Back-to-school for the kids, back-to-the-hustle for entrepreneurs looking to start September off with a bang. While students are sharpening their pencils, aspiring merchants can prepare by reviewing Clover’s best resources for launching your business. This handy guide delivers everything you need to know to start a business from scratch.
Business Planning 101
Business planning may feel like a tedious exercise, but laying the groundwork now can set you up for success in the long-run. Investors will want to see you’ve put the thought into your business idea before they jump on board. Check out these guides for some quick business planning tips.
- Select a profitable vertical/industry for your business
- Build a business plan with competitive analysis
- Perfect your sales pitch
- Get your pricing right
- Develop a target customer profile with market research
- Answer these 13 questions before starting a new business
Finding Funding and Investors
Once you have a plan, the next step is to execute it. To do that, you’ll need some start-up capital to help you get momentum. There are a few ways to get the money you need to start your business: take out a loan, find an investor, ask your friends and family for money, or try crowdfunding. These articles can help you figure out which is best for you.
- 5 questions to ask before borrowing money for your business
- Is equity crowdfunding right for your small business?
- 5 questions to ask a potential investor in your business
- Friends and family investors: How to keep things professional
- How to get quick cash for your small business
Business Structuring and Operations
Not sure what the difference is between an LLC, B-Corps, and nonprofit? Getting into the weeds of business structuring can feel daunting. Try some of these articles to get a sense of the right business structure for you, plus some tips on setting up your accounting tools, leases, payroll, and inventory.
- Understanding the alphabet soup of business structures
- Organizing your tax info
- Negotiating your first lease
- When (and how) to hire an accountant
- What small businesses should look for in a POS system
Marketing and More
Branding and logo design is the first order of business when it comes to launching your marketing campaign. From there, build out your marketing program based on your business plan, target customer, and budget. Hire a graphic designer to help with the look and feel of your business, or use a free template tool like Canva. These articles can help share the news of your business with potential new customers!
- How to spend your marketing budget
- 5 free tools to improve your online presence
- How to choose the right social media platform
- How to turn your social media followers into customers
- 5 questions to ask before launching your marketing program
Hiring and Staffing Strategy
Short of cloning yourself, it’s impossible for every entrepreneur to do everything at once. Running a startup is challenging work. That said, finding someone to shoulder the workload can help you sleep a little better at night (or at all). If you think you’re ready to bring someone on your team, check out some of these resources for hiring the right people.
- The 5 people every one-person business needs on their extended team
- 5 questions to ask before hiring your first employee
- How to hire great hourly employees [Webinar]
- Top tasks to outsource, top tasks to keep in-house
- What top candidates look for in a job description
Clover is sold by leading U.S. banks including Bank of America, BBVA, Citi, PNC, Sun Trust and Wells Fargo. You’ll also find Clover at our trusted partners including Ignite Payments, Restaurant Depot, and Sam’s Club. For more information, visit us at clover.com.