1. Figure out who your customers are
It might sound obvious, but this is something you want to think about carefully. It's a common mistake to assume everyone will be interested in your product or service, so you need to know who your target market will be. Ask yourself these questions to get started:
- Who will want your product or service?
- Roughly how many people fall into this category?
- How might you reach them?
- How will they want to pay?
- Why should they pick your business instead of a competitor?
2. Write a business plan
A solid business plan is a key part of starting a business. Set out what you want to achieve and how you're planning to achieve it. Writing your business plan will help ensure you've thought through every aspect of running a business and can also help you identify any potential weak points.
Once it's time to launch, a business plan with financial projections can help you get funding from a lender or investor. It will also give you a framework to run your business by outlining what's important.
3. Choose your business structure
Will you be a sole trader, a partnership or a registered company? Knowing which structure is right for you will depend on your business and how you want to run it. Tax and legal requirements can vary for different business structures, so it's important to know your obligations before you get started.
4. Open a business bank account
An accounting system is a must for almost all small businesses, and a little extra effort at the start can save you some headaches come tax time. Another key step to take is opening a specific business bank account. It's important to separate your business and personal finances for:
- Better cash flow management
- Reconciling your business activity statement (BAS) and tax returns
- Presenting your business as more professional
5. Get support for your business
Find out if your business is eligible for any government grants or rebates. There's lots of support available, such as growth-focused grants, environmental rebates and free training courses. Knowing what you're eligible for might help you get started and plan for the future. Our Benefits finder tool makes it easy to explore and claim government grants to support your business.
For more guides and tips on starting your business, visit our small business hub.