You’ve got a business idea and a name in mind, but how do you go from far-away dream to opening the doors of your new business? Follow these six steps to get started:
1. Check Out the Small Business Administration
The United States Small Business Administration has tons of resources to help you launch and run your business. They offer informative articles and webinars, access to free business counselors, and more.
2. Calculate Your Startup Costs
Typical startup costs include things like building space and furnishings, licenses and permits, utilities, equipment, inventory, employee salaries, and marketing materials. List out your planned expenses and estimate how much they’ll actually cost. Check out our handy calculator for saving to start a business.
3. Make a Plan
Your business plan is the foundation of your business, and you can find some great free templates online to get you started. Be sure to define what your business does, determine what your goals are and how you will measure success, outline your organizational structure, conduct market research on your industry, and pinpoint your competitive edge.
4. Determine Your Banking Needs
Consult a business banker about what banking services are available to support your business. Contact a merchant card servicing processor if you plan to accept credit cards. Determine how your transactions will be processed. If you have determined you may need a loan to fund your business seek advice from a credit union, bank or the SBA prior to filing your business entity documentation. However, you will need to wait to formally open your bank account after you establish your business.
5. Establish Your Business
You’ll need to choose a business structure, which establishes your business as a legal entity and influences how you pay taxes, what paperwork you need to file, and what liability you may have. Common business structures include Sole Proprietorships, Limited Liability Companies (LLC), Partnerships, and Corporations. Visit the California Secretary of State to learn about the differences between the structures and what you need to do to register your business. You will also need to file for federal and state tax ID’s in order to file your taxes, pay employees, open a business bank account, and obtain additional services. Depending on your business, you may also need to apply for federal and/or state permits and licenses.
6. Open a Business Bank Account
SESLOC business banking and lending services are tailored to the unique needs of the local businesses making the Central Coast the best place to live, work and thrive. Whether your organization is small or large, the SESLOC Business Services Team offers personal, one-on-one service for commercial and business loans, deposit and cash management solutions. With great rates and fewer fees you’ve come to trust from our personal accounts, let us help support your goals and grow your business.