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_Business - How to Start Your Own

Updated: Mar 25, 2023

_Business. First of all, why am I spelling it with an underscore? We'll get to that soon, but first, let's talk about the craft of _business. Running a _business is not for the faint of heart. A successful _business requires capital, a well-formed _business plan, and proper management.


_Business owner

If you're thinking about starting your own _business, keep reading!


In this article, we're going to discuss:

  • How to start a _business

  • How to write a _business plan

  • Where to find the money for your new _business

  • Where to buy insurance for your new _business

  • How to manage a _business

  • Why in the world am I spelling the word "business" like "_business" (Hint: it has to do with something called Blue Ocean Strategy)


Table of Contents


What is the Best _Business to Start?

Deciding what _business to start isn't as simple as it might seem. Sure, you might have an idea for something you want to do, but the real question is: "What do people want to buy?"


According to my favorite book about _business - The E Myth: Why Most Small Businesses Fail and What To Do About It; by Michael Gerber - most entrepreneurs go into _business due to something called an "entrepreneurial fissure."


It typically goes like this...


You had a job; you were probably pretty good at your job. Maybe the best in the entire office, or shop, or whatever...


Every day you came to work and outperformed every last one of your colleagues. You showed up on time, worked hard, received praise and gratitude for your work (or maybe not), and you knew everything there was to know about how to do your job.



Then one day, you said to yourself: "I'm the one doing all the work around here while the boss just sits back and collects all the money! I should go into business for myself so that I can sit back and make my own money!"


So, you said goodbye to your job and set out to make your own fortune by going into _business for yourself.


You probably went out and bought all the latest and greatest equipment, hired a few of your close friends, and got right to work.


Things were probably going pretty well for a while too.


But little by little, things probably started to become slightly chaotic.


Maybe client appointments weren't organized as well as they could have been, or maybe the level of cleanliness in the workspace started to deteriorate slowly.


Perhaps you started to realize that the friends you hired to be your employees aren't taking the job as seriously as you believe they should, or perhaps they're not performing at the level you expected from them.


Maybe those relationships even began to show signs of stress as time passed.



After a while, you probably came to the conclusion that what you really need is someone who "knows what they're doing" to run the _business for you, and you probably found someone who was more than happy to do that for you.


But after letting someone else take the reigns for a while, things only seem to get worse!


No matter what you do, no one seems to be able to get the job done as well as you can!


Starting a _business is stressful

You probably eventually came to the conclusion that you either need to close the doors for good or go back to doing everything yourself; and if you do decide to go back to doing everything yourself, it's only a matter of time before you decide to close the doors for good anyway.


So what went wrong?


The short answer is that the entrepreneur confused the 'technical work of a _business' with knowing the '_business behind that technical work.'


For instance, if we're talking about a car repair shop, the technical work of the _business includes knowing how to change tires, change the oil, top off the fluids, etc...


Whereas the _business of that technical work includes managing cash flow, tracking inventory, human resource management, marketing, meeting OSHA safety standards, enforcing cleanliness standards, systems engineering, etc...



Notice that the two disciplines are completely different from one another.


Knowing how to fix cars, and knowing how to run a business that fixes cars, are two entirely different sets of skills. Just because you know one doesn't mean that you know the other.


Imagine sitting down at a piano without ever having had a single lesson and being asked to play Mozart?


It's impossible.


You need to take the time to learn how to play the piano first, and there is only one correct way to play the piano.


The same is true in _business.


There's only one correct way to run a _business, and accepting that is the first step toward success.


There's only one way to run a _business

So, before we get too hung up on what type of _business to start, first make sure that your _business meets a need and has a reliable customer base.


Ideally, the community you serve should already be thirsty for your new _business.


The best products are ones that meet a need or correct a market inefficiency.


Growing up, one of my Father's favorite Dad-isms was:


"It's better to be the guy who sells the french fries than the guy who sells the deep fryer."

There's a lot of wisdom in that one sentence.


A salesman who sells deep fryers has to find a new customer every time he wants to make a sale. Rarely, if ever, will he sell to the same person twice. However, a salesman who sells french fries has an ever-increasing consumer base who makes recurring purchases of french fries.


Of course, french fries are just a metaphor. But the same principle applies to other consumable product categories such as Bath & Body products, Health & Beauty, Nutritional Supplements, Foods, and generally any _business that follows a subscription model or provides any type of ongoing service.



These types of products will always outperform products that can only sell to a customer once.


Regardless of what you decide to do, this is one decision you should make with your head rather than your heart.


Ecommerce _Business

Without a doubt, one of the easiest businesses to start is an e-commerce _business.


Ecommerce remains one of the fastest-growing industries in America and has soared to new heights during the COVID-19 pandemic.


According to a recent survey, 59% of entrepreneurs who started new businesses during the pandemic went into e-commerce, and of that group, 58% reported spending less than 8 hours a week on their _business.


The most popular e-commerce solutions platform was Shopify, and frankly, it was easy to see why.


Shopify allows entrepreneurs to set up an e-commerce _business in just one day.


The secret to their success is their app store.



Shopify has over 2,400 apps available to its users. Here's a list of just some of what you can accomplish with the Shopify app store:

  • Find suppliers

  • Design your storefront

  • Arrange for dropshipping

  • Customer relationship management

  • Track orders

  • Process payments

  • Interface with external sales channels (i.e. Amazon & Walmart)

  • Provide customer service through virtual agents

The possibilities are endless!


Let's take a closer look at some of the most successful small _business models in the e-commerce space that you can set up through Shopify.


Amazon FBA

By the numbers, Amazon FBA is the most profitable business model online. It involves buying physical products, sending them to an Amazon warehouse, and then listing them for sale on Amazon.


The advantage to this _business model is that anyone who is shopping on Amazon can find your products, and they can buy them just as easily as they would be anything else that Amazon sells.


Your products would be eligible for Prime benefits, as well as recurring purchases through Amazon Subscribe & Save.



The only major drawback is that becoming an Amazon merchant is no easy task.


For more information about Amazon FBA, check out: "5-Step Guide to Selling Trending Products on Amazon."


Dropshipping

The second most popular e-commerce _business model is dropshipping. Dropshipping is when you advertise a product for sale without actually owning the product first.


When a customer places an order, you then buy the item from the manufacturer who ships it directly to the customer.


Like any other business, your profit is the difference between what the customer paid you for the product and the price you paid to the manufacturer. The major difference is that you don't buy the inventory until after making the sale.


This model is extremely helpful for new entrepreneurs who may not have the capital to buy huge amounts of inventory.


For more information about dropshipping, check out: "The Top Dropshipping Stores on Shopify (and what they have in common)."



Print-on-Demand

Print-on-Demand is similar to dropshipping to apply mostly to intellectual property.


Let's say you have an idea for a shirt.


If you have a Print-on-Demand app on your Shopify store, you can design that shirt virtually and advertise it for sale without ever spending a dime.


If a customer buys your shirt, the Print-on-Demand company processes the transaction, prints the shirt, sends it to the customer, and pays you a commission. The Print-on-Demand even handles customer service and returns.


The obvious advantage to this _business model is that it requires almost no money to start!


For more information about starting a Print-on-Demand _business, check out: "How to Start Your Own Clothing Line on Amazon with Print-on-Demand Merchandise."



Digital Products

Digital products are intangible pieces of intellectual property that can be delivered online. They include things like:

  • Fonts

  • Design-templates

  • Stock photos (Pro Tip: Shutterstock will buy almost anything)

  • Document templates

  • Music

  • eBooks

  • Online Courses

  • Shopify store themes

Digital products are great because they can be created and shipped almost entirely for free, and they're capable of producing residual passive income.




How to Choose a Name for Your _Business

The first rule in choosing a _business name is to ensure that the URL (web address) is available. If you already have an idea for your _business name, go ahead and type it below to check if the URL is available.


If you can find a URL that has a .com extension, it will greatly improve your website's visibility.


The important thing is to find a name that already has a high monthly search volume but low competition. You can analyze these two metrics using the free Keyword Magic tool from SEMRush.com.


Once you know what you want to call your _business, you can go ahead and register your _business name with 1st Formations and officially form a company.



How to Start a _Business

Once you've determined that there is a legitimate need for your product or service, you can take the necessary steps to get your _business up and running.


However, this is no small task.


To do this correctly, you'll need a full accounting of every conceivable expense to anticipate your cash flow needs properly.


This means assembling a spreadsheet that shows all of your anticipated expenses laid out on a timeline that also includes a realistic expectation of your future sales.


In _business school, they call this document a cash flow projection, and operating a _business without one is like driving down the highway with your eyes closed.



However, if you're unfamiliar with spreadsheets, I would highly recommend taking Excel Skills for Business through Coursera; and you can enroll for FREE.


Creating and maintaining an accurate cash flow forecast is essential to running a successful _business.


Cash flow analysis is also a critical component of your _business plan.



How to Write a _Business plan

Writing a coherent and detailed _business plan will help you answer some of the more challenging questions regarding the "how" behind your _business operations.


Create a _business plan

It's also a critical element when it comes time to convince others that you're capable of executing your vision for your _business.


Here is a general outline of what your _business plan should include:


Executive Summary

The Executive Summary should be the first page of your _business plan. Think of it as an elevator pitch. It should convey all of the critical details of your _business, including the basics behind how your _business will make money.


Sometimes it's easier to save the Executive Summary for last when you know the answers to all the open questions.



Company Description

This section should include all of the basic details of your _business, including but not limited to:

  • The name and address of your business

  • The management team and their respective qualifications

  • The structure of your _business (i.e., sole proprietorship, S-corp, etc...)

  • The history of the company

The main objective here is to familiarize people with the basics.


_Business Objectives

What are your _business goals? What metrics will you use to quantify your success? Is the goal to make a certain quality of product? Or offer a certain degree of service? Or to make a particular amount of money?


Regardless of your answer, it's important to define the objective of your _business venture early.


Products & Services

What products or services do you offer? Be as detailed as possible. Help a potential investor understand why your product or service will out-compete the status quo.



Market research

Who are your customers? What are their needs? What do they all have in common?


Do your customers behave one way during certain times of the year but behave differently at other times? How much money do they make? What are their other relevant habits?


All of this information is essential for knowing how to reach your target audience.


Marketing Strategy

Once you know who your customers are, you'll need a realistic plan for reaching them.


What types of media do they consume? What are their spending habits? What criteria are important to them when they make buying decisions?


Financial Analysis

What are the numbers behind your _business? How much start-up capital do you require? How do you intend to spend it? What are your recurring expenses? How many employees do you need, and how much will you pay them?


Most importantly, at what point do you expect to turn a profit?




How To Get A _Business Loan

There is a myriad of loan providers that will help you get money to start your _business. Let's take a look at some of the industry leaders:

Each of these lenders has its own criteria for determining whether or not to give out a loan, so if at first you don't succeed, try try again!


_Business funding


Buying Insurance for Your _Business

This is America, and every business - no matter how small - needs insurance. At the very minimum, you'll need some sort of general liability umbrella to protect you against third-party claims for property damage, bodily injury, and personal and advertising injury.


Thimble.com specializes in providing insurance to small _business professionals, including, but not limited to:

  • Construction contractors

  • Landscapers

  • Cleaning services

  • Artisans and craft makers

  • Fitness professionals

  • Event organizers

  • Photographers & Videographers

  • Pet care professionals

  • Cosmetologists

  • Drone Pilots

  • Retail stores

  • Restaurants

Let's take a look at some of the basic levels of insurance that are available for small _business owners:



General Liability Umbrella

A general liability umbrella basically protects you against legal claims that could result from everyday accidents like slip & falls, flying tools, accidentally damaging a customer's property, etc...


Essentially, a general liability umbrella is the most basic level of insurance that you can buy for your _business. If you sell any type of food product, own a company vehicle, take possession of someone else's property, or have a physical location that customer's can visit, you'll need a general liability umbrella.


Even if your _business is something small like selling homemade crafts, you'll still likely need some sort of general liability umbrella to participate in local craft fairs.


Professional Liability Insurance

It's also a good idea to consider some level of professional liability insurance. Professional liability insurance - also called Errors & Omissions (E&O) - protects you against claims of financial loss as a result of providing, or failing to provide, professional services properly.


Essentially, it's an insurance policy in case you screw up on the job.


Workers' Compensation

Almost every state in the union (except Texas) requires businesses to have workers' compensation insurance. Workers' compensation insurance covers the costs associated with employees' workplace injuries and illnesses.



_Business Equipment Protection

This type of insurance is pretty self-explanatory. If your _business involves expensive equipment, its a good idea to get some type of coverage on that equipment in the event that its lost, stolen, or damaged. You can buy policies for equipment that you own, rent, or borrow.


Event Insurance

Event insurance is short-term liability coverage that protects you against third-party claims for property damage and bodily injury that can be made by either event attendees or the event venue.


If your _business involves organizing any type of large in-person gathering (farmers markets, local festivals, conventions, etc...) you'll likely need some event insurance.



Why am I spelling _Business with an Underscore?

The mystery is about to be revealed! Why on Earth have I been spelling _business with an underscore?


The answer is: Keyword Strategy.


Whenever you go into _business, it's vital to know what search phrases your potential customers are typing into Google so that you can create content around those search queries. Then, whenever someone types a specific string of words into Google, your page will be at the top of the search results page (SERP).


As I was doing my keyword research in preparation for my upcoming articles, I noticed that the phrase "_business" receives over 609,000 searches every month and has virtually no competition!


_Business rankings

So, by spelling the word "business" with an underscore and including it in my page title, description, URL, headings, meta tags, image titles, anchor text, and content, I'm able to rank for this incredibly popular keyword!


I would encourage all of you to seek similar opportunities!


SEMRush has an excellent tool called Keyword Magic that helps to identify similar opportunities.



Conclusion

Starting a _business can be difficult, but it's also an incredibly rewarding experience. If you choose to take that leap, make sure you plan ahead and make responsible decisions.


Of course, a little creative keyword strategy never hurt either!


For more information about running a _business, consider enrolling in "How to Start Your Own Business Specialization" through Coursera, offered by Michigan State University.



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