Launching a new company is one of the most exciting, terrifying, and rewarding experiences you can have in your life. It’s also incredibly hard work. But if you take care of these things before you launch, it will make the process much easier.
1. Register your company
Where you start when registering your company is entirely up to you. You can register at federal, state, or local levels, or all three. But before you register your company, you need to decide on what will the company name be. If you are having trouble with this, don’t worry! One way to get this sorted out is to hire a brand naming service, which can help you out tremendously in the early days of your business and help get your creative juices flowing! This will depend on how much paperwork you need to do and if there are any legal obligations for your type of business activity. To register your company, you will need to choose a name and decide how to do so. You can register your company as a sole proprietor, which is the simplest and cheapest option. The next option is registering as a C Corporation. You’ll need an employer identification number (EIN) and a business license. You can also research your industry before you register to find out what licenses or permits are required for your type of business activity.
2. Completing some paperwork with the secretary of state
The secretary of state in most states has online resources that can help you complete the paperwork for registering your company name at the state level. Some states also have requirements for getting a bond and/or filing articles of incorporation with them (check with your secretary of state). Registering your company is the first thing you have to do if you want to launch a new company. You can register your business at the federal, state, and local levels. It’s also important that you complete some paperwork with the secretary of state in the state where you are registered. For example, if I’m starting my business in Florida, I would have to complete paperwork with the Florida Secretary of State.
3. Research industry licenses and permits
Researching industry licenses and permits for your type of business activity is an important part of the process. It is not always clear what type of license or permits you might need. You can research the requirements at your state’s secretary of state website, your city government website, and also through any relevant industry associations.
4. Find office space for rent or purchase
One of the most difficult parts of finding a location to launch your company is finding the right office space. It’s important to take into account the type of building and the location when deciding what you’re looking for. A single-tenant shop is perfect for a business with a small staff and limited need for storage space. A retail storefront or multi-tenant building is better suited to businesses with more employees and a greater need for warehousing and storage space. For most startups, it’s going to be cheaper and easier to find office space for rent rather than buying a piece of property. You’ll have many more options in terms of locations and amenities. Finding a suitable location may take some time and effort, but it will be worth it in the end when you get started with your company.
5. Create a business plan that includes goals and objectives for the first year of operation
The first thing to do when creating a business plan is to set goals and objectives for the first year. Begin with the goals of your company, which will likely be to stay profitable so that you can continue operations in the future. Think about what you want to achieve with those profits, such as expanding your customer base, diversifying your product line, or launching a new service. Next, list objectives for each of those goals and prioritize them by their importance. Now make a timeline for completing those objectives and attach it to your plan as an appendix. Finally, outline who will complete each task and how much it will cost.
To create a business plan with goals and objectives for the first year:
- Set company Goals
- List Business Objectives for each Goal
- Prioritize your list by importance
- Create a timeline to complete the objectives and attach it to the business plan as an appendix
- Detail who will complete each objective and how much it will cost.
- Launch the company website
6. Figure out how much money you need to start up your business
The most difficult part of launching a new business is figuring out how much money you need to start it. This will depend on many different factors, such as:
- How much rent will cost
- How much inventory and equipment you’ll need for your industry
- What type of office space do you need (e.g., single-tenant or multi-tenant)
- The cost of getting all your licenses and permits from the secretary of state
- Employee benefits packages that you might want to offer
- A reserve fund in case anything goes wrong during the first year of business operation
7. Consider what type of insurance coverage you’ll want to have in place before opening day
Regardless of how you feel about insurance, it’s a good idea to have it before launching your company. It’s not always easy to know what type of coverage you need, especially if you’re a new business owner. But there are a few basic things to keep in mind:
- Make sure any employees who will be working for the company have their own personal health and dental insurance plans. You can take care of this by signing them up for a group plan through your employer or offering an individual plan through either the Small Business Association or SHOP Marketplace.
- If you’re starting a retail storefront, make sure that your building is adequately insured with property and casualty insurance. This is likely going to be included in your rent or lease agreement, and you’ll only need additional coverage if your business takes on a greater risk than is covered by the original agreement.
- Make sure that any equipment and inventory you use for your company are insured adequately. This may be included in some of your insurance plans already or it might be necessary to purchase separate policies.
Starting a company can be challenging, but the rewards and benefits it provides are worth it. From choosing your location to set up office space for rent instead of purchasing property, there is no wrong way to start a business. You’ll also want to research licensing and permits required by your industry, as well as insurance coverage you may need for equipment or inventory items used in your company. If all this sounds overwhelming, consider consulting with our team of experts who specialize in assisting new ventures on their journey from startup to success!