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Here’s How to Start A Business for $100

by Guest Author  |  February 1/2013  |  ,

Start Business for $100

I remember the days of starting my own business like it was just yesterday.

No money, no budget, no idea of what you are getting yourself into, just a huge desire to build something that matters and make an impact.

When you make that decision to start a business or a project, it can be the most exciting thing you’ve ever done, and also the most daunting.

If you’re about to take the plunge then I congratulate you on embarking on the most rewarding journey of your life. And I sure hope you like rollercoaster rides, because that’s what you’re about to experience for at least the next two years.

If you’re just about to start out, this is key stage for you to consider what matters most, and where to spend your lack of available dollars, to get the most bang for your buck.

Invest In Your Future Now

Well at least that’s what I recommend you do. There is a common trend I’ve seen among entrepreneurs, to scrimp and save from the get go.

And while I totally understand that mentality (been there, done that), I’ve learned the only way to build a successful business, is to keep on investing in it, even when you don’t think you can afford to.

The money you put into looking more professional than you may feel, and presenting yourself as if you’re bigger and better than you really are, will pay you back in dividends, trust me.

That may sound contrary to a lot of advice you’ll receive, but hear me out. You have to treat your business as the success you’d like it to become, from the very beginning. Take yourself seriously and keep your eye on your grand vision, always.

This means great design, branding and communication to clearly state your USP – unique special proposition. This is hard to do initially as you’re finding your way, but remember `done is better than perfect’. So just ship and then you can continually tweak and improve along the way.

Where to best spend your first dollars

The great news is there are plenty of services these days that let you build a business for next to nothing so you need to take advantage of them.

If you were handed $100 today to start a business, here’s how I recommend you invest that money:

No need to break the bank is there? Obviously your biggest investment here is in learning the ropes. You will need to take the time to understand the psychology of online marketing, selling and influence.

Invest In You

The best investment you will ever make is in yourself. In up-skilling, mentoring, coaching and learning to become the best at what you do.

You’ll have to set aside time to learn how best to engage and market your brand through social media, and how to become a better blogger to gain more credibility and drive leads and referrals.

It would pay to know which online tools other entrepreneurs love to use, and then to try them out yourself to streamline your business and save you time and money.

All of this knowledge and implementation can be taken one step at a time, and it will seem less overwhelming, if you keep your eye focused on your immediate short term goals that are taking you one step closer to your long term vision.

Spend Your $100 Change Wisely

If you want to get a head start, then can I suggest you check out the $100 Change Program, a digitally delivered eCourse to get you to take action today.

I’ve gathered over 100 change makers, including FreshBooks co-founder and CEO Mike McDerment, who are successful entrepreneurs, published authors, leaders in their field, renowned speakers and incredible people, to deliver their insight, wisdom and advice.

This is delivered via 100 daily email prompts over 100 days designed to give you a blueprint for taking action including daily success rituals, overcoming fear to allow you to do your best work, staying focused on your vision, keeping momentum on a project and developing a killer mindset, to name a few.

About the author: Natalie Sisson is a Suitcase Entrepreneur who is on a mission to ensure others create freedom in business and adventure in life. She blogs about how best to use online tools, social media and outsourcing to build a thriving online business you can take anywhere. Over at the Suitcase Entrepreneur she offers free resources and tools, digital products and programs and business design coaching to ensure you create your ideal lifestyle. Natalie’s a featured contributor for Forbes Woman, Social Media Today, Visa Business Network and more. She also adores Ultimate Frisbee and world adventures.

 


  • http://paulteague.com Paul Teague

    Totally agree with this!

    The only thing I’d add to that list is a free Mailchimp account to capture leads and build a list of customers and prospects – I really don’t think you need much else to get started.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#justinesmith Justine Smith

    Hey @Paul, Mailchimp is an awesome idea, thanks for sharing your tip!

  • beetzy

    YesWare is a great way to organize your email communications!

  • http://www.lovinglifewithdiabetes.com Claire Kerslake

    Awesome advice, Natalie!

  • http://www.paraplanner.com.au Rich

    Great tips. I love the Bootstrapping articles. Another great resource is Seth Godin’s Bootstrapper’s Bible http://www.sethgodin.com/sg/docs/bootstrap.pdf , Weebly for websites and, of course, Freshbooks!

  • http://www.liveca.ca Josh Zweig, CPA, CA

    Great article. I definitely agree with the concept of ‘ship and tweak along the way.’ It’s one of the main premises of “The Lean Startup” by Eric Ries which I believe is a must read for those setting off a new business venture on a budget. The idea of getting your product to market quickly (once you reach a baseline point of professionalism of course) is key as your customers will dictate what improvements need to be made and you can iterate accordingly.

    In addition, while I am biased as an accountant, I would also stress the importance of speaking with an accountant or lawyer before setting off with a venture. I find that many startups are weary of the costs and therefore the thought of speaking to a professional doesn’t cross their mind. In fact, there are a number of free resources for startups where reliable accountants and lawyers will happily offer free initial consultations. Doing so will give you an idea of what issues to keep on your radar (ie. HST, payroll, insurance, etc.) which you perhaps hadn’t considered before – and by acting on them properly in the beginning you may save yourself time, money, and high blood pressure in the future.

  • http://www.freshbooks.com/our-team.php#justinesmith Justine Smith

    Hey Josh, thanks so much for your comment, The Lean Startup is a favorite around here too. Also, really sound advice about speaking to a lawyer or accountant before jumping into your business, it can be more affordable than people think and well worth it to avoid problems later!

  • Linda

    Thanks for all the great advice.

  • Caution in the Wind

    I caution you: you get what you pay for. If you know design and web security then go for it. If you don’t you can set yourself up to get hacked or have your customers get hacked.

  • David Trumpet

    Great foundation here, if you can sell some kind of consumer products, even better, use the same model, but instead of earning commission why not drop ship.. providing the margins are more attractive, which they usually are if done correctly

  • Henry

    Great tips,

    Another great way to start a business is to start taking surveys.I know that many people don’t like that, but the truth is that there are money in it.You can make $10-30 day immediately.Some surveys are scams.Watch that video to find legit surveys: youtube. com/watch?v=UR_mycV8Tj8

  • http://www.desmalone.com/ Des

    Put that 80 bucks back in your pocket and nix the Genesis theme. There are a number of quality free wordpress themes available. Web2feel is a good source, as are the thousands of free modern themes available on the WordPress.org website.

    Total cost: $21

    Visit one of the bulk online printers to take advantage of the inexpensive business card creation option, from free to 20 or 30 bucks if you go with a low count to start, which is all you need unless you’ll be leaving wads of cards in bathroom stalls.

    Invest the rest in some measure of advertising. Not marketing, but advertising. Consider the reality nobody likes marketers or advertisements and work out your ad spiel based on that reality. Or, hustle up business one on one.

  • http://uberontime.com UberOnTime

    I started mine with about $80 and it’s already profitable. It can happen, if you have a concrete plan, ambition and drive to succeed.


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