Photo of team of project managers with sign offerning business start-up tips.

Become a success story and find yourself on the right side of survival statistics with our checklist of business start-up tips

If you’re thinking of starting a business, you’ve probably been barraged with statistics about failure rates and how difficult it is to turn an idea for a product or service into a viable venture.

So why try?

You should try because statistics can be misleading. For instance, did you know:

  • More than half of all business start-ups survive five years or more (SBA)
  • Approximately one-third of start-ups survive at least 10 years (SBA)
  • Nearly one-third of “failed” businesses are successful when they stop operating (Small Business Study)

Business success is within reach

Is it hard to start a business? Absolutely. Is building a successful business even harder? Without question. But you’re not destined for failure. In fact, you’re more likely to be successful than you realize, and if you’re not successful, it’s more likely that you give up on your business before the market gives up on you. This is especially true if you take the time and put forth the energy to start a business the right way.

For many entrepreneurs, this is the obstacle. This is where they fail. They either don’t know what to do or lack the time and resources to build a stable foundation from which to grow. So before you start a business, review this Business Start-Up Tips checklist. Find out what you need to do and what you need to know. It may seem like a lot now, but it will pay big dividends as you begin to invest more time and money into your business.

Build your brand

  • Define your product or service

  • Identify your market
  • Name your business
  • Design a logo
  • Create a website
  • Establish your key messaging points

Protect your property

  • File a DBA
  • Structure your business
  • Trademark your name
  • Obtain a Federal Tax ID
  • Obtain a State Tax ID
  • Secure the proper permits and licenses
  • Protect intellectual property by filing for a patent or provisional patent

Plan for success

  • State your mission and values
  • Define the scope of your business
  • Study your market
  • Analyze the competition
  • Set goals and objectives
  • Identify risks
  • Map out your strategy
  • Establish measurement tools

Manage your finances

  • Separate your business and personal finances
  • Open a bank account
  • Invest in accounting software, or hire a bookkeeper
  • Accept all forms of payment
  • Open a credit card merchant account or create an account with an online payment services company
  • Establish payables and receivables policies
  • Pay your taxes
  • Learn about lines of credit
  • Know when and how to finance growth
  • Value cash flow

Establish and advisory team

  • Lawyer
  • Banker
  • Accountant
  • Insurance Agent
  • Management Consultant

The reasons to start a business are many, but the driving motivation should be that you have a marketable talent you are passionate about. If you have that, work hard, and surround yourself with smart people who can be inspired by your vision, there is no reason why you can’t be on the right side of the statistic of those who start a business and succeed. This checklist of business start-up tips should help.