Guest Blog: Starting Your Home-Based Business and Making It Work for You by Amy Collett
Often, getting started is the most difficult part of any major project. Starting a home-based business is no exception. There are so many necessary tasks — where should you begin? A successful home business starts with a series of steps, mapped out in advance to keep you on track. That may require a bit of organization.
If organization is not your forte, it may help to consider hiring someone who lives and breathes it. KMA Organizing may become your new best friend when it comes to preparing to open your home business. Whether it is establishing your home office, organizing digital records, or creating processes for your business operations, Katy can help. As you start to develop your plan for starting a business, consider how you will attract your initial customers.
Getting Set Up and Attracting Customers
Fortunately, the setup for a home-based business is fairly simple. Since you are operating out of your home, you can get started right away by setting up space to work, ordering necessary supplies in bulk, and establishing a website. Your website is an ideal way to draw in customers, and you will have a greater reach than businesses with only a storefront. Consider hiring a professional to build your website. It will be worth the cost to have a crisp, well-designed site, and it will pay off since most people steer clear of sites that seem unprofessional or ill-designed.
You can attract customers to your business with skilled marketing that spans many avenues of outreach, but initial clients may be earned through word-of-mouth from friends, family, and colleagues. Social media marketing is a simple way to reach people and is inexpensive and user-friendly. Other marketing options include starting a podcast with topics related to your business or clientele and offering promotional deals to get customers interested.
Establishing Tools and Getting Registered
Prior to launching your business, it is necessary to register and get your operational tools ready to roll. As a small business with few employees, you may not need a massive payroll system. If you expand and hire more folks, it might be worth considering a combined payroll and expense tracking program.
Having the right technology is indispensable, particularly for a home-based business whose primary presence is online. Consider a laptop that meets your digital storage needs, a scanner/printer combo with fax option, and a high-speed wifi setup. For selling goods, be sure to have a proper setup for photographing your products. It may be worthwhile to take a quick training online to learn how to stage and shoot items in a way that looks professional.
Registering as a Limited Liability Company (LLC) is likely a wise choice as a small, home-based business. Filing as an LLC requires a bit of homework as each state has independent regulations that must be followed. You can hire a formation service if you would rather not file the Certificate of Formation and accompanying paperwork on your own. Formation companies complete the paperwork at a reasonable rate and save you a lot of footwork. LLC formation is a safe bet for small business owners since it protects personal assets and offers tax advantages.
Staying Productive and Diversifying
Working at home is a dream for many, but at times, it can be challenging to stay focused and productive. Even when business is slow, assign yourself tasks each day such as updating social media sites, writing content pieces for marketing, following up with clients and vendors, and developing ways to expand your product or service. Downtime can be a gift in that it gives you time to be creative, brainstorm innovative ideas, and dream up improvements to your business.
You have marketable skills and can use these abilities to provide consultation. If you decide to try your hand at consulting, start by drafting infographics on varying topics you are skilled in, and identify some curriculum ideas for people who are entering the field or learning your trade. Advertise the consulting option on your webpage and social media sites, and offer a workshop or coursework to help people get started.
Before long, your home-based business will be thriving. Throughout the process, you may find that you need some help from KMA Organizing. Reach out to Katy for a consultation today.