If you’ve always imagined opening your own store or freelancing business, this is a great time to do it. Launching a company doesn’t have to be an intimidating process. You can build your own business from the ground floor with no investment other than your time. There are several different ways to open a business from your living room.
Online businesses are inexpensive and easy to scale
Starting a service business online is an inexpensive way to start. Selling your time allows you to limit the startup costs for a traditional business. You can often start one for less than $100. Once you make a small profit, you can invest in tools that allow you to scale the business.
Start by selling your time
The easiest and cheapest way to start a business is to sign up with a company that helps you market and provides infrastructure. Online platforms like Upwork, TaskRabbit, or Amazon Mechanical Turk connect workers with clients who are willing to pay for administrative services. Using one of these online services gives you immediate legitimacy and removes marketing costs. Completing surveys, writing blogs, or answering questions is a good way to build expertise and a client list.
If you’ve got a reliable car and like food and meeting people, you’d make a great candidate to deliver food with Instacart or Postmates. Clients will submit an online order for a meal or groceries, and you’ll confirm the order is correct and deliver it. Another option is transporting people with a delivery service like Uber or Lyft.
Open a store
An inventory-based business is the riskiest because it requires an investment. To limit how much startup capital you need, start by selling things you no longer need or can get for free. Review the free listings on Craigslist or Nextdoor and pick up items you can resell for a profit. Use the money to fund any business requirements or inventory you need.
Protect your investment by seeing a lawyer
Setting up an online business or store has legal requirements with revenue and tax implications. You’ll eventually want to register the business to limit your personal liability and ensure that you have all the necessary licenses and permits. For example, there isn’t a sales tax on services, but you’ll need a certificate of resale and a seller’s permit to collect state sales tax on products sold.
Engage a lawyer with experience in your area to assist you with the documents you’ll need when incorporating your business. For example, when incorporating in British Columbia, you’ll need a legal team that can act as a record holder and registered office for your business, like McQuarrie. There are also necessary annual statutory requirements to maintain your corporation in good standing.
The internet makes it easy to start your own business. In many cases, you only need a computer, a phone, or a car to get started. Once the business becomes successful, it makes sense to formalize the operation by incorporating. Creating an LLC provides tax and liability benefits, but requires legal assistance to create and file all of the articles, agreements, and resolutions necessary.