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It’s sad when small businesses crumble, because most of the times, the people behind them invested not only money, but time and effort and they put their whole heart in it, hoping they would make it big. Unfortunately I have seen a few of my close friends’ small businesses go down and I have talked to them at lengths about what they thought could have caused it. Almost all of them said they wished they had been better prepared! I’ve learned from their mistakes and I’m going to tell you some common mistakes when starting a business so that you may have a better chance at this.
Not Tapping into Online Marketing
You need as much help as you can get, especially when it comes to marketing, so a few good marketing tips always come in handy, but no matter what approach you decide to take, your business has to be online! And it needs to be all over the place, especially that there are so many ways to get your business out there free of charge: Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+. People will start to take notice and your business will start growing.
Not Doing Your Market Research
Unfortunately, there is an increasing number of people who decide to start their business without doing any market research at all! And then when it crumbles, they act surprised! You must test your products, your services before you start your business – only then can you have an idea if people will actually be interested. Just because you are, doesn’t mean the whole world has to.
Not Doing What You Love
This may be like a piece of advice you would give to someone who recently finished high school, but it’s not – it’s probably the most important piece of advice you need in this life. But this could very well go downhill if you’re not good at what you love. Our advice is do what you love AND what you’re good at!
Not Making a Business Plan
A good idea alone does not translate into a good business. What transforms a good idea into a successful business is a good business plan. Without one you’re going into battle with your pajamas and a stick! If you don’t know how to write a business plan, you can either learn or hire someone to do it for you. You won’t regret it, I promise.
Ignoring the Competition
You think that if you choose to ignore the competition, it will just go away and you’ll never hear from it ever again?! Wrong! If you ignore it, it can basically destroy your new business and this is a common mistake when starting a new business. Learn as much as you can about your competition, know what they’re doing all the time and even get inspired. If you have a store that sells nails, then you need to know everything you can about all the stores that sell nails around you so that you know how to attract more customers than they are.
Also, you will need to understand what market saturation is and you need to understand it well and this means research, but to keep it simple, if the street you want to open your nail business on has five more nail stores, then maybe you need to reconsider wither your location or your business focus.
Not Making Sure You Have Enough Money
Put aside more money than what you’ve estimated you need for starting your business. Make sure you have some put aside just for emergency situations, because as we all know, something is always bound to come up and mess up all your plans. Did you know that 93% of businesses will not start making money when they open and a large percentage of all new businesses will not make significant money for years!
Not Knowing How to Delegate
You can’t do everything all by yourself! You can’t be the boss, the supplier, the vendor and the assistant, and the earlier you realize that, the better it will be for your business. Even if your business is a small one, you simply can’t do everything and you shouldn’t. You should save some time to think about the big picture and relax. It may be hard to start delegating, at first, and that is why it is paramount to surround yourself with competent people whom you trust.
I hope you won’t make these common mistakes when starting a new business and I wish you all the luck in the world! Success is something all entrepreneurs want and unfortunately it can’t be achieved just by working hard. Luck has something to do with it, but education is key. Learn from people who have succeeded, learn about the business you want to start – educate yourself! Only then will you have a chance in this tough market!