Starting a business involves a great deal of planning, making key financial decisions and completing a series of legal activities. Listed below are 12 easy steps that will help you plan, prepare and manage your business.
Step 1: Write a Business Plan
The link below will help you create a business plan that will help you map out how to start and run your business successfully. It will show you how to get your business up and running efficiently,
Step 2: Develop a Marketing Plan
Marketing takes time, money, and lots of preparation. One of the best ways to prepare yourself is to develop a solid marketing plan. A strong marketing plan will ensure you’re not only sticking to your schedule, but that you’re spending your marketing funds wisely and appropriately.
Step 3: Consult with Industry Professionals
The Manhattan Beach Chamber of Commerce offers free counseling by SCORE counselors to aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners, every Thursday morning at the office, 425 15th St. Manhattan Beach. Call 310-545-5313 to book an appointment. These wonderful counselors will help you with preparing a business plan, securing financing, and give advice for expanding or relocating a business.
Step 4: Choose a Business Location
Get help choosing the best location for your business. Find out where the customers are and how to comply with zoning laws so your business is successful.
Step 5: Develop a Financial Plan
Need help financing your business? There are different avenues for you to get those resources. Find government backed loans, venture capital and research grants to help you get started financially.
Step 6: Determine the Legal Structure of Your Business
You will want to make sure that your business is a success. You have many different ownership choices that have different benefits to your type of business. There is help to show you the best ownership style for you. The different types are: sole proprietorship, partnership, Limited Liability Company (LLC), corporation, S corporation, nonprofit or cooperative.
Step 7: Register a Business Name (“Doing Business As”)
Register your business name with your state government. Choose your business name to ensure that the name is not currently being used or that no one can use it later.
Helpful links and notes:
- Fictitious name search for DBA: http://rrcc.lacounty.gov/CLERK/FBN_Search.cfm;
- Fictitious name application: http://www.lavote.net/CLERK/Business_Name.cfm
- You may search and view the names indexed to Fictitious Business Names statements which expire 5 years from the date filed in the office of the County Clerk.
- Persons doing business for profit under a fictitious name (does not include surname in company name)
- Statement must be filed in county of principal place of business, and may also be filed in other counties as long as the requirements for filing in the county of principal place of business have been met
Step 8: Get a Tax Identification Number
Learn which tax identification number you’ll need to obtain from the IRS and your state revenue agency.
Step 9: Register for State and Local Taxes
Once you know the tax identification you’ll need, you can then register with your state to obtain a tax identification number, workers’ compensation, unemployment and disability insurance. This will help make sure your business is covered in case of an accident.
Step 10: Obtain Business Licenses and Permits
After you have selected your business name and have all the proper tax information you can then move to the local government. Register with Manhattan Beach to obtain your business license so your business can operate in this city.
Helpful links and notes:
- Manhattan Beach Business License information http://www.citymb.info/businesses/business-license-information
- State Board of Equalization – Resale permit http://www.boe.ca.gov/info/reg.htm
- The Manhattan Beach Municipal Code requires all businesses operating in the City to pay an annual business license tax
- Visit the link for more information about doing business in Manhattan Beach
- The Board of Equalization (BOE) wants to make doing business in California as easy as possible. You can register for a seller’s permit or use tax account using our online registration or in person at one of our field offices
Step 11: Obtain Insurance Coverage
As a business owner, you have enough on your mind without having to worry about your insurance needs. You want to have the confidence that the business you’ve built is covered by a company that understands your business insurance needs.
Step 12: Understand Employer Responsibilities
You want to make sure your business is in compliance with the law. You will need to learn the legal steps you need to take to hire employees. Make sure that you are not hiring the wrong employees for your business.
Link to the Manhattan Beach City Website Businesses page: http://www.citymb.info/businesses
The links below each section will take you to even more information about starting your business.