Great Britain is a nation of entrepreneurs, with over 600,000 new business start-ups registered annually but sadly, around 20% of these businesses will not last a year and 60% will close within three years.
A great idea, passion and hard work are all necessary attributes for a new business starter but these traits alone cannot make a business successful. Before you set up your business, it’s essential to understand your motivation for the start-up and whether your personality and skills suit the business you want to run.
At CRM, we have helped many businesses get off the ground. Here are the 10 steps you need to follow to begin life as a new business owner:
- What’s your business idea?
Explore lots of ideas before you settle on the best one. Turning your hobby into a business can work well as it’s something you love to do. Other things to consider are; is there a gap for your idea in the market, does your idea solve a problem or can you offer something more cheaply?
- Test your idea
Before you launch, you need to research whether your idea will work by analysing your target market – is it big enough to support your business and is there is a demand for your product or service? Do you know who your potential customer is and are there enough of them?
- Make a business plan
Good planning before you launch your business is vital to outline your goals and how you will achieve them. Your business plan needs to be clear and structured so that potential investors or partners can understand what you want for your business.
- Choose a business name
This can be one of the trickiest parts of the start-up process. Your name needs to be unique, stand the test of time and be simple to remember and spell. However, it doesn’t need to be the same as your trading name.
- Register your business
There are different business types to consider here, from sole trader to public limited company, make sure you choose the right one for you. It’s a good idea to seek professional business advice from CRM at this stage.
- Finance, accounting and tax
You need a business bank account to start a business, but business insurance is also essential and you must understand your tax liabilities and basic accounting so that you are legally compliant and don’t fall foul of HMRC.
- What is your brand identity?
Your brand is your public-facing identity, how you present your company and stand out from your competitors. Consider creating a logo, colour scheme, slogan or strapline to describe what you do. Explore and test different ideas as your chosen brand should be long-lasting.
- How will you fund your business?
All businesses need initial capital to get started, whether that comes from your savings or your family. For larger investments, you might need to investigate business grants and loans or even crowdfunding and business competitions.
- Sales and marketing
This is the lifeblood of your business. Plan how you are taking your product or service to market and what channels you will use to reach your customers. This involves packaging, pricing, your unique selling point, marketing material, customer service and lots more.
- Create a strong team
If you want to grow your business, you’ll need people around you to help but this comes with great responsibility. Attracting good people and effective management is essential, along with creating a great place to work and complying with employment laws and taxes.
Wading through the guidance available for start-ups can be a headache so why not seek the tried and tested advice of CRM, with years of experience in helping new and established businesses, the team would be pleased to assist. Call CRM on 01865 379272.