You have probably seen hundreds of success stories about people who came up with an idea one day, executed it, and succeeded. All stories like this can be inspirational. However, what’s often left out are the sad days—the days when someone doesn’t think their idea is sellable or when they feel like they are going to fail.
If you are determined to open a business of your own, there are stages you go through. Some of them are triumphant and will leave you feeling like you can conquer anything. However, some of them are discouraging and full of doubts. Here is what you should expect when you decide to venture into the small business world.
Everything starts with an idea. You might have been actively searching for it for years before it came to you. Or you might stumble upon it one day. It could also be from something that you’ve had all along.
For example, since you were a kid, you have always been passionate about crafting. Every Saturday, it’s your go-to stress reliever. One day, a friend asks if you could make a simple invitation for an event. You do it, and your friend likes it, pays for it, and orders more. There goes the business, idea. You suddenly realize that you can make a business out of your weekend hobby.
Now that you have an idea, you start exploring its viability as a business. How many people around your area are offering the same products and services? Is it profitable? Should you limit yourself to just one kind of product, or should you launch ten products all at once?
You also look into your availability. Especially if you are a full-time employee, it will be a huge consideration. How much time every week can you devote to taking and making orders?
The planning stage has to be the most tedious of all. This is when you lay all the groundwork. You make a timeline for all the deliverables and finalize all decisions you need to make.
One, you need to have a final answer to all the questions you had in the research stage. Once that is all out of the way, you have to start planning for the execution and everything you need.
One of the things that you need to pay attention to is your marketing strategy. As early as this stage, you have to think of the specific needs you will have along the way.
Which logistics provider should you be using? You also have to think of whether you will build a website or not. Are you going to offer discounts and promos once you open your business? Will your first customers get rewards and incentives when they make their first order? You also have to explore payment options, among other things.
You will need a lot of patience, time, and money for this one. You will be wasting a lot of materials trying to find what works best for your products. Some moments will make you frustrated. Don’t let it get to you. Just take a break from time to time.
The search for a supplier is also a long one because you should consider a few things. One is the price. You have to get high-quality materials at an affordable rate. Secondly, you have to consider if the supplier can provide your materials any time you need them.
- Getting miscellaneous materials
When you are set with your supplier and the exact process of making your products, you still have a few more steps to take. For one, you have to decide on the packaging. Remember that today, visual appeal is part of the game.
When you price the product, you have to consider the materials, even the packaging, the labor you put in, and the markup. You have to consider your target market for this. Can they afford your products? If not, change the product or the market.
- Product Photoshoot
Again, the selling competition requires you to level up with the visual appeal. You will use photos and videos for marketing your products. You can do it yourself if you have the know-how, but you can also contact professional photographers.
Finally, it’s time to give the spotlight to the product of your sleepless nights spent on planning and research. You have to launch the platform where you will sell your products. You can decide to open up one online platform at a time. Even this stage will be time-consuming and difficult. You have a lot of things to learn.
Even this whole guide can be considered an oversimplification of the entire process. That is how tricky launching a business is. Even so, don’t let this discourage you from building a business. Sacrifice is part of the game. The aim of this guide is to help you manage your expectations.