Every successful business you see today started small years back. Be it the Apple starting from a garage or Facebook from a hostel ward. Successful businesses don’t turn successful overnight. People work hard to make themselves successful. In this article, we have covered the important steps of starting a business from home.
A small home-based business doesn’t necessarily need to stay in the drawing room all the time. You can grow a small business out of your home into a million-dollar startup. Every big business today started small. You don’t need a huge amount of money or a lot of employees to grow big. You just need to stay dedicated and work hard to turn a work-from-home venture into a successful startup.
Here are the 10 Steps to Start a Business from Home
1. Ideation Process
Before actually jumping into starting a business, you need to brainstorm different ideas. It is important to understand the demand and trends of the local market. While your business may have a market in your locality, does it have enough potential to grow outside?
Working on the idea is very important. Even if you are yet to choose a business idea, it’s better to choose something that you feel the most passionate about.
Starting with a business idea means you have to stay with it for a long. In order to succeed and turn a home business idea into a successful startup, you first need to believe in your idea before others do.
2. Understanding The Market
It’s crucial. Once you lock in a business idea, start working on it. You have to understand your target market. Supposedly you want to sell tacos in your city. You need to have a rough understanding of who will buy your product or where people may buy it the most from, or which are the most preferred brands.
It is worthwhile to mention here that one just can’t only focus on your product or service entirely but also need to understand what the audience wants.
3. Working On A Business Plan
Writing a business plan is your next task. Start with some market research. The actual customer using the type of product or service you wish to sell will help you with a clear idea of what you need to deliver. Even if you can’t spend a lot on market research, you yourself can buy a few of the competitor products and test them, and check how good is your product, or do you need to improve. You can even send samples to your friends and relatives for some feedback.
You need to test your idea with actual customers to clearly understand the market demand.
Build a minimum viable product or a prototype. The idea is to put out something that offers the main value of your startup or that solves the core problem of your customers.
4. Calculating the Finances for Your Home-Based Business
If you are already in the business, you may have an operational income. But to grow, you need more money. Start with the costings and do your financial projections. You need to come up with realistic numbers for your business to expand. As you plan to grow, you can either go for a business loan or some sort of funding.
You need to list all your expenses and have to project your sales first to understand how much money you may actually need to turn a home business idea into a successful startup.
This will help you to determine whether your business can generate money if expanded. Also, you can come up with price points so you can calculate your profit.
5. Working On The Requirements
There are businesses that may have to buy or lease retail space in order to expand their business. As you plan to take your home business to a new level, you may have to work on certain requirements. For example, you sell gourmet cookies out of your home, and now you plan to start a bakery, there are certain things you will need.
You might have a business that may need production equipment or partnerships with manufacturing facilities to expand your home business.
You may also need additional permits and meet certain legal obligations before your expansion. Going into depth is important to turn a home business idea into a successful startup.
6. Testing Your Product/ Service
After completing the formalities, now it’s time to focus on the product or service. If you are starting new, test your sample products in a few key markets. Or, in case you already own a business, you can test your actual product in a different market. You need to test this in at least three-four markets to see the response.
Are people satisfied? Are they able to use it properly? Whether their problems resolved by using your product? Is it easy to use?
With the answers, you will have a clear idea of whether you have been able to deliver successfully or not. In the marketing world, a seventy percent success rate is often considered a safe zone.
7. Making The Necessary Changes
If your product or service has been well accepted, you are good to go. But if some of the customers feel differently, you should start working on them and fix them right away. If the majority of the customers are complaining, it’s better to drop the product or service and start working on it from scratch.
Make sure you listen to what your audience is asking for. Because the customer is the king! You definitely can’t go wrong with that.
8. Market Segmentation & Distribution
You need to segment your market properly. This will help you to sort out your target audience. This will also assist you to choose your distribution network. Like if you choose to manufacture organic soaps, you need to work on your delivery channels. You need to decide on how many will you produce for different markets, where you wish to sell them, how will you transport them, marketing, etc.
The same goes for service. You need to be there where you wish to operate. You need to work according to a plan so that you can easily segment out a target market, and your product or service is available there.
9. Have a Marketing Plan for Home-Based Business
With a target market in your mind, it’s now time to kickstart your marketing campaigns. The initial marketing should always be about brand awareness. Let people first know that you exist. You make such products, and you are available here and so.
Put your company branding strategy to work. Make sure you buy a domain and launch your website. Also, be there on all the social media sites and channels. Start to market your brand.
10. Establishing a Brand
You need to be different from your competitors. You need to give your customers a reason why they should choose you over your competitors. This is where you establish a brand. Make sure the brand identity is clear to your audience. This will act as an added perk to turn a home business idea into a successful startup.
Your branding campaigns must reflect the image you’re trying to sell.
As you are a new startup expanding itself, ensure that marketing campaigns and promotions speak of your brand identity largely. Your brand will speak for you and will help you nurture your brand reputation.
Turning a home business into a successful startup does involve a whole process. You need to have a solid business plan, select your target market, carry out market research, and then a branding strategy to turn a home business idea into a successful startup.
Work on your financial projections minutely to understand how much money you need to expand your company. To sum up, it’s more about believing in your own idea, and working hard.
About the Author: 99businessideas.com led by Rupak Chakrabarty is committed to helping beginners, entrepreneurs, and small business owners in starting, managing, and growing their businesses.