11 Steps Every Start-Up Needs to Know
Starting-up a new business is much like building a house. For one thing, you need to set your foundations in place for your new house. Similarly, you need to set the foundations in place for your new business.
Building your new business consists of aligning the following foundations:
- Product or services; and
This blog is prepared to provide valuable information for potential business owners that are interested in starting-up their own business.
Here is a list of steps everyone contemplating starting up their own business should know.
Step #1: Determine the Feasibility of your Business Idea
When determining the feasibility of your business idea, you will need to gather as much information as possible about your new business. This includes reading a number of research sources such as:
- Industry reports.
- Business magazines.
- Trade publications.
- Newspapers, etc.
Step #2: Refine your Business Idea
Once you have determined the feasibility of your business idea, you will need to “refine” your idea. This involves addressing a number of relevant business-specific issues and asking yourself some questions such as:
- What specific product or service will your business provide?
- Do you have the skills required to provide your business’s product or service?
- What makes your business idea, product, or service unique?
- Do you have any competitors and what advantages do your competitors have?
Step#3: Build Your Support Team
It is advisable at the early stage of starting-up your business that you surround yourself with trusted and reliable advisers who can help both now and as your business grows. Your support team may include your accountant, your solicitor, and your business consultant.
Step#4: Market Research
After determining the feasibility of your business idea and refining your idea, you will need to do more in-depth market research and analysis.
Your market research can provide you with data and information about your customers or clients as well as the industry your business is in. You can do this process by asking yourself a number questions such as:
- Who are your customers or clients?
- Where are your customers or clients?
- What is the size of your potential market?
- What are the buying habits and lifestyles of your potential customers or clients?
- What is the demand for your product or service?
Step #5: Market Analysis
Your market analysis can help you to understand the business environment and the basis on which your business must compete. It is through this analysis that you are able to determine if your business idea can provide you with an attractive opportunity.
Your market analysis will include identifying your competitors, and your business as well as evaluating your industry. For example:
- A business analysis will identity via a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis your identified market.
- A competitors analysis will identify who your primary competitors are, and what their strengths and weaknesses are.
- An industry analysis will evaluate your industry’s overall opportunity and attractiveness.
Step #6: Develop your Business Plan
Develop an effective business plan that brings together your goals, plans, strategies, and resources for your business. Your business plan serves a number of purposes. For example:
- It helps you to focus on your business idea.
- It creates a track for you to follow in the early stages of your business’s growth.
- It creates a benchmark against which you can measure the progress of your business’s growth.
- It also provides a very useful document you will need when arranging finance or raising capital.
Remember. It is essential to the success of your business that you carefully review and revise your business plan as an ongoing business activity.
Step #7: Understand Your Finances
An important part of starting-up and then running your new business is to have a clear understanding of your finances. Good financial management is critical to the success of any business.
To assist you in understanding your finances more clearly. You can start by answering the following questions:
- Can, in fact, afford to start-up your new business?
- How much money will you need to start-up your new business?
- How can you access money to fund any future plans?
Arranging finance and raising capital are ongoing activities throughout the life of any business. In spite of this, you will find with proper information, preparation, and planning you will be much better placed when trying to raise capital and achieve your financing needs.
Step#8: Decide on your Business Structure
Consider each type of business structure and decide on the structure that best suits your needs.
Your business structure (e.g. sole trader, partnership, trust, and company) can affect the safety of your personal assets and taxation obligations.
Step#9: Register your Business Name
If you wish to carry on a business under a business name, you must register your business name with ASIC (Australian Securities and Investment Commission).
Step #10: Promote and Market Your Start-Up Business
Once your start-up business is up and running. you will need to start attracting customers or clients. With this in mind:
- You will need to explore as many business marketing ideas as possible; and
- You will need to decide how to effectively promote your business to the wider community.
To market your start-up business, you will need to market your product or service to the right people. This involves, creating an effective sales and marketing plan.
You will find your sales and marketing plan will give you a systematic approach to developing specific products or services your customers or clients need.
Step #11: Get to Know your Customers or Clients
The success of your business ultimately comes down to how much you know your customers or clients. This will involve:
- Knowing how well you and your team understand your customers or clients; and
- Knowing how well you and your team understand their “needs”.
In addition, knowing your customers or clients it is beneficial that both you and your team work at:
- Building strong relationships with your customers or clients;
- Creating unique experiences that will attract and keep your customers or clients, and encourage them to come back to do business with you.
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If you require more information or assistance about starting up a business. Please call our business consultants today on 1300 4 SINGH, or simply click here to send your question.
DISCLAIMER: This blog post is of a general nature only and does not constitute professional advice. I strongly recommend that you seek your own professional legal and accounting advice in relation to your particular circumstances.