The Real Cost of Doing (Your Own) Business

Ready to start your own small business? You’ll be joining the ranks of the other 28.8 million in the United States alone! At this point, you’ve probably gotten all the fun stuff out of the way—like what kind of business you’ll be, the perfect name, and a logo design—so now it’s time to examine everyone’s least favorite topic: Your operating budget. Rather than facing one big number that covers it all, ease yourself into it by approaching your financial needs one line item at a time. Here are six standard costs you need to consider:


  1. Workspace

First thing’s first: Where are you going to operate your business? While many small businesses originate in a garage or spare bedroom, working out of your home has its disadvantages. Alternatively, if you want to work out of downtown New York, for example, office space is at an all-time high of $62 per square foot! So, what do you do if you can’t work from home or afford a traditional office space? Consider renting a versatile and affordable business workspace unit from a reputable company like Gotham Mini Storage, where you’ll get more bang for your buck—plus a desirable zip code.


  1. Office Equipment

Now that you’ve got an office space, you need to furnish it. While your needs may vary based on your industry, you’ll still want the basics to help you run the day-to-day. A laptop, tablet, or desktop for you and any employees, desk space, a printer, paper, and ink, office phone, pens, staples, paper clips, etc., it all adds up in the end.


  1. Inventory

If your business is a service you will likely have Littleton inventory to worry about. But if your business provides goods, you need to make sure you have enough inventory to fulfill orders and replenish for future orders with little downtime between the two. How much you need will differ based on your sales and whether your goods are perishable, so make sure you don’t over- or under stock.


  1. Marketing

This one is a bit more fluid. Some small businesses find success with a few social media pages and word of mouth, but you can’t count on that. Sooner or later, you’ll want to work with a professional marketing firm to determine if paid postings, banner ads, print ads, direct mail, or other marketing avenues will better serve your bottom line.If you wish to save money from paying professional fees, printing your own marketing materials is a good alternative. When looking for a high-quality and affordable replacement ink and toner cartridges, is the most trusted source online.


  1. Website

In today’s online-centric world, a website is a must for any business. In the beginning, you may be tempted to create your own on platforms like Wix, Squarespace, Weeby or similar ones that charge a nominal service fee, or offer ad versions free of charge. While this is a simple way to begin your online presence, you’ll eventually need a more robust site, especially if you offer online purchasing, and for that you’ll want one built by a professional.


  1. Employee Payroll

This last one is pretty simple: People want to get paid for their work. While small businesses don’t employ thousands of people, every salary you pay needs to be factored into your budget. Many small businesses go years before they start to turn a profit, so you need to determine how many other salaries you can afford to pay before you see any return on your investment (and can pay your own).

Starting your own small business can be a very exciting—and scary—time in your life. There are a lot of unknowns you’ll be facing, especially in the first few years, but understanding these six standard costs will prepare you to face them head-on and put you on the road to success.


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