If you’ve stumbled across this blog, then you’ve probably got a great idea for a business. Perhaps you’re already a seasoned entrepreneur, with a small company on the go. If you’re looking to take things to the next level in 2016, we’re here to help. We have resources to assist with marketing, finances, and SEO.
Today, however, we’re going back to basics. We’re going to talk you through the bare bones of setting up a business. Interestingly, many entrepreneurs fly past this crucial stage without setting up correctly. In this post, we’ll help you slow down, and get the foundations in order.
1. Business plan
No business can operate effectively without a solid plan. You wouldn’t set off on a road trip without a map, would you? Well, don’t do the same in business. A successful company requires a strict set of goals and objectives.
You’ll need to outline a basic timeline for the next five years, as well as a detailed 12 month strategy. Most important of all, you need a plan for monetisation and revenue. Without a business plan, you’ll never secure a loan or investment either.
Talking of loans and funding, your business needs a cash investment to get off the ground. Some companies can get moving with little or no cost. Examples include freelance work and consulting.
However, if you’re selling a product or setting up physical premises, you’ll need some money. There are plenty of options here, and it’s up to you to choose the best route. You can fund the project yourself, ask friends and family for help or approach the bank for a loan. We advise building a core, profitable business before seeking investment.
3. Incorporating and registration
Every business must register with the government, and sign up to pay their taxes. Again, there are a variety of options available here, and it’s worth consulting a lawyer and an accountant.
A simple ‘sole-trader’ business or ‘partnership’ are the easiest to set up, and apply to smaller companies. If you’ve got big plans, and a high turnover, you might want to consider full incorporation. Your Company Formation is a good place to start when learning more about this process.
4. Intellectual property and patents
When you’re getting your business off the ground, your ideas are the most valuable thing you have. In the early days, your company is entirely based around potential.
Now, imagine if those ideas (that potential) was stolen. That’s where intellectual property and patents are crucial. If you’ve created something unique, apply for a patent.
Meanwhile, secure your business with trademarks and copyrights.
A lot of companies we speak to think that branding only applies to giant corporations. Not true. Even the smallest startup needs to consider its unique personality and branding.
Everything from your logo to your website to your tone of voice must come together as one. It’s all about building that brand recognition from day one.
With these foundations in place, you’re ready to take on the world.
Good luck with your venture in 2016!