Thursday, September 21, 2023

Cash Flow Questions: 5 Things All New Business Owners Need to Understand.

November 17, 2022 by  
Filed under Business, Money, Opinion, Tech/Internet, Weekly Columns

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( Owning a consistently successful business is something a lot of people aspire to achieve. However, before you start your journey down the entrepreneurial lane, there are several things you need to square away.

Some of these factors may seem simple, but as you’ll soon learn, it’s the little things that can break or build your business.

1. A Business Plan

A business plan is your way of counting the costs before you start to build. While some feel it’s not an absolute necessity, a business plan will enable you to fully develop your idea. It can also help you identify any problems that might otherwise blindside you and drag your fledgling business down. 

A solid business plan will impress potential investors who are keen to provide you with resources to kick-start things. So make time to create a simple business plan that covers your idea, the services or products you will offer, and the costs and market opportunities. 

Clarify details such as whether you’ll start with a managed office space or if you plan on renting out a more traditional headquarters. And be sure to cover expected challenges and possible solutions.

2. Cash Planning and Management

Most businesses fail not because they are not making profits but because they lack the cash flow to hold things together. So before you launch, identify how you will keep money flowing into the business before it starts making profits.

What areas of the business will require cash input apart from inventory or materials? If you’re taking up a loan, how long will it take to pay it back? Cash planning and management will help you answer these questions and continue moving, even if the business has not yet started making returns.

3. Market Research

Whatever product or service you want to sell, you have to take some time to understand the market, the competition, and your audience. Don’t just assume that you know who your customers will be. Rather, do the research to find out, and see if your potential customers genuinely need your products or services.

Find out if your business and website will be suitably accessible for your target market, and since you are just starting out, take the time to identify who your main competitors are. Know what makes them stand out and what you can do better to attract customers. Is it the price, quality, incentives, or customer care? Laying this groundwork will arm you with the information you need to set your business apart.

4. Develop Marketing Strategies

Effective research can also help you develop marketing strategies to push your brand name and your sales. To get started, familiarize yourself with radio, print, and online marketing tools. Determine which channels are best suited for your business in terms of reach and budget. 

You may also benefit from talking to potential customers to see which mediums they use the most. Don’t just settle for a tool because it worked for someone else. Instead, tailor a marketing plan to fit your brand and audience.

5. Keep Records and Track Progress

Running a new business may be overwhelming, and your first sales will certainly be exciting. However, you cannot let these moments derail you. Keep records of all aspects of your business, and track your progress to see if you are moving in the right direction. The best time to lay a solid foundation for a new enterprise is before you open for business.

Keep these tips in mind if you’re ready to become a business owner, and you’ll have a solid foundation on which to build your successful future.

Staff Writer; Sherry Barker

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