So, you have a great idea. You know who your customers are, and you’re ready to dive into entrepreneurship and launch a business? How exactly does one do that?
Fear not, we have gathered the best and most useful resources for aspiring entrepreneurs to get their business up and running with their new business idea fast. This guide is for people who are ready to take the first steps into running a business, or are trying to get their bearings after just starting out. We have an email series on starting a business if you like this topic, you can find the sign-up form below.
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Step One: Register your business
Starting a business means that you need to build relationships. These relationships include relationships with your customers, your vendors and your bank or financial institution. These relationships are built with authenticity, intention, and mutual trust, meaning that you have to demonstrate that you’re a legit business owner and not a fly-by-night operation. Yes, even if you’re dropshipping (especially if you’re dropshipping). The first step on your entrepreneurial journey should be to register your business. Around here, we’re big fans of Ownr because they make it so easy to get your business registered, and it’s affordable too. Ownr can help you register the business type that you need, whether you will be a sole proprietor or LLC.
Step Two: Prepare to have a lot of logins
Everyone has a system for passwords, most of them are fairly terrible, It’s devastating to have your social media account compromised, but losing an important part of your business can be a much more critical loss. Plus, starting a business means creating a whole lot of new logins for everything. If you think that you already have a lot of logins to remember, you are in for a surprise! When you start a business is a great time to start using a password manager to keep track of all your logins and keep your business safe. We like 1Password because it’s a Canadian company and they have a very easy to use interface, and they seem to be adding a lot of great features all the time.
Step Three: Get organized! Organize yourself and your business
One key challenge of starting a business is that there are so many tasks, and it’s easy to move from one unimportant thing to the next but not actually get a lot done. We recently switched over to using Notion for practically everything, from organizing projects and client tasks, keeping track of todos, company manuals and processes, centralizing brand assets, and even help with writing content using Notion’s AI. You can use it in your browser and there’s a desktop app. Notion is a game-changer!
So, what is Notion? It’s where project boards, todo lists and documents all meet in a single easy-to-use interface that can be adapted and shared as your business needs evolve.
Step Four: Get a domain and build a great website
Okay, as people in the business of both building websites and running them, this part admittedly seems a little self-serving. For the purposes of keeping this article brief, this step cannot be as detailed as we would like, but a website is your best friend and partner in showing what your business has to offer. Pair it with email marketing and you’ll be ready to greet new customers in no time.
(The pros and cons of various platforms is out of scope for this article but keep an eye out for a post about that coming soon.)
One of the main obstacles we often see with our clients is that they don’t have or don’t want to write content for their site. If this is you, then CrowdContent is a great solution to solve the content problem. They offer an affordable and reliable service, and unlike AI generated content, it’s written by actual humans.
If you’re going the DIY route, don’t use the same boring free images as your competitors are using, you know, the free images that you see absolutely everywhere. Investing in some eyecatching, high quality images will elevate your brand and the image of your company. We often use DepositPhotos for images because they have a great selection and very reasonable pricing.
Pro tip: Using something like the HelloBar is great for collecting leads in a very beautiful way that your visitors will love. Although popups seem annoying to some people, you might be surprised to learn that they actually convert really well!
Step Five: Get customers to buy your thing
Just one step? Well, sort of. This is a multi-step process that will vary dramatically from one business to another. I think we can all agree that having customers is vital for any business, and especially when starting out it can be challenging. In fact, it is the most important thing separating your business from not being a business at all. Important!
If you have a shop, what does it sell and are your suppliers reliable?
One of the key issues in eCommerce is finding suppliers that are reliable and don’t take weeks to ship goods to your customers. In this world where Amazon has made fast shipping the expectation for consumers, nobody wants to be waiting for 8 weeks for a small, unmarked parcel to arrive. Sprocket is one solution to this problem, they offer a marketplace of suppliers with higher-quality products and faster shipping than AliExpress.
This is the marketing your business step, and getting the word out is the hard part, but it’s also the most rewarding and interesting part. We have a free email series for small business owners that has tips and tricks for navigating this stage in the business journey. Sign up below if you’re interested