Building a business? No one said it would be easy, so many questions go through your head… ‘how do I start a business?’ ‘What’s my business?’ ‘Can I do this?’ STOP! Take a deep breath, don’t stress, this should be a fun and new opportunity, but it can be a lot when you have no clue how to make this dream a reality. It’s ok, you’re not on your own; in January 2020 there were 804,398 new businesses starting up, so if they can all do it, so can you!
You kept reading? Great! That means you have the motivation, now ﬁrst step, a business name. The best way to come up with your name is to think, if you were the customer, what would catch your eye? You would also want it to relate to what your website is all about; make it fun, catchy and something that stands out from the rest. Remember, a business name plays an important role in the brands growth and perception.
When it comes to pricing your product/services you need to take account of all things that go into creating your product to place a fair price for you and your customers. Be patient and know your market when setting a price, a thoughtful well-planned approach is greater. Acknowledging information such as your audience demographics and such will help you come to a better decision! Having a solid pricing strategy will help you save money and budget. Also, a huge factor is the supplier you use. While you can get your products by making it yourself or any craft shop, having a company that caters to your service is a better option as it allows you to look at the many possibilities they have for you that you may beneﬁt more from and you can compare prices! Always purchase samples ﬁrst and see what supplier is best for you. You also can gain great deals and discounts from suppliers especially as a loyal customer and building a stable relationship with your supplier will help you in the future when you want to venture out to new products or improve them. Tip: Start by requesting samples from diﬀerent suppliers!
Next Step, growing your online presence – the digital world is not new to us anymore, it’s developing every day meaning it also changes the way we market and advertise. It’s also an advantage for small businesses that do not have the means for traditional advertising! So it’s a win-win. Many small businesses start from home. Having a full working interactive website, social media, blogs, etc, allows your market to become accessible to you vise versa. You can speak directly to your customers now, share behind the scenes of your
product making, or online campaigns, upcoming launches and have people from all over the world, diﬀerent backgrounds and ages, even future investors looking at your business. Building your online presence lets your audience get to know more about your brand and the product/services you oﬀer in a personal way since it’s all in your hands! On top of that, you can research your competitors and get inspired. By deciding what platform is right for you, it will be easier to expand your audience and build relationships. Pay attention to trends in social media to stay updated within the industry and what the customers are looking for. Social media is a great way to accumulate loyal customers, customers now can take a role in promoting by just writing reviews, sharing your business with friends and followers, and follow and post about new launches! Having a stable relationship online with your audience is a free and eﬀective way of promoting and selling.
Tip: Use social media built-in interactive tools!
A very simple and easy step is that you must include your contact information. Why? And what does that involve? Don’t worry, it’s easy. Make sure you have a work email set up and include other contact information, such as phone number, other social media and your website URL. The reason for this is so that you are giving more options for how people can contact you for any issues, queries or concerns, which gives you that helpful and professional approach. Also having your website and other social media information available gives a nice, easy and eﬀective way to encourage them to check out your business and again, give oﬀ a professional image.
Tip: Make sure you include your contact information on your business cards and website.
Customer service is the key to every business, but how do you succeed in achieving positive customer service? There are many steps you can take to do this. First of all, make sure you have an approachable and friendly attitude, as this will help you create great positive relationships with new and previous customers. Another great way is to showcase your customers’ comments and opinions on your products and services. If they can leave you a review, this will then help potential customers to be more informed and conﬁdent with purchasing from your business, and in turn help to improve your business. “Your most unhappy customers are your best source of learning”.
Tip: Creating customer relationships start with a smile!
The business world is highly competitive, this goes without saying, so why should a small business think about product packaging? Surely it won’t matter as long as our packages are secure and get delivered to A to B… so is custom packaging worth the investment?
Well, product packaging surprisingly takes part in a pivotal role in the selling process, same as marketing! High-end brands tend to have bright and bold coloured statement packaging that everyone can recognise and straightway perceive the brand and their product/services, for example bright yellow shopping bags = Selfridges. A simple statement can do so much for your business! Packaging is one way where retailers can stand out and be distinctive from their competitors. An opportunity to charm their customers and give them a touch of personal and creative experience to connect and appreciate the business brand and your eﬀorts. Many small businesses have caught many customers’ eyes through their creative and skilful custom packages, which encourage customers to take pictures and upload to social media, we all love aesthetically pleasing things to share! It’s all about the customer experience! Share a piece of your company.
Tip: Make it memorable and cohesive to your brand!
Once you have the knowledge of packaging ready to go, you also need to know about postage and delivery. Firstly, workout how much your products would be to post and make sure to include that information to your customers, so they are aware that the amount you charge for postage and packaging will not be included in the price product. Make sure you research the cheapest but best recommended company to use as a delivery service.
A helpful tip is to do ‘sign-for’ deliveries to make sure the customers are receiving their orders. Also include tracking information for the customers, as it is a great way to create more trust in your relationship with your customers and helps to make sure your deliveries are successful. Educate yourself! Make sure you know all aspects of delivery this will help you to answer any issues or enquiries from customers.
“Building a good customer experience does not happen by accident. It happens by design.”
Advertising is a key to growing your business and promoting your product/service. Having a strong commitment to advertising helps you grow word of mouth, raises your target demographics awareness and changes the perceptions of your business if required. Advertising provides instant feedback and solutions and increases traﬃc to your business! A simple, eﬀective advert can not only generate many buyers but also increase your visibility within your market. Thoughtfully promoting your business/product in a way that is a “solution” to your customers’ needs and wants will make it simple to persuade customers that your product is right for them.
Tip: Show instead of telling. People believe what they see!
How do you create the right workspace? And how does it help? Choosing a place in your home where it has nice lighting and a calming atmosphere will help when concentrating and creating your products. It’s also very helpful if you have a nice organised set up of everything you need, so when it comes to doing customers orders and keeping track of your supplies, you have easy and visible access to the products.
“If you want light to come into your life, You need to stand where it is shining.”
Now not every business needs a team, it can be a one-person job from home or starts with collaboration with a few people with the same goal. But some small business owners may feel the next step for their business is building a team to maintain steadiness and wider growth. Bringing a group of people together across your business fosters creativity and innovation whilst building a good reliable relationship. Each individual can bring something new to the table allowing new challenges, opportunities, and distinctive skill sets and not forgetting a new and stronger network! Recruiting the right people gains professional development for your business, as you have people professionalised in diﬀerent sectors. Teamwork provides greater ﬂexibility in the workplace.
Tip: Clarify roles, responsibilities, and accountabilities.
Following these steps will give you that push you need and help put the puzzle pieces of starting a business into place.
So, are you ready to be the boss of your own business?