Becoming a small business owner can be a very rewarding experience. The challenges of your new adventure can be very exciting. Before you take the steps to start your small business, we offer some tips for beginners based on our experience building SecureGlobalPay.
Before Getting Started
Before you jump into the world of self-employment, we recommend that you spend some time researching your new small business idea. Sometimes a great idea in the middle of the night doesn’t translate to a great money-making opportunity in the morning. Research can help you understand if there is a need for your products and services. It will also help you generate ideas on how to differentiate yourself from your competition. Recognizing the path of those who went before you can help you create a plan for success.
Be Comfortable Taking on Different Roles
It is important that you understand that when you run a small business, you will be wearing many different hats. From CEO to janitor, make sure you are comfortable with the notion that you may be “doing it all.” Educate yourself on a variety of topics from finance management to marketing. All that information will be incredibly accessible to you when you start your small business.
Build Your Business Around Something You Love To Do
Many people are lucky when they can do what they love for a living. As a small business owner, you have the opportunity to find out if what you love to do coincides with the ability to make money. You are going to be spending many hours of your day pouring blood, sweat and tears into your small business. Doing what you love will help you stay passionate about your business when times are tough. If the thought of sitting in an office all day makes your break out into a rash, consider jobs that will keep you active. There are hundreds of websites online that can help you figure out how to incorporate what you love to do into making money. With a little time and effort, you can find something that will suit your needs.
Choosing a Name for Your Business
Most likely, when brainstorming business names, you are looking for something unique that stands out. The business name you choose will represent an image that you wish to convey to your audience. The tone of your business name will also communicate to your audience. A silly name for a serious matter can be offensive to some and you may possibly loose business.
Also, when choosing a business name, take the time to make sure that the business name is available through your state business registration. Check for domain names online to see if you can immediately purchase your desired domain. This is critical and is something you should not put off. What is available today, may certainly be unavailable tomorrow.
Put Together a Business Plan
While your business plan does not have to be precise, we do recommend that you work through, at the very least, and outline of a business plan for your small business. A business plan can help you think through every aspect of your potential business. It will also help you to view and overall picture of who your competitors are and what they are doing, so that you can find a special niche that your business can help fulfill.
How Should I Structure the Business?
There are so many options available, each with great benefits on how to structure your business. Some of these options include Sole Proprietorship, Partnerships and Corporations.
A Sole Proprietor is perhaps the easiest type of business structure to set up. It requires very little paperwork and is fairly inexpensive. A Sole Proprietor is for businesses who have one owner. The owner of the sole proprietor assumes all responsibility of liability. If you a customer sues your company and wins, then all of your personal assets can be considered in the settlement. When it comes to taxes, you just simply roll your tax structure into your personal taxes and simply report income gains and losses.
If you are planning to share business responsibilities with a partner, then you will want to set up your business structure as a partnership. While there are a couple of different options to setting up your business as a partnership, most businesses set up a general partnership. This means that both you and your partner will assume responsibility and liability for the business.
If you would like your business to be completely separated from you personally, then you will want to consider setting up a corporation. Setting up a corporation can be very time consuming and is often those most expensive option. However, the largest benefit of a corporation is that you will be sheltered from any liability that may come from owning your own business.
Set Up a Merchant Account
Credit/debit cards are the most prevalent way to make purchases currently. Not being able to process debit or credit cards can become a huge inconvenience for your customers. Most customers will tell you they feel safer carrying a credit/debit card thanks to the many different fraud protection services that credit/debit card offers. It is extremely rare for customers to carry around large amounts of cash to make large purchases.
Accepting credit cards online can be so critical to your small business success. Chances are very likely that your competitor has already found a way to collect money online. SecureGlobalPay has solutions for businesses who are planning to sell online or businesses planning to move into the online space. No matter the situation, you will need an online credit card processing solution built to fit your business needs.
To begin accepting online credit and debit card payments, you will need an online merchant account. Like any business decision, it’s important that you do your research. The following are a few critical reminders as you investigate your options and select the provider that is right for you.
Following the tips listed above can help ensure that your new adventure is a success. It will also make the process a little less stressful. This will allow you to have more energy to make sure that your business