Starting as a small business, either as a solopreneur or with a small-dedicated team, it’s important that your sales are high enough to cover the cost of running the business. You probably do not start with much funding, to begin with – usually family and friends or savings – and need to be careful in the first few months of trading to not exceed what you planned to spend.
To help new small businesses, it’s useful to consider what industries are more profitable to provide support via related services. The more essential the service is, the greater likelihood that an unexpected recession won’t slow growth prospects that were previously going well.
Accounting and Bookkeeping
The beautiful thing about providing an accounting service is that other small businesses almost always rely on an accounting service to assist them. Whether it’s for general business advice or UK corporation tax, VAT, or asset depreciation implications of a major upcoming purchase of computer equipment and software, good accountants keep busy. SME’s are getting more used dealing with solopreneurs and virtual teams too, so building up a firm from a home office and virtual staff at first, before expanding out to a physical office, is viable too.
When needing money for expansion, there are a couple of good options. The unsecured business loan could provide enough capital to secure an office lease and to buy the equipment. Alternatively, if the new firm starts to bill enough clients who choose to pay via credit card, then a merchant cash advance provides cash ahead of receipts based on the history of credit sales. There are pros and cons to each approach: a business loan is repaid on a given day, but a cash advance has greater flexibility.
The role of an estate agent involves finding new listings and people looking to buy or sell a home and marries the two together. The estate agent is often busy long into the evening but has greater flexibility during the day. It’s also possible to find clients and network online to locate buyers using your website and co-listing properties on Rightmove or Zoopla as an independent firm. Rightmove has over 130 million visits each month, which translates to several million estate agent enquiries, so linking up with an online property site with a broad audience works extremely well.
The law profession is always something that’s required, whether to protect against a lawsuit or on the conveyancing side of things. It’s a growing field and while properties can be bought without the services of a solicitor or a conveyancer, it’s always best to use their services, as there are many loopholes and things to be aware of.
For trained solicitors, working in a small office is possible, but going independent offers growth possibilities too. Either a home office or a small leased office provides enough space to perform the conveyancing role, with more space being required for legal actions. Other services like the creation of wills are ideal for a home office and there’s a case for setting up a specialist website targeting UK people who need a will made. There are minimal operating costs with providing such a service and only basic computer equipment required.
When wanting to strike it out on your own, you need to find a way to offer a service that will be useful to individuals or companies. Whether these are people or businesses operating locally to you or ones found nationwide, keeping costs down is important. It’s also sensible to look at what funding needs you have and the best way to go about securing affordable finance to help grow your small business into a medium-sized one.