Article | March 21, 2020
Support for Small Businesses In a Time of Global CrisisBusinesses around the world, whether bricks and mortar or ecommerce stores on Shopify or other platforms, may be experiencing disruptions resulting from the global outbreak of COVID-19. However, to help ease the burden on businesses, Facebook has this week announced it is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits to help during this extraordinary time.
Article | February 18, 2020
For small businesses, every dollar counts. That's why it is important to make sure you aren't overspending in areas you can't afford to. Starting up a new business is rarely an easy endeavor and keeping it growing and thriving for years to come will always require work and attention. Industries change and consumer spending habits can shift from year to year. How a business manages its finances to adapt to these changes is often a determining factor in its survival. The best way to ensure that entrepreneurs don't steer their new business ventures off a cliff is by planning ahead to avoid potential money mistakes. Hidden overspending pitfalls could be one of the more dangerous issues small businesses face.
Article | July 8, 2021
How to Become an Entrepreneur in 2021
Author: Deborah Sweeney | July 8, 2021
How, exactly, does someone become an entrepreneur?
Some individuals instinctively know that they want their careers to follow an entrepreneurial path. They may go to school for an MBA or find that they have a knack for starting businesses as early in life as a childhood lemonade stand. Others find opportunities in entrepreneurship out of necessity. During lockdown amid the COVID-19 pandemic, many individuals started small businesses. This allowed them to pursue their passions and earn a profit.
Article | August 27, 2021
Coming up with great business ideas is one of the most important things you will need to do as an entrepreneur. You can have all the confidence and training in the world, but if you don’t have an idea your customers can get behind, your organization isn’t going to go anywhere. So, what do you do when you’re struggling to find your Eureka moment? It takes many business leaders a lot of time and effort to find the idea that’s going to make them the next Bill Gates or Elon Musk. While there’s no guaranteed way to ensure lightning strikes, there are a few tips you can follow to improve your chances of getting the right inspiration.
Build Your Education
Going to college and earning your degree is not just a way to improve your resume, it also trains you how to think in different ways and look for unique solutions to problems. Going to college to earn a business degree can help you to develop your confidence, your understanding of your industry, and your ability to brainstorm. All you need to do is find a private lender who can finance your way through school, and you can use this period of your life as a crucial time for personal and professional growth.
Record Every Idea
Sometimes, we are too harsh with ourselves about what we identify as a good idea. Sometimes, a concept can come to you in the middle of the night, and by the time you’ve reached the next morning, you might have already convinced yourself it’s no good. Rather than ignoring moments of inspiration, take a note of all ideas, whenever they come to you – no matter how silly they might seem. Getting used to this process of considering every idea will help you to avoid ignoring any concepts that could be a lot more impressive than you think.
Start with the Problem
One of the best ways to guarantee that your business will be a success, is to work backwards from a problem your customers already have. The chances are you already have an industry and target market in mind for your business, so start exploring the market and finding out what competitors have to offer. Are there any gaps that aren’t being addressed? What kind of problems do you notice customers in your marketplace talking about all the time? Is there anything you can do to solve these issues for your customers? How are you going to offer a result where no-one else could?
Be Better than the Competition
Sometimes, you do not need a brand-new idea, all you need is a way to be better than the solutions already on the market. For instance, rather than designing a completely fuel-efficient car that does not use any fossil fuels, a lot of automobile companies started working on hybrid cars that could offer a combination of performance and eco-friendly functionality. Find your most significant sources of competition in the market and ask yourself what you could do to make the solution even better for your audience. Ideally, you shouldn’t get too focused on being the cheapest option when you’re just getting started. Most of the time, larger companies have more supplier options, so they can fight you on price quite easily.
Leverage Your Passions
The best business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs are often the people who started with a hobby or an idea and turned that into a career. Ultimately, you’ll always accomplish more in your business if you’re doing something you genuinely care about. With that in mind, you should always choose an industry that appeals to you when you’re building your new company. Think about what kind of products and solutions you’re usually excited about. Ask yourself what you’re good at, or what you can do that no-one else can. If you launch a business, you are passionate about, you will be much more likely to keep pushing forwards, even when your company faces a difficult stage.
Do Not Restrict Yourself
You do not have to choose a specific business idea and stick to that no matter what from day one. Spend some time brainstorming concepts, and do your research to find out which idea has the highest earning potential, or which is the most exciting from an innovation perspective. Once you’ve built your business, you can also begin to think about how it can grow in the future. For instance, just because you start your career creating gluten-free bread for people with intolerance doesn’t mean you have to stick to just bread forever. As your company evolves, you can move into new markets like pasta and pastries, or even spread around the world.
Keep Exploring New Ideas
Even once you have chosen an idea you want to pursue as a business owner, that does not mean you should stop coming up with ideas. Constant innovation and creativity are how most businesses stay ahead of the competition. Encourage your entire team to share their thoughts on how the business can improve, and have regular meetings where you can discuss new opportunities and avenues. Just like people, companies can evolve and change over time, give yourself the freedom to grow at the pace that suits you.