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Building a business in the modern world can be hard due to the fierce competition in all industries. This competition often forces small-scale businesses, who lack funding, to shut down. We all know the commonly told statistic that around 90% of startup companies fail within their first few years. Although this may sound daunting, it does not mean that all innovators need to abandon their business dreams – quite the opposite really. Those individuals who are interested in the business world simply need to understand how much it costs to start up a business. By knowing the relative costs, they will be able to spend their money wisely and hopefully turnover more profits. This, in turn, ought to allow them to survive in this harsh business climate. Quite often we see businesses failing as they have failed to pay attention to the finer details. As such, I would like to explore the costs of these finer details which, more often than not, can determine the success or failure of a newly founded firm.
The first thing that any startup business will need is a good website and domain. A website enables you to provide a source of information about your company which is easily accessible for potential consumers. Moreover, a website is easily shareable therefore meaning that it can enable your business to gain more attention from all around the world. Quite often we see websites being created by Web Designers – individuals who specialize in creating attractive websites. These individuals are responsible for setting up, designing, building and maintaining your website. The best thing about such individuals is that they can give you a unique design which will make your website stand out. The downside is, however, that they can be quite expensive which can make life tough for startup business owners. According to Website Builder Expert, a web designer has the potential to charge you around $7000 in your first year, however in my experience a decent website for a start up is around £750-1500.
Alternatively, you may decide to use a website builder which is far cheaper. These sites offer you templates from which you can build your website and organise your content as you so please. The issue here is that you will be required to do more work, and your website could come across as far more generic and potentially less professional. Nonetheless, it could be a good strategy for individuals that are interested in bootstrapping in order to save as much money as possible and get the business going.
Another potential cost could be that of business cards. Business cards are an excellent way of spreading the word about your services in a personal manner. They are also useful because they enable potential clients to know exactly how they could contact you. Just like websites, business cards can be intricately designed or make use of basic templates. Hence, they can cost anywhere in the range of £10-£40 per 100 cards. The important thing to remember about business cards is that they should be straightforward and easy to interpret. You could, for example, outline your basic services and contact details (use a professional email address with your business domain) and then go into greater detail by using a LinkedIn page or through your website. Whichever you go, remember to stick to a clear and precise message. But I would add as a note, that a business card is a reflection of you and your brand so it makes sense to invest in a designer and a good quality print and card. It says a lot about you!
When you’re starting up your business you may also wish to spend time with a business mentor who will guide you through the early stages of your businesses’ development. Business mentoring is a useful tool to invest in because it can enable business growth, prevent mistakes and develop your knowledge of the business world. According to The Business Mentors, mentoring programmes can cost anywhere in the range of £400-£4000 depending on the level of input required. Consultancy is another essential service that all business owners will require because it means that businesses can receive more expert advice. Consultancy firms often charge large sums of money for their services, but are well-known for providing a good service. I believe in a consultative mentoring experience with the mentees that I support because want to be able to share my experience, expertise and imbed them into a community of likeminded people. Who you surround yourself with in business, is an essential part of your business development. The wrong people, the wrong advice or no advice – can end up costing your £000s.
With all of this in mind, the question is: can you afford a business simply through bootstrapping? Could you, for example, start your business from your kitchen with the aim of spending as little as possible? Although it may be somewhat tougher than starting your business in the regular fashion, I believe that you could bootstrap and start your business from home. This will, however, require you to do lots of research beforehand. It may also require you to develop some sort of side hustle, in order to accumulate enough funds to build your business. I strongly believe in starting on the journey with a survival budget spreadsheet so that you know exactly how much money you need to have saved or coming in to ‘survive’ during the business development process.
There will, of course, be other expenses but these are the ones which you will have to take care of right at the beginning. There are also other elements required for the business that don’t cost anything to set up like social media but can still be very time consuming and therefore costly – so use it wisely! It will inevitably be a difficult thing at first; however, through hard work you will be able to succeed. Just like anything else, success in the business world is reliant on four key things: determination, hard work, a decent idea and passion!
July 1, 2019 at 07:03AM
Forbes – Entrepreneurs