Starting a small business is so common nowadays. People see small businesses on Instagram, TikTok and other platforms and think, I can do that! It looks easy, but running a small business is anything but that. It takes hard work, dedication and perhaps the most often overlooked factor, time. Unfortunately, small business success does not happen overnight, as it may seem online.
Saw.com has gone through this process before, and now we are here to help you be successful. Here are common mistakes small business owners make when starting their business. And of course, how you can avoid them!
1. Not Having a Plan
When you are starting your business, it is crucial to plan. Yes, it takes some time. Yes, it can be overwhelming. But, not making plans can hurt your business down the road.
There is so much to consider when starting a business, and you simply can not rush the process. We suggest making a business plan, marketing plan and financial plan. While doing these, it is crucial to stay organized and take your time.
Do your research; study competitors and other industries and look at what consumers are interested in. Evaluate your own resources, your connections, experience, your money and planned investments. Create ideas for the future And of course, set goals.
2. Relying on Social Media
In this day in age, many people assume they can start their business using social media platforms. It is free, easy to upload content and accessible to people around the world. However, social media can only take you so far when it comes to running a business. You also lose control over some aspects of your company. Essentially, do not use social media to build your business.
What should you do instead? Buy a domain name and build your company website. Not only will it be easier for customers to find you. But, this will ensure you have full control over your content, traffic and brings credibility to your site.
We hear too often, “you need to invest money to make money”. Although this is true, there is a balance when starting a small business. You do not need to buy the newest and shiniest of everything when you are starting out. It is possible to find equally reliable equipment and software at a lower price. Additional ways to avoid overspending is not hiring non essential employees and not diving into unnecessary purchases like a huge office space or storefront right off the bat.
To avoid doing these, make a business budget. Decide what is worth investing in, and what is not.
The other side of the scale is underspending. Although it is good to save and be aware of your spending, never investing in your company can also hurt you down the road. Again, you need to decide what is worth investing in to make you successful.
Sometimes new small business owners lack the confidence and have a fear of failure. So, make sure you are not underpricing your goods and services. Research competitors in the industry and across other markets. More importantly, have confidence in yourself and your product!
5. Trying to Do it Alone
Many small business owners try to juggle everything alone. This is inefficient and can lead to stress, un organization and end up hurting your business. Make your business stronger by putting together a strong team of people who support you and your vision for your business. When you hire driven, intelligent people in the areas that you need to make stronger, your business will benefit. These employees will become the people you can bounce ideas off of, learn from and trust.
As a business owner, it is also important to learn effective delegation. It is one of the core concepts of management leadership and crucial as you start to manage a team of employees. Being able to assign authority as well as distributing and entrusting work to another person will help your business become more efficient.
6. Not Setting Goals
Going along with creating your business plan, you need to set goals for your business. Goals give you direction while you are starting out, and help you stay on track long after. They also help you measure your success. You can develop steps or check points as you move towards reaching those goals.
Business goals come in all shapes and sizes. They can be little victories or huge wins. Additionally, they can be daily, monthly or weekly! Do whatever you feel works best for you and your business. However, be smart with your goals. It is important to have a dream, but also try to be realistic. Make sure your goals are measurable and attainable.