Need Some Help with Your Small Business or StartUp Company?

First: Do you have your business idea chosen?

Normally when people start a new business, the area of product or service is already the owner's area of expertise.  Such as an auto mechanic may open a new service garage, or an Information Technology Specialist may start up a Consulting business.  For some ideas you can check the Business News Daily Article here.

If you want to start a small business but do not know what product or service to invest your time and resources on, you may want to consider researching available franchise opportunities.  A franchise is normally defined as an agreement or contract between an owner of a chain of stores that allows independent business owners the right to market their products or services for a fee.  There are normally requirements that also have to be met, such as:

  • Restricted use of propriety information.
  • Restricted use of propriety trademarks and branding images.
  • Restrictions on other business activities that may be considered a conflict of interest with the product or service being franchised.
  • An initial franchise fee with additional fees and royalties paid at regular intervals to continue with your contract.
  • and more....

A good example of a franchise are fast food restaurants, motel chains,  and Hair Salons.  For the's 2016 list of top 500 Franchises, click here.  I also found these sites that offer services to match up business owners and available franchises: FranchiseHelp  and Franchiseforsale.

The next steps in your small business idea is to have a plan.  You will need to consider several areas when developing your plan such as:

  • What local or state level licenses do you need to apply for?
  • Will your business be run out of your home or at another location?
  • What initial investment capital will you need and where will you get it?
  • How many employees will you have initially?  You need to have their payroll set aside for the first 6 months or longer, depending on when you expect to start showing profit.
  • What training will you need to provide your employees or yourself?
  • What office hardware and software do you need to purchase?
  • If your business requires travel, do you have a discount agreement setup with a travel agency?
  • What marketing do you require help with?  Local, interstate, online?
  • Do you have your own branding/ logo yet? 
  • Do you need a website domain and web hosting for your business?
  • If you require a storefront for your business,  in what area of your city will provide you with the best customer traffic?  Do you need to rent a space in an office building or retail mall?

The list above is not a complete list, nor will it apply to everyone.  You do need a place to start though.

Now, lets talk more about your Business Plan. 

You will need a plan to ensure that you do not forget any important tasks or requirements and to provide you with goals and objectives to work toward normally with an end date.  If you need help creating your business plan, the Small Business Administration (SBA) has a guide here.

The SBA also has several very good, and free, educational resources:

Ebay also has several "Dummies" books for more educational resources.  I found books to help with taxes, human resources, networking, financial management, and marketing.