Taking the Leap Into Small Business: 8 Steps

If you're thinking about starting your small business in Denver, you're not alone. Last year, the state topped the nation's small business growth according to a report by Paychex | IHS Markit Small Business Employment Watch.

This year, an analysis by LendingTree found that 69.4 percent of businesses in metro Denver are turning a profit. This means you're in the right place, at the right time, to turn your small business idea into reality. But where do you start?

Do a lot of research.

Answer questions like — Who is your product or service for? How is the competition? What will make your business unique? You will need a comprehensive understanding of your product and the market you're jumping into. Take your time and learn everything you can.

Create a detailed, but doable business plan.

It doesn't have to be minutely thorough, but it must have the ability to provide your business its short-term and long-term direction, especially if you're planning to attract financial investors on the onset or in the future. It also has to be flexible enough to survive issues down the road. A good business plan is dynamic and adaptable to change. 

Work out your finances.

No matter how small your business seems, setting it up and keeping it running will always entail cost. In the beginning, you will have to consider your starting capital. This should include everything from your inventory to the costs of processing your permits. Your financial plan should also account for your running costs before your business starts turning a profit. 

Fund your business.

There are a number of ways to do this. You can get small business loans or grants. You can look for investors or try crowdfunding. Or you can also use your savings. Learn more about these options and weigh which of them is best for you. Remember, you may try a combination of options.

Process your paperwork.

Depending on your location and the nature of your business, setting up your small business may involve less or more paperwork than others. Ideally, you've already covered this on your research. Make sure all your permits are in order before you open. While you're at it, don't forget to name your business!

Hire or don't.

Hiring employee

Based on your business plan and financial situation, you have already decided whether extra pairs of hands will help you at this stage. If you're unsure, you may also consider outsourcing parts of the work to independent contractors. If you're set on going solo, keep in mind that advice and support from loved ones can help as much as actual work — and they're free! 

Consider going online.

Recent studies by Global Ecommerce found that US consumers will spend $586.92 billion on ecommerce this year. That number has grown by 14.0 percent since 2018. This trend will very likely continue. Some products are easier to market online than others, but having an online presence can always give your business a boost. Consider outsourcing the ins-and-outs of your website. There are a lot of companies that offer services like web design, social media marketing, SEO, and PPC in Denver

Keep at it. 

Realistically speaking, half of small businesses don't make it past their fifth anniversaries. But don't let this get you down. Aside from time, effort, and money, patience and determination are equally important investments. Follow your business plan and pour your heart into your work. Good luck!

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