Tips for Starting a Business From Home

Posted by Samantha Miller on Oct 15, 2019 2:22:13 PM

start a business from homeMany successful businesses originally started out of a home office. Mary Kay and Apple are 2 well known companies that originally started inside a home office or garage. In recent years, starting a business from home has become a growing trend. Shows like "Shark Tank" have highlight individuals who start a businesses from home, but the show also highlights how important the correct planning actually is to gaining success.

Home businesses present plenty of benefits, but there are also pitfalls that can quickly turn a home business sour if not carefully avoided. We've collected 5 tips that will make starting your business from home a success!

  • Know Your Market. Researching and understanding the business industry you are attempting to enter is the first step to success. Your research phase will help you form your business to best suit you, your audience, and your financial means. Many businesses fail due to poor planning or a poor understanding of the desired market. Networking is another great way to do your research. Connect with business owners within your desired industry to gain a better understanding of what you will be facing when you start a business from home. 
  • Incorporate Your Business. Incorporating your business is a crucial part of achieving success. This process designates the business as a separate entity from yourself. Through incorporation, you designate your business as a corporation or an LLC, and you can protect your personal assets, increase tax savings, and start raise capital. 
  • Create a Business Plan. A business plan is a great way to gain an understanding of whether or not the business you have chosen will be successful. Follow a business plan outline and carefully work through each step. Creating this business plan before you start a business from home will help you better understand your business model, goals, and finances before a problem arises. 
  • Hire a Professional for Taxation & Business Regulations. Understand the taxation rules and self-employment regulations at both national and state levels. Seek out a professional accountant to gain a better understanding of what paperwork you need to file and how this potential business will affect your taxes and tax bracket. Being educated and informed is half the battle. 
  • Set Up The Space. When you decide to start a business from home you have to be ready to delegate a work space. A garage, a home office, or even a basement or attic, are perfectly acceptable spaces to start a business. Set up the area for business purposes and business purposes only. This space has to be able to accommodate the business you are planning, so be mindful of equipment and resource needs before deciding on a space.

Making the decision to start a business from home can be incredibly rewarding and lucrative, if planning has been thorough and complete. If you decide to start a business from home in 2013, we hope these tips will help you along the way! 

Raise Capital With Stock



Topics: Tips & Tricks, Start a Business From Home, Year End Business Reminders, end of year small business tips

New Year's Resolutions For Small Business Owners : A 2013 Checklist

Posted by Samantha Miller on Jan 2, 2013 3:28:00 PM

There are only 4 days left in 2012 and this means that it’s time to start thinking about the sometimes dreaded New Year’s Resolution.  Chances are you’ve been reviewing your past year - deciding what worked, what didn’t, and what to do in 2013. Since this can be a hectic time for many businesses, we’ve created a checklist of 4 Key New Year’s Resolutions For Small Business Owners.

Small Business New Year's Resolutions

Protect Your Assets.

  • Form  a Corporation or a Limited Liability Company. If you have not done this already, you should form a Corporation or a Limited Liability Company in order to gain protection. In doing this, you’ll separate your personal assets from the assets of your company, leaving you less vulnerable to personal damage in the event of a lawsuit.

  • Review Annual State Requirements. Most states require Corporations and LLCs to file an Annual Report or pay an annual fee. These requirements do vary by state, so it’s best that you review your state’s specifications. You can find the requirements on most Secretary of State Division of Corporation websites and can also review our State Specific Information section. Take note of due dates and schedule reminders for filing and payment deadlines.

  • Maintain an active Registered Agent. You’ll also find that your state of incorporation or formation requires you to maintain an active Registered Agent. To review the duties of a Registered Agent, you can take a look at our previous blog article.

  • Obtain or update all required business licenses. Business licenses are handled at state and county levels. If you need help obtaining a business license, you can visit our Business License section. If you have already obtained a business license, check the expiration date and arrange for any necessary renewals.

Update Your Website.

  • Do a Review. Check pricing, contact information, and general content for accuracy. If you have changed your phone number or email address, it’s crucial to provide this updated information. Your website is the main way your clients will contact you and you wouldn’t want your clients being lead to a dead end. If you provide time sensitive information, make sure you have someone consistently updating the content.

  • Update design for a better user experience. Outdated web design can be a turn off for many potential clients. Make sure that your site is easily navigable and provides a friendly, easy experience for both current and potential clients.

  • Include links to your social media pages. Make sure that you’re linking to your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media accounts. These are great ways to expand your online presence and attract new clients. You’ll find the guidelines for adding buttons on the social media form’s website. For example, take a look at Twitter.

  • Provide relevant educational information. This can be displayed on your blog or frequently asked question section. Any educational information is a great takeaway for your clients and it is something that they’re inclined to pass on to other people. This is a great way to start having the web link back to your site.

  • Check for mobile viewing optimization. You’ll find that many people are probably viewing your website from their cell phone, or other mobile viewing device. Make sure your site is still easily navigated, even in the mobile view.

Introduce Something New.

  • Create Social Media accounts. Create a Facebook page, Twitter Account, and LinkedIn page for your business to get started. These are great outlets to find new customers, announce promotions, and stay in touch with your audience. You’ll find many other social media outlets out there, including Pinterest, which is great for retail based businesses.

  • Start a Blog. Starting a blog can help your organic search engine optimization. This will help drive traffic to your website, and it is also a great way to provide your clients with resourceful, educational information.

  • Offer Coupons or Deals. This can be done through new platforms such as QR Codes linking to social media, or can be done in more traditional format, such as postal mail. Either way, a coupon or deal is a great way to ramp up visits to your website and increase revenue.

Expand Your Network.

  • Join LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a social network for business professionals. This is a great way for you to connect with industry professionals and spread the word about your business and services. LinkedIn recently introduced company pages, where you can list your products or services and share your company background. You can also help answer questions in group discussion boards and find local networking events in your area.

  • Attend networking events. Your social network should extend beyond your social media websites. Take time to find local events where you can share your knowledge and make connections. 

We hope that these resolutions can alleviate some stress from your new year! If you have any questions or needs to check that you've completed your annual requirements, please contact our office. 

You can download the Checklist for free below to help keep you on track in 2013!

 

 

New Year's Resolutions For Small Business Owners

 


 

 

Topics: Tips & Tricks, Year End Business Reminders, end of year small business tips

5 Year-End Small Business Tips

Posted by Samantha Miller on Dec 3, 2012 12:33:00 PM

year end business tipsFor many small businesses, the end of the year can be a busy and confusing time. Rectifying paperwork and dealing with the new year can take the holiday spirit out of anyone, but December doesn't have to be glum for small business owners. We've collected 5 year-end small business tips that will help ease end of year stress and lead you into a profitable 2013. 

1. Get Organized. It is important to take some time to review your books and make sure they're accurate. In this final stretch, getting things organized and catching up on regular organization will be a big help when tax time comes. Make sure that W-2 forms and 1099 forms are all together, organized and properly filed; if the forms aren't properly handled it, it can quickly turn into a problem for small business owners. 

2. Stock Up. Along with getting everything organized, it is a good idea for small businesses to deal with tax bracket issues before the close of the year. Buying new equipment before 2012 is officially over becomes a write off for the 2012 tax year; the same goes for donating to a charity during the Holiday season. 

3. Hire. Consider adding a Veteran to your payroll before the end of 2012. The government is offering tax credits up to $9,600 for employers who hire war veterans. The tax credit is especially helpful to small businesses, but the employment of a veteran is even better. Military vets generally have exceptional knowledge, discipline and work ethic; they are certainly an asset aside from tax credits. 

4. Review Your Website. Small businesses that haven't started to utilize the internet are missing out on many opportunities. Even those who are connected need to maintain their website in order to continue attracting customers. Web content grows old quickly, so take a look at your website and add new, fresh content. This can really give a small business a lift for the new year

5. Get Social. Social media is a branch of marketing that simply can not be avoided or ignored by small businesses . One of the best end of year small business tips that a business can utilize  is to get connected; or at the very least update existing profiles and websites. Adding Facebook and Twitter allows small businesses to "join the conversation" and generate new interest and business. There are plenty of social media management software applications out there to help small businesses manage social media and analyze changes in consumer activity. 

Take a look at these tools recommended for social media management.

HootSuite  With this tool, you're able to manage multiple social profiles, schedule messages and tweets, and track brand mentions.

Klout By using Klout, you'll receive a score, highlighting your influence and strong categories within social media. 

By utilizing these end of year small business tips, the new year can be bright, fresh and wonderfully profitable. Stay tuned for more year end tips as we come closer to the end of the year!

If you haven't incorporated your business yet, learn more about how you can protect your personal assets through incorporation!

Protecting Personal Assets

Topics: Tips & Tricks, Year End Business Reminders, end of year small business tips