Profile your customer
List key characteristics like:
• where they are
• what they care about
• how much they spend
This will help you refine your product and your marketing.
Do your numbers
Plot your projected costs on a timeline. Do the same with projected income. You'll run at a loss when you first start a business. How will you make up the shortfall?
Research shows that most businesses do this through owner savings, bank loans, friends and family, or credit cards. Learn more in our guide to finance.
Most US businesses get their money from:
34% owner’s savings • 10% bank loans • 17% friends and family • 33% credit cards
Register your business
Ask city, county, or state authorities if you need licenses or permits. Ask the state tax office about sales tax. Ask the IRS if you need a federal tax identification number.
After starting a business
So now you know how to start a business, but what comes next? Lots of questions, that’s what. Keep your advisors and mentors close. And look for helpful articles in our small business guides.