3 Important Steps to Start a Small Business
If you are lucky, your small business may be doing well and thriving on its own. Not everyone is as fortunate. You must have heard or read somewhere that most small businesses fail within the first couple of years. It isn’t easy of course, so getting financial assistance would be like winning the lottery.
Many small businesses apply for small business grants to get some money that they can use to improve their business. These grants can make a significant difference. Some business owners make the mistake of not thinking how and where to use this money, assuming their grant application is successful. Here are some ways that a small business can use their business grant.
1. Marketing Efforts
Every business must do marketing or they’d be dead in the water. Some spend millions and know what they are doing, so they also make millions. However, even if you can’t afford it, somehow, you must still make the effort in marketing and do the best you can within your means. It is better than not doing any marketing at all. It is better that some people know about you than nobody at all. It is all about making people aware of your business, what you can offer them and how they can benefit from it.
There are many ways to go about it. There are TV ads, radio ads, newspapers, magazines and of course, social media. However, it is more than just placing ads and sitting back. You need to see what’s working and what isn’t. You need to analyze the information and then do more of what works and get rid of what doesn’t. This way, you can spend wisely on any grants you’ve received.
2. Stocking Up
If you receive a grant, you can stock up on your inventory. Let’s face it, if you don’t have something, customers are disappointed and will go elsewhere. You cannot allow this to happen. The good thing about stocking up on products is that you can sell them relatively quickly and see a profit. This allows you to stock up again, pay invoices and other debts.
This is a clever way to use a grant, however, make sure to stock up on things you know will sell well and quickly. If you’re selling Coke and Diet 7Up, it is better to turn down 3 customers than 58!
3. No Website? You’d Better Get One!
Your business has to move along with the times or get left way behind. Even the biggest businesses that don’t even need a website have one. If you don’t, you should not only consider it, you had actually better get one. It also gives you the option of doing business online and you could incorporate shipping items both locally and perhaps one day, globally as well. So, set aside some grant money to have a nice website set up to give you another avenue of income.
Don’t forget that you need to pay for operating costs as well. You can use some of the grant money to pay bills, get office supplies and other little things that are part of your day-to-day operations. Don’t make the mistake of being so focused on the big things that you forget about all the other things. Be organized; this will help you to allocate your grant in the most advantageous ways.