Are you thinking of setting up your own business? Good for you! While you may be filled with excitement and keen to throw yourself into this new venture, there are some important things to consider so you get off to the best possible start. According to the Small Business Association, 30% of new businesses fail during the first two years, and 50% during the first five years. Here are three things you can do to avoid becoming a part of this statistic.
1. Realistically estimate costs
One of the most important things to do when starting up a business is realistically estimate your costs. Unfortunately, many businesses fail because they run out of money in the first few years. Make sure you create a thorough and comprehensive business plan that breaks down every cost you will face. While you may not be able to budget for everything (after all, unexpected things happen, that’s life) taking control of your cash flow will ensure you maintain a healthy pot of money. You may need to consider the costs of things such as accounting and legal services, business registration, branding and marketing.
2. Consider your environmental impact
Environmentally friendliness is a major consideration for consumers now. In fact, many customers favour businesses that are actively sustainable and make efforts to reduce their environmental footprint. Your approach to sustainability and the environment could make or break your company. The steps you take to establish sustainable practices will depend on the industry you are working in. For instance, are you setting up a new café or bar? Then you will need to consider sourcing your goods sustainably. Are you building a retail company? Then establishing a comprehensive recycling system for unwanted cardboard, hangers or textiles will be important. Companies such as First Mile make it easy and cost-effective to dispose of your waste in an eco-friendly way, so your unwanted goods never end up in landfill.
3. Get out there and network
For any business to thrive, it needs to be known. It’s important to create a strong network of contacts that will help your business to achieve its long-term goals. For instance, if you are offering a service or creating a product, it is likely you will need suppliers/contacts outside of your business to deliver your objectives. Networking will allow you to forge strong relationships with potential suppliers to get your business up and running. Plus, these relationships may open doors to new opportunities such as additional funding, allowing your business to grow and develop.
Finally, inject your personality into your brand. The most successful companies have a real sense of identity and effectively communicate their goals and beliefs to consumers. Don’t be afraid to be yourself – after all, the business is built on your vision, so champion it!