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Small Business, Smaller Budget: 8 Ways to Get Started with What You Have

The rate of small business failure is trending downward, ​Entrepreneur​ reports. The trend stems partly from savvy business owners who do their homework  before putting their product or service on the market. It can also be attributed  to the rise of accessible, cloud-based eCommerce tools and accounting  solutions, which make it possible for even home-based businesses to enjoy  global impact.  The opportunity for success has never been greater than it is right now. But  there’s a problem: While you’re long on ideas, you’re short on cash. So how do  you start making money when you don’t have any to spare?  1. Go Bare Minimum. 


Once you’ve got a great idea and credible business plan, it’s tempting to run out and spend money on all the “essentials” that other small businesses have,  like office space or computer hardware. But here’s what you should be asking  yourself: Do you really need these things to be successful?  Consider physical office space. Depending on your needs, you could pay  anywhere from US$500 to US$2,000 per month for a moderately sized place to  call headquarters. But is this really necessary? In a world of online ordering  and easy shipping, is it possible to run the business from your home? Other  considerations here include capital expenses such as new computers or office  equipment and more peripheral spends such as business cards. In every case,  ask yourself the same question: What’s the bare minimum?  2. Leverage Low-Cost. 


If you’re manufacturing a product, you need a reliable supplier. If you offer a service that includes an online component, you need solid support. But here’s  the thing: You don’t always have to pay top dollar. Option one is to negotiate.  Don’t assume a vendor’s price is final, and be on the lookout for added services  or solutions you don’t need. Pare down to the absolute bare-bones offering and  then try to reduce the rate a little more. For many owners, this means getting  out of their comfort zone to hold a firm line, but it is often worth it in the end.  If you need any R ​ ent A Car​ service from Bangladesh, you can get company  detail of best Rent A Car service provider here. They are very much professional  Rent A Car business house in the country.   Another option? Find local providers to help meet your needs. For example, a  Texas-based home business that produces baby sleep sacks got by during its  first year by l​everaging the talents of local seamstresses​ to supplement  production until revenues outstripped operational costs by a wide margin.  There’s no shame in looking local to support hometown suppliers and keep 


costs down.

3. Be Realistic.  Don’t kid yourself: Many startups still fail between the three- and five-year  mark. Why? Because they don’t set realistic goals. If you’ve enjoyed a solid six  months to a year of sales, you might want to forecast a steady growth for  revenue—rather than an exponential increase—and budget accordingly. In  addition, be prepared to do most of the work yourself for the first few years.  While hiring full-time employees may be the eventual goal, you can  significantly reduce overhead by being the only staff member on payroll—and  by working as long as it takes to get your business off the ground.  4. Embrace Expertise. 


Tell everyone you’re an expert. Don’t hesitate, don’t equivocate: Believe it and vendors will be less likely to take advantage of your naiveté. Next? Actually  become an expert. Do product and market research in your field. Go to  conferences. Read articles. Know everything about the current market climate  and its likely next direction. Not only will this increase your overall confidence  and performance, but help reduce the risk of making poor budgetary choices.  5. Connect With Your Network.  It’s probably a good idea to avoid asking friends and family for money since  they’re not business experts and would (understandably) want a say in how the  business is run. But there’s no harm in asking your social circle to help out  with some sweat equity even if you can’t pay very much. Here, goodwill goes a  long way, even if it’s just to get your first order out the door or handle  customer inquiries over the holiday season. Express your gratitude freely and  often, pay back family and friends when the business gets on solid ground, but  don’t hold back from asking for help when you’re in the early stages.  6. Find Financing.  You can’t do everything for free. Sure, you’ve passed on office space, found a  local supplier and tapped friends and family, but you still need to bankroll  some startup costs. Here are a few options to consider:  ● Crowdfund: From Kickstarter to Indegogo to GoFundMe, crowdfunding  sites are one way to share your idea with the world and see what kind of  traction it generates. Ideally, you get a large sum of cash from thousands  of individual investors. Just make sure to under-promise and  over-deliver.  ● Try the SBA: As noted by F ​ ortune​, if you’re not able to secure a loan  through your local bank, try the Small Business Administration. They 


don’t actually issue loans, but they will offer potential loan guarantees to approved lenders if you pass their screening process.  ● Private Loans and Lines of Credit: Opt for online small business lending  companies that provide either term loans or lines of credit to help get  your business off the ground. Many now offer a speedy approval process  and quick funds delivery.  ● Bootstrap: The classic small business investment strategy: Fund it  yourself or through friends and family. There’s risk, sure, but you keep  total control.  7. Prepare for Problems.  Sometimes things don’t go as planned. That’s what happened to Rickshaw  Dumpling after their first successful brick-and-mortar location opened; they  opted for a second and almost bankrupted the business. A quick pivot to food  trucks saved the fledgling dumpling empire, but it was a close call. Be prepared  for the same kind of quick moves as a small business. Solid revenue doesn’t  always guarantee future success. Once things start going well, always keep  some money tucked away for unexpected legal costs, hardware replacements  or staff needs.  8. Stay True.  Ultimately, the goal is to run the small business you imagined, not simply the  one that’s possible under a limited cash-flow scenario. While minimal money  is the common starting point for many small businesses, periodically take the  time to reevaluate: If you’re enjoying steady success, does the business reflect  your ultimate intention? If not, consider your priorities: Is money or message  your end game?   

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Small Business, Smaller Budget: 8 Ways to Get Started with What You Have  

The rate of small business failure is trending downward, Entrepreneur reports. The trend stems partly from savvy business owners who do thei...

Small Business, Smaller Budget: 8 Ways to Get Started with What You Have  

The rate of small business failure is trending downward, Entrepreneur reports. The trend stems partly from savvy business owners who do thei...

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