Starting a Business from Home? What You Must Consider First
There are loads of advantages to setting up a home business. Firstly, you get to wear your pyjamas to work if you want to! You save time and petrol costs in getting to work and you will have lots of flexibility. Another big bonus is that you don’t have to pay for office rental. However, there are a few things you must think about before taking the leap into running a business from home.
Do You Have Room?
This is probably the most important consideration. Is there space in your home to operate a business successfully? While you can use the dining room table for your office desk, it is not ideal. You really need to be able to keep business and home life separate, so a designated space is important. If you are short on room, consider using the services of Fort Knox Storage to store some of your stuff. It is a much cheaper alternative than renting office space.
The Tough Questions
You need to think carefully about your business idea. What skills, services or products can you offer? Do you have the experience needed to be successful? Is there a need for what you will be offering? How strong is the market? Will it be affected by an economic downturn? Most importantly, will you enjoy doing it? Loving what you do will make a big difference to your quality of life and also the success of your business. Passion is catching!
Marketing: it’s not a Dirty Word
No matter how good your idea is, unless you communicate it well to your marketplace, you will not succeed. The first thing you need to do is define what it is that makes your product or service different; what is your point of difference? It is important to stand out. If the market is oversaturated with exactly the same thing you are offering, it will be more difficult to succeed. Your business must have a drawcard; something that you are offering that beats your competitor. It may be as simple as excellent, personal service versus impersonal big business models.
When you figure out what it is that gives you your competitive advantage, start communicating it. This is what is called you point of difference, or your value proposition. It is this succinct piece of information that you need to convey as creatively as possible. For instance, if personal hands-on service is your point of difference, try a letter box drop with hand written cards to introduce yourself and your business to the neighbourhood.
Check the Legalities
You should check with your local council to make sure that there are no zoning laws prohibiting you from starting a business from home. You will also need to procure an Australian Business Number (ABN). You need to chat with an accountant or book-keeper about things like GST and BAS statements. If you are not savvy with these things, you can take a class, or alternatively you can outsource your bookwork.