Searching around for the crucial information to put a new business together can be both exciting and full of anxiety. The reason many new businesses fail is not because of bad luck, the problems stem from bad decisions and faulty information.
Once you have your information, you should verify it with another independent source before you open your wallet. Not all information is real time and changes can happen overnight. Once you are satisfied the information is correct you need to get ready to make a business plan and choose your target customers.
For a start there may be no need to start an official company depending on what you plan to do. Just a trial hobby run for a month or so should give you some idea if you have a working formula. However if you are planning on going beyond your neighborhood for your test run, then getting properly set up with the government for taxes, permits and so on should be reviewed. Use your best judgment on who to ask. Your lawyer or some other person who has proper credentials should be the only people on the who to ask list. Listening to uncle Fred who is the certified know it all down at the local pub may be more trouble than it is worth.
Depending on if you are providing a service or a product will dictate what to do next to let people know about you.
A website is a good start. Construct your site but don’t put it on line until you are ready to push the launch business button. If you don’t have a website and small is your goal, printing up some advertizement flyers and get them ready may be the way to go. Word of mouth is also a good way to start off building a network of customers or clients. All are very low cost and well worth it.
If you are planning to market a product you will need some samples. So do what you need to have them on hand. There is no need to build a stocking inventory just yet. The key to success is how fast you can get the product into your customers hands. If they can have it inside 3 to 4 weekdays, then you should be fine. In this case less time is better. There are people who order when they run out, and there are people who order when they get low on supplies. To capture both groups you must decide to stock or charge more for rush orders. This also opens a door for you to offer automatic reordering service. Some will like the idea and others will not. This depends on the customers/clients personal habits.
Choosing a product that is a necessity will help as it will market itself. If it is a consumable product, then good customer service will get and keep customers. People tend to be willing to pay more for good service. So screw up here and you could kill your company in no time.
In a few days in part 5 we will talk about service related jobs. Check back or hit the subscribe button.