The Home Business Startup Guide Ebook
Title: The Home Business Startup Guide
The fastest-growing segment of today's economy is the home business, but "firing your boss" is not as easy as some would have you believe.
To succeed - and you can succeed - you will need help.
Whether you want to start an online web business, an offline mail order business or even a local service business, the valuable information in your copy of The Home Business Startup Guide will help you to get started.
Here's a summary of everything you will learn in this essential guide...
- Is it legal where you live? Do you need a license? How to find out
- Working from home: The pros and cons
- Researching and developing your idea
- Preparing yourself for business - mentally, financially, physically
- Identifying - and understanding - your competitors
What You Need - And Where To Find It:
- Creating "The Plans"
Your business plan
Your marketing plan
Your disaster plan
- Finding the money you need
Government and private grants
- Creating your company
Choosing a name
Choosing a legal form - Sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation
Know the law
- Work where you live - but don't live where you work
Creating a work area
Furniture, hardware, software
Keeping personal and business lives separate
Dealing with family, friends and neighbors
Workplace safety is still important
No more water cooler chats or "let's grab lunch" socializing
- Surviving the financial strain - and knowing the costs
Setting reasonable prices
- Trademarks, copyrights and contracts
- Advertising and marketing
- Accountants, programmers, website designers and more
- Privacy policies, terms of service, customer rights and other legal stuff
- The art of e-commerce
Bringing It All Together:
- When customers complain
- Cashflow - when it's good, when it's not
- Keeping customers happy, loyal and coming back
- The Top 5 first-year mistakes
- The taxman cometh
- Knowing what you're doing right, what you're doing wrong and what to do next
- Hire staff - or outsource - or partner?
- Planning for growth
- No more paid vacations
- If it all goes right: The exit strategy (aka, Retirement)
- If it all goes wrong: Don't rush to bankruptcy
1. Why Start a Home Business?
Working from home is a dream for many - but actually going ahead and starting a home business is very difficult. So what makes so many people want to do it, and why would you ever try such a crazy thing? Here are some common reasons, and some things to consider.
You Can Build Your Great Idea.
It suddenly hit you like a bolt of lightning: you've thought of a great business idea. This is perhaps the number one reason that people go into business from home: they've come up with something great that they really believe in, but can't afford to rent any business premises. It does depend on what the business is, but working from home is often ideal in these situations.
Remember, though, that even the best ideas take hard work to become a reality. The kind of ideas that are good for a home-based business are ones that can become at least partly real quickly, and start bringing in an income - you shouldn't sit at home for a year working on something that's making you nothing whatsoever.
You Can Make Your Hobby a Job.
Most people have something that they're really passionate about, and would spend the rest of their life doing if they could, just for the enjoyment of it. Getting paid for doing what you love is obviously appealing - even if you only earn a living wage, it'd be your idea of paradise.
Make sure, though, that you'd be able to take it if you had to make a living from your passion. It's the things we're closest to that hurt us the most - think of how you might feel if no-one buys what you've made, or if they send it back and with a note saying "what rubbish, I demand a refund!" Can you cope with your hobby becoming commercial?
You're Tired of Your Boss.
It seems like everyone hates their boss. They try to pretend like they're your friend, but they're not fooling anyone, are they? You're forced to work to pointless deadlines and targets. Anytime you spot a better way of doing something you're told that it's impractical, or, worse, that it's great but the stupid way of doing things is already 'established' and 'policy'.
What you might not realise is that 'being your own boss' requires quite a lot of willpower. If there was no-one to make you get up in the morning and do any work, would you? Your home is supposed to be a place of rest and entertainment - and when it's full of the equipment and temptation to do anything but work, working there can be hard.
You Want to Spend More Time with Your Family.
You feel like all you do is go to work, come home, and then sit around, too tired to do anything fun with your family. If you have children, they seem to be growing up so fast, and you're missing it all - all because you have to go out and work.
Of course, the flipside here is that you might just end up spending too much time with your family, while you're trying to work. When everyone knows you'll be in the house all day, they'll probably ask you to do all sorts of unimportant things, just because you're available. It's hard to say no, and before you know it, you're doing the job of a full-time 'housewife' instead of what you set out to do.
You Don't Like Wasting Time and Money Commuting.
After all, once you get to the office, what is there anyway? Offices are dreary environments, and terrible to work in - travelling for hours there and back and spending a significant proportion of your wages to do it seems completely pointless (especially if you live in the middle of nowhere). If you could work from home, think of the time you'd save... and time is money, isn't it?
Don't be surprised, however, if you start to feel trapped in your home, since you never leave it. Can you find good ways to get away from it all?
But Don't Be Put Off.
While the list of warnings for working at home might look long, a list of warnings about working in an office would surely be longer. As long as you stay on your guard, you can get all the benefits of working from home without falling into any of the traps.
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