10 Steps to Setup Your Home Based Business

So you are here because you want to start an online business. Maybe you have an idea already and you just need to know what to do to make it happen. Or maybe you are looking for ideas on what types of business you can do online. Let’s jump right in!

But first, I need to be transparent and let you know that some links are affiliate links which means if you buy, I may receive a small commission from the sale. This does not cost you anything.

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  1. What business are you going to be in? Decide on what you are passionate about and look for a way to either take it online or do it from home. Here are some examples:

    • Bookkeeping - if you have a great attention to detail and enjoy things with a right or wrong answer.

    • Virtual Assistant - if you are highly organized and enjoy helping others manage their schedules, social media posting, and other online business needs

    • Blogging & Affiliate Marketing - If you have a specific talent or gift for writing, creating, or teaching

    • Online course creator - similar to Blogging, or could be combined with blogging

    • Home-based Bakery - If you like to be hands-on and don't want to sit behind a computer all day

    • Join a Network Marketing Team - if the thought of running a business excites you but you don't feel like you have any original ideas, and no, you don't have to be an extrovert to be successful!

  2. Decide on a business name:

    • Check to see if it is available as a web domain here

    • Check to see it is available in your state and/or city

    *Note: some professions have rules about how you hold yourself out in the name of your business. For example, Texas does not allow you to call yourself an Accountant unless you hold a valid CPA license. Be sure to check your state's requirements if you are planning to start a bookkeeping business.

  3. Choose your legal structure:

    • Sole proprietor - this is the simplest, least expensive type of business structure, but also does not offer any legal protection.

    • Partnership - this would only apply if you are going into business with one or more people, or if your spouse will be participating in your business equally. This also offers very little legal protection.

    • Limited Liability Company (LLC) - this is the most common business structure, with more protection than a sole proprietor, but less expensive than a Corporation

    • Corporation or S-Corporation - these are the most expensive (when it comes to formation fees, annual reporting, and tax filing and tax burden) but offer the most legal protection.

  4. File for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) if:

    • You are going to be a Sole Proprietor will have employees OR wish not to do business under your personal Social Security Number or

    • You are any other legal business structure. It will be required by your bank to open a business bank account in most circumstances.

  5. Open a dedicated Business Bank Account (or 5 if you want to follow the Profit First Method)
    These are the top picks for small businesses with free options.

  6. Obtain any special licenses, permits, or certifications you may need for operating. Be sure to check each:

    •  City Business Licenses/Permits

    •  County Licenses

    •  State Licenses
      *Note if you are preparing and selling food in your home, you may be required to obtain a food handler's permit

  7. Obtain a Sales Tax Permit from your state's Department of Revenue if:

    • You are selling goods

    • Your services are taxable in your state

  8. Set up your accounting system. These days, everything is moving toward cloud-based, and it is beyond easy to get setup and started. There are even free options. The most popular are:

  9. Obtain Business Insurance. You may not need certain types if you aren’t allowing customers into your workspace, but cyber and Directors & Officers (D&O) are always important to have. It can be as low as $300 per year, depending on your coverage.

  10. Develop your Brand - you can do this yourself, with tools like Canva.com or you can hire a branding and design team, like Truth Design Studio.

    1. Create your mission statement

    2. Come up with a tagline

    3. Create a logo

    4. Set up your website

    5. Set up your Business Facebook Page

    6. Order Business Cards

There ya have it! Now all you have to do is create a marketing plan and get the word out! If you’d like more business tips and ideas for staying organized, subscribe below

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