| Capital Critters! Fundraising Methods To Ponder

Posted in Start-up Ventures at 1:00 PM by Loftis Consulting

Running an established business can come with concern after concern. When you are setting up your business, the worries come thick and fast! The most obvious one is money. The precarious position a business can find itself in during the early days means that business owners are tearing their hair out to find the easiest and quick source of money to inject into their business and also pay their staff members! And for many first-time business owners, they may not be too sure where they can go to raise capital, or what is available to them. So here are some alternative sources for your notebook!

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Microloans

While there are many different types of small loans, the microloan is one that is easier to get than the traditional ones. There are companies that provide up to $25,000 to small businesses and startups that have no access to any type of funding. Some money loan organizations provide loans based on the type of business, for example, a group like Accion has a program for food and beverage businesses. Microloans are usually under $50,000. So if you need a larger sum, you will have to go down the standard loan application route.

 

Merchant Cash Advances

This is where a company offers cash advances in exchange for a percentage of future credit card or sales receipts. It is a quick process, and for businesses that are looking for mca leads to help aid their marketing and generate leads, it is a lucrative prospect. The benefit of businesses looking for merchant cash advances is that it is very quick to apply for and generally involves minimal paperwork.

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Crowdfunding

A mainstay of the internet is the ability to crowdfund almost anything. It is a very attractive option when you have to raise capital fast. People have used it fund movies, businesses, books, you name it. If you can reach a broad spectrum of people, and each person donates a small sum, you will be able to reach your target in a short amount of time. But for each person that donates, you need to give them an incentive to give that money, and this could be a free sample of the product you are raising for, or something else. For example, a musician may offer a free CD. As the process can have a very quick turnaround, it is a great way to get funds fast.

 

Sales or Discounts

You shouldn’t overlook your customers as a way of generating quick cash. You don’t even need to be in the customer service industry to reap the rewards of this. You can offer a discount to customers who pay quarterly or pay in advance, and as this gives you the big cash injection up front, it is something you won’t notice further down the line because the discount doesn’t have to be a massive one. A discount, as small as 5% from one customer, is barely noticeable on your books, but they feel like they are gaining from it.

| Business Beginnings: Which To Choose?

Posted in Start-up Ventures at 4:00 PM by Loftis Consulting

Sometimes people don’t know what kind of business to get into. The problem is, they know they want to go into business, to own their own business, but they don’t know what to do. They may have skills and experience that is all encompassing and as such not have direct knowledge of any given niche. At this point you need to sit down and really ask yourself about the business you want to create. The fact you want to go into business is great. You can really make a name for yourself in doing so and live the life you want. Yet it will be hard, grueling at times especially if you make the mistake and set up the wrong kind of business. Your issue is that you simply don’t know what you want to do, but all great businesses are built on ideas or knowhow. You need to find one of these. This article can help you by making suggestions involving different kinds of businesses whilst also making suggestions involving how you can think and come to the right decision for you. You may have pondered some of these tips before whilst considering what business to go into, yet read on because you might read something else that hits a cord and makes you think. Good luck in the pursuance of your business dreams.

 

In the first instance you need to think of a few logical ideas. The best businesses are the ones where the services offered are always needed. Think about that, what do people need? Or what do other businesses need? An example would be cleaning services, for which you can find more about at https://www.cleaningbusinessacademy.com. Business-to-business ideas like these are great. If you set up a business where people actually need the services you offer you have a better chance of succeeding. Or course the competition is fierce so you need to offer something unique, put a different spin on what you do and use it to your advantage.

 

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Food is always a good bet. Yet remember, it comes with all sorts of problems. Owning a restaurant or eatery of any kind means wastage, inspections, food safety issues, etc. Also, you would think food is a necessity, but it isn’t in terms of a restaurant because people can just buy something from somewhere else. Food is everywhere and at all varying prices. If you want to go into the food industry you need to do it because you have a great idea. Look at your town. What is it really missing? Is there something specific that could do well but isn’t yet there? Beat the others too it! Remember, restaurants have high setup costs due to the machinery and if you have limited culinary experience you will need to hire chiefs that cost a lot of money. If you really don’t know what kind of business to set up then don’t go with a restaurant. It is hard work with tough competition. It can be great, but only if you have a certain passion for food.

If you have more of a digital flair then you could be better places keeping your business online or in the digital sphere. You can do and manage all kinds of business from the internet, you don’t even need a physical business address in this day and age. However, you do need a stellar idea. The benefit of a physical business is that it is unavoidable to the passer by. They can see it and some will be lured towards it. On the internet you don’t have this, yet of course you also don’t have the high costs of upkeep. Swings and roundabouts, you need to come to the best and most logical business decision for you. Online can be done. Look at Amazon, and businesses like Uber. The models are there for you to copy, you just need to try and bring something new to the table, something world beating. Or, something that is needed and works such as marketing, SEO, etc. These are the current trends for online businesses and are most popular. Yet again, they require high depths of knowledge.

To be successful you need to mix your passion with a vivid idea. You need the idea to ensure your business is successful and the passion to carry you through. You can go through just on your passion, as long as you carry yourself through it. People have forged empires through sheer force of will. What are you good at? What experiences do you have that you can take into business? Lots of people want to go into business but are basing it on a spark of idea they have. Without the idea you need to think of one. Don’t base it all on one thing. Be all encompassing. What can you bring to the business world. In the meantime save money. No matter what you do, setting up will need money for a premises or a website etc.

You need to avoid jumping in as soon as you can. Those who fail to plan, plan to fail. You need to be hard on yourself and really try not to jump the gun or you’ll be wasting money and asking yourself for trouble in some kind of way. Plan it all out, come to the best conclusion and then go ahead. Business plans are hard to draw up at the best of times let alone when you need money from the bank, so give it the best possible chance of success and do your research. You may just find something close to your heart and as a result find something lucrative and worthwhile. Ask for help every step of the way, the internet is full of resources. You could even speak to a business analyst or a consultant to ensure your ideas can be properly implemented. They key is in never giving up, but toeing the line between this and restraint. You must ensure your business is planned to perfection and then breathe life into it. Be the force that drives it to succeed.

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| Cutting Costs When Setting Up Your Business

Posted in Start-up Ventures at 5:00 PM by Loftis Consulting

You would be surprised that one of the main reasons a business fails is due to funds. After all, a lot of entrepreneurs don’t realize how much they need when they start a business. And then they fall short when they have to pay for things like materials. After all, it’s so easy to spend beyond your means if you don’t budget properly before. In fact, it’s a good idea to get some financial help before you begin. However, starting a business doesn’t have to leave you short. In fact, here are some ways you can cut costs when setting up your business.

Outsource Work Rather Than Hiring Employees

It’s hard to get your business to go from strength to strength when it’s just you working for the company. After all, there are so many factors to a business that it’s hard to do it all. But if you start hiring employees, it can make things very expensive for you. After all, a salary will hack into any profits you have made. And being responsible for employees can just be added stress. Therefore, if you want to cut some costs, you should consider outsourcing work instead of hiring employees. For example, if you need a website drawn up for you, hire a freelance designer. It won’t cost you an arm and a leg if you get them from sites like Freelancer.com. And the same goes when it comes to your accounts. Just pay someone to do the work, and then if they do a good job, you can work with them again in the future. That way, you won’t have to pay out for a full-time employee!

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Consider Your Location When Setting Up Your Company

A lot of people don’t think about the fact that different areas have their own legal rules and taxes for businesses. After all, some states have great benefits if you do start a business there. While others might charge a fortune on taxes if you begin your business in that location. Therefore, if you want to cut some costs, you should make sure you research different areas before securing a place for your business. And remember that you also need to think about this when it comes to where your business is incorporated. After all, some states are more business-friendly than others. Therefore, look online to find the best states to incorporate. That way, you won’t live with regret that you have extra taxes and fees than other states!

Make The Most of Free Advertising and Marketing

The cost of advertising and marketing can often leave a business in financial woe. But it’s so important to get your message out there, so the clients come rolling in. However, you don’t have to spend a fortune when it comes to marketing. For one thing, use online tools to your benefit. For example, setting up a website and social media page could bring clients to your doorstep. Also, sending out email newsletters about your company to potential clients is also an excellent way to market for free. And there are plenty of other ideas online of low-cost ways to promote your business.

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And you might want to consider working from home at the beginning. After all, opting for a workspace at home could save you a ton of dollars!

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| Scrapbook To Shelf: Tips For Entrepreneurial Inventors

Posted in Start-up Ventures at 4:00 PM by Loftis Consulting

Have you had a bit of a Dragon’s Den moment? Have you come up with something brilliant, which you believe could be the next big thing? If you’re an inventor with designs on becoming an entrepreneur, you may be thinking about how to get your product from the scrapbook to the shelf. In this day and age, it’s not enough to have the ideas. You also have to possess the acumen to get your product to market and then make it a success.

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Production

If you have designs and prototypes, the next thing to do is work out how you’re going to mass produce the product. Where are you going to manufacture it, what kinds of materials are you going to use, and how are you going to finance the process? It’s a big jump to go from sketching and making a prototype version to having a product on sale in shops. Once you’ve got the financial side of things sorted, you can decide how to best to invest your capital. Work with suppliers and distributors to negotiate deals, and think carefully about price points. You want to generate a profit, but you don’t want to price yourself out of the market.

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Marketing

There’s no point in investing your life savings and taking out a loan to pay for a venture that nobody is even aware of. Marketing is essential for any new product. You want people to know about you and your product, and to buy it. There are so many ways to market your business, and it’s essential to understand your market before you start working on a strategy. What is the target demographic? How can you best connect with these people? Do they like the concept and how much would they be willing to pay? Tailor your marketing plan to suit the audience. If you’re aiming at young people aged between 18 and 30, for example, online marketing is probably a good bet. As an inventor, you may be not up to speed with techniques like social media marketing and SEO, and this is where SEO expert services come in handy. You can work with agencies or individuals with expertise in this field to build your profile, create a buzz, and get people visiting your shop or website.

Pitching to buyers is another important cog in the process. Buyers at online retailers and huge chains have the power to change your life overnight, so don’t underestimate the importance of being prepared. Go into a pitch feeling confident about the product. Be clear and concise, and make sure you have the figures pinned down. If you hesitate when it comes to numbers, this can be an instant red flag for buyers. Show off your passion, and tell the panel your story. Be engaging and inject some personality. If there is a possibility of an order, be willing to negotiate on price.

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Image courtesy of https://pixabay.com/en/photos/digital%20marketing/

Are you a budding entrepreneur keen to change the world with a brand new product? If so, you should be prepared for what’s to come. Bear these tips in mind, work hard, and be confident in your abilities. Good luck!

| Set up a Stall in the Internet Marketplace

Posted in Start-up Ventures at 5:00 PM by Loftis Consulting

The Internet offers up a whole host of opportunities for anybody to make a bit of extra money, or even a living. There are a plethora of platforms and services out there that allow for anybody to make some cash without even having to leave the comfort of their home, or even their bed. If this is something that interests you, then make sure to continue reading and see some of the ways in which you can do it yourself.

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The first option is to make use of the huge and various marketplaces that the Internet has set up in recent years. There are services, such as Arcadier, that allow you to create your very own e-commerce marketplace in order to sell all the things you know longer need in life online, instantly eradicating the need to get up early on a Saturday and go and do a car-boot or garage sale. This kind of venture also cuts out the possibility of allowing for products to be sold at a cheaper price to the power of haggling; when somebody is trying to convince you in person to lower your prices, it can be easy to do so, whereas online that human connectivity is diminished and ultimately the prices you set are retained. A type of online marketplace that is coming into real fruition is the independent distributor scene, specifically those that distribute electronic components. The products distributed on DigSemi.com, for instance, are those that are generally hard-to-find and difficult to source, which is why the company and scene in general is, in this day and age, so vibrant. Becoming an independent distributer is a great way to make money, but you must be aware that you need to be able to provide a vast amount of products and supply must meet demand.

However, if seeking all of your world belongings isn’t of any interest to you, then why not take to other online methods of filling your wallet with wonga? You could, for instance, take to a freelance job where all the work is done and submitted via the Internet. Freelancing is a flexible job that can even be turned into a successful career — all you need is a strong Internet connection and the ability to remain self-motivated throughout the day, even without authority figures looming over you. Similarly, you could start you own form and brand of online entertainment. Blogs have turned into a business as the ways in which connections are made over the Internet has grown, which is why blogs now are viable ways of making money. Consumers are accessing blogs in order to connect with other likeminded people, and the bloggers themselves, which then means that said blogger is making an income. As well as this, entering the video sharing site Youtube as an uploader, and not just a consumer, of videos is now a way in which those that do it are making SERIOUS amounts of money. For instance, KSI, a Youtube personality, has managed to earn himself a net worth of £11 million through his comedic videos and even spawned himself a career in other ventures such as TV presenting, acting and even rapping.

So, if you want to make some more money, or even ditch the traditional nine to five, then you should boot up your laptop, jump online, and start making money on the Internet today!

| Starting Up In Logistics? This Can Help

Posted in Start-up Ventures at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting

Logistics is a great business to get involved with because companies always need to be transferring items from one place to another. Goods need to be moved. Whether over land, sea, or air. Your business will be hard to set up, there is so much you need to think about in logistics, however, if you nail it and get it right you’ll be making money hand over first. You may have already considered some of these tips, which is great! But check out the others and see if they can stoke your ideas. You may even think of something you had previously not considered. Good luck!

 The first thing you need to think about is your base of operations. This is the place from where items come in, get moved around and packed back up before going out again. This place needs to be pretty big; it also needs to have the right machinery. Items like a 3 ton overhead crane, forklift trucks, roll pallets. All of these warehouse style types of machinery need to be used because of the extensive amount of items you have coming through. This gets worse with the more variety you use. You’ll need fridges for food and separation techniques when holding certain items like gas, fireworks etc. The more you take the more money you will get. Just be wary of the amount of space you have in your warehouse. Certain things will need to be segregated.

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 On the same note it could be worth investing in a bespoke inventory management system. It can stop silly mistakes happening and save you money by limiting on items going missing in paperwork which can sometimes happen with under delivery and the like. Paper based systems are redundant in this day and age. Go for an automated system and watch your profits stay consistent.

Now you have your base setup you need trucks. These cost a lot of money, especially now you need to ensure they comply with environmental standards in terms of emissions. As such, settle on a low number at first. When your business expands you can increase the number at your disposal. There should be clear loading bays and easy ways to add the items into the trucks. Again, you may need to invest in truck cooling systems if ferrying food around. At this point you need to work out your limits. If in America, are going to cover the whole USA? In Europe? How far out are you going to go? Again, start out small and get bigger as you expand. Your drivers need to be comfortable in travelling long distance, so ensure they have the right training to do so.

You may need to partner up with other companies that use shipping and cargo flights, as you won’t be that far yet. As such, you need to include all of this in your price plan. Never operate at a loss otherwise your business will be gone before you know it. Try to just use your trucks when you can, only outsource to shipping firms when you really need to.

| 6 Tips to Sell My First Private Label on Amazon

Posted in Start-up Ventures at 9:00 AM by Sarah Kaiser

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Private label selling involves the purchase of a generic product and remarketing it under your own brand. The best part of selling private label is that the income can be passive, once things have been set up correctly. The chosen product is sold through Amazon, who takes care of practically everything from storage to delivery, if you so choose. You simply have to market and package the product better than any competitors. It is always important to remember than this is certainly not a get rich quick scheme. It takes skill, timing, patience and intelligence. And even with these elements, success is not guaranteed.

 

Tip One – Pick the Right Product

Tip one is the most obvious, simple and crucial part of selling your first private label. Product selection is crucial because no matter how well you do the other steps your business will not succeed if the product is not desired by the marketplace. The first question to ask yourself is “will my product sell?”. Simply go to Amazon and see the list of bestselling products. You also need to know some hard facts such as the sales volume and the search volume of your product to help predict how it will sell. That’s where tools such as Jungle Scout and MerchantWords come in.

Type in keywords that customers will be using to find your product at MerchantWords then view the results. For your product to be successful, ensure it gets a minimum monthly search volume of 100,000 either on the main product keyword or a combination of different keyword sets. Jungle Scout is a powerful tool, giving you not only the estimated monthly sales volume of a product but also important metrics such as the BSR, number of reviews and revenue. Before settling on a product, ensure that the Best Seller Ranking (BSR) of 2-3 similar products is 5,000 or less.

It is also important to choose something that is generic, not patented like Nike shoes or an iPhone. These are protected products. It is also important to select items above $10, as it is often difficult to make a profit on items that are too cheap due to Amazon’s flat fees. After you have identified a bestselling product that meets these criteria, the next step in product selection is to check out the competition. Do a search with the name of your chosen product on Amazon and take down all relevant data of all sellers of that product into a spreadsheet. You are looking to identify a number of low quality reviews and a low seller rank for most of the sellers. Any seller rank below 1,000 could count as low. A low number of reviews itself is also a good sign. If the competition is too stiff, it is not worth going into the market, as you will have an uphill battle to fight from the beginning as well as having to learn all other necessary information about selling private label products.

Tip Two – Choose the Best Manufacturer

There is a tradeoff here between price and reliability. Choosing the best private label manufacturer is no easy task and may take quite a lot of research and investigation if you are unwilling to use third party specialists. Many Amazon private label sellers are sourcing from China, where cheaper rates can be availed of. In any case make sure that the terms of the deal are clear and that you have an effective quality control process in place to ensure that the product is safe and exactly as described. Errors in the manufacturing process can hurt your business very badly.

Tip Three – Take the Hit

Your first sale is very important. It is recommended to just take the hit and offer your products at half price or less. And make sure that the orders execute swiftly and flawlessly. You need killer product reviews on your first 10 or so sales. People are far more likely to leave negative than positive feedback. They will swiftly complain if anything goes wrong and may leave a positive review if something goes right. Follow through on the first number of purchases and ask consumers if they would mind leaving a product review and if everything went smoothly. Go the extra mile, at least in the beginning. Word will get around about the fantastic service and cheaper product.

Tip Four – Generate Traffic

Like any online business, your webpages need traffic. This means you need people to come to your site. It is a good idea when starting off to run an Amazon sponsored ad campaign to get numbers to your product listing. These can run as cheaply as $5 per day and can be highly effective. But there are quite a number of different ways to generate traffic. You can also use social media to highlight the power of your product with a link to the listing on Amazon. Amazon may not like the use of its platform to drive traffic away from its products, but it sure does love you using your resources to drive traffic to its website.

Tip Five – Convert, Convert, Convert

You have people at your site, but to make a conversion your product needs to be lower than your competitors. This is the main reason you entered the market in the first place, right? This is enough for people to favor your product, but you are also going to have a creative and brilliant product listing which makes your product sound better than your competitors. Though Amazon wants the product listing to be entirely factual, there is some wiggle room for creativity. There are numerous online sites such as upwork and freelancer which have freelancers specializing in product listings for this exact job. Your product listing is your sales page. The difference between a 1% and a 2% conversation rate can be the difference between a successful and an unsuccessful business. It is not worth skimping out on. Check out an example for product listing here.

Tip Six – Use FBA

There is little reason not to use Fulfilled by Amazon. This is highly recommended if you are entering the private label business for the first time. Amazon is expert on packaging and delivery. And customers trust Amazon so are more likely to buy your product. People with an Amazon prime subscription are going to heavily favor a one day delivery. It’s too convenient to say no to, and I’m speaking from personal experience as an Amazon shopper. FBA sellers also have an advantage in the “buy box”, a box which shows the prices of the best alternative sellers. You need your private label product in this box if possible. Low cost products do not work as well with FBA due to the charges. FBA is ideal for heavier products due to the fantastic shipping deals available to huge companies like Amazon, but which could eat into your profit margins if you chose to ship them yourself. FBA should also be avoided if your products are slow sellers, as the storage fees may eat up on profits. Though there are some reported flaws with FBA, for a first-time private label seller it is definitely worth using the service initially.

It is highly recommended that you go through Amazons terms and agreements for sellers with a fine comb. They do not tolerate infringements on their policies. Check carefully their selling policies prior to your product selection. It is also advisable to get a tracking spreadsheet so you are familiar with all the numbers associated with the business you are managing. Remember it is not as simple as picking a product and watching it sell. You need to take count of stock, taxes, profit margins, reviews, invoices and much, much more. Ultimately it requires business savvy, patience and attention to detail. It is a business. But if you do it properly the results are endless, simply because the business is repeatable. If you get one product correct there is nothing preventing you from doing it over and over with other products.

 

Author Bio:

Sarah Kaiser is a digital marketing manager at casino global sourcing, the sourcing division of a French retailer Groupe Casino. She’s in charge of the product catalog of casino global sourcing, which offers helps and handles enquiries about private label product sourcing and manufacturing. See how further your private label business can grow by having a free enquiry on their online catalog, godirek.com or follow @Godirek on twitter.

| Tips For Starting A Business

Posted in Start-up Ventures at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting

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Having an entrepreneurial mindset is one half of the key to running a successful business, but the other half depends on preparation and a level business head, as well as a passionate one. You might have innovative ideas and a keen interest for spotting gaps in the market which can be exploited, but ‘good business’ is a multi-layered and complex concept. You need to go into your new business with eyes wide open so that you start off on solid footing and don’t run into problems down the line. Here are some tips for starting a business if you’re new to the entrepreneurial world.

 

Research and Plan

The most important initial step is research. You need to know your market in terms of potential customers and the competition you’ll be facing in your local area or on a national scale, depending on the ambitions of your business. Starting from the ground up, however, you need to look at what other businesses in the industry supply and what your potential target market demands. For example, you could look into the best US cities for real estate if you’re considering property development, as location is key to the value of a property but also the demand from consumers on the market.

As another example, if you were planning on opening a store which sold cupcakes or simply an all-round café, you’d want to buy premises in a busy town or city area wherein you’re likely to attract many passersby around lunchtime; perhaps near office blocks or shopping centers. Essentially, you need to form a business plan around the research you collect regarding competitors and consumers. The plan can change as your objectives change, but the desires of the external market need to be the focus for the plan rather than the company’s internal desires.

 

Create a Budget

It sounds obvious, but many businesses fail when they ignore the simple fact that they can’t spend outside their means. You need to plan out a budget and continuously re-plan it as your company’s financial situation improves (hopefully it won’t worsen at any point, but every eventuality must be considered). If you have a rigid plan for spending the money your company makes, you never have to worry about finding yourself in a position with low funds and few options. Keep your costs low and your profits high.

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Growth

As an entrepreneur, you likely have big ambitions. Even if you’re starting a small, local business, that doesn’t mean you don’t want to grow and expand your reach over time. Still, the key is to walk before you run. Growth will come, but it can’t be rushed. As mentioned in the previous point, your business needs to always spend within the means of its cash flow, and, as that level of income increases, more staff, resources and eventually more branches can come as a result of that growth in profit. The money must come before the business expands, however, otherwise you might find your company ends up in a tight financial spot.

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The Team Is Everything

Without good staff, your business will fail. Again, it’s an obvious point, but there are so many different variables to consider in business that it’s easy to become fixated on profit or attracting customers whilst forgetting that the most important people to your company are the ones who keep it running. They’re not cogs in the system, and they need to be respected and understood as individuals. That way you can see who’s a team player and who isn’t.

| An Easy Way To Start A New Business?

Posted in Start-up Ventures at 1:00 PM by Loftis Consulting

If you’re keen to start working for yourself, it’s likely you’ll have considered many business ideas and options. But, have you given any thought to becoming a franchisee for an existing brand? Believe it or not, franchises can be quite profitable ventures; just ask anyone that runs a McDonald’s restaurant!

For those seeking an easy route into entrepreneurship, franchising can be quite a simple venture to launch instead of starting from scratch. So, why should you consider starting such a business? And what are the advantages of doing so?

 

There’s No Need to Create a New Brand from Scratch

One of the biggest challenges of starting any new business is the need to establish its brand name in the market. As you can appreciate, you’ll have to dedicate a lot of time and financial resources to marketing a new brand. And there are no guarantees that it will be a memorable one either!

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As a franchisee, you get to skip such a big challenge when growing your business. That’s because you are already using a trusted and well-known name.

 

Plenty of Interesting Niches to Get Your Teeth Into

Did you know there are all kinds of niche markets that you can cater to if you become a franchisee? For instance, you could set up a franchised business in the healthy eating market.

One example of a successful franchise in that niche is Healthy You Vending. As you may have guessed from the name, you would offer vending machines to your clients that provided healthy snacks to consumers.

Another example is Zoup. They are a leading franchise concept for nutritious, great-tasting soups. Each restaurant offers at least a dozen daily varieties of soup to cater for the most discerning of soup eaters.

 

You’ve Got the Support When You Need It

Something they don’t tell you about when you start a new business is that you’re effectively left to your own devices. That means when you’re stuck or need help with someone, it can sometimes be hard to find the support out there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Thankfully, that’s not the case when you run a franchised business. You have the full help and support of the franchisor. After all; you are promoting their brand, so it’s in their interests to give you any help that you need!

They can also give you advice on things like running seasonal promotions and how to market to new demographics.

 

No-one Will Steal Your Territory

The thing about franchises is that you get given an allocated area or “territory” to cover. That’s good news because it means no-one will step on your toes by opening up the same branded franchise just a few streets away from your location!

Some franchising companies will allow franchisees to set up more than one office or retail store in their area. But, in general, there is no direct competition from other franchisees in the same vicinity.

 

Final Thoughts

Franchising can be an excellent way to get into the business world without dealing with the challenges of brand establishment. It’s something worth considering if you want an easier route into business.

| Building Your Construction Business From The Ground Up

Posted in Start-up Ventures at 5:00 PM by Loftis Consulting

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The construction industry is a highly lucrative line of work, and also a very secure one for businesses. Councils and individual people will always need things to be built for as long as humanity lives and breathes, which means there’ll always be opportunities for companies in this line of work. It’s no wonder that you’ve considered entering this industry, then, as it offers more job security than most.

However, construction is a highly competitive trade as a result of the level of demand for it. Whether you’re a dab hand at DIY and you’ve always fancied the idea of pushing yourself to the next level or you’re simply a business expert who wants to take the plunge into a brand new industry, you’re going to have to put in some graft to make it in the building world. Still, considering that grafting is a concept at the core of construction, I’m sure you’re not fazed by that. Here are some tips for starting a successful construction company from scratch, nonetheless.

 

Training Is Vital

Before you start a construction business, it’s of paramount importance that you or the team you hire, at the very least, are trained and qualified to carry out the advanced level of projects you’ll be offering to clients. You’ve heard of cowboy builders, and you don’t want to be one of them. A construction business needs to be built on solid foundations, if you’ll excuse the pun, and this depends on the reputation you build with your very first clients. Their reviews of your work will determine your success.

If you prove yourselves to be a reliable and professional team of builders, then you’ll have a reference or testimonial you can use to entice customers for future projects. If you leave the site in a mess and perform a sloppy job, however, then your construction business’ reputation will be shattered before it even became anything. It’s okay if your talents lie in business knowledge and sales expertise, but your team of physical laborers, at the very least, should be professional and experienced builders.

 

You Could Go Solo

Not every construction business has to be a huge corporate entity. The types of construction projects that people want vary from a skyscraper to an overhaul of their kitchen. If you have the business know how, there’s nothing stopping you from taking the self-employed route and starting a business on your own. You could look into companies offering offering equipment wagons so you can take your construction business on the move with a mobile workshop.

For a freelance entrepreneur simply looking to build a name in their local area, this could be a good start for your solo business. Obviously, being the sole employee and boss of a company can be a lonely job and also quite limiting in terms of the level of construction projects you’re capable of taking on, so this is more of a business venture for those with more modest ambitions in the industry. Still, you’d be the boss, and it’d be your company. That gives you the freedom to develop your company and expand your team in the future.

 

Prepare And Plan Ahead

Whether you decide to start a business with a team of reliable builders or you start a solo enterprise to fulfil your dream of building for a living, the rules of construction are always the same: prepare and plan a project before you turn up to the site. It’s not only unprofessional, but costly to turn up to a project with a half-formed plan of the task at hand. If you don’t have all the tools you need or you add to the plan as you go along, you’re going to be wasting time, which will be wasting you money.

This is about more than completing projects on time and impressing the client; it’s about keeping your back pocket safe. A successful construction company is one which reduces costs without compromising quality, and setting out a full, detailed plan of the project from start to finish date ensures that you have all the tools you need before day one even comes around. It’s okay to alter plans if unexpected problems arise, but there needs to be a plan and an overall structure in the first place.

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Safety Is Everything

As the owner of a construction business, you have a duty not only to deliver a quality service to clients, but to yourself and any builders you may have hired. Safety has to come first, and that doesn’t just mean the end product has to be safe, but the site during the construction process too. Your team will rely on you to ensure everything is secure on-site, and it won’t just cost you a chunk of your company’s profit for lawsuits and damages if there’s an accident during the building process, but it could cost you your business’ reputation.

Clients expect a certain degree of reliability when they hire a construction firm. When you break that trust on a project, it might be hard for that same client or any future clients to trust your business again, and this is the kind of blow your business likely couldn’t sustain. You need to be getting everything right from day one of running your company, and that means ensuring that you meet all manner of safety regulations on-site. Train your team members about potential hazards and ensure that the materials you use are of industry standard. Don’t cut corners on costs, as faulty tools will cost you a lot more in the long run.

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Price Your Work Fairly, But Not Too Fairly

Construction is a competitive business, much like any, but you have to ensure that you don’t become too competitive with your prices. Many building companies fail if they don’t cover all the unexpected costs of their project. You have to allow a little room for building materials and other resources to rise in cost over the course of the project and the potential for unexpected, costly problems. If you don’t, you might not make a substantial profit or any profit at all on a certain project, which is not a solid start to a construction business.


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