So you were inspired by your grandparents that started the world’s first television store for the new color television sets that came out in the 1950s. Maybe you thought your brother had a really great idea when he started his fly fishing business during his youth and earned enough to pay for his college education. Whatever the reason you’re starting a small business, you’ll need to do some proper planning to ensure that no details go unnoticed and you don’t let your emotion get away with you. Running a business on emotion can get you into trouble down the line when the profits don’t stack up.
The first step is to take emotion out of the equation. It is great to be passionate about a business. However, don’t let emotion be the sole, overriding factor in starting a small business.
What do the statistics say?
The good news is that there are 5 million small businesses in the U.S. with 1-4 employees. The next highest group, 1 million small businesses, has just 5-9 employees. There are a lot of thriving entrepreneurs out there trying to do just what you’re setting out to do, and there are a lot of resources to help. There are small business networks all over the country.
Almost 75% of U.S. businesses don’t keep full-time employees. Most are just self-employed people that operate businesses that are not incorporate. It might or might not be the business owner’s primary source of income. A lot of people go it alone, and you shouldn’t be discouraged about starting out that way.
Planning a Small Business
There are core principles that apply to all businesses. But there are some cold, grim facts that you have to come to terms with when you’re starting out with an online business nowadays. The Internet has taken over everything, and even if you run a local shop, you still need an Internet presence. Customers in your area may use a smartphone to check for local businesses of a certain type or type your industry and location into Google, and you should come up at the top of the search results. It’s not enough to be known in the community and be spread by word-of-mouth. There aren’t enough repeat visitors to keep you going.
Hiring a Web Consultancy Firm
Planning your small business website means that you need to get a site developed, be able to edit it and make changes, get listed in the search engines, be featured on social media networks, and garner traction through promotions, and giveaways. There are lots of firms that can handle these aspects of your business plan.
Coming Up with a Small Business Plan
You can use a small business plan template to generate a good outline of your business. The plan should tell a story about your business. It should be focused and clear. It should set out specific business objectives and parameters and how to achieve them. It should also be updated regularly.
AJ writes for several small business resources and understands the importance of having a written business plan to both guide the business owner and to potentially convince others such as financiers to invest in the venture.