Starting a business can be an exciting venture. However, it is important to lay the groundwork with research and planning before you undertake this step in your life.
This guide will show you how to start a business by detailing all of the steps needed in the process, from applying for licenses and permits to marketing your product or service.†
Planning Your Business
Before starting a business in the United Kingdom, there are some things you must consider in order to have success with your project. The first thing you need to do is decide what type of company structure you want to utilize for your company. There are many different options, including sole proprietorships, partnerships, and corporations. Each of these types of companies has its own set of rules and regulations for starting a business within the United Kingdom.
Another important aspect to remember is naming your company. Having a company name is a basic UK company formation requirement for startups. Before you can register your company with the government, you must select a name that follows UK’s strict guidelines for naming businesses. It cannot be too similar to another business or trademark name already in existence within the country.
Your business’ name must also not contain any rude words or swear words as well as offensive images such as those depicting violence (e.g., guns, bombs) or drugs (e.g., cannabis). If your desired name choice does not meet all of the UK’s requirements, you might have to change it before beginning any business activity.
After you have settled on a name, it is also important to consider where your business will be operated from. This includes picking a physical address for your company’s headquarters as well as determining whether or not you need to register for a trade license and VAT (Value Added Tax). The type of registration needed depends on the nature and location of your business operations.
Licenses and Permits
Before beginning any type of business in the United Kingdom, it is important to research all necessary licenses and permits that might be required based on your company structure or field of work. Licenses may need to be issued by regulatory agencies such as the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) or Health and Safety Executive (HSE) or they might be issued by local councils if they are required for their area.
Also, make sure to check all the laws and regulations that will apply to your company locally. Ask your city government about any licenses or permits required for your type of business, or contact the Health & Safety department at your workplace location for information on safety requirements. You should also verify whether there are any local taxes you must pay, such as property tax if you operate out of a commercial location.
Registering Your Business
When starting a business in the United Kingdom, it is necessary to register for an Employer’s Liability Insurance and contribute to the National Insurance Scheme in order to receive benefits such as receiving sick pay and receiving contributions towards your state pension when you retire. To save yourself from any unexpected problems with registering your business, you should research all of the steps needed to establish your company correctly. This includes the following steps:
1) Register your company with Companies House and HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). Without completing these steps first, you will not legally be able to open a bank account for your company. Costs range from £15-£40 depending on how many directors are registered with your company.
2) Set up an Employer Details Service (EID) account with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), which is required by law if you will employ staff in your new business. This service costs £14 per year and can be set up online.
3) Get a bank account: Most banks will require you to set up an Employer Identification Number (EIN) for businesses registered in the UK before they will issue you a company bank account. This should not cost anything and takes only a few days to receive after applying.
4) Get Business Insurance: Before doing any other legal steps such as getting VAT registration or going through the processes of hiring employees, it is important that your new company has adequate insurance coverage in case something goes wrong. Make sure that all assets are covered and that third-party liability insurance is included.
Write Down Your Mission Statement and Company By-laws
Your mission statement should include all of the goals that you want to accomplish with your new company in one paragraph. This statement should be used as a guide for all of your business activities.
Also, write out the company’s by-laws or operating agreement. Your by-laws or operating agreement is a document that states how your company will be run and protects you from lawsuits from your employees, customers, and suppliers. The by-laws are a set of rules written within the framework of the company structure itself. If you have multiple owners, then you may want to consider setting up an LLC instead which has much less paperwork involved. All you will need is an LLC operating agreement template to outline the ownership structure and the operating procedure.
Market Your Business
A sound marketing strategy is one of the most important things that must be successful if you want your business idea to succeed in today’s competitive environment. There are many types of businesses that can be started in the United Kingdom. Therefore, it is important to assess what your business will sell and where you will sell it.
Marketing and advertising are important tools in your company’s promotion and one that many companies overlook, but it’s also the single biggest expense for some businesses. Whether you’re planning on marketing through traditional channels or new ones, it is a good idea to start with a plan of action.
Where should you advertise?
Start by creating a list of potential customers based on age, location, income level, etc., then figure out where they would be most likely to see your message. For example, if you are selling children’s clothing you want to reach parents more than teenagers so focus on places like preschools, pediatricians’ offices, or mommy blogs rather than local magazines aimed at teens or web ads for twenty somethings.
Marketing through traditional channels vs. new media
More and more small businesses are using social networks to market their businesses, including promoting events on Facebook or launching campaigns on Twitter. The web offers many different options for marketing your company in addition to the usual print ads and commercial spots, including blogging about your products, running Google AdWords ad campaigns, setting up a website with Pay-Per-Click advertising, or listing your business on online directories like Yelp or Google Places. Marketing becomes increasingly important as you expand your customer base and introduce new products because it can help spread the word quickly to potential customers near and far.
Starting a business is not without challenges. You need the right resources if you want to start your own company, and the steps are meant to help you get started easier. Keep in mind though that even with the most careful planning, you might have to cut a few corners. That’s just part of being an entrepreneur – you need to be willing to take on the difficulties that come with the success you want so desperately. Just remember that you can achieve whatever you set your mind to, but it takes hard work and time before you’ll see any profits from your company.