Starting a business has never been so popular; according to StartUp Britain over 533,577 people have done just that so far this year (and counting). So if you are thinking about starting a business, don’t be scared off by the thought of looking for advice and inspiration. Start by asking yourself a few simple questions:
Do you know what you want to sell? It could be a tangible product or an intangible service – or both. Research your market thoroughly – who is your audience and who are your competitors – as this information will help you establish your Unique Selling Point (USP) and form the basis of your sales and marketing activity. You must become an expert within your field, so make sure you put aside sufficient time for this crucial part of the business set up.
Tip – knowing your business market is the key to survival.
Now you understand your market, what would you call your business? Coming up with a name and creating your brand is the fun part but once you’ve decided on a business name you will need a matching domain name (or as close to a match as you can get). Domain names are IP addresses that create URLs (www.xxxxx.com) so customers can find your website on the internet.
You will need to register a domain name in order to use it, You may need to think slightly outside the box with your domain extension to get the domain you want. For example, .com and .co.uk may have already been taken but there’s no need to panic as there are lots of new extensions available.
Tip – Whatever name you choose, registering your domain name should be a high priority in case the name you want gets taken.
So you have your name, but you need to register it to make it official. Firstly you need to decide how you wish to operate your business. If you plan run as a Limited company, for example, you need to register your business with Companies House and will be legally required to submit documentation to HMRC. You can choose to register your business and then trade under a different business name but in either case you will also need a registered address for the business as your customers won’t want to trade with a ghost company.
Tip – However you choose to register your business it’s best to do this under the guidance of an accountant.
What next? Now it’s time to set up your website, market your business and drive customers to your website. You can use your domain name to create your email addresses, such as firstname.lastname@example.org, but you will need a service to access your email. Microsoft Office 365 is a cloud-based solution that enables you to log into your emails from any computer, anywhere, so you can always talk to your customers or respond to their queries in any timezone.
Tip – Always be available to your customers.
Once your business is up-and-running, it’s easy to be overwhelmed by some of the everyday tasks such as meeting your legal responsibilities, the bookkeeping and accounts, marketing, handling queries, fulfilling or servicing orders. If you feel your mask of composure is starting to slip as you struggle to manage day-to-day tasks on your own, it’s worth calling for help.
Tip – Turning your phones, accounts and IT over to an outsourced company is a good way to free up extra time to do more of what you do best.
Whether you need to understand it, name it, register it, sell it, manage it or simply just want to talk about it, do it today – call Boffix on 01840 700 700. We help make it a reality and remove the fear.