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Start a business steps: complete set of steps — from the ground up

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We outline the complete set of start a business steps — from the ground up, and many that don’t even require you to have a lot of money.

When you’re someone who loves the idea of becoming self-employed, it may be an idea that you’ve toyed with for a long time. When the seed plants itself, it only ever starts to grow. It doesn’t die off. It just sits there in the back of the mind, until you need it and encourage it to grow.

You may also find that you just can’t stop thinking about it. And that you choose to invest your time in. And before long, all of this intrigue and investment will need to come to fruition. So as much as you’ve thought about it, and when you’re at the point where you convince yourself that you really do want to do it, you may desire to know everything you need to get started.

Because that’s the thing about having a small business, it’s often the idea of getting started and set up that intimidates you -because you have no idea how to do it. Or what you need to do it. And sometimes, you can talk yourself out of it by thinking it’s just too hard. When it’s not.

At this stage, the huge overarching question that you may have in your mind, is what do you really need to do, or have, to start a business in the first place? When you’ve worked this out, you can get going. So, let’s take a look.

The start a business steps you need to take

If you are looking to start your own business, you’ve come to the right place. Here, we are all about supporting female founders and entrepreneurs. There are so many boxes to check when you are starting a business — no matter which industry or field you’re going into — which is why we created this checklist of start a business steps to help you start your business off on the right foot.

Plus, we need more women founders! Currently, 42 percent of all American businesses are woman-owned, but it’s not stopping there as the number of women-owned businesses has expanded rapidly over the last few years. And these stats count side hustles and gigs that women have started while also working a traditional 9-to-5 job.

If you have a general idea of the kind of business you want to start and create, we will show you how to put your plan into action with these start a business steps that will set you on the right path. Let’s do this!

An idea

The very first of the start a business steps is incredibly simple – you need to have an idea of what you’re doing. Whether it’s a service idea, a product idea, or an idea of what niche you want to be in, make sure that you think it over. And then research it. Don’t just have that idea and start. Make sure that you look into it, and create a business plan so that you feel more confident in how you’re going to launch.

Research

Before you create a business plan, you will want to do some preliminary research on the business you want to start. Here are some things you should be looking into:

Company Name – Are there any companies or entities out there that already have your business name? You will want to choose a name that is unique and can be easily searched and found.

Trademark or Copyright Status – Once you have determined a name or a slogan for your business, you will want to make sure that those aren’t trademarked or copyrighted. This will just ensure that you can use the name you have chosen without any legal consequences or obstacles. You may want to entertain trademarking your company name, too.

Registering Your Business – Most businesses need to be registered under specific business structures such as an LLC, sole proprietorship, etc. Depending on the kind of business you are starting, it would be beneficial to research how to register your business, as well as which structure fits your plan the best.

Write a Business Plan

If the words “business plan” scare you, don’t worry. A business plan can be as formal or informal as you need it to be. We understand that businesses don’t always look the same or have the same goals, which is why they usually all start out differently.

For this step, you’ll need to write down important things such as your business name, mission, goals and other plans you have. You can also note any important financial information such as revenue goals and funding needed, and you will want to make sure you assign due dates or times to your goals so you can stay on track.

Complete a Competition Analysis

Once you have your mission statement and goals written down and in place, you will want to take a look at the competition you face. Sign up for the competition’s emails and do some social media research.

Social media can be a great way to find clients, learn about your audience and get marketing ideas from those within your industry. Researching other companies that have a similar goal, product or stance as you could help you learn how your company needs to differentiate itself to become successful.

Set a Budget for Startup Costs

Let’s say you’re opening a hair salon. Congratulations! In order to get your beauty business up and running, you’ll need a lot more than a salon chair. Of course, you will need to look for a physical shop space for your business that meets all your needs.

Then, you will need to fill your shop with salon equipment that will allow you to get your business up, running and accepting clients. These are known as startup costs, and depending on your business, your startup costs may be hefty or minimal. If you were starting a digital business as opposed to opening a physical location like a salon, you might find your startup costs to be relatively low. But don’t sweat. There are initiatives and programs you can take advantage of such as salon equipment financing or taking out a loan.

If your upfront costs are big, don’t worry. This is common for most businesses and you will be able to make these costs back as your business succeeds.

Create a Strong Digital Presence

Whether your business operates online or you will have a physical store or space, every business today needs a strong digital and social media presence. Not only will a user-friendly and high-quality website and bustling social media platforms keep your clients and customers engaged once your business is open, but it will also help you build hype and excitement around your business pre-launch.

When setting up your social media platforms, make sure you are able to secure your company name as a username and try to make it the same across all platforms so that you are easy to find.

Identify Your Target Audience

As you start to put your budding business out there on the Internet and social media, you may notice some followers trickle in. You will need to identify the target audience and customers you want to cater your business toward and speak to as you develop your digital presence.

To get started, think about the people who would enjoy your products or services the most and then find a way to target them on social media through hashtags or advertising.

Invest in Marketing

If you want to hit the ground running with your business, it may be a smart idea to look into hiring a marketing team or pay to boost your social media profiles so that you can start to build your client and customer base. Marketing isn’t mandatory in starting your business, but investing in it right off the bat will propel your business forward quickly.

Craft Your Team

A lot of business owners are a one-woman show, and we think that’s great! But if you need a team behind you to make sure your business is running, you will want to start looking for the best candidates possible. Determine what you need the most help with in your business and the characteristics and skills you would need in someone to help you accomplish these tasks.

Financing

Now, the next thing is money. And when it comes to the actual amount, this can be small – like $50 or huge, like $100,000. It’s entirely possible for you to bootstrap the company, and not throw a ton of money at it. But if you do need a lot, then you’ll want to find investors.

A website

Every business should have a website. Because customers will want to see what you do and get as much information from you as possible. Whether you have an online of offline business, this is a key sales tool and resource, so get something set up.

Customers

Now, one of the most important things that you will need to do here is make sure that you have customers. If you don’t have customers, then you don’t have a business. So, you need to know how you are going to find your customers. And more importantly, you need to know who they are. When you’re able to allow yourself to connect and engage with the right audience, it’ll help you to make your business work.

Commitment

Finally, you’re then going to want to make sure that you are in the best possible position to launch the business in general. If you aren’t committed to the idea, then you may struggle to keep the momentum up when you’re struggling or when you’re looking to grow. So here, you’ll want to make sure that you’re driven and passionate about what you’re doing. When you’re able to be committed to making this work, you’ll find that you’re able to do it!

Now, you’re ready to start your business! We hope these tips empower you to take that huge chance on yourself that you have always been thinking about. You’ve got this!

About Business Woman Media

Our women don’t want to settle for anything but the best. They understand that success is a journey involving personal growth, savvy optimism and the tenacity to be the best. We believe in pragmatism, having fun, hard-work and sharing inspiration. LinkedIn

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