The Ultimate Guide to Starting a New Business in 2018
- December 14, 2017
- Posted by: Quarles Business and Financial Strategists
- Category: Business Advice
Do you have a brilliant idea that you want to capitalise on and develop into a business?
It is one thing to have a good idea, but it is entirely another matter to take that idea and turn it into a business and a successful business at that.
Do you think you have what it takes to make your business idea a success?
All good businessmen know that one of the keys to success it asking for help in matters you do not have expertise and experience in. That is where we come in. We are here to help you get your business on its feet and moving in the right direction.
Take a look at our ultimate guide to starting a new business in 2018 and your business will surely be on its way to success in no time.
Do Your Market Research for Your Business Plan
First things first, you should never jump into any business venture without being thoroughly prepared, and part of preparation is research.
You need to examine the following:
- Your customers
- Your competitors
- Your industry
The aim of this research is to have a comprehensive understanding of exactly what your potential clients want, who your competitors are and the market your business will enter into. This enables you to make an educated decision about if your business will be as successful as you think it would be, rather than just going on what you think is a good idea.
Some people use independent survey companies or Google Survey who collect information on demographics to give them an understanding of their target market. Others take on the hands-on approach and complete their own market research.
However, whichever way you go about it, making sure you have a sound understanding of the needs and challenges of your target market will mean you are better prepared for your businesses launch.
Take a look at The Best Ways to Do Market Research for Your Business Plan for more research tips.
Choose the Right Business Structure in Australia
It may not seem like it, but deciding on your business structure in Australia is a crucial step in setting up a new business. Depending on which structure you choose it can have impacts on who can make decisions, affect how profits and losses are shared, there may be legal implications and costs along with tax advantages & disadvantages.
The four most popular business structures in Australia are:
- Sole Trader – Is where you are the sole owner and hold all responsibility for the business
- Partnership – Is where a number of people or entities run a business together.
- Company – Is where the business is a legal entity separate from its owners
- Trust – Is where the business is an entity that holds property or income for the benefit of others.
Not sure what business structure is best for your potential business? Check out the ATO website for more help with choosing your business structure.
How to Write a Business Plan
Now you have done your research and know how your business is going to be run the next step is planning. The first part of your planning should be writing your business plan.
A business plan is essentially a formal document that outlines your businesses goals, reasons they are attainable and how you plan to achieve those goals. It can be intimidating especially if you have never written one. However, it does not have to be.
Just download this simple FREE Business Plan Template Guide
Developing Marketing Strategies and Plans
The second step in the planning stage is completing a marketing plan. Your marketing plan pulls together the information you have gathered in the research stage, it then outlines your marketing strategy.
Your marketing plan should cover the overall direction and tactics for your marketing and your goals specifically in relation to your businesses marketing goals.
Again, if you are not sure where to start when writing your marketing guide, just take a look at this FREE Marketing Plan Template
Calculating Your Costs When Starting a Business
Now you are halfway towards setting up your business. The next step is for you to calculate your businesses costs.
Be pretty ruthless in this step; we are not looking for best case scenarios if anything you are looking at works case scenarios. The aim is to understand the set-up costs associated with your business and be adequately prepared so you can work out if you need financing and if so, how much.
There’s nothing worse than being halfway through your businesses set up and getting hit with foreseeable but still unexpected costs that you do not have sufficient funds to cover. Avoid being caught out by downloading this FREE START-UP COSTING TEMPLATE
How to Choose and Use Financial Tracking Tools
One of the most common things that lead to the failure of a new small business is lack of financial understanding. It is understandable that in the early days you may opt to handle your businesses finances in an effort to minimise costs. However, this does not excuse poor finance management.
It is your responsibility as a business owner to either have the right financial tracking tools in place to track your profits, losses, sales, stock & cash flow or otherwise hire a professional to do so.
If you are opting to complete your books yourself for now make use of helpful templates like the ones below.
Find Out Which Registrations You Need for Your Business
Depending on what market sector your business will operate in and what products or services you plan to seel there may be a variety of different registrations you will need. However, no matter the type of business you plan to run, all businesses operating in Australia require an Australian Business Number (ABN) and Tax File Number (TFN).
The Australian Business and Licences Information Service (ABLIS) is an invaluable resource when determining exactly which registrations, licences and permits you require to operate.
How to Make Sure Your Business is Insured Correctly
Insurance is something that most people try their best to avoid dealing with in their personal life, and it is no different with most business owners. Most owners set up the minimum insurance with a provider but might not have done the necessary research prior.
The industry your business will be operating in will heavily influence exactly which and how many insurances you will require. Some insurances you may need to purchase are:
- Workers Compensation Insurance
- Motor Vehicle Third Party Personal Insurance
- Building & Contents Insurance
- Assets & Revenue Insurance
- Public Liability Insurance
- Professional Indemnity Insurance
- Products Liability Insurance
- Personal Accident, Illness & Life Insurance
- Income Protection Insurance
Rather than risk being underinsured or missing a required insurance, many business owners opt to have their insurance arranged by a broker. This saves them the time and hassle of organising numerous insurances. Also if you have a good broker they should be able to save you a little bit of money as well.
How to Protect Your Intellectual Property the Right Way
How long did you spend thinking of the perfect name for your business?
If you were like most other businesses, you went through a number of ideas before you got to the perfect one. How would feel if you were halfway through your business start-up only to find another local competitor had chosen to use that same name.
This is why you need to register your business or company name & domain name. This does not automatically give you the right to use the name as a trademark, so you may also need to consider registering the name as a trademark if you intend to take action against illegal users.
Similarly, you need to protect your business idea. Because at the end of the day that is what’s going to be making you money and no one will pay for something they can get elsewhere. If you have a unique business idea, you should look into protecting your intellectual property (IP).
Your intellectual property includes:
- Design rights
- Domain names.
As you can see there is a lot to think about before jumping in and starting a business; we hope this guide has been a useful resource for you while you are on the journey of starting up a business.
If there’s anything, you would like a little more assistance with or if you have any questions that we have not covered, please get in touch with one of our Business Advisors Perth.
We would love to help you on your road to success.