Starting a new business takes a lot out of you. You need to juggle several things—fundraising, business planning, marketing, etc. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed and overlook the essential groundwork you need to do before starting a business.
To keep you organized, we’ve prepared a seven-point business startup checklist. Go through the steps and follow them to hit the ground running.
1. Research Your Audience and Market
Find out whether or not your product/service has sufficient market demand. It would be a colossal waste of time and money to invest in a business that has no takers. While conducting market research, inspect your target audience and competitors as well.
2. Craft a Business Plan
Outline your business plan in as much detail as you can. Elaborate on your products, organizational structure, and business areas like sales, marketing, and finance. The business plan document will come in handy during business registration and fundraising as well.
3. Name the Business
Choose a name that is unique, memorable, and attention-grabbing. At the same time, it should be free of copyright issues and compliant with the state rules. This is also a good time to develop your business logo.
4. Register the Business
It’s critical to register your business under an appropriate business structure. After all, the business structure you choose will govern your day-to-day operations as well as overall management. You have four options to choose from—Sole Proprietorship, LLC, Partnership, and Corporation.
5. Get the Tax ID
The next step is to apply for a tax ID or EIN (employer identification number). It is mandatory for your taxation and hiring processes, and makes your business legal and real.
6. Open Your Business Bank Account
To do financial transactions on behalf of your business, you need to open a bank account for it. For that, keep your documentation in order, including your ID, Articles of Organization or Incorporation, ownership documents, and EIN.
7. Apply for Business Permits
Lastly, you might need to apply for additional business permits depending on the nature of your business. For example, a restaurant or pharmacy will need to have a health permit. Apply for permits that are required by the state in which your business is registered.
There’s more to starting a new business than what meets the eye. Prepare yourself fully by gathering as much information as you can about the business formation process. To start with, check out this infographic by GovDocFiling that elaborates on the above seven steps.
Brett Shapiro is a co-owner of GovDocFiling. He had an entrepreneurial spirit since he was young.
He started GovDocFiling, a simple resource center that takes care of the mundane, yet critical, formation documentation for any new business entity.