As a new business owner, it’s unlikely you’ll get by without making one or two mistakes along the way. Avoiding them can be futile.
You learn from mistakes, so providing you see the lesson in them, they can actually be quite beneficial. That being said, you shouldn’t set out to make as many mistakes as you can.
Minimizing the mistakes you make from the get-go will make sure you’re actually starting a business that has staying power.
Let’s take a look at 11 big mistakes new business owners often make so you can avoid them as best you can!
#1 Cutting Prices As Low As Possible
If you’re thinking about cutting your prices as low as possible, it’s probably best to think carefully about it first. You might want to undercut the competition and get people buying, but you probably won’t make enough profit to keep your business running.
It’s also worth noting that you don’t want to become known as a ‘cheap’ business, as people will expect it from you. It can be difficult to increase your prices once you’ve become known as a budget business.
Instead, make sure you know your worth and price your products/services that way. If you know that it’s what you’re worth, you should have no problem selling.
#2 Not Having A Clear Business Strategy
Having a clear business strategy as early on as possible can help you to make plans for the future and know what steps to take when things get a little difficult.
To do this, you should know what your priorities and goals are and where you’d like to be in the future. You should include things like where you will get capital from, how you’re going to measure success, and so on.
The business plan isn’t just a good tool for you, but a good tool if you’re planning on going to get capital from investors. They will want to see it!
#3 Trying To Do Everything Yourself
Trying to do everything yourself is a recipe for disaster. You can save time by automating with software, outsourcing to freelancers, and even looking at hiring.
You can hire temporarily, or you could even hire a virtual employee. You might think that saving money by doing everything yourself is best, but your time is often worth more than that.
If you spend a little more now so you can have more time to focus on what you’re best at, it’ll likely be better for your business in the long run.
#4 Forgetting All About Brand
It isn’t enough to have a great business product or service. You need to build a strong brand right from the get-go. Building a brand takes time, but you need to define who you are right from the beginning to do it well.
This means knowing your core values, as well as having a good idea of how you want people to view your business. Also, know exactly why customers should choose to work with you.
A strong brand can make all the difference to your success. Just take a look at some of the biggest and best brands in your industry and work out why they are so popular to get started.
#5 Using Social Media Incorrectly
Knowing how to use social media from the beginning can help business owners to build a hype around their business, build social proof, and more.
However, using it properly is key. This means posting on the right platforms, at the right times. You can’t use social media sporadically! You also need to be very careful about what you post. Assume that the things you post online are there forever.
One poorly judged tweet or status update could ruin your reputation for good. In extreme cases, it could also mean having to get in touch with a business dispute lawyer. Be professional and polite while showing off your brand personality, and make sure social media is taken seriously.
Having somebody to handle it for you will take a weight off your shoulders.
#6 Letting Your Emotions Get In The Way
Your business is your baby, so not letting your emotions get in the way is easier said than done. However, keeping them under control and being able to make decisions with a clear head is crucial to your success.
This is why a business plan can be so helpful, as it can help you to see what direction you need to go in when you’re under pressure.
#7 Losing Touch With Your Support Network
Your family and friends may end up feeling neglected when you start a business. Do your best to stay in touch with them. A support network is essential for any business owner.
#8 Not Separating Business And Personal Accounts
Separating you’re business and personal accounts as soon as you start your business will make doing your taxes 100 times easier. It’s best not to mix these purchases.
#9 Failure To Keep Track Of Absolutely Everything
Keeping track of everything right from the start is another essential step for your taxes. Know how much you have coming in, your expenses, and have a way of keeping track of your other important bits of data.
Your accountant will appreciate this – it’s a good idea to get one rather than trying to do it yourself, as you could end up spending more in the long run if you make a mistake.
#10 Getting Into Too Much Debt
Loaning money is normal when starting a business, but being careful not to get into too much debt is key. Only loan money you are confident you can pay back, and remain frugal no matter what.
Buy second hand, and only hire if absolutely necessary. Don’t make any extravagant personal purchases, either. You need money in reserve, just in case.
#11 Not Defining The Ideal Customer
Defining your ideal customer is important if you want to know who you’re targeting in all of your marketing campaigns (and you should). Don’t try to target everybody, as it will not work.
Have you made any of these mistakes as a new business owner?