Tell me something; what comes into your mind when you think of a business, especially the one you’re starting from scratch? Funds, capital, gains, profits… all in all, it’s money. A business is a fair trade of loss and profit where you sometimes get lucky or sometimes… not so lucky. Let me tell you something quite fascinating: most people live under the illusion that you have to pour as much cash into the pothole of business to make it work. But practically, that isn’t how any business works.
You need skills and knowledge of the market to make your business reach the acme. A pure inspirational example is that of Sophia Amoruso, who started off by buying second-hand material and selling it off on her online e-bay store. By leaps and bounds, she now runs the company Nasty Gal and Girlboss. Just like you and me, she was an ordinary person who started with nothing and created a multimillion business out of thin air.
Scour the internet and you’ll witness numerous entrepreneurs like Sophia, who inclined towards their skills and mainly used the internet to their advantage. Sure, there are many other factors that can drain your income and general savings. One must drag out of the idea that business only looks good when it is traditional; we’re transitioning and so is the business. It’s shifting to a new paradigm where it’s highly convenient for almost everyone to start a business from scratch.
If you’ve been wanting inspiration and came here hoping that you’ll find something workable, then you’ve come to the right place. In this article, I’ll walk you through 10 uber-practical ways to start your business.
1. Start the business from home
The general rule of thumb, when you’re going to start a business, is to use the resources that are at your disposal. And what can be better than running your business from home? This leverages you cost savings on office supplies and space. You can use your garage like Steve Jobs did or set up the office in a spare room in your house.
You need to make sure that the place you’re occupying is spacious enough to make room for you and your goods. If your house doesn’t have enough space, you can go on renting someplace near and see if it spacious and meets the requirements of your business.
Do you know why I suggested renting? Because it’s way cheaper than going for a commercial office. The place you’re renting must be accessible for you as well as anyone who comes to your office, such as your customers or the suppliers. One more thing: Do talk to the landowner about why you’re renting the place so that it’s easier for you to negotiate and manage the expenses that come along with renting and running your business.
2. Go For Used Equipment First
More often than not, most novice businesspeople think it’s important to buy brand new equipment, which is not quite the way to getting your business work. When you’re starting a business, you must consider the fact that you don’t have a lot of money to spend on fancy machinery. Whatever cash you have, it’s more important to preserve it. And when it comes to new equipment, you must know that it could cost you a fortune, especially when you’re a new business owner.
Again, research the equipment you need. Scour it online and see if the local companies in your niche have something for you. Check if the instruments you need are available at a lower price in the market. Even if you purchase it at a bargain or get it on a lease, it’s better than buying the new thing in the first place. Before purchasing, check if the machine is working. If there are any issues, get them fixed. Check advertising websites like Craigslist and eBay to check the availability of your desired instrument.
Once you’ve worked with the second-hand equipment and have your business progress with speed, you can go for new equipment.
3. Join An SMB Organization
This is a great way to lay the foundation for a new business. If you think you don’t have enough capital to start a business of your own, you can always approach a startup incubator. If you don’t know what a startup incubator is, it’s a company that helps new businesses by delivering management or entrepreneurship training, office space, equipment, or even capital.
I’m going to reiterate that you have to keep the search running on high alert and keep a watch on startup incubators in your area. These can help boost your startup from idea to a revenue-generating business in no time. Business incubators like CSI Kickstart and Startx etc. can help you grow your businesses in the most unique and customizable way possible.
4. Go For Free Tools And Software
When you’re starting your business from scratch, why not use some free-of-cost or low-cost web applications and software to enhance your business and productive skills? As a budding business, these tools can help you get organized and may even give you an upper-hand in deciding the prospect of your own business.
If you want to recognize your audience and their interests, reach out for Google Trends. If you want to make a website, go for WordPress. Need a logo for your business? Make one using online logo maker. Except for these ones, there are many great tools that can help you grow your business and enhance your skills and expertise.
However, when it comes to employing a software, say a management software the full version may come at a price. But the good thing is that you’re just a startup and you don’t need to hoard all the premium features that are no use to you at this point. Instead, you can use a free trial version that is usually limited to a span of 30 days and see if that works for you.
5. Use The Power Of Social Media
Ok. So this isn’t something you’re new to, but you may be new to the ways you can use social media as a business platform. Whether you have multiple accounts at different popular social media sites, there are many creative ways to use them.
For instance, making videos about your product and uploading it on YouTube can help you generate revenue. Then there’s social media posting, where you can add several types of media and content, interact with our audience, and keep an eye on your competitors.
But… let’s not forget the reality, shall we? Small businesses starting off new on social media have a hard time getting recognition. They need to have prior marketing skills to avoid potential pitfalls that might be faced by every new business venturing into the social media waters. However, there are certain tools you can use to enhance your marketing skills.
One such tool is Sensai. It is an AI-driven social media marketing platform that helps small and medium businesses break through that white noise. It is known to be one of the most powerful social media tools that exist today at an affordable price.
6. Form Partnerships
Before you start your business, make sure you’ve researched everything. Period. This everything includes your customers, your competitors, the market, and your benefactors. Yes, you heard that right. Having a benefactor or a partner leverages you lots of capital in the long run. Not only that, you can learn from the business partnering with you and pick on a smart tactic or strategy. When you’ve had a partnering business, you don’t necessarily need a consultancy or advisory firm.
But there’s one thing; look out for startups that are a stage or two ahead of you. You don’t really want to aim for bigger businesses in your niche as the difference between you both is quite much. Make a list of businesses in your area and ask around if any of them is interested in partnering with you. Getting a reliable partner benefits you in many ways.
You both benefit by merging your resources to introduce a new product in the market. The revenue generated increases due to this mutual collaboration. Plus, the scope of you both progressing enhances to certain degrees. You both learn from each other and the business stress reduces. With so many benefits, I don’t see a point in not connecting with a potential partner, but do you?
7. Invest And Reinvest In Profits
It’s obvious that when you’re doing business, you’re going to sell something and make a profit. You will get the idea of expanding your business when you’ve got some capital in your hands. You must think through if it’s the right time for you to do it.
Save the cash for the time when you think it’s the time to make some business arrangements. Investing in your profits helps you manage your capital and strengthen your company. To make this saving investment profitable, reduce your expenses, eat in than eat out, and use borrowed or second-hand equipment and so on.
By doing so, you aren’t a cheapskate; you’re just waiting for the right time to expand the business when its foundations are strong enough.
8. Hire Part-time Employees
You’ve just started and you’re dreaming big. Hiring experienced and full-time employees are going to cost you too much even though you’ve just started. You must avoid them at all costs, it’s better to hire part-time employees with moderate skills.
Since you’ve just started, your business won’t require complicated stuff and skills. You can hire part-time employees who can do the basic jobs for you. And guess what? You can even hire the neighborhood college kid who was asking you lately about your business.
The thing with hiring part-time employees is that you can save the cost on payments. The temporariness of the employees is a good start for a newbie business. Think about training them first and then hire them on short-term contracts. Actions like these might help make our business more productive in the near future.
9. Negotiate And Bargain
In order to make your business more efficient and cost-effective, you must have an advanced communication level. When it comes to your supplies and vendors, maintaining a good repute is highly mandated. Be loyal with your payment schedule because it sets the foundation for your business.
You must then discuss the conditions of the business you’ll be conducting with the suppliers. It’s important to talk in detail about the products you’ll be purchasing and the discounts you will be availing. Negotiate and bargain for the products because purchasing goods at a lower cost is highly profitable for you in the long run. Plus, it’s a good start to begin with.
You can also deal with the vendors by settling payment after all the goods are sold. The advantage here for you is that you’re earning the profit without even investing.
10. Buy Supplies In Bulk
In continuance of the last point, when you buy the supplies in bulk, the vendors and suppliers give you larger discounts that you can’t avail in the local market. So as long as the stock doesn’t have an expiry date, you can keep increasing the margin of your profit. Stocking will help you raise the bar when there a shortage of supply. Plus, it depends on how long you’re going to work with the same line of product.