small business

Tough Decisions to Make When Starting a Business in COVID-19 Times

Have you heard of the saying: “Out of the frying pan into the fire.”? You may not like to hear it. But that’s exactly what happens to many people who got tired of being employed and started a business. They get burnt and have fallen short. It’s true being employed is hard but being in business is a lot harder.

A survey that was carried out in 2018 showed that about 62% of people in the U.S want to own their own business. The bravery is admirable. Reality bites, however. Come the pandemic, more than 100,000 small businesses that were operating well before the virus closed forever.

The truth is working is easier. You won’t have to make big decisions. But then again, working a job is limiting. Someone else is telling you how much you can earn. With business, the sky’s the limit. The hard part is making it work.

If you’re bent on starting a business, then buckle up. Below are three of the most important steps you have to take to get your brand standing. Yup, you heard that right: standing. Making your business become the next McDonald’s is another story altogether.

Secure funding

One popular question that people ask is can I start a business without having money? The answer to this is yes. There are a handful of people that start their business with little to nothing.

A concrete example is Kevin Plank. The guy started with just $20,000 cash. For the rest of his needed investment, he used a credit card. It was a worthy risk as today his brand is worth $3.1 billion. You may even have worn his brand too. The name of his company is Under Armour.

Make no mistake about it. You can’t start a business without risk. You may not have to spend your own money (assuming you don’t have any). But in the long run, you’ll have to find funding. There’s simply no going round about it.

According to statistics, 32% of business owners started with their cash. About 24% start with money gotten from credits and loans. And just 12% get the necessary funds from friends and family.

If you don’t have the funds needed then consider getting a house loan. Banks are usually reluctant to lend money to fund a business. But when you use your home equity, you could borrow a lot more. Even better, the terms of payment could go beyond the normal 3 to 5 years. It could stretch to 10 or even 20 years.

Getting a space or staying online

Another important decision that you have to make is if you are getting a retail space or not. With the advance in technology, many people opt for online stores alone. But if the demand for the service you are offering is high you need to get a space. You can opt for an online store at the onset or as a supplement.

With the coronavirus still up, getting display space may not be favorable this time around. Check your online options. That should offer you a better avenue.

As for the online store, you would need a website. Developing a website for your business these days is a good strategy. Especially when you will be offering services online.

However, know that websites will cost you. The design itself has to reflect your brand. Added to that, you need to pay a web hosting company monthly. It’s like getting a display space. To get your website running, you have to do your due diligence. Hiring professional help is wise to this end.

Then again, if you want to test the waters, you can start with social media marketing. A Facebook page would be a good start. It’s cheap and it can get your business running. Word of caution: You can still bungle it up if you’re not careful.

storefront

Take care of the legalities

Legal work is another important decision to face. The first important legal work is registering your business. You need a business license to be able to operate without any problems.

Another important legal work is figuring out if you will need to get insurance. If you have a working space then getting insurance for the working/retail space is important. Some people also advise getting insurance against any liability that could come from customers. These are just some important legal works that must not be neglected.

Know that this can add a lot of stress to you during the pandemic. Getting a business permit can be tedious. And that’s an understatement. With the virus infecting over 2 million Americans, going around is simply a risky proposition.

To help with most legal works you can get a lawyer to represent you for the business. In many cases, you need a legal representative to help sort out many issues when starting a business. This way you wouldn’t have to stress yourself over simple legal issues for your company.

The downside? Lawyers will cost you.

As you can see, getting into a business requires a lot more than just a decision. It’s like panning for gold in a river. Many people who long for business success don’t actually make it. But for those who do, the rewards say it all.

The good thing about business is it offers you a way out of working a 9-to-5 job. If you’re not afraid to make bold decisions, then you may just have the right idea that works. The good news is when you make it happen, the rewards are far greater than any job can give. And that can be all worth the sweat.

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