New Year, New Me, New Business?
A recent report by Start Up Muster showed almost 20% of all business start-ups in Australia were founded in the month of January. Why, you must ask? Perhaps our fascination with new years resolutions comes into play.
January is the time to not only reflect on the past year, but to also think about where you want to see yourself in the new year; your goals and objectives for the year. For many, this means finally following their dream of starting a business.
But before you walk in to work on Monday morning and yell “I quit!” to the entire office, you should consider the following:
So you’ve got an idea, but are you aware of the different business structures available to you? Will you operate as a sole trader, partnership or company? Each business structure has different legal requirements so it is important you do your research. Ask yourself – are you providing a product or a service? Will you be importing or exporting goods or manufacturing? How will you be selling your product or service (retail, online, or both)? These are all factors that will impact your business operations and structure.
Do your research
You’ve now started to think about your business structure; but will it work in the current market place and economy? Is there a need for your product or service? Will you have people who will purchase your product or use your service?
The first step is to do your research. Have a look to see if there is anything similar to your aspiring business out there. Research your competitors – how are they performing? What is their unique selling proposition (USP) and how will you differentiate yourself apart from them?
Who will your customers be? Will you be focusing on a particular niche market or will your product/service appeal to a broader market? Define your target market – their demographics, their interests, their behaviour. Try to think like the consumer. Figure out what their ‘problem’ is, and see how you can go about in solving that problem with your product/service.
Lastly, but perhaps most importantly, research the industry you will be operating in. How has it been performing over the last few years? Has there been a period of growth or decline? What are the current trends and who are the most important or largest players? Are there any industry standards, performance requirements or benchmarks you should be aware of?
Not sure where to find this information or simply don’t have the time? We can provide a consultant to assist you in this area.
Create a business plan
Right – you’ve done your research and your business idea appears feasible. Now it is time to put everything down on paper and develop a business plan.
A business plan is an in-depth document that details your business structure and information as well as your goals and objectives and the strategies needed to achieve them. A business plan will act as a blueprint for your business and should always be the first step when developing a business. Once established, the business plan should be used to further provide operational and financial direction.
To receive your very own Business Plan in an editable Word Document format click here.
Once you’ve drafted up your business plan, why not discuss it with one of our experienced consultants who can provide further insight and experience to help you on your journey.
The next step
When you feel you are ready to put your business plan into action, head over to business.gov.au for tips on how to apply for an Australian Business Number (ABN), how to register your business name and trade mark, and for further information on the steps you should take to start your business.