1. Why do you want to start your own business?
This is the first and probably most important question you should ask yourself. If the answer is that you’re fed up of your boss – stop now! Just find another job. However, if you are certain that starting your own business is what you want to do then make sure you are prepared. It is not easy – even when the business is established and turning a profit.
2. What will your business be?
It’s essential that you have a clear idea of what your business will be, where you want to take it in the future and what products or services you will offer. In other words, you need a well defined core service and a comprehensive business plan for at least the first 3 years.
3. Who will your customers be?
You need to have a well defined core customer base. For example, if you’re thinking of opening a hairdressing salon it’s not enough to have a target audience of women who want to look good. Will you have more than one type of customer and therefore several different target audiences?
4. What will your customers want from your business?
You must delve into the psyche of your customer. For instance, if you’re a butcher, your customer doesn’t just want meat – if they did, they’d be at the supermarket! Your customers come to you because they want top quality meat from an expert who can recommend and prepare the exact cut they need for the meal they are planning because they want to prepare a great meal for their friends or family. So, dig a little deeper and tap into the emotions that drive a customer’s behaviour and you can see that what a butcher’s customer may really want is to spend quality time with loved ones.
5. Who will you be competing with?
Your competitors are where your target customers currently go to when they want your product. You need to identify each and every one of them and find out as much about the services and the products they offer. Ask yourself questions like: what is their product offering? Do they offer complimentary services? Are they allied with complimentary businesses? What is their level of service? What price level do they offer? Where are they located? Do they offer services online and offline? You need to know as much about your competitors as you do about yourself!
6. Why should your target customer choose your business?
Now you know who your customers are, what they want from you and where they shop, you need to persuade them that they should choose you over your competitors. While for some businesses, location may be enough to persuade customers to choose you, for most businesses it is likely that success will come down to more than just where you are located. Ask yourself what will set you apart from the rest.
If you know the answers to these questions before you start then you’ll have given yourself a great chance of success but remember that this is only the start and this list of questions is not exhaustive. The more question you ask yourself, the greater your chances of success!
The information contained in this Blog is intended solely to provide general guidance on matters of interest for the personal use of the reader, who accepts full responsibility for its use. The application and impact of laws can vary widely based on the specific facts involved. Given the changing nature of laws, rules and regulations, and the inherent hazards of electronic communication, there may be delays, omissions or inaccuracies in information contained in this Blog. Accordingly, the information on this Blog is provided with the understanding that the authors and publishers are not herein engaged in rendering legal, accounting, tax, or other professional advice or services. As such, it should not be used as a substitute for consultation with professional accounting, tax, legal or other competent advisers. Before making any decision or taking any action, you should consult a professional adviser.
While we have made every attempt to ensure that the information contained in this Blog has been obtained from reliable sources, One Plus One Ltd is not responsible for any errors or omissions, or for the results obtained from the use of this information. All information in this Blog is provided "as is", with no guarantee of completeness, accuracy, timeliness or of the results obtained from the use of this information, and without warranty of any kind, express or implied, including, but not limited to warranties of performance, merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. Nothing herein shall to any extent substitute for the independent investigations and the sound technical and business judgment of the reader. In no event will One Plus One Ltd, or its partners, employees or agents, be liable to you or anyone else for any decision made or action taken in reliance on the information in this Blog or for any consequential, special or similar damages, even if advised of the possibility of such damages.