10 SIMPLE STEPS TO GET STARTED
1. What is your business? Do some research on the type of biz you want to start. This is very important since you will need to become an expert in this field or product.
2. Create a Business Plan. This plan is essential when applying for a banking loan or asking investor to invest in your business. Your plan should detail its purpose, include a mission and your goals. This plan will show how your business goals will be achieved and how you plan to develop this new venture, making it a success.
3. Register your business. Before you can move forward you need to determine the legal structure of your business. The structure you chose will determine the amount of regulatory paperwork you have to file to start, your personal liability, and the taxes you have to pay. Decide whether you are going to form a sole proprietorship, Partnership, LLC, or a Corporation.
a. Sole proprietor – someone who owns an unincorporated business by himself or herself.
Taxes are filed with the individuals personal taxes and liability is the sole responsibility of the sole proprietor.
b. Partnership – relationship existing between two or more persons who join to carry on a business or trade.
Each individual contributes money, property, labor or skill. All parties involved share in the profits and losses.
c. Limited Liability Company – a business structure allowed by state statute.
Similar to a corporation, owners have limited personal liability for the debts and actions of the Limited Liability Company.
d. Corporation – association of individuals, created by law or under authority of law, having a continuous existence independent
of the existences of its members, and powers and liabilities distinct from those of its members.
4. Fictitious Name? Most businesses register under a fictitious name. This is an assumed name, trade name or DBA name. DBA is short for “Doing Business As”. For Example, If Anthony Smith is a sole proprietor of a dog training studio. Anthony Smith may not want to use his legal business name, Anthony Smith. He files for a fictitious name and runs his business under the name “K-9 Academy”.
5. Getting a Tax Identification Number. This is also referred to as a Federal Identification Number (FEI). All businesses are required to pay taxes (Federal, State, and in some cases, Local Taxes). Most businesses need to register with the IRS and receive a tax ID number. Your Tax ID can be used to open a bank account.
6. Licenses / Tax Receipt / Permits. You will have to find out what types of permits, tax licenses and permits you will need for your state, county and in some cases, your city. Regulations vary by industry, state and locality. It’s very important to understand the licensing regulations where your business is located. Not complying with licensing and permitting regulations can lead to expensive fines and put you out of business or sink your finances.
7. Open a Bank Account. Your business needs a bank account. An account that can track your company’s finances independently of your personal finances. Banks usually require your ID, Social Security or Federal Identification Number (FEI), State Registration and local registration (Business Tax Receipt).
8. Employees. If your company will have employees you must learn the legal steps that you will need to take in order to hire employees. This is very important because it involves Federal and State regulations.
9. Build a Website. If you’re just starting out and don’t think you want or need a website, start small. MC Virtual Professionals will build a website for you at a very affordable cost to you. Websites give you an opportunity to tell your clients more than just a few words on a business card. You can tell your client all about your services, samples, and offer them a way to contact you for comments or questions.
10. Advertising. Start now! Virtual companies like MC Virtual Professionals can help you design your logo or add it to just about anything. They will find the most affordable rates and explain everything to you in detail. They run around and get things done while you work on the other aspects of your business.