Checklist to Starting a Business

So, you’re thinking about starting a business! Congratulations! It’s an exciting time to start a business; there’s no question about that! However, before you jump in with both feet, it’s essential to start your business in the right way.

If you’re not sure about the steps needed to start a business, read on! We’ve put together a checklist of steps that you need to follow to ensure your business starts out in a positive way!

Lack of research, poor planning, and a few oversights here and there can cause a business to fail. So, use our list to get your business off to a great start!


Checklist to Start a Business

Here is our list of things you need to do before starting your business. Bear in mind these steps are not detailed; however, we let you know where to find the information you need and the specialists who can help you along the way. Let’s get started!


1. Research Your Business Idea

The first step is to research your business idea. This is a crucial step before you invest a lot of money and time. Research helps you determine whether your business idea is a good one and if it’s going to be successful. So, consider the following items on our list to effectively research your business idea:

Examine the market and industry you’d like to enter.

  • Is the market sustainable, growing, or in decline? Is the market underserved or saturated?
  • Is there enough demand or a real need for your product?

Analyse the competition:

  • What does the competition do well?
  • Are there areas where they’re failing?
  • Can you realistically compete with them?

Research potential customers (your target audience):

  • Where are they located?
  • How can you reach them?
  • Analyse their demographics to gain complete insights into the target audience

The goal of this first step is to see if your business idea is a good idea. You can also test your business idea by conducting surveys and through focus groups. You may consider asking friends, family, and colleagues for their honest input about your business idea.

Remember that even negative or critical feedback can be helpful when it comes to improving your business idea, products, services, and more.


2. Create a Business Plan

Writing a business plan is another crucial step to your business idea, especially if you need to reach out to investors, banks, and lenders for financing. These experts expect to see a detailed outline of your business idea, which shows what you plan on doing and how you’ll achieve your goals.

In addition, you may need to include financial projections for the startup and running costs. These should be illustrated with complete transparency and be able to sustain your business idea.

Even if you don’t seek financial assistance for your startup, creating a business plan is a good idea. The plan keeps you organised and on track. It’s also useful to help you gauge progress as you go through the process of starting your business.


3. Choose a Business Name

The name of your business is very important, and it’s worth taking the time to find the right name for your company. It may take several brainstorming sessions to come up with several names. And that’s OK. The process can even be fun, though it can equally be a frustrating exercise. However, the process will help you find the right name for your startup.

As you consider the company’s name, think about the products and services you’ll offer. Think, too, of the values and mission of your business, the market, and the target audience. These can also help you find a name for the business.


4. Choose a Legal Structure

In the UK, you can choose from four different legal business structures, including:

  • Sole trader
  • Private company limited by shares
  • Private company limited by guarantees
  • Limited liability partnership

Each of these business structures comes with its own implications. So, it’s necessary to seek out the assistance of an accountant to help you choose the proper legal structure for your company.


5. Set Up a Business Bank Account

Next, it’s essential to set up a business bank account for your company. This is the best way to manage your business and personal finances. It’s never a good idea to use your personal bank account when you’re starting a business unless you’ll be a small sole trader. Otherwise, keeping business and personal finances in the same bank account may complicate your finances.

So, start your company in the right way by setting up a business bank account from the very beginning.


6. Finance Your Business Startup

You’ll also want to consider how to finance your business seriously. You’ll need to include startup costs, expenses, and more. You may be able to self-fund your business, and that’s OK. However, if you’re planning a larger entity, you will probably require financial assistance.

There are plenty of ways to fund your new business, including :

  • Personal savings
  • Borrowing money from friends and family
  • Small business loans
  • Credit cards (with 0% interest rates)
  • Investors
  • Crowdfunding
  • Government loans and grants


7. Create a Website & Social Media Accounts

You’ll also need to create a website and social media accounts for your new business. You can take a look at competitors’ websites to see what their sites look like. Don’t copy these sites; however, it’s OK to make notes on what you like, what works, and what you’d like to have on your own site. Remember, you’ll also need to buy a domain name for the website.

Social media accounts are also essential, especially for new businesses. They make it easy to connect with potential customers, promote your business, and even connect with business partners. It’s essential to keep your accounts up to date and only post information that’s relevant to your company and target audience.


8. Buy Business Insurance

It’s also imperative to buy business insurance to protect you and your business from claims made by customers and others. Look for an insurance broker that offers business insurance for your particular business. They can help you find the right policy at the right price.


9. Business Software & Data Protection 

Finally, you’ll need to consider what types of software your business will need to operate smoothly and effectively. At the very least, it’s a good idea to consider cloud services such as Google Workplace or Microsoft 365. These services are available 24/7 and can be accessed from anywhere you have Internet access.

And remember that it’s essential to find ways to manage and protect company data. It may start with antivirus for all company devices and go up from there. So, you may need to check with an IT professional to ask what your business may need to keep data safe and secure.


Summing It Up

So, there you have it! These are the steps you can take to develop your business idea! Following our checklist can ensure your business starts out on the right foot and becomes a huge success!

Our Office Space have everything your business needs to thrive! Contact us for more information.

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