Starting a business is exciting, exhausting, thrilling, stressful, and always, always an involved process.
According to the Small Business Association, more than 627,000 new businesses open their doors (metaphorical or otherwise) every year. Unfortunately, the same report found that around 595,000 businesses close each year, too, meaning that getting off to the right start can be crucial.
In this post, we’re going to walk you through the initial steps you need to follow when starting a business.
1. Get a Business License
A business license protects your personal assets and determines how you are taxed. There are several different types, it’s best to consult with a CPA.
2. Obtain Industry and Local Licenses you Need
This also includes checking state and federal guidelines. Consult with a business lawyer about what you need to get things up and running. There are costs associated with applying for these, so budget for them upfront.
3. Check Insurance Requirements
Depending on your industry, there will be some types of insurance that you’re required to obtain. Again, a business lawyer can help you assess what you need legally.
4. Assess Your Finances & Secure Funding
On top of all the licenses and permits you’ll need to get started you’ll also have to consider costs like finding a building to rent, software, and marketing.
5. Think About Your Business Model
What will make your business different and how do you want to operate? Laying out these specifications is important to do early on and will help you make other decisions down the road.
6. Get Your Inventory & Equipment Lined Up
If you’re selling physical goods you’ll need to know your inventory process, and even if you aren’t, you’ll still need equipment and software like a virtual phone system.
7. Set Up Your Site & Contact Information to Launch
Every business needs a website, a phone number, and a Google My Business profile. Have some friends give your site a look prior to launching.
There’s a lot of incredible things that business ownership can offer you, including outstanding earning potential, fulfillment in doing things your way, and the option to create something great that impacts others. These are some really powerful reasons to take the plunge and start your own business. With a little (or a lot) of paperwork and planning upfront, you’ll be well on your way.