Things to know before starting a small business

When starting a small business, knowing where to begin can be a difficult and confusing process. A good business idea can only get you so far. The amount of time, money, planning and organization needed is overwhelming, even for seasoned professionals. But from humble beginnings, anyone with enough ambition and a little know-how can launch a successful business. Here are a few things you should know before starting your own small business.  

Clarify your business idea 

You need to determine exactly what problem you are trying to solve with your product or service. More importantly, is it better than what is currently on the market? This market research is essential because there’s no point in starting a business if there is no demand for it. Look at your potential customers and figure out why they would want your idea. Then learn from your competitors and try to avoid their mistakes while improving your own offerings.  

Build a business plan 

Develop your pitch and describe your idea so anyone can easily understand it. Then, do your research on the market and your customers. Analyze what makes your customers tick and what a successful business looks like to model yourself after. Decide on important details like names, branding, and organizational structure, because you should know who does what. Lastly, set your goals, especially the financial ones, and present where all the money is coming and going.  

Get your finances in order 

Running a small business can be a rewarding experience, but it can also go south very quickly. Make sure to assess your finances before putting pen to paper. Consider things like permits, real estate, payroll, benefits, materials and any other startup costs. Figure out how much do you need to sell to cover costs and turn a profit.  

As a rule, try to have 6 months of operating expenses ready to go in case of a rainy day. You do need money to make money. This can come from personal savings, credit cards, small business loans and grants, as well as friends and family investors. When other people’s money is involved, understand the risks and create a plan in case the business fails.  

Don’t forget about taxes and paperwork 

Because we live in a society, you can’t just start a legitimate business without some bureaucracy. There is a lot of paperwork that needs to be submitted. You need to register your business with the government, acquire licenses, satisfy legal requirements, and pay your taxes. On the tax side, make sure to keep detailed records and consider partnering with an accounting firm like Rise CPA. 

Your Business. New Heights. 

Rise CPA provides professional accounting, tax and business advice to help you make the right decisions at the right time. Since 1979, we’ve been helping clients create businesses and lifestyles they envision by delivering expert insights and financial guidance. At Rise, we excel at advising business owners and their families in a caring and personal way. Our services cover a wide range of Tax Planning, Auditing, Accounting, Estate Planning, and Business Advisory. Please call (604) 936-4377 or use the online contact form to book an appointment with one of our accounting professionals.