The Ultimate Guide to Starting a Business from Home and Make it Grow
The trend of earning while working from home has seen a massive spike in popularity over the past decade. More people are opening new businesses and some estimates indicate that more than 60% of the new businesses are started from home. It’s no surprise at all that more people are now choosing to start businesses from home. It is now common to see growing home-based businesses harnessing the full potential of information and communication technologies to connect with customers, manage the supply chain, and generate steady revenues without the need for expanding out of the home.
Obviously, there are numerous apparent benefits that come with starting a home-based business, especially for small business startups. For starters, you don’t have to deal with the stress of hours of hectic commuting to and from work each day if your workplace is literally a couple of minutes away. Second, you are able to minimize overhead costs like rent for commercial premises. You’re also able to develop the business in line with your family life when you have the freedom of doing business from the comfort of your home.
People from all over the world are constantly identifying new opportunities in the existing markets. They’re also increasingly becoming conscious of the fact that there are people and organizations willing to pay for the knowledge, skills and assets they have acquired through personal passions and even employment. Most of these business people are utilizing the space in their homes as the launching pad of their businesses. Perhaps this is something you’ve been thinking could work out for you.
Here’s a nice video from Gary Vee giving tips on how to grow your business.
Is a Home-based Business Right for You?
Before you decide to quit your job to start your own business from home, you first need to ask yourself if a home-based business is appropriate for you. Conduct some market research to find out if there’s a product or service you have that people are willing to pay for. This will be essential in crafting your business plan, which is an essential element of executing a good business idea. Consider if there’re any benefits you will gain by locating your business from home. Lastly, ask yourself if your home is suitable for locating the business you have in mind.
Come Up with a Bright Business Idea and a Sound Business Plan
A good business idea is vital to the success of any business enterprise. Try to think of a product or service you tried to buy in the past but you just couldn’t find it easily. Conduct some basic research to find out if other people could be looking for the same service or product. If that’s the case, this certainly presents a potential market opportunity. Try to figure out why such a service or product is scarce or doesn’t exist. Once you’ve gotten some insights into these questions, it’s now time to think of how you can plug that market gap.
Alternatively, you could turn to what you love doing as a way of earning income. The best thing about working on something you love doing is that it never actually feels like you’re working. Try to think of a skill or hobby that you can easily turn into a business and offer a service or product to your friends, neighbors, and family.
Perhaps you’ve bought a product or used a service in the past and you were not impressed. Why not take this as an opportunity to provide a better-quality product or service? You can do many things to improve a product or service including, improving packaging, offering a service more efficiently, or adding something to transform something ordinary into a unique product/service.
Once you’ve come up with an idea and done your research, prepare a business plan. A business plan not only serves as a first step to starting a business, but it also acts as a map that will guide you from the beginning and as the business grows. Include milestones in your plan as well as information about your objectives and your strategies for achieving those objectives. While crafting the business plan, you should consider the types of resources you’ll require and how you’ll meet the costs of those resources.
Managing the Household and Business Affairs at Home
Once your business plan is ready, you need to think about managing the household as well as the business administration. Remember that your house will no longer be used for residential purposes alone once you start operating a business from home.
You need to consider certain important things like planning permissions from local authorities, whether you need to inform your landlord, mortgage provider, and insurance provider, and whether you need to make any changes in your home to accommodate the flow of customers and/or products.
Once you’ve taken care of these issues, you can now deal with the business registration process and ensure you acquire all licensing and permits required to operate in that field/industry. This is also the best stage to ensure your brand and intellectual property is protected through patents and trademarks.
Create the Right Working Environment at Home
One of the benefits of running a business from home is the freedom of working where and how you like, while wearing whatever you like. It is important to create an appropriate working environment and equip your work station with the tools needed to deliver the product or service effectively and efficiently.
You need to find a set aside some space in the house to serve as your dedicated working space. This will help you to set your mind into a business mode whenever you’re within that space. It also helps to make it clear to family and friends that whenever you’re in that space you’re busy working and you don’t want any form of interference.
Ensure you equip your office or workplace with the right tools, technologies, desk and chair, and anything else you need to make the workspace fully functional.
Creating the Right Image
It’s common for most people starting a home business to have concerns that it might appear unprofessional to customers and clients. However, clients will be pleased that you’re not passing on additional costs associated with costly office expenses. Try to ensure that the services and products you are offering have a truly professional feel and look to maintain a professional impression.
You should also set up a P.O. Box number for your daily contact details to avoid using your home address on business cards and promotional items as it normally sounds too unprofessional or domestic. Alternatively, you can have all your mail delivered to a suitable address and then forwarded to you.
In case you’re going to be holding business meetings, it is not wise to hold the meetings at home and you are better off hiring a professional meeting space with a proper serviced address and other essential conference/meeting amenities like secretarial services.
Lastly, you can develop a professional impression by utilizing online platforms that facilitate co-working, informal meet-ups, organized events, and networking opportunities to link with partners, suppliers, and potential customers.
Working on the Move
Now that you are operating a business from home, it doesn’t mean you must work from home all the time. It is always a good idea to get out and work in the field where you get to meet customers or work with other enterprises in your industry or related industries.
This is where technology comes in. With technology and a few tips, you can enjoy a lot of flexibility and run your business from virtually any location with electricity and a reliable internet connection. Ensure you have a fairly up-to-date laptop computer that is able to access available Wi-Fi hotspots. This will help to ensure you always stay connected to clients and prospects, suppliers, and other stakeholders in your business.
Expanding the Business without Getting Out of the Home
Once your business becomes known and you’re making substantial money, you might be forced to look at options on how to grow the business. There are several avenues you can pursue if you’re looking to scale your business. First, you can consider providing a kit with the material and instructions for making the product.
You can also consider creating a course that teaches people how to make a particular product or perform a certain service. Alternatively, you can decide to go global by selling your products or offering your services in other markets beyond your national boundaries. Lastly, you can outsource and increase revenues and profits by focusing on the processes you do best and outsourcing the rest to third parties.