Scratch

Setting up a business from scratch is certainly challenging, particularly in these tough economic times! It’s a well-known fact that the majority of businesses fail within their first year and many owners often don’t realize just how much work goes into starting a business, not to mention the costs involved. There are a few things that can make it a little easier and some of those are covered here.

Analyzing the competition
One of the most important things you need to do when starting out is to analyse your competition. You need to create a strong marketing campaign, and in order to do that you need to know how your product differs from the competition. This will be your unique selling point.

Something to focus on when looking at your competition is to try and establish what they are doing wrong. Read customer reviews online and see what people are saying. What do they like about the competition and more importantly, what don’t they like? You can use this information to make your business better than the competition.

Renting an office space
You may initially decide to operate from home, either from a study, spare room, or a bespoke office, which will certainly keep costs down. However, if the businesses progresses well – which is obviously the aim – you’ll need larger space at some point, particularly if you hire staff and the business grows. If you’re dealing with stock, you’ll need storage, so consider finding a solution via a service such as www.readysteadystore.com which will enable you to keep items safe without cluttering up office space. Be sure to check what type of security will be in place, and that you’re insured if anything goes missing.

Go back to basics
A very interesting article was published by Startups. Featuring an interview with Lord Sugar, he highlights the importance of going back to basics – don’t get too bogged down by your business plan. Instead carry out weekly reviews and set simple goals for your business. Keeping on top of your overheads and costs is extremely important. Maintain your focus on these fundamentals, and your business will be better for it.

Focus on marketing and branding
The two main things you need to focus on when setting up a business are branding and marketing. You will need to spend most of your time marketing your product and building up your brand name. What’s more, the marketing part of a business never stops. You constantly need to review your target market and make use of the latest marketing tools.

There really is a lot to think about when you’re starting a business from scratch. There are some excellent links on the Gov.uk site. If possible, it’s also recommended that you use your own money to start up the business, rather than heading to the bank. That way you won’t start out in debt. Starting out with a loan can be really stressful so always raise your own funds when you can.

Originally posted by Dane Carlson on April 11, 2014 in You Don't Say.

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