Starting a business can be more than just a new step in your career. It can be the beginning of a passion project that allows you the chance to share your own unique innovations.
However, it isn’t easy to get a business off the ground and there are certain barriers to starting a business that all burgeoning companies face.
In this article, we will take a look at 7 of the biggest barriers you will face when starting a new business and how you can tackle them.
The Biggest Barriers to Starting a Business
1. A Lack of Money
For many entrepreneurs, the first problem they run into is a lack of funds to get their business off the ground.
This is especially true for young entrepreneurs – those young adults in or fresh out of college without years of experience behind them to help them get started.
There are certain things you can do to make money, though. For example, many people take out loans or accept donations from those who support their business ideas. If possible, you could even go into business with a partner or work with investors.
What many new business owners do, though, is a strategy known as “bootstrapping”.
With this method, you basically do whatever you can to save money on your costs when you get started. For many businesses, this self-funding includes using zero interest credit cards or leveraging assets of their own.
The process of self-funding is made a little easier in the modern age.
This is because you don’t have to buy property the minute you want to start your business. Instead, many businesses are started in the digital realm – online.
By doing this, you save a lot of money on the expenses that come with renting a physical location and keeping it up and running.
2. Running Out of Money
Alternatively, there is always the chance that starting this business has been a long-time dream of yours and that you’ve been saving up for years. However, the money you thought would carry you to profit runs out quickly.
If you do run out of money, you’re pretty much back to square one – you’ll need to come up with more money to keep your business running. The best way to avoid this one of the biggest barriers to starting a business, though, is to not run out of money in the first place.
To make sure you keep your spending on track, you will want to start accounting right away.
If you aren’t sure what you’re doing, don’t worry, there are plenty of useful tools that can help you start a business. With these tools, jobs like accounting and bookkeeping can be a breeze for almost anyone.
What you will want to remember, though, is to factor in risk.
There are situations for a new business in which extra expenses might come up and you don’t want to be caught off guard by these developments.
3. You Need Benefits
When you work for a pre-established business, one thing that you are accustomed to receiving is certain benefits.
For example, many employers offer health insurance to their employees and for many employees, this is the only way that they can afford to go to the doctor.
As a small business owner, though, you aren’t being offered these benefits just for being a part of a company. Instead, it is up to you, as the company owner, to provide yourself and any employees if you have them.
However, with the aforementioned lack of funds, it might seem difficult to attain these benefits and that’s the next one of the barriers to starting a business.
This could put a snag in your plans to devote yourself to your new business if you are dependent on the benefits that a standard, pre-established, full-time job offers you.
Luckily, there are some resources specifically made for small businesses.
The biggest option is SHOP – the Small Businesses Health Options Program – and is available for companies that have 1 to 50 employees. With SHOP, you can offer dental and/or health benefits through your company.
With these benefits, you will not only be able to rest easy knowing you’re covered but you are more likely to find employees willing to work for you if they know they’ll be taken care of as well.
4. You Don’t Have Enough Time
Another commodity that many people have a hard time finding is the time to start your own business. After all, time is precious.
Plus, if you are starting a business later in life and are used to working a standard 9-to-5, the time that it takes to get a business off the ground can be shocking.
The short answer is that you will have to sacrifice some time while you are getting your business started. That’s how you can overcome the next one of the biggest barriers to starting a business.
Generally, you should expect longer days and less time off for a while. You can make this time more useful, though, by making sure you work efficiently and don’t waste hours at work.
The best advice, though, is to remember what you are working for and to try to not get burnt out by the long days.
In addition, you should remember this isn’t how your business will always be. Once you have the initial set-up handled, you will see your workload reduce drastically.
This is further exaggerated by the fact that if your business grows large enough, you will be able to hire employees to help you handle the workload.
5. Marketing Your Business is Expensive
So, you have a new idea and a great business plan. However, none of that really matters if no one knows about your business and traditional advertising can be expensive. The best solution to this, though, is not to use traditional advertising.
While taking out ads can rack up business expenses, you don’t have to resign yourself to these costs. In fact, a free and surprisingly effective way to market your business is with social media.
For social media, you can create the pages yourself at no cost. Even better, you can use this medium to directly talk to and get feedback from customers, making them your main priority.
Another way is through blogging. Blogging can improve your website’s SEO and significantly increase traffic to your website via inbound links.
6. Not Enough Traffic
So, maybe you do have social media accounts and a website set up. Unfortunately, you still aren’t getting the traffic you want and you don’t have as much patronage for your new business as you need.
There are techniques that can increase your traffic, though.
Namely, you should try to incorporate SEO techniques to help your content rank higher on search engines. This includes concepts such as using the right keywords, link building and making sure your website is user-friendly.
7. People Are Choosing Your Competition
When you start a new business, it can be hard to win customers over from an established source of competition. So, you have to take certain steps to try and win these customers over.
How do you rise above the competition? The main goal is to show these customers that you offer something extra that your competition doesn’t. To do this, you need to know your competition inside and out as well as know your customers wants and needs.
So these are the 7 biggest barriers to starting a business and now you can be prepared for each.