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Successful Home Business Start Up

Starting a business takes a great deal of work and dedication. In many cases, would-be entrepreneurs fail to fully research and plan a home business start up. Here are four recommendations for a successful home business start-up.

Choosing the "Best" Home Business:

Deciding to work at home is the easy part. Its deciding what to do that is difficult. Most people start looking for something fast and easy, and only end up losing money and getting discouraged. Instead, would-be entrepreneurs should start with start with self-evaluation. What do you like to do What are you good at What interests do you have What limitations will have you in choosing a business (i.e. can you have customers in your home or will you travel to meet them)

Once you have a better sense of what you would like to do, what you are willing to do, or what qualities are needed in a home business to meet your goals, you can then begin to consider different home business ideas. Researching and evaluating each idea carefully is vitally important. It may seem like a great idea to turn a hobby into a business but you must consider whether or not you want to turn something you enjoy doing into something you HAVE to do.

Careful research of business opportunities is important as well. Anyone saying one can make money online doing nothing is selling something. If it was REALLY possible to make money doing nothing at home, everyone would be doing it and you wouldn't read so much about scams. Evaluating a business opportunity is not just about legitimacy though. Its important to not just go after the money. If you don't like the product or the system, you won't make any money because you won't feel comfortable marketing it, you'll lack credibility or you just won't do it.

The Business Plan

You've heard the saying, "Those who fail to plan, plan to fail." All start-up small businesses (not just MLM) have about a 90% failure rate within the first 5 years. If you talk to people whose businesses don't succeed, what you'll discover in most cases is a lack of planning, financing, and consistent implementation is the root of the failure.

Having a business plan is crucial to your business's success. While it can be used to secure funding for your venture, its most important function is to provide you with direction and focus in building a business. Business plans vary in complexity depending on whether or not it will be used to ask for funding or solely as a course of action.

The basics of your plan should include a description of your business including its structure (sole proprietorship etc), target market, marketing plan, start-up financing, and goals for the short and long term.

Financing Your New Home-based Business

Financing is another area in which first-time entrepreneurs fail to do their homework. While start-up costs vary, few successful businesses have launched and grown without any investment. The most successful home businesses have a start-up and ongoing budget for expenses that include things like advertising, supplies, services, utilities, business education and more.

Your start-up costs will depend much on the business you are starting and what materials or supplies you will need. When starting a business, it is important to calculate your living expenses as well as business expenses. A new business can take several months to years before seeing a lifestyle sustaining profit. Anticipate this "lean" period in your budgeting for business start-up.

The following provides various ways to help fund your venture while still supporting yourself.

Work Part-time
Turn your employer into a
Live on one salary (if married)
Use savings
Use free money: Gifts, inheritance etc.
Borrow from family or friends
Credit: But use carefully and only after a well-set up business and marketing plan.
Loan: Visit the Small Business Administration for help.

Before spending any money on your new business, be sure you are clear on all the details of your business. Create a business plan that includes details on starting and running your business and the costs associated with it.

Getting the Word Out!

Without advertising, you have no business. Many first time entrepreneurs place an ad or put up fliers and expect a multitude of clients. It just doesn't work like that. Odds are your future customers are already customers of someone else. It's going to take more than one ad to convince them to change.

Promotion, publicity, marketing, advertising...whatever you want to call it, it works best if you have thought ahead and developed a plan. Haphazard marketing will only get you haphazard responses. The following ideas should be put together with any other marketing ideas you have into a marketing plan that also includes a budget and method for evaluating how each marketing method is working.

Business Cards:
Press Releases
Networking groups i.e. Chamber of Commerce
Community Service i.e. volunteer or sponsors a sports team
Write an article
Websites, e-mail, and discussion groups, etc

You have just had an overview of what it takes to start a successful home business. A business doesn't grow overnight so persistence and dedication are required along with good research, careful planning and implementation.

Copyright 2004 Leslie Truex
Leslie Truex created Work-At-Home Success in 1998 to offer free information and resources on working at home in a job or home business. Be sure to sign up for the free Work-At-Home Success Jobs and News for legitimate jobs, home business tips, inspiration and more to work at home. join-wahsnews@p....

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