20 Practical Tips On How To Start A Business From The Experts
Trying to figure out how to start a business on your own can be daunting. Starting a business can be overwhelming. There are so many questions that it can be overwhelming.
As business owners, we’ve all been there. The ever-expanding to-do list, the uncertainty of “what works” and “what doesn’t” and ALL of the resources touching on the topic can put us into idea overload.
We’ll break it down for you…
The expert advice laid out in this article will be an invaluable resource for you going forward; you can refer back to it in the future and you will read each piece of advice again and it will feel new, and have new meaning, as you progress on your journey of becoming a successful entrepreneur.
So, without further ado, here are our 20 tips on how to start a business (and grow it) in today’s cutthroat world.
Tip #1: Find And Use The Right Tools
“There are a million ways to do everything. Prioritize your time and work accordingly. Many times, finding the right tool can help make your task substantially easier and more efficient.
Finding the right tools can be difficult. There are a ton of resources on the web, however we happen to use a few tools here that we think are absolutely vital as far as online businesses go. These tools are mostly focused on helping us monitor and improve our SEO, social media, and tracking efforts to help measure how we are doing.
A few tools we use every day here at WorkFromHomeHQAustralia.com are:
- Thrive Themes Content Builder
- Ahrefs Backlink Tool
- Micrositemasters Keyword Ranking Tool (Awesome)
- ...many others
Expert Tip On How To Start A Business: "Stick to a niche - don't spread yourself too thin."
Bio: Jeffrey Nelson runs the site here at WorkFromHomeHQAustralia.com and is passionate about helping people uncover their potential and freeing them to create the lifestyle they desire.
Tip #2: Don't Spread Yourself Too Thin
“Stick to a niche. A million other sites and businesses exist that spread themselves so thin that they get lost among others, however if you find a niche and stick to it people will begin to recognize your passion and commitment to that particular area.”
Expert Tip On How To Start A Business: "Stick to a niche - don't spread yourself too thin."
Bio: Nicole runs the site RetailMinded.com where she writes about the retail business. She has been seen in a ton of impressive publications including Forbes, NBC, Smart Retailer and more.
Tip #3: Being An Entrepreneur Isn't Easy
“I’ve started several businesses. Working for yourself, working without a guaranteed income (even that is not all that guaranteed today) is not for everyone. Starting a business probably means several years of 70-90 hour work weeks. It is sometimes having to do it all.
It is being responsible for the lives of the employees and contractors you bring onto your team. There will be exhausting days when everyone but you gets paid before you, and there is more month at the end of the money. Often you have to take a giant leap and build your wings as you fly.
This is not for everyone, maybe less than one in 50. Not everyone wants to work that hard, risk it all, deal with uncertainty and fear, handle the stress on the job and at home to succeed as an entrepreneur. Of the things I learned in business here are a couple of quotes.“
Expert Tip On How To Start A Business: "Being an entrepreneur isn't easy - it's hard work."
Bio: Bruce is a real estate professional in the Atlanta area that has successfully negotiated over 4,000 real estate transactions. Find out more about him on his site: locationlocationlocation.com.
Tip #4: It's A Marathon Not A Sprint
“The world of business is unpredictable. We aren’t all born knowing how to build a business. We hear all the success stories of people getting rich over night or becoming the next Mark Zuckerberg. What you don’t hear about nearly as much are the struggles, long-hours, and dead ends that generally lie between the starting and finish lines.
Building a business takes time. It’s a momentum game. Things may seem to start slow but as your business grows it starts to have a compounding effect. If you start something and aren’t where you want to be after a few weeks, or months, give it time. As long as you have a viable business model and are executing properly you will eventually get there.”
How To Start A Business Tip: It's A Marathon Not A Spring - Building A Business Time
Tip #5: Reinvest, Reinvest, Reinvest
“My biggest regret is not reinvesting back into the business as aggressively as I should have. It’s easy to start enjoying the passive income and let go but essentially – money makes money. Pour back as much money as you can to the business and you’ll grow much faster and that’ll not only make you a better business person down the line, it’ll also keep you more motivated.“
Expert Business Tip: Reinvest your earnings to maximize growth and sustain motivation.
Bio: Karl Kangur is an internet marketing geek with over five years of experience in many different verticals, languages and countries. His passions include SEO, PPC, display advertising and getting results. You can see more of his work over at monetizepros.com.
Tip #6: Start Now, Practice Often
“I wish we would have started this project earlier. We always thought too much and planed too much, but hesitated to take the first step. Actually the most precious experience comes from practice.”
Expert Business Tip: Start Now - Practice And Learn As You Go.
Tip #7: Clarify Your Vision
“It’s actually surprising how many people start out to build businesses without a clear vision. They have a rough idea of what they want to do, and a few ideas on how to get there, but not a rock-solid vision of where the company is going. This creates a whole host of problems.
If you have that clear plan, it makes decision making much easier. Without it, sometimes it can be pretty hard to decide which way to go.”
Expert Business Tip: Have A Clear Vision. Remind Yourself Regularly What That Is And Stick To It.
Tip #8: Don't Let Fear Hold You Back
“I think one thing I’m exceptionally good at (now) is execution. When I started my online business, I was SERIOUS about making a career change, so I knew I couldn’t let fear (which is what most excuses manifest themselves as) hold me back. I just had to do. And even if every step wasn’t perfect, it was an action that I took and then learned something from.”
Expert Business Tip: Learn To Execute - Don't Let Fear Hold You Back.
Tip #9: Get Really Good At One Thing
“Avoid spreading yourself too thin. There’s a 100 different ways to market an online business but if you want to succeed in today’s crowded online world you have to focus on being really good at a few things.
If not you end up being kind of good at a bunch of things but not really good at anything, and kind of good is not going to get you anywhere in the competitive online world.”
Expert Business Tip: Being Pretty Good At Several Things Isn't As Effective As Getting Really Good At One Thing.
Tip #10: Control Your Cash
“Cash flow is so important in business. You can have the strongest business model, best vision, and great team but if you can’t keep the cash coming it won’t last.
Make a budget, stick to it, and revisit it often to modify it if need be. If something falls outside of that budget, create a business case for it. Sometimes it make sense to change plans, but there should always be a reason.
Controlling costs is another important note. If something isn’t vital or isn’t adding to your bottom line, get rid of it. Use the 80/20 rule on costs and you’ll quickly find yourself leading a leaner, more efficient organization.”
Expert Business Tip: Control Cash Flow - Use the 80/20 Rule To Get Costs Under Control And Stick To A Budget.
Tip #11: Don't Be A Ghost
“Don’t be a ghost. If you’re a business owner/blogger/influencer, and you haven’t taken the time to connect and collaborate with other influencers in your niche, that’s a very bad thing.
Reach out, say hello, work together. Not only will this help accelerate your business’ growth, but you might just end up making a few life long friends too.”
Expert Business Tip: Don't Be A Ghost. Build Relationships And Collaborate With Others.
Tip #12: Test And Document Everything
“One thing many new entrepreneurs do is fail to understand what is working and what isn’t. While it seems pretty simple, when you’re “in the trenches” of running a business there are so many things happening at once it’s sometimes hard to understand where your big wins are coming from (and why).
The answer: test everything. Do A/B tests or just simply look at data and take your best guess as to what happened and then move in that direction. Monitor the results. If it’s doing what you thought, great, if not then try something else.
Keep this going until you have really fine-tuned the process and are confident you understand it very well.”
Expert Business Tip: Test Everything. Test, Document Results, Analyze, Repeat. Keep Going Until You Are Sure You're Fully Optimized.
Tip #13: It's Important To Make A Plan
“Know what you are getting into before you begin – Most online companies are based on an idea, but as they say, an idea without a plan is just a wish. A product/service that is being released to the public should always have proper go to market strategies.
Make sure that you have a strategic plan from the beginnings that you can properly execute. Once you execute your plan, do not let anyone take away your focus, do not give up, and do not allow failure. Continue to push until the market sees what you have to offer.”
Expert Business Tip: Make A Plan. An Idea Without A Plan Is Just A Wish.
Tip #14: Focus On Your Target Market
“As you begin to grow your business, stay focused on your target market. Do your market research to know who your customer is and what their needs are. Believe in your product/service and be passionate.
Be adaptable and don’t be afraid to change with the times and needs of the market. Starting and growing a business is tough, but if you believe in yourself and your product, it is worth it. Push through the tough times and nothing will be more rewarding!”
Expert Business Tip: Stay Focused On Your Target Market. Understand Your Customer And Their Needs.
Tip #15: Find A Mentor
“This can sound corny in some circles, but a mentor will help a lot. Mentors can flatten the learning curve in a huge way. They can show you exactly what works, and what doesn’t work, and get you started off in the right direction. Finding a mentor may be a bit challenging, but ultimately it stems from finding someone successful in the field and asking them.
Successful people are busy and, well, successful. It may be a tough sell so give them something. Can you help them with something? Find a value proposition they can’t resist and pitch it like your dreams depend on it.”
Expert Business Tip: Get A Mentor And Get To Where You Want To Go Faster.
Tip #16: Research, Taxes, and Persistence
“My first piece of advice for starting out a small business is to do your market research first. Ensure that the business you are starting is something that people need, especially if you want to start out local. Don’t plan to have a snow blowing business if you live in south Florida (extreme but you understand).
For me I saw a large number of small businesses who needed help with marketing but couldn’t afford an agency or large firm in addition the ones that did have a marketing person on hand, their efforts and plateaued and they needed an outsider’s point of few to help.
My second piece of advice is to budget every last time and talk to a CPA/CFP early on. Taxes for small business owners are a nightmare if handled incorrectly or ignored so it’s best to game plan early.
Lastly, don’t give up. Being an entrepreneur is like a roller coaster and there will be down points when all your efforts may seem hopeless but you have to remember the highs and keep pushing on because the highs are worth more than the lows. So don’t give up, even when things get tough.”
Expert Business Tip: Do Market Research, Figure Out Your Taxes, Never Give Up... Wise words.
Tip #17: Pick A Great Name
“My biggest tip for people just starting out is to research your business name.
This includes (at the very minimum) making sure that no one holds a Trademark for the name you’re thinking of, doing a Google search to see what comes up for that name already (even if it’s another business that isn’t your direct competition), and making sure there is nothing that could be construed as offensive with the name (including acronyms and abbreviations).“
Expert Business Tip: Pick A Great Name That Will Be Help Brand Your Business As It Grows.
Tip #18: Do A Self-Inventory
“Not everyone has what it takes to start a company. That’s not to say that your idea is not brilliant. It just means that you may not have the personality traits to handle launching a company of your own.
Before investing any time or resources, evaluate yourself and see if you have some of the typical traits of an entrepreneur. Are you motivated, able to adapt and confident? Are you resilient?”
Expert Business Tip: Know Thyself. Do A Self-Inventory Prior To Launching. Do You Have What It Takes? What's Lacking?
Tip #19: Create A Blog
“Create a blog and update it regularly (ideally at least once a week) with new, quality content. In addition to showcasing your expertise for website visitors, blogging regularly is a fantastic way to increase your search engine optimization (SEO) and website traffic.
Click here to read more about how to come up with topics, write your blog posts and make sure your posts are seen.“
Expert Business Tip: Create A Blog. A Blog Is A Great Way To Get Exposure, Traffic, and SEO Benefits. Do it.
Tip #20: Make Social Responsibility a Priority
“Aligning your business with a social cause/s has never been more important, so take the time to create a program that’s authentic and true to your brand. A strategic social responsibility program will enhance company culture while giving back to the community and the world.
Incorporating a giving program can also help differentiate you from your competitors and help grow your business. Start small and aim to inspire. Here are 10 tips for making giving part of your business: http://www.inman.com/2016/08/
Expert Business Tip: Social Responsibility Is Important - Make It Part Of Your Business Plan.
What Did These 20 Tips Teach You?
Learning how to start a business is easy… actually doing it isn’t as easy. These tips have taught you a few things that are very important, here’s the recap:
- Understand what you're getting into and work hard to achieve your vision.
- Find the right tools and people to compliment your abilities. Focus on one core competency and let others fill in around you.
- Guard your cash. It's the lifeblood of your organization.
- Create a marketing plan, Blog, write, promote, and socialize. Jump in with both feet.
- Don't forget about the administrative stuff. It's part of the game.
- Don't get discouraged! Keep at it. Be persistent. You will get there.
- It's not all about the money. Give back. Make social responsibility a part of your business in some way.