Nothing can be more thrilling than starting your own business. Especially for an entrepreneur who is passionate about what they do. From the planning stages right through to implementing the product and service. You take enjoyment out of each aspect and strive to do your best. However, it is a sad fact that almost half of small businesses that get started up, fail within the first five years. This can be down to silly things being forgotten, or just not enough care taking at the planning stage.
So what can you do to avoid that? Sometimes it’s taking care of the minor details that can equally take care if the bigger issues. With that in mind, here are some of the things I think every small business owner should think about.
The business plan
A business plan is a solid part of the planning stages. It’s the guide that includes every hurdle or obstacle. Your budget plans and how far you need things to stretch. Often they can cover the first five years of business. But it is always recommended to refer to the business plan at some point. To ensure that you are either on the right path or improve it, change it, to make sure you end up where you want to be. Some entrepreneurs don’t even bother with a business plan. They just go straight into things with no guide or know how. They are the ones that may end up failing. If this is something you want to consider doing, then you can get a lot of information online, and even write something up yourself.
The next steps of the business
A business plan is essential to driving your business in the right direction. But it’s also important for you to know the direction you are heading. If the business owner doesn’t know what the next steps are then how can the business move forward? It’s basics. You start something up. So you should know where you want it to go or what you want to achieve. Make yourself aware daily of your next steps. It will keep it all in the forefront of your mind.
It’s easy to forget how you are funding a project, but so easy to spend the money. Again this can be one of the biggest reasons a business fails in the first few years. Handling the budgets and making sure you are up to speed with all the figures is vital for good business ownership. A business that sinks money is never going to be something that is profitable. Which should be the end goal. Of course, you sometimes have to spend to make more money. The initial investment is not a bad thing. Just make sure you are aware of where the budget stands and you are not overspending on things.
Running a small business means that at some point there won’t just be you to think about. You may decide that the time is right to start hiring people to take on some of the roles. However, this is where things can get a little complicated. For a small business owner, getting your head around employment law won’t be easy. Things like holidays and sickness can feel like a minefield if the appropriate action isn’t taken. This is where gaining some legal and employment law advice from Peninsula Group could help you out. It’s a big issue, and if you are not careful, some employees could take full advantage of your kind nature, or lack of knowledge. Make sure things are done by the book from day one.
The online presence
So many entrepreneurs are savvy with the internet. They may create a beautiful website. But the one solid thing they may spend less time on, or completely forget, is the power of social media for the company and brand. Your online presence may be your only way of getting in front of potential customers. With so many people using social media to upload things about their daily lives, keep in contact with people, and find things of interest. It’s not something you want to mess about with. Your online profiles are an extension of you and your business. It’s a link to talk directly to new and existing customers. So make more use of it. Social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter are some of the most popular ones to use today. But don’t ignore some of the other up and coming platforms like Snapchat, Instagram, and even things like YouTube. They can all provide you the same access while showcasing your business in a different light. Social media humanises a brand. It’s a powerful tool that requires your full attention.
Their website and company blog
While social media is important, you need to have an equally good place to be sending them to. This is where your company website and blog needs work. You could have an amazing social media following and presence. But then if you direct them to your website, and it’s not that great, you may not get their business. A company website needs to be easy to use. Have all of the information there and be accessible for paying for things online. Many themes for website building include an ecommerce option. A company blog could then be an extension of your website and social media. Being the place where you can divulge more about offers or new and exciting product launches. Use it how you will but don’t make the fatal mistake of not taking advantage of this tool.
Whether you have or need business premises
Finally, the last thing some business owners tend to forget about is whether or not they need to expand. Let’s face it, many start up businesses begin from a computer and laptop in the comfort of your own home. But what happens when you start to outgrow that? This is where you need to consider business premises. But with that comes rates and extra expenses you may not have accounted for. Explore all the options before making any rushed decisions.
I hope these help you make the right decisions when it comes to your start up.