7 Business Mistakes You Can't Afford To Make

Whether you’re looking for a way to escape the 9-5 routine or an excuse to pursue your passion, starting your own business can be very rewarding. Related: Are You Crazy To Start A Business In This Economy? Setting up a new business isn’t easy and while it’s okay to leave certain aspects to trial and error, there are seven mistakes that you simply can’t afford to make.

1. Starting without a business plan.

When you have an idea, it can be tempting to go full steam ahead without a business plan. This is the number one mistake that you could make. Lack of a business plan could lead to poor cash projections, refused finance, and inefficient functionality. The majority of businesses fail, and without a thorough business plan, you’ll find yourself a lot closer to that margin.

2. Eliminating marketing when times are difficult.

There will be times in your career when business is slow. Marketing is without a doubt the easiest way of cutting down costs; however, cut them too much and you’ll lose the very thing that keeps you afloat. Make sure you prepare for these phases so you can get through them without any long-term implications. Instead of reducing your marketing costs, perhaps you need to spend more time analysing the results of your marketing methods?

3. Not moving with the times.

Regardless of your industry, you need to move with the times to remain current and relevant. The world is becoming increasingly digital, and if you don’t utilize social networking and search engine optimization, and so on, from the start you’ll significantly limit your client base.

4. Not asking for help when you need it.

If you’ve started a business, there's no doubt you’re an independent person. However, if you try to do everything yourself, you’ll spread yourself thin. There’s no shame in asking others for help. If you ever have doubts either get some advice or consider outsourcing. Not many untrained business people can manage things like accounting, book keeping, and marketing on their own.

5. Creating an unresponsive website.

According to The Guardian, people spend an average of 43 hours per month surfing the Internet. In over half of these instances the Internet is being accessed via a smart phone. If you haven’t optimized your website for mobile devices, then you could miss out on a significant amount of exposure. Responsive websites will adapt to the screen resolution and provide seamless viewing across multiple different platforms.

6. Relying on one customer.

You may have one client that brings in the majority of your revenue, but what if you lose them? This could cripple your business. Make sure you have a system in place if this happens. Ideally, you want more than two large clients so you can remain afloat if you lose one of them. Obviously, your priorities should lie in providing a good service and not losing them in the first place, but sometimes things can happen that are way out of your hands.

7. Expanding too quickly.

If you’re not careful, expansion can drive you out of business. As your company grows, so will your costs – hiring new staff, relocating, and so on. If the price of your products and services are too low, payments from new clients may not be able to cover your growing expenses. Make sure you keep everything at a sustainable level to prevent this from occurring. Before you start your journey into self-employment, take some time to develop a solid business plan so you know exactly how to move forward when the time comes. If you’d like expert advice on how to get started, visit click here for a business set up guide.

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