How To Start A Start-up
In contemporary times, words like start-up, entrepreneurship, seeding have become a popular topic of discussion among youths. The credit for this has to be attributed to Startup India which has been fundamental for this positive spur of change.
India’s population is among the youngest in an ageing world. India’s working-age population has numerically outstripped its non-working age population. With diverse aspirations of a large section of youths there is a need to impart quality education and train them for future opportunities.
If you’ve never started a business, the first time can be a little scary especially because it takes a lot of hard work and planning. Besides, only about half of all businesses survive five years or longer.
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Experts suggest nine strategies for start-ups:
Start With a Great Idea:
Your first step in learning how to start a business is to identify a problem and solution. This is because successful start-ups begin from business ideas that fill the needs of a group of customers. But your idea doesn’t always have to be a new one. You can update existing products or services in a way that’s better for the consumer. This can be as simple as:
- Changing the product’s appearance.
- Adding a new feature.
- Finding a new use for a product that customers already love.
For instance, Apple started from Steve Jobs’ original idea for a computer and has since created enhanced versions that better fit the market. They’ve also continued to evolve newer products like iPhones and iPads, making them more useful with each update.
Make a Business Plan:
Once you have an idea, you’ll want to start building a business plan that describes your products and services in detail. It should include information on your industry, operations, finances and a market analysis.
Writing a business plan is also important for getting financing for your start-up. Banks are more likely to give loans to companies that can clearly explain how they’re going to use the money and why they need it.
Secure Funding for Your Start-up.
The cost of a start-up is different for every business owner. However, no matter what your costs are, you’ll likely need to get start-up financing from:
- Friends and family
- Angel investors
- Venture capitalists
- Bank loans
If you don’t get the right amount of funding or can’t raise money for your business, you’ll risk not being able to pay your operating costs. This may cause you to close your doors. In fact, it’s estimated that 29% of start-ups fail because they run out of money.
Surround Yourself With Right People.
There can be a lot of risk in starting a business. That’s why you’ll need essential business advisors to help guide you along the way, like:
Building the right start-up team is especially important in the early stages of small businesses.
This means you’ll want to carefully select your:
- Initial employees, including remote workers
Make Sure You’re Following All the Legal Steps.
From designing your product to setting up your workplace, opening your dream start-up can be a lot of fun. But before you officially enter the market, you’ll want to take the right legal steps to give you the best chance at success, including:
- Applying for a business license
- Registering your business name
- Filing for a trademark
- Creating a separate bank account
- Familiarising yourself with industry regulations
- Building contracts for clients and others you plan to work with
Establish a Location (Physical and Online).
Whether you need to establish a manufacturing facility, set up an office space or open a storefront, you’ll want to determine if leasing or buying a property is right for you. In many cases, you can get tax deductions for managing a commercial space, which is a benefit to owning your own place. You’ll also be able to rent it out to make extra income.
In today’s digital era, it’s important to set up an online presence and e-commerce platform. In fact, you’ll have trouble being successful without it. This is because customers are increasingly shopping online and using google to find out more information on your products.
- Keeping your store open 24 hours a day, on weekends and on holidays, which increases sales.
- Helping you reach customers around the world.
- Allowing customers to read reviews about your products, which can raise your brand’s credibility.
Develop a Marketing Plan.
Every start-up needs to spend different amounts of money and time on marketing. It’s an important expense, because it helps you:
- Establish a brand identity
- Stand out from competition
- Create customer relationships and build loyalty
- Increase visibility, which attracts new customers
- Strengthen your company’s reputation
Some start-up activities should look into include:
- Using social media to engage customers and promote coupons or deals.
- Giving rewards out for referrals, which brings in more business.
- Offering free samples or demos in your store.
- Sponsoring events to get your name out there in local communities.
Build a Customer Base.
In order for your start-up business to have long-term success, you’ll want to build a customer base. These loyal customers can help with:
- Boosting your sales, because they’re willing to keep spending at your company.
- Sending a message to new customers that your brand is trustworthy.
- Gaining referrals, which saves you time and effort with finding new customers.
Some ways you can attract and retain customers include:
- Regularly offering a great product or service.
- Launching loyalty programs to keep them coming in.
- Using affiliate marketing on social media, which involves paying influencers to promote products to your target audience.
- Focusing on great customer service.
- Using market research to understand your customers’ expectations better.
- Asking for feedback directly from the customer.
Plan to Change.
Start-ups change drastically within their first few years in operation. A key to success is to evolve and adapt your business model to your market and industry.
Some strategies to make sure you’re prepared to adapt are:
- Hiring forward thinkersso you know your team is adaptable.
- Listening to feedback from customers, suppliers and others that you work with.
- Staying updatedon trends in your industry.
Remember, it is businesses that are willing to evolve with consumer expectations that are able to establish themselves for years to come.