How to start a business: 10 steps

Business idea

What to do if you want to start your own company? Idea, business plan, legal form, financing, trademark protection, insurance, notary appointments, contracts, etc. are some of the key aspects on the way to founding a company. Therefore, you will find below 10 important steps to start a business.

Before you actually formally start your company, the planning phase is on. According to Founding Monitor, the average preparation time is seven months from the idea to the actual start of the company. However, 50% of all founders are through in three months, if they want to start their company. Of course, many founders also initially spend a long time thinking about starting a business. This also shows a look at the time of the intensive start-up preparation, which includes the optimization of the idea, the business plan and the administrative procedures. This takes on average 2.5 months, with more than 50% of the founders taking less than a month.

1st step: the planning phase

Our tip: Take your time and pay close attention to a valid business model. This is followed by the detailed elaboration of your business plan, which forms the foundation for a successful start-up. Pay particular attention to a realistic financial plan. It shows you how much capital is necessary and whether your planned company is worthwhile.

2nd step: main or sideline?

The step into self-employment is a great venture for many founders. For this reason, many start-up entrepreneurs are also initially looking for a part-time self-employment. However, whether you start a business as a sideline or start full-time directly does not matter for the basic requirements of starting a business. However, you still have to pay attention to a few things if you start your own business on a part-time basis.

Step 3: Check brands and protect if necessary

Many founders break new ground on legal issues when they start a business. But these are of great importance when starting a business and should not be neglected. Finally, the company should be located at a suitable Internet address. The company name should be clear and unambiguous. A brand protection for the products and services secures the position in the competition. However, you must not forget that these topics are not a one-way street. When you start a company, you also have to be careful not to violate existing intellectual property rights. We have compiled further details in the section dealing with industrial property rights.

When you set up a company, it’s also about avoiding risks – private and commercial – for self-employment. For many risks that you can not influence, there are insurance policies so that the financial impact does not mean an early end to the self-employment.

As far as the personal risks are concerned, you can decide during the first three months after the foundation if you would like to take out a statutory or private health insurance. As a rule, it makes sense to compare the costs and benefits of private health insurance first, in order to compare the best rate with the statutory health insurance.

Operational risks are primarily concerned with identifying insurance needs. Because: Depending on the industry, different insurances can make sense – do the free needs analysis.

As a self-employed person you have the choice between legal and private health insurance. Take advantage of the choice and compare costs and performance of both health insurance systems!

Step 4: secure corporate financing

Self-employment means investment and costs first. And the savings are often not enough. The idea of ​​bank credit comes quickly to many founders. But corporate finance can be diverse. The starting point is the financial plan that you have created in the business plan. This shows which capital requirements you have for the foundation of your company. For corporate financing, you can then use funds, equity, loans, or grants: get enough capital when starting your business.

Step 5: which approvals are necessary?

You like to cut hair and want to open a hair salon? But it is not just that easy. .Permits, approvals, or specific qualifications may be required when starting a business. Inform yourself well in advance, before you get problems to start your self-employment: necessary permits at a glance.

Step 6: Company Form, Account and Contracts

The corporate or legal form is associated with different requirements if you want to found the company and can significantly extend the start-up process. While individual companies or partnerships can be set up quickly, it takes longer for corporations. Reasons for this are the dates at the notary and the necessary entry in the commercial register.

Also connected with the foundation is the opening of a business account. Corporations are not registered with the commercial register by the notary until the share capital has been paid in (usually on a business account). For freelancers and individual companies, a separate business account is not absolutely necessary, but in any case advisable – only so private and professional finances can be separated.

Closely connected with the aspect of the legal form is also the topic of the necessary contracts. However, you should not just think about the articles of association or the management contracts. Employment contracts for potential employees or general terms and conditions as well as templates for customer contracts should already be ready for launch.

Step 7: clarify the location

If you do not start your own business in your own home, but rent an office, a shop, a workshop or a restaurant, then you have to deal with the question of the suitable location. There are many important factors that you should take into account when it comes to your location, so that your customers can find their way to you – as you say: all roads lead to Rome.

Step 8: at which office to register?

Without official registrations, nothing works if you want to found a company. Numerous applications are mandatory and fines are threatened if they are missed. And without a tax number from the tax office you can not write any invoices. But again, progress is gradual. And so you are quickly on the home straight when you start your company. Which office to contact and when, we have put together in the section register company. Particularly noteworthy is the business registration and for corporations of the commercial register entry.

Step 9: the perfect appearance

Part of the preparation for setting up a business is making sure you have the best possible presentation. These include, for example, the company logo or the website as well as a properly prepared invoice or legal aspects such as the imprint and the privacy policy. The first impression counts – this applies to your company in customer contact as well as the first date. So do your best and convince with a successful appearance.

Step 10: win customers

After the planning and the numerous formalities, you have successfully founded your company. But now it’s about achieving sales and successfully mastering the market entry. Many people would like to buy from you – but very few people know your offer. And even if you are completely convinced of your products or your service – with potential customers, you must first do a lot of persuading. For this we have collected the different ways of customer acquisition for you.

There are many ways to advertise your offer. That you advertise is out of the question. However, you should also – for budgetary reasons – design and implement a coherent marketing concept.