Whether you're a seasoned business owner or thinking of a new start-up business, it's always helpful to have a checklist to ensure you're not missing any crucial steps. At Keeping Your Balance, we work with a variety of clients helping them with their accounting, bookkeeping, payroll, and tax services needs. We understand that starting and running your own business can be a stressful and daunting.
1. Write a one-page business plan. You don't need to write a novel. Within this plan, you need a general outline of: your vision, mission, objectives, basic strategies, and an action plan. If you need to expand it, you can spend time later for a finance-centered business plan.
2. Decide on a budget. You want to keep your costs down as low as possible, but be realistic. Consider adding on an additional 20 percent for incidentals.
3. Decide a legal entity. Depending on where you live, you'll need to consider city or municipality licensing, state incorporation or business entity fees and more. Do your research. It may help to start as a sole proprietor and expand later.
4. Take care of the money. Keep your funds separate from your personal account. This will make it easier come tax time.
5. Get your website. Secure a URL and create an online presence.
6. Test sales. Once you have some the basics in place, begin networking and sharing your services or products in inexpensive, creative ways.
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