the following –
|Don’t quit your job just yet. Although it may seem tempting, ensure that your business has actually taken off before you start badmouthing your boss. |
Get help. Not psychiatric help. We’re talking about business help. If you know somebody who’s already started up their own company, ask them for some pointers that can help you on your journey.
Be realistic. You can fantasize all you want about making billions within your first month, but it’s probably not going to happen. Many businesses don’t start making profits for quite a while after they start up, so stick with it and don’t be discouraged.
What are the Most Successful Small Businesses?
Some of the most profitable small businesses are ones that cut costs wherever they can. With this in mind, companies that require limited staff, operate from home, and make use of digital services, are frequently rewarded.
For example, an online tutoring or writing service could have low upkeep costs without sacrificing the quality of the service.
What are the 5 Things you Need to Start a Business?
Although every situation is different, the five things you usually require when starting a business are –
- A comprehensive business plan
- A budgeting plan
- A customer base
- A unique factor that you offer over competitors
How Can I Improve my Business?
The most surefire way to upgrade your business is to conduct a SWOT analysis.
SWOT stands for –
Put simply, you’ll need to identify these factors within your business and then act accordingly.
Ideally, you’ll want to capitalise on your strengths and opportunities while simultaneously safeguarding yourself against your threats and weaknesses.
How do Businesses Make Money?
At their most basic level, businesses make money by turning a profit over time. Making R100 million per month doesn’t really matter if you’re spending R110 million every month to do it.
When creating and/or running a business, you should always be on the lookout for ways to make a profit, as well as methods which will improve the profit you’re already making.
In Conclusion – How do you Start a Business and What do you Need?
The trick to starting any really successful business involves looking for a niche in the market that hasn’t yet been satisfied. Usually, this process takes a lot of time and effort to accomplish, but it’s far more reliable than jumping into the deep end with any random idea that takes your fancy.
Once you’ve found your idea, get to work by tackling the basics. You’ll need to come up with a solid business plan, work out your budget, find funding, and identify your primary target demographic.
Even when you’ve done all of this legwork, you normally won’t be able to just start selling goods and services. Most industries have strict laws which regulate businesses and safeguard consumers. On the most basic level, you’ll probably have to register your business with the relevant authorities, but you may also have to receive the appropriate licences and permits depending on the business in question.
The most important part of running a good business is making a healthy profit. This can be harder than it sounds though, and it might be a good idea to look out for businesses that can be run with very little upkeep on your part. Additionally, many businesses don’t start making money immediately upon starting up, so you may have to persevere through some hard months before you can begin reaping the benefits.
It’s also generally a good idea not to pin all your hopes on one new business idea, so maybe don’t quit your job before you’re absolutely sure that you can make it on your own.
Once you have your business up and running, it may also be worthwhile conducting a SWOT analysis. The abbreviation SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, and can help business owners figure out their company’s standing as well as their next best step forward.
Once you’ve conducted a SWOT analysis, you should try to take advantage of your strengths and opportunities while simultaneously shoring up your defences against any threats and weaknesses.
Disclaimer Finance101: All of our posts are for research purposes only. Finance 101 aims to assist its readers with useful information on the laws of our country that can guide you to make financial decisions that will enable you to become more financially independent in the future. Although our posts cite the constitution in many instances, they are intended to assist readers who are looking to expand their knowledge of the law & finance-related queries. Should you require specific legal/financial advice we advise you to get in touch with a qualified financial expert.
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