Whether you cannot get a job, you have finally convinced yourself of the advantages of having a business compared to having a job, or have a revolutionary idea that could change the world. Whatever the reason you have to start your own business, the following guide will show you how to start your own business successfully.
You can use this guide as you see fit; however, to get the most out of it, we recommend that you read it all the time, from step 1 to step 20, and then read more carefully each step, as you apply it.
As for the order of the steps, it is established in such a way that the steps are easy to follow; however, it is only referential, and it may be the case that you have to change it (for example, perform step No. 10 before No. 9), depending on your circumstances, but also on your preferences. Also, each step is summarized in such a way that the guide can be easily read.
20 Steps to start your own business are given below:
- Find a business idea
- Evaluate if the idea could succeed
- Choose the name of the business
- Choose the location of the business
- Determine the target audience
- Analysis of the target audience
- Analysis of the competition
- Preparation of the business plan
- Search for financing
- Legal constitution
- Obtaining the operating license
- Brand registration
- Buy or rent the premises
- Remodeling and decoration of the premises
- Purchase and installation of machinery, equipment, and furniture
- Search and selection of suppliers
- Search, selection, and training of personnel
- Organization of accounting
- Marketing organization
- Inauguration or opening
How to start your own business -1: Find a business idea
If you already have your business idea, that is, you know what business you are going to put, you can move on to the next step, but if you still do not know it, the first step to start a business is to find a business idea.
Some ways to find a business idea that you can use are:
- Find an unmet need in consumers, and then think of a product or service that you could satisfy it with.
- Think of a product or service that others do not offer and that due to its novelty and innovation, could create a new need for consumers.
- Identify a product or service that others already offer, but that you could add something that differentiates you from them or make it better.
- Go to company directories or sites dedicated to entrepreneurs on the Internet where you can get ideas that inspire you.
- But whatever the case, it is advisable that you choose a business related to what you consider to be your passion in life, since only then you can have enough motivation to get it out despite all the difficulties you may encounter in the path.
How to start your own business -2: Evaluate if the idea could succeed
Before going further, it is recommended that you conduct a small and informal market research that lets you know if your idea could be successful, that is, and that allows you to have a preliminary idea of the feasibility of your business.
To do this, you could visit places where products or services similar to the one you are offering are offered, and analyze if there is enough demand for them, or see how many similar businesses you think you create, and analyze how competitive they are.
You could also choose to ask your family and friends for their opinion about your idea, or make a quick estimate of the resources and knowledge you would need to put it into practice, and analyze if you have them or are able to acquire them.
How to start your own business -3: Choose the name of the business
After having concluded that your idea has the potential to succeed, you could start by taking one of the most important decisions: the name of your business.
To look for names for your business you could look at the names of the competition and pay attention to the ones you like, or go to business directories on the internet that is the same type as yours, where you can find names that serve you inspiration.
And then, to choose the right name, you should take into account especially your personal tastes and the implications in the marketing that you may have (that generates a positive image, that communicates what your business is, that is easy to pronounce, etc.)
How to start your own business -4: Choose the location of the business
After choosing the name of your business, another important decision you could take next is the location of your business.
To find locations for your business you could go to the classified ads in the newspaper or on the Internet, or go through the areas where you would like your business to be located (for example, areas where similar businesses exist), to see if you find local or offices for sale or rent.
And then, to choose the right location, you must take into account different factors such as the influx of public in the area, the visibility of the premises, access roads, competition, costs, etc.
How to start your own business -5: Determine the target audience
One of the most important steps when starting a business, but that many overlooks, is to determine the target audience, that is, determine the type of audience to which your product or service will be directed.
To determine your target audience, you must first segment the total market that exists for your product or service, in different homogeneous markets composed of consumers with similar characteristics, taking into account different variables such as location, age range, socioeconomic level, etc.
And then, choose one of the resulting markets that are more attractive to enter taking into account your ability, knowledge, and experience, but also making sure that it is not so small to the point of not being profitable, or so wide to the point of not being able to specialize at.
How to start your own business -6: Analysis of the target audience
Once you have determined your target audience, you must analyze it so that you can get to know it better, and thus design the product that best suits your preferences, as well as formulate other strategies that may have better results in it.
To analyze your target audience you must first determine the information you would like to analyze about it, which could include, for example, your tastes, preferences, consumption habits, buying behaviors, customs, attitudes, etc.
And then, collect this information, for example, through surveys where you ask questions that allow you to obtain the required information, or visiting the places where you used to make your purchases to observe their behavior.
How to start your own business -7: Analysis of the competition
In addition to analyzing your target audience, it is also important that you analyze your future competitors in order that you can know them better, and thus make decisions or formulate strategies that allow you to compete with them in the best possible way.
As in the previous case, to analyze your competence you must first determine the information that you would like to analyze about it, which could include, for example, your location, your resources, your prices, your main strategies, your strengths, your weaknesses, etc.
And then, collect this information, for example, visiting their premises to observe their processes or the attention they give to the client, acquiring their products or testing their services to analyze them better, or making small interviews with their former employees.
How to start your own business -8: Preparation of the business plan
The preparation of a business plan is one of the most important steps you must take since this will allow you to check the feasibility of your business, it will serve as a guide to start and manage it, and will allow you to demonstrate the attractiveness of your idea.
In summary, the sections that your business plan should have are:
- Business definition: The basic data of your business, the description of this as well as the product or service that you are going to offer.
- Marketing plan: The marketing strategies that you will apply once your business is launched.
- Plan of operations: The physical requirements necessary for the operation of your business, and the description of its process.
- Human resources plan The description of your management team and the personnel requirement that your business will have.
- Financial plan: The calculation of the investment, the projection of income and expenses, and the financial evaluation of the project.
As a tip on this point, it is not necessary to develop a complex business plan of more than 200 pages that probably nobody will read, but a simple business plan that simply allows you to meet the objectives of it.
How to start your own business -9: Search for financing
In case the capital that you have a product of your savings is not enough to cover the investment you need to start your business, the next step is the search for financing.
Some of the main sources of financing you can go to are:
- Family and friends: Which could lend you money without charging interest and without putting so much pressure on you to have to pay back the money so quickly.
- Banks: The most used source when applying for a loan, but the most difficult to access in the case of new businesses, especially if you do not have a good credit history.
- Financial entities oriented to SMEs: Which are more accessible than banks, but with the disadvantage of charging more interest.
- Investors: People who could finance all or part of your business, but with the disadvantage of having to pay them a portion of the profits forever.
Assuming a debt implies a great responsibility, so as a council on this point, you should take your time looking for the best financing alternative, and before requesting a loan make sure you will be able to pay it in a timely manner.
How to start your own business -10: Legal constitution
The legal constitution is a necessary step in the creation of your business because it will allow you to be legally recognized and thus, among other advantages, qualify as a credit subject, and issue proof of payment.
In summary, the general steps you must take to legally establish your business are:
- Determine if you are going to constitute as a natural person or legal entity.
- Choose the type of company or society you will have.
- Search and reserve the name you want for your business in public records.
- Elaborate and elevate the constitution minutes to the public deed.
- Enroll public deed in public records.
- Choose the tax regime to which you will receive for the payment of taxes, and process the obtaining of your taxpayer code.
Legally establishing a business can be a tedious task, so at this point, it might be advisable to go to centers or institutions that help you carry out this process at a minimum cost, and that you will surely find in your locality.
How to start your own business -11: Obtaining the operating license
Another necessary step you must take is obtaining the operating license, in addition to other permits that might be necessary for the type of business you are going to put.
In summary, the general steps you must take to obtain an operating license are:
- Go to the municipality of the district where your business will be physically located.
- Deliver the required documentation (which you will surely find on the website of the municipality in question).
- Fill out the application for obtaining the license.
- Make the corresponding payment.
As for advice on this point, before acquiring the premises of your business, you must ensure that they will grant you the operating license, and not assume that they will give it to you, for example, seeing that there are already other similar businesses in the area.
How to start your own business -12: Brand registration
In case you are going to create a trademark for your product or service, it is recommended that you register it in the trademark and patent office, in such a way that others cannot use an identical or similar one, or copy it in order to take advantage of your reputation.
In summary, the general steps you must take to register a trademark are:
- Go to the trademark and patent office (it could have another name in your locality).
- Make sure that others have not registered a trademark equal or similar to the one you want to register.
- Fill out the application for the trademark registration.
- Make the corresponding payment.
At this point, it might be advisable to hire a trademark and patent attorney to help you carry out these procedures and, above all, avoid having to be sure that there are no registered trademarks equal or similar to the one you want to register.
How to start your own business -13: Buy or rent the premises
If you have not done it yet, the next step is buying or renting the place where your business will operate.
In case of renting a place, in addition to the duration and the price of the rent, some aspects that you should contemplate in the contract are the possibility of transferring ownership of the contract in case you decide to sell your business and the possibility of making improvements in the store.
Whatever the case, at this point it is advisable to hire a lawyer with experience in the subject, to advise you on the purchase or rental of your business premises and, above all, avoid making mistakes when signing the contract.
How to start your own business -14: Remodeling and decoration of the premises
Once you have bought or rented a place for your business, you must remodel it to suit your type of business, and decorate it according to the concept or style you want to give it.
For the remodeling, in addition to the personnel in charge of the planning and execution of this, it is advisable that you also hire a facilities designer who has experience in the type of business you are going to put.
As for the decoration, which includes the placement of posters and posters, the use of plants, and the installation of paintings, ornaments and other decorative objects, it could also be advisable to hire an interior designer to advise you with it.
How to start your own business -15: Purchase and installation of machinery, equipment, and furniture
Once you have a remodeled and decorated store, you can proceed with the purchase and installation of the machinery, equipment and furniture that you will use to run your business.
As for advice on this point, you should buy only what is strictly necessary, avoiding letting yourself be carried away by the natural emotion that comes with starting a new business, which makes us want to buy everything that is within our reach.
Also, you should look for and compare prices well, in some cases rent instead of buying (for example, in the case of some equipment), and if possible make agreements with suppliers (for example, to provide furniture in exchange for advertising) or the exclusive sale of your brand).
How to start your own business -16: Search and selection of suppliers
The next step is the search and selection of the suppliers with whom you will work, that is, the search and selection of the companies that will provide you with the supplies, products or services necessary for the operation of your business.
To look for suppliers you could ask your acquaintances to recommend yours, go to the internet and search in classified ads sites, directories and yellow pages, or attend fairs or specialized exhibitions.
And then, to select the right suppliers, you must take into account different factors such as their prices, the quality of their inputs, products or services, the payment facilities they offer, their experience, their reputation, etc.
How to start your own business -17: Search, selection and training of personnel
Along with the search and selection of suppliers you could also proceed with the search and selection of the personnel you will hire to help you operate your business, and their subsequent training.
First of all, you must define the profile that a person must meet in order to apply for the positions you have available, and search or recruit applicants who meet that profile, for example, by publishing ads in the newspaper or on the internet, or asking for recommendations.
And then, you must evaluate the candidates through tests and interviews, select the best performers in them, hire them, and train them to perform well in their new positions.
How to start your own business -18: Organization of accounting
The organization of the accounting of your business is an important step, not only because it will allow you to know the amount of taxes you must pay, but also because it will allow you to analyze the financial situation of your business, and thus make better decisions.
The organization of accounting includes the preparation of accounting books and financial statements (the statement of profit and loss, the balance sheet, and cash flow), but also the preparation of the projected financial statements.
At this point, it is advisable to hire an accountant who visits you periodically without the need for you to be permanently in your business, and in addition to helping you keep the accounts and to declare your taxes, help you with the financial planning of your business.
How to start your own business -19: Marketing organization
Another important step you must make is the marketing organization of your business, both the one that will allow you to create expectations for the opening of your business and the one you will use to get your first customers.
As for opening marketing, this could include the placement of posters and posters on the front of your business premises or the distribution of flyers announcing the early opening of your business, and the sending of invitations for the opening.
While the marketing needed to get your first customers, this could include the printing of posters, posters, brochures, flyers and business cards, the creation of your business website, and the publication of your ad on the pages yellow.
How to start your own business -20: Inauguration or opening
Finally, after a long process of planning and execution, and having overcome several problems, difficulties and unforeseen, comes the expected day of the opening or opening of your business.
On this day you must coordinate well with your staff the functions or tasks to be performed, ensure the good performance of it, and correct all errors that both your workers and you will surely commit in this first day of operations.
And then, strive every day to grow your business, make sure you always maintain the quality of your product or service and always try to provide excellent customer service that not only makes your customers buy or visit you again.
We hope you will like these recommendations to start your own business successfully. We want your comments and suggestions to promote our ideas. Thank you and have a great day.