If you are thinking about starting your own business, there are many things that you need to put in place first. According to Bloomberg, 80% of small businesses fail within their first 18 months. Many of these cases will be the result of a lack of planning or unrealistic expectations of what may lie ahead.
Here are 4 things to consider if you want to start your own business.
Do you have the relevant skills?
When you start your own business, you will, of course, learn new things along the way, but before you launch it’s a good idea to be realistic about your skill sets. If, for example, you intend to sell products online, do you have adequate marketing experience to ensure you are maximising your company’s potential?
Many who are looking to launch a new business decide that, before doing so, they would be best placed to go back to college or university to brush up on or learn new skills. If this is something you are considering, check the UK university rankings and establish which facilities might provide the best courses and programmes for your needs.
When you run your own business, you become the stock controller, the manager, the marketeer, and so forth. Gaining as much experience as you can across different sectors will increase your chances of success.
Where will you be based?
Renting or buying premises in areas such as Central London can be extremely costly, so it’s a good idea to consider all options. Many new business owners work from home initially as it keeps costs and risks to a minimum.
Another option which is proving more and more popular these days is coworking. Coworking allows you to rent shared premises alongside other companies, which effectively means you get the benefits of a fully functional office space but for a fraction of the cost.
Your target market
Establishing your target market is key when running a small business. You may have amazing products and a solid brand, but if you are pitching to the wrong people, it could become a bit pointless. Do lots of research and analyse your current customer base regularly.
When putting together a marketing strategy, target certain demographics, and keep track of the results. Over time it will become apparent what is working and what isn’t. This will help you to ensure that your marketing budget is being used on the right platforms and being pitched to the right people.
Look after the pennies
It’s paramount to keep on top of your finances when running your own business. Keep records of all income and outgoings, as well as setting realistic targets. Shop around for suppliers and negotiate prices when you can. Many small business owners employ an accountant from time to time to ensure that they are making the right financial decisions.
Every penny counts, so you must know your figures inside and out. It may determine whether your business succeeds or becomes just another statistic.