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Deciding to start a business is very exciting! It also can be very overwhelming. Where do you even start? In this blog post, I’ve got you covered! Here are 8 questions for you to ask yourself when thinking about creating your small business dream!
At the end, I’ve also included a PDF download of a list of tons of unique small business ideas for women, so don’t miss that!
1. WHAT IS YOUR PASSION?
First and foremost this should be the main concern. At least, that’s my personal opinion. If you’re going to start a business outside of your normal 9-5 it HAS to be something you enjoy.
There are so many reasons for this:
- In the beginning, your passion is what will drive you because money will not happen right away.
- If you’re going to step away from the comfort of a 9-5 because you don’t like it, you might as well step into something you enjoy.
- The mindset that you just have to pick a job to pay the bills, or you’re not going to like any job you have, in my opinion, is a terrible mindset. If you’re going to be spending more of your day working than anything else, you might as well enjoy it!
You most likely won’t like every part of your new small business job, it is a business after all and won’t be all fun and games. So don’t think when business gets hard you should quit because you’re not enjoying it.
And you will have to consider if your passion actually will make money, however, I think those should be secondary thoughts to “What is your passion?”
2. ARE YOU GOOD AT YOUR PASSION?
Once you’ve decided what your passion is, it’s time to get serious.
Are you actually good at it? And not just semi-good. Like good enough to convince people to give you money for it?
For example, the first business I started was a crochet business. I love to crochet, it’s one of my passions. However, It turns out I wasn’t very good at creating patterns to get people to buy them nor did I have enough time to make physical products and to ship them out to people.
That business ultimately failed. So, before you jump the gun make sure you have the time, knowledge and resources for the business you’re considering.
Let’s say maybe you have a passion and you’re not an expert at it… Don’t worry, not all is lost.
Going to be working from home? Learn how to avoid work from home distractions here!
3. CAN YOU LEARN MORE ABOUT YOUR PASSION?
If I tried hard enough in my crochet business, there is not a doubt in my mind that I could have gotten it up and running. You can do anything you set your mind to!
So, if you can find a way to learn more about your passion and be able to turn it into a business, go for it! You don’t have to be an expert in your business.
It’s hard for me to say if your passion is good enough to start a business out of because everyone’s situation is so different. I don’t know what you know, how hard you’ll work, how much time you have to work, or your ability to keep going when times get tough.
Those are things you’ll have to decide for yourself.
So, I’ll just say this. Use your best judgment. And remember, no one knows everything about their chosen business when they first start out.
You need to know enough to start but you don’t need to be an expert. Humans learn best through trial and error. And many, many business owners, myself included, have a few failed business ideas behind us before we found the one that works.
So, don’t get discouraged.
4. IS THERE A DEMAND FOR IT?
This is the final beginning stage of your business idea before you get to the tougher steps. Once you get past the passion, it’s time to get serious about the money. Because you can’t have a successful business without it!
Do some research on your idea. Is there actually a market of people waiting to buy your new product or support your new business? And I don’t just mean friends and family, but of course, that is a good place to start.
We want to allow our business to expand past acquaintances and spread to people you don’t actually know.
If you can find a market of people waiting for your business, it’s time to move on to the next phase!
I think that does it for much of the beginning mentality stages of starting a business. Hopefully, by now you have at least one solid business idea you’d like to run with. Now let’s get on to the more concrete stuff!
5. GET CLEAR ON YOUR GOALS
What do you want to come out of this business?
Obviously income would be one of them. But how much income are you looking to make? Do you want a side income? To quit your full-time job? Save money for retirement?
How much do you actually want to make? Setting a specific goal is better than just “make enough to quit my full-time job.”
6. WRITE THESE GOALS DOWN
You may be telling yourself “Well I know in my head how much I need to make”. Doesn’t matter.
Write it down anyway. Writing down your goals is the second step for getting clear on them.
It’s a psychological thing mostly. But trust me, the biggest battle when starting your small business is going to be yourself.
Take a few minutes and write down your goals. They can be vague to start, but once you’re done get as specific as you can with them.
Actually figure out how much money you’d realistically need to live on if you want to quit your job. Or decide how much extra income you want to save, go on vacation with, put in retirement, or whatever else you may be going towards.
7. LOOK FOR PAIN POINTS
To ensure your business will actually be successful in the long run, define common pain points within your product/service.
- Think about the problems you’ve had, and potential solutions for them
- Ask friends and family about the problems they might have
Try to identify any common issues with similar products (if you go the product route), or anything you noticed that can be improved on to make the overall experience better in some way
Pay attention to any holes in the market, comments, or common complaints with the users or shoppers of a product. For instance, what are people struggling with or complaining about? What are they asking for help with?
Make a list of things you are noticing, but be prepared to cross ideas out. Not everything will be able to become a profitable business.
8. LOOK FOR SOLUTIONS TO PAIN POINTS
Once you’ve decided on the pain points, you have to come up with solutions that you’ll fix in your own business. The reason businesses become, and stay, successful is because there is a vast majority of people struggling with a common problem.
That “problem” can be any number of things:
- A product to sell. “I think people need better quality X / this product would make life easier for Y.”
- A better way to buy a product. “Amazon has too many products, and it’s overwhelming to consumers of product X. Therefore, I want to create a website selling only X.”
- A hole in the market. “My friend struggles with X, and I can do X,Y and Z to help him fix it.”
- Provide information in a better way/different perspective. For example, if you’re starting a blog, podcast or Youtube channel
For example, take a look at all the door-to-door services there are now; DoorDash, Postmates, GrubHub, UberEats.
Why are they so successful?
Because people are either too lazy to go get the food themselves (guilty!), they don’t want to go out in bad weather, or they have no transportation to get to the restaurant.
Those are a few common pain points. Therefore, a food delivery service is a logical solution to fix them!
Take the pain points you’ve collected from your personal experiences, friends, and family you’ve talked to and what you’ve observed from other businesses. Then decide how you will improve and solve those pain points in your own product/service.
Once you’ve got all of those questions answered, you’re well on your way to creating your small business dream!
If you are still struggling to come up with ideas for what to do, here are some great ways to earn some extra money! These range from legit business ideas to some side cash hobbies to do on top of your normal job!