As any new or experienced entrepreneur knows, getting a startup off the ground can be tough. The endless hours and stress can make it seem like an unsustainable task. This is especially true when considering that 95% of businesses end up failing.
The first year is often a vital time for a business. It’s a time for the product or service it brings to prove itself, to secure funding, or pay back start-up loans. So, making early gains is vital. This is particularly true if you’re in a modern industry like IT and technology, where funding and constant innovation are necessities.
So, we put together a few quick wins you can make in your first year of business to help set it up for success down the road. These can be both achieved quickly and easily, and be used to great effect throughout your business life.
6 Quick Wins for Small Startup Businesses 2019
1. Securing your first round of funding
In this day and age, angel investors are easier to obtain than ever before. For those unfamiliar with angel investing, or rounds of funding, it’s basically pitching your product or business idea to investors. If they like this idea, they will provide the money you need for a percentage of your company.
During the initial round of funding, investors stand to gain the largest share of the company for the lowest investment. So, this can be a quick win for many businesses, particularly in IT.
2. Obtaining your first testimonial (and customer results)
Regardless of what your business, product, or services are, you’re going to need to market and sell it.
This means ads, reviews, and testimonials. So, the sooner you can get the content for this, the better. The initial year of business is where you’re going to spend some time allowing customers to try your product or service for discounted, or no, charge.
3. Getting your first off-the-road client
There’s no better feeling than getting a client directly from your own marketing or sales effort. This will often be the first customer you charge a retail price to, and the one that can get word of mouth going for your business to improve your brand.
Whether you run an online or bricks-and-mortar business, word of mouth is still one of the strongest forms of advertising. So, make sure the best version of your product or service is presented for your first set of clients. As the saying goes, first impressions are everything.
4. Making your first online sale
This may seem like a quick win for those in online or tech businesses only. But, all bricks-and-mortar businesses should also have an online component to their business if they hope to succeed nowadays.
With people looking for a new service or product, or those curious to try a competitors’, making an online sale or booking can come quick and easy. However, good marketing will be required to keep these coming through. So, be sure to find out how that person found you online, and why they chose your business.
5. Making early adjustments and fixes to your product/service
This may not seem like a ‘quick win.’ But, many companies survive the first year of business only to fail later on due to neglecting early feedback of their product or service.
Early feedback and fixes allow you to improve and finalize what you’re providing your customers before your business gains traction and reaches a large number of people. This can ensure any success you have early on remains consistent and keeps your business successful for years to come. Remember, winning often means failing at the start.
6. Getting your first government tax break and grant
One of the biggest advantages of being a new startup, and working for yourself, is the grants and assistance available from the government. In both Europe and the USA, there is usually a wide range of grants. These can be to help to fund for employees, marketing, and exporting.
Alongside these grants, tax breaks are also widely available. So, make sure you consult an accountant and do your research on available grants to help boost the funding to your company and get you on the right track for no extra cost.