Guest Post by Elena Stewart
If you’re trying to start a home-based business, here’s some good news. Startup costs are typically minimal, and you can capitalize on empty space in your home instead of spending money on an office. That doesn’t mean there isn’t work to get done. But that’s okay; you are an entrepreneur and you’ve got this. The following tips can help.
Know your worth.
First, and perhaps most importantly, know your worth. You must position yourself as an expert in your field. Don’t sell yourself short by pricing low just to get customers. Remember, most consumers are more than willing to pay for quality and exceptional service.
Handle legal issues.
When you’re working from home, the first legal issue to look into is whether or not you can actually have an office in a residential area. This is easy enough, and a quick phone call to your local codes department should give you the answers you’re looking for.
You’ll also want to file a certificate of formation if you plan to form an LLC. This will give you a few perks, including limited legal liability. Double-check your local regulations here as well so you can file using a formation service instead of paying attorney fees.
One of the greatest benefits of a home-based business is that you get to work from home. This also happens to be one of the biggest challenges. There are many distractions (like that pile of laundry or the undone dishes) that can easily throw a wrench in your productive hours. It’s important to set strict boundaries with your family and keep your office or workspace out of your home’s main traffic flow.
Create a great space.
Speaking of your workspace, make sure your home office has ample natural light and a high-speed internet connection. That spare room in the basement, for example, might have a weak signal, so make sure that a Wi-Fi extender will help before you go through the time and expense of setting up your home office.
Use the right tools.
Just like running a home, running a home office requires certain tools. But instead of a wrench and leaf blower, you’ll need things like great accounting software and video conferencing tools, such as a webcam and headset. Simply using payroll software can be a boon in many ways, since it helps you with everything from setting aside money for retirement to making tax payments on time.
Some software options also offer same-day direct deposit and tax penalty protection. UpHabit recommends other software including Google Suite, Intercom, and Zoom. These will help you maintain your productivity and will be valuable as you grow, whether you plan to stay home or want to move into a commercial space.
Get help where you need it.
Even when you typically operate as a business of one, you have to have help sometimes. As a business owner, this means you’ll need to hire employees. While the interview process isn’t especially difficult, there are a few considerations when hiring for an in-home position.
First and foremost, make sure your future employees understand whether they will be working from your home or theirs. Just as importantly, make sure you know whether you plan to hire for expertise, potential capacity, or to simply do the things you don’t want to do.
Whether you plan to become a consultant and lend your expertise in a certain area to other business owners or want to open a retail establishment from your garage, one of your greatest hurdles will be getting comfortable marketing yourself. The first thing to keep in mind here is that marketing is not bragging.
Instead, it’s the practice of creatively showcasing your talents and skills in a way that makes people want to pay you for your services. Get cozy with social media and don’t be afraid to utilize brand advocates that can spread the word and make you go viral. You’ll also want to create exceptional and engaging content for your site and products. That’s where experienced content creators, like the team at Owl & Pen come in! It’s worth investing in elevated content that will drive your business’ growth.
Everything you do as a homegrown entrepreneur will put you one step closer to achieving your professional – and personal – goals. The tips above can help you propel yourself into a place of success, but, ultimately, it’s your hard work and perseverance that will keep you afloat.