This is a guest post by Brooke Peterson, owner of MyBestFurryFriend.com.
The American dream is to be your own boss and own your own business. Anyone who has thought about starting a business finds that there are so many things to think about and so many things to do. There are many publications on the steps to create your business entity from filing the legal documents, getting your tax id and determining the type of entity you need to set-up. But, some of us, who have little or no creativity, need help in determining the product or service our business will provide.
This article is targeting those of us who wants ideas. What do we need to think about when trying to decide the type of business we can run, afford and stay interested in? There are several questions to consider:
- What is my passion in life? Can I find a service or product that relates to that passion?
- Is my passion something someone else will purchase?
- Do I want to produce a product for my business or market a product for another company?
- What are my skills? Can I be a manager, a creator, a marketer or all if I need to be?
- Can I afford the costs of starting a business?
- Will I have employees or do I want employees?
- Do I want a small business to supplement my income or do I want to make this a business that I hope to grow and grow?
To get started, get a paper and pen. You must write everything down. Then look over your notes, something in those notes will strike a cord. List all of the things you love to do in your life. Think of things that keep your attention, things that make you happy, things that are in your life every day. If you are creative and are good with your hands think of things you can make. If you have a good eye for decorating, good math skills, or are talented in technology, think about all of your skills a build a business upon those skills.
Once you have found something you believe is a good idea you must verify that it is something that is marketable.
Your test market will be with your family and friends. If it is a good product or service your ideas will be easily passed by word of mouth and the interest will translate into new sales. If it is not, the reverse will be true and you will not have sales.
You must consider a few things now: Do I have the ability to mass produce my own product? Do I have the space to store items I purchase to sell? Or will I be able to have the product I sell stored by the company I purchase from?
Depending on the size and type of business you decide on, you may need to consider hiring employees. If you have a baby blanket business you may want to have others do the sewing and you do the selling and managing. If you have a technology consulting business you may need extra people to manage several clients. If you’ve decided to sell another company’s product you may want others to box and ship the items for you. Of course, you will have costs associated with your business.
Be sure to determine the dollars you want to spend on this new business. The start up costs can surprise you, from the legal filings for your business name to the new business bank account costs. And, of course, the costs of any materials needed if you are the manufacturer or if you plan to purchase the products you will then sell. Do your homework.
If your dream is to build a big business or to have a small operation out of your home, it is your dream. It all takes work, big or small. Don’t limit yourself, think positively and work, work, work. This will be the most rewarding adventure you have ever taken. Take it from me, I did it!!
Brooke Peterson, owner of BIP Enterprises, LLC dba My Best Furry Friend, the maker of the most precious baby blankets on the planet.