Launching a business is a difficult task, but it’s even harder when you’re new to the business world because you probably don’t have a lot of capital to spend. That’s okay! Here are a few tips on how you can launch a business even if you have little money to do so.
Keep Your Day Job
There’s nothing more exciting than starting your own company. But when you’re just getting started, it might be a wise idea to keep your day job. That’s not to doubt your abilities! Most new businesses fail—the odds are just against you.
Don’t lose your daring, entrepreneurial spirit, but remember that businessowners value one thing above all else: making money. Keep your job so that if your business falls through, you’ll still have an income to fall back on, which you can use to jumpstart a new company.
Many entrepreneurs want to quit their day job immediately because they want to put all their time into getting the business going. There may be some truth in that, but it’s more important to have financial security. Do your best to work on your new business before or after your day job—set a time for it each day and make a routine out of it. Remember to eat healthy, exercise, and get plenty of sleep—this will help you deal with the stress and keep from getting burnt out.
Run Your Office from Home
It’s practical to work from home if you plan on keeping your day job. But there are also some pretty big financial incentives to launch your business from home. You don’t have to pay for an office lease (which can be a substantial cost for businesses that have yet to develop a cash flow), and you can also claim tax deductions on a home office (read about home office deductions here).
The hardest thing about working from home is trying to avoid getting distracted—especially if you’re sharing your home with family or roommates. It’s important that you have an efficient home workstation where you’re able to block out distractions. Try and choose a room in your home in which you can close the door and shut everything else out when it’s time to work.
But what if you have employees? You can still run your business from home even if you have a few people employed. Consider moving to a larger apartment or renting a house. You can use some of the business funds to help pay for the rent, which would still probably be cheaper than leasing an office. You may also be able to give employees the option of working remotely.
Get a Loan
You might need to get financing in order to grow your business. Financing might be the only way to get the funds to develop your product, do effective marketing, and hire the employees that you need to thrive. It’s possible you could find some investors that are willing to give you some cash, but most small business owners seek a loan.
Before you take out a loan, be sure that you have a clear plan on how you’re going to use the money to boost your profits. You’ll obviously have to pay back the loan, so you want to make sure you use your funding to increase the cash flow of your business and keep from falling into insurmountable debt.
You might find it difficult to secure a loan if you’re starting your first business, since most financial institutions won’t grant one unless you provide several years of financial information—which you might not have if you’re just getting started in the business world. Thankfully, there are some alternative financing options for you, like stated income loans.
Focus on Digital and Local Marketing
The most cost-effective way to promote your business is through digital marketing. Build a website that’s fast and secure, and be sure to include lots of keywords that your target audience might be searching for online—this is a tactic called “search engine optimization” or SEO. There are plenty of user-friendly website builders that enable you to build a solid website.
You should also setup a Yelp page for your business. When customers are pleased with your product or service, they might feel inclined to post a positive review online. This is a great way to spread word-of-mouth, especially if your company relies on local dollars. Online reviews are an important way in which you can build hype and establish your legitimacy.
Don’t let a lack of funds prevent you from launching and growing your company. Just follow one or more of these tips and you’ll make the most of whatever capital you have.