Navigating Startup Idea Maze

A simple mind map diagram can be a vital tool in keeping you focused to avoid this brain clutter. All you need is a sheet of standard letter paper. Start by drawing a small elliptical circle in the center of the sheet of paper. Inside the ellipse, write the purpose or vision for your business. This brief sentence should boldly promise a better outcome for your customers. This purpose serves as your primary filter to keep all of your ideas focused on the same long-term purpose.

Now think of all of the primary products, services and business functions needed to accomplish your business purpose. For each one, draw another elliptical circle and spread them around the outer area of the page. Link each outer ellipse with the central purpose by drawing a line between them. This cluster of ellipses joined to your vision in the middle of the page represents the first mind map for your business. This diagram is immediately helpful in managing the flow of ideas, keeping them in context and even establishing a prioritized approach to going to market. By following a simple process, you will remain focused and organized.

As you get a new idea, first … Read the rest

Successful Business Exposed

  • Manage cash flow wisely
    Knowing when to spend and when to save is both an art and science. A lot of businesses when faced with cash flow problems tend to cut their marketing budget, which could be one of the worst decision ever made. If you cut the channel to bring in more sales, how do you expect to get more cash flows? What needs to be done is a detailed analysis on the Return on Investment (ROI) on their existing marketing efforts to determine which is effective and which is not. I have also seen businesses investing too much on fixed assets such as offices and renovations.
  • Gather feedback and take right actions
    I hardly heard of businesses that take off right away so successfully before they actually do some “soul-searching”. Many a time, businesses will be dealt with less desirable results and more challenges than expected. That’s normal. To become successful, the team needs to be willing to adjust and adapt along the way.
  • Know your target market
    While this sounds like “Business 101” or “Marketing 101”, it is and will always remain the key reason for a successful business. If you do not have a defined target
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Successful Business Relationships Online

People are Insecure; Give Them Confidence

It’s easy to buy from a brick and mortar store where you see real faces involved. Even if it’s some 16-year old kid, with numerous body-piercings standing behind the counter, you have confidence that when he takes your credit card he won’t be stealing the numbers. This kind of confidence in the buying process is lost online. My biggest issue with buying products online is the return process if, for whatever reason, something goes wrong. It’s easy to drive back to Target and return something you don’t want. But online, once the purchase is made, the return process is more cumbersome and often results in extra shipping fees.

You need to give your visitors confidence, not only in the security of the purchase process, but also in the quality of your products, their expectations and your policies and procedures in case something doesn’t go as expected. This is most easily accomplished through making sure you have pages on your site that address each of these issues, and clear and obvious links in the places where the customer will be most looking for them. For example, your product pages might need an obvious link to … Read the rest

Communication Keeps Business on Target

Ironically, in the early stages of a new start up business, the people you may want to hire to run operations, accounting, sales and service delivery and so on are all eager to work and help you grow your business. This is ironic because at the stage you need them urgently; you also have no money to pay them. You are left to struggle through the process of developing and launching a business with extremely limited resources.

Of course, if you are fortunate enough to attract substantial investment capital that can help you to attract people to perform the various functions and tasks, you have the opportunity to shift your focus a little. Why only a little and why not a complete shift so that others are doing their part while you do the ‘CEO stuff’? The reason is that your business will take many shapes and it will continue reform itself many times as your launch and learn how to operate in the marketplace.

Many of the assumptions you made as you wrote your long, detailed business plan – the one that encouraged the investors to participate – will change dramatically the minute you begin interacting with real customers. … Read the rest

Start A Catering Business

First one has to make the decision to start their own catering business. Once the decision is made a Catering Company Plan should be formed. There are many differences between purchasing a previously owned catering business to starting one from scratch. If you choose to start a catering business from scratch your first step is to apply for a license to operate as a caterer. Anyone can purchase a catering license at their local Health Department. The Health Department will then inspect and check to be sure that you have the capacity to operate in an area where food will be cooked. The legal requirements include a business license (as previously mentioned), a certificate of occupancy, a fictitious business name and a tax license.

Now, after you have completed the legal requirements the next step is to become your own employer, set up a work plan, learn the basics of sales tax, and gain knowledge in the areas of payroll and bookkeeping. A successful catering business is run by a successful mind.

Your business is beginning to take shape, at least on paper. To create the business visually one has to purchase the cooking utensils, chairs and tables. Many caterers … Read the rest

Make Money With Just A Ladder

Most homeowners prefer to delegate the task of gutter cleaning to a local handyman who specializes in this tedious task. The common dislike of cleaning gutters makes the business a well paying use of time. Most people who clean gutters make anywhere from £15 to £30 an hour, and the best part is, they do it working for themselves, on their own schedule!

Getting started with your own gutter cleaning business is easy to do. The only supplies you need are a good, sturdy ladder, a reliable way to transport it, and your own labour! Once you have gathered your supplies, take a trip to your local council and secure a contractor’s license to create your own legitimate business. Licensing a small business like gutter cleaning is usually as simple as filling out a short application and paying a small fee.

After you have obtained the proper license, you’re ready to get started! Finding new clients and customers is almost as easy as getting your equipment and license. There are a number of advertising options available to low businesses that cost very little. The best way to build a new base of customers is to go out and knock on … Read the rest

Start Freelancing

Learn fluent English

This is essential, 99.9% of my clients speak english, they are generally from United States, England or Australia. You will also get to Germany and France.

Create a Paypal account

I would never start designing without some payment in advance, so we need a quick payment method, otherwise you can loose clients that need something quick, the majority.

Paypal is indispensable if you don’t want people to cheat you; you can receive instant payments through email, besides it’s free and easy to use. If your client doesn’t have an account, it’s easy to register and pay with a credit card, fees aren’t high and transfers to your bank take about 3-4 days; if you use a personal account you save all the fees but you have limits at the time of using the money, it’s better to use a business or premier account. This way, when you ask for the payment in advance there wont be any excuses. The problem with Paypal is that it’s not available in every country, specially South american ones.

You can also use Epassporte, it’s similar but less people use it and it’s worst for Europe (it costs 50US$ to transfer your … Read the rest

Rules for Entrepreneurship

  • Find a problem and solve it. Like your customer’s needs and wants, they also have problems. If your company can solve that problem, they you will probably succeed. It’s linked very closely to their needs. For example, a customer needs more money. The problem is a lack of money. Your financial education system will fill that need and solve that problem! If a customer needs more time, the problem is a lack of time. Your time management system will fill that need.
  • Focus on the customer. How many companies have fallen away from this one? And how many are starting to fall away? Very recent surveys have shown that customer service is the most important part of a business. Without a customer-focused program, the company will likely get a bad image, and lose customers, and it will likely have some financial setbacks… You get the idea. Without customers, the company can not even stay open, let alone do anything.
  • Put your time, talent, energy, and your whole heart into producing a product or service they will buy. If you do not already have an established company, of even if you do, you must always remember to invest into the business.
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Finding Good Wholesalers

Product Choice

Your search for wholesale products will ultimately depend on what product you are chasing to find at a wholesale price. Choosing the highly competitive products such as (iPods, Games Consoles, etc) will almost certainly cost you time and potentially money before you find a trustworthy supplier. So before you decide to go out looking for a wholesaler, thoroughly consider the product you are attempting to find and in turn profit from.

Think outside of the box, think away from the competitive markets, think niche!

Find Good Supply Sources

Finding a good wholesale supply isn´t an easy task, especially for certain products. Spending a few hours on the major search engines might throw up some decent opportunities but don´t underestimate the power of a good wholesale directory. One thing you will learn pretty quick in the wholesale business is there isn´t a shortage of people claiming to be able to offer you wholesale suppliers. The market is currently saturated with directories, sourcing agents, and websites promising low prices and easy money making opportunities.

Try and avoid paying for suppliers until you are really stumped for opportunities. (Even then, paid services may not offer you anything viable.) Browsing free directories … Read the rest