Have you always dreamed of starting your own business? Perhaps you have a job outside the home and dread the thought of having to get up and go to work. For many, leaving the ho-hum of the brick and mortar world for the comfort of a home based business has become a reality. If you’ve been considering starting your own business, knowing where to start can help you get off the ground running. Here are five steps to get you going:
Research and Brainstorm
Just because you make a great chocolate chip cookie doesn’t mean that you can turn baking into a home-based business, no matter how badly you want to. Before you begin your business, you’ve got to come up with a great idea. Will you sell a product? Will you choose to offer a service? The internet is a vast place; look to see what is selling, whether it’s a product or service. If you have a unique twist on something that’s already on the market or have something completely new to offer, you’ll see your business succeed.
Look at your state’s government website, along with the IRS site, and decide what type of business license you will get. An LLC, or limited liability company, is, by far, the most common license applied for by new business owners. By doing your due diligence, you’ll be able to make the best choice for your new company. If you are still uncertain, after looking at state and federal websites, consult an accountant or tax attorney for advice.
Any good business starts with a great business plan. A standard business plan consists of seven sections: an executive summary, a company description, product or service, strategy and implementation, management team and your financial plan. If you don’t have any idea what you just read, run to the library and grab a reference book. Setting up a strong business plan will help you get off the ground and stay there!
While you may have enough capital to start your business initially, there will come a time when you need a larger cash flow. Utilize the web as a resource for your financial backing. From loans to grants, the web is a virtual myriad of capital for your new business. Before you apply anywhere, sit down and run the numbers. If you apply for too little, you’ll soon find yourself applying for more loans; apply for too much and you may find yourself in the red before you know it. Be realistic about your financial needs!
Once you’ve created your business plan and secured financing, it’s time to market yourself. Will you build your own website? Will you rely on social media? Perhaps you’ll use a combination of both. Remember that your business won’t get off of the ground if no one knows about it! There are hundreds of ways to market a business, but only a handful of ways to market a business successfully. Be sure to do your research and market your business in the best way possible. Starting your own business doesn’t have to be a dream. With an adequate amount of research and planning, you can start working from home sooner than you think! Come up with a plan, secure financing and learn how to market yourself effectively and you’ll be your own boss in no time.
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