Starting a small business can be both exciting and daunting. There are so many things to do in order to get your business off the ground, and it can be hard to know where to start. From coming up with a great business idea to building a strong team and developing a marketing strategy, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed.
Every year more than 600,000 people in the United States start a small business, according to the Small Business Administration. But, only a few of those businesses will become successful. In fact, about 80% of small businesses fail within the first five years.
So, how can you make sure that your small business is one of the few that succeeds? By following these small business tips for new companies, you’ll be on the right track to building a successful and sustainable business.
1. Do Your Research
Before diving headfirst into starting a small business, it’s important to do your research. This includes everything from understanding your industry and target market to knowing the ins and outs of running a business. By doing your homework upfront, you’ll be in a much better position to succeed.
You should also research the competition. See what they’re doing well and identify any areas where you could potentially do better. This will help you to create a unique selling proposition for your business.
2. Create a Business Plan
Once you’ve done your research, it’s time to start putting together a business plan. This document will outline your business goals, strategies, and how you plan on achieving them. Having a solid business plan is essential for any successful business, so be sure to take the time to create one.
You can find templates and resources for creating a business plan online or you could hire a professional to help you. This is especially a good idea if you’re not sure where to start.
3. Choose the Right Business Structure
One of the first decisions you’ll need to make when starting a small business is choosing the right business structure. This will determine things like how your business is taxed and what legal responsibilities you have.
There are several different business structures to choose from, so it’s important to do your research and select the one that’s right for your business. Some common options include;
- Sole proprietorships
- Limited liability companies (LLCs)
4. Build a Strong Team
One of the most important things you can do when starting a small business is to build a strong team. This includes hiring talented and passionate employees, as well as developing positive working relationships with vendors and other partners. Surrounding yourself with good people will help to ensure your business’s success.
When hiring employees, be sure to take the time to find the right people. Not only should they have the skills and experience you’re looking for, but they should also fit in with your company’s culture.
5. Develop a Marketing Strategy
No matter how great your product or service is, it won’t sell itself. That’s why it’s so important to develop a marketing strategy that will help you to reach your target market and promote your business.
There are a number of different marketing channels you can use, so it’s important to find the ones that will work best for your business. Some common options include;
- Social media
- Email marketing
- Content marketing
- Paid advertising
6. Get credit card processing (If needed)
Another important thing to do when starting a small business is to get credit card processing. This will allow your customers to pay by credit card, which is a convenient and popular payment method. There are a number of different credit card processors to choose from, so be sure to compare your options and find the one that’s best for your business.
You may be able to get a credit card processing for free if you sign up for a merchant account with a particular bank. Otherwise, you’ll likely have to pay a monthly fee, which is typically around $20-30. Consider eliminating your credit card processing fees with a reputable company like ZeroPoint so you can have more working capital.
7. Utilize Social Media
Social media is a powerful marketing tool that all businesses should be utilizing. Not only is it a great way to reach your target market, but it’s also a great way to connect with customers and build relationships. Consider hiring a digital marketing company to help with your website and SEO.
These platforms will also give you the opportunity to show your brand’s personality and build a community around your business.
There are a number of different social media platforms to choose from, so it’s important to select the ones that are most relevant to your business. Some common options include;
8. Create a Website
Another essential thing for any small business is to have a website. This is your online home where potential customers can learn more about your business and what you have to offer. Your website should be professional and easy to navigate. Don’t forget to pay for search engine optimization with a reputable web design company.
Be sure to include important information about your business on your websites, such as your contact information, location, and hours of operation. You should also include a brief overview of your products or services.
9. Develop a Customer Service Strategy
Providing excellent customer service is essential for any small business. This includes things like being responsive to customer inquiries, addressing complaints in a timely manner, and going above and beyond to exceed expectations.
Developing a customer service strategy will help to ensure that your customers are always happy with your products or services. You should also make sure that your employees are properly trained in customer service.
10. Keep Your Business Organized
Last but not least, it’s important to keep your business organized. This includes things like maintaining accurate financial records, staying on top of your inventory, and having a well-organized office space.
Keeping your business organized will help to ensure its success and make it easier to run on a day-to-day basis. While it may seem like a lot to keep track of, there are a number of software programs and other tools that can make it easier.
Starting a small business is a big undertaking, but it can be a very rewarding experience. There are a number of important things to do when starting a small business, but the tips above will help you to get started in the right direction. Just be sure to stay organized, develop a marketing strategy, and provide excellent customer service, and you’ll be on your way to success.