Over the last few weeks FirstStep has been asked by a number of users on how to start their own business and make it a success. These are some of the toughest questions that have come our way so far!
Starting a business at first can be the most painful and trying experience of your life however it can definitely be the most rewarding experience. It all depends on a number of things, one your commitment to your idea and two your ability to convert that idea into working product or business.

With regards to the questions asked about starting a business, each question was targeted at specific industries, so it’s now our task to answer the question in way that would cover or qualify for all types of industries. So we are going to break it up into points so it gives a more lucid description:
Point 1:
The wonderful thing about South Africa is the lack of competition in our country, if you look at a number of First world countries there are a multitude of businesses in one specific industry. So there wouldn’t just be one or three businesses dominating an industry but rather a large number of businesses covering or competing for the same market.
Point 2:
Successful business models (the structure of a business, what makes a business tick) are always a great way to build a new business, consider how other businesses in the same industry have become successful. Study a business model or investigate the inner workings of a business that could be converted into another industry. These are all great ways in which to structure your business or make a similar or better business.
Point 3:  
Finance, yes the big one! All businesses be it a corner shop cafe to a multi-national rotates upon one major axis and that’s finance. There are many ways in which you can finance your business:  
1) Bank loans
2) Venture Capital programmes some include a system of incubators that provide business support and the infrastructure to help you get going.
3) A private loan from an individual willing to give you the seed (start up capital) that you need to get going.
4) Your own capital.
All of these schemes have major pros and con’s, it’s really up to you on how you want your business to work. Hence if you have plans to go extremely big or just keep your business in a small local market then pick the financing option that suits you best.
Point 4:
Use all the information you have to build a Business Plan. The Business Plan or BP is the story, guide and an A to Z of your business.  Business Plans change all the time, so try to use a stencil or a simple structure so if you have to chop and change a Business Plan then it’s easy to do.
Once you have a Business Plan, you can now set yourself up to go forth and implement your business. Hence you can decide what type of entity you want to have, open your business bank account, setup premises and in the long run create the business that you had hoped to achieve.
FirstStep recommends:
Before you start a business always get solid legal and financial advice. Always look for the niche market, know your business like that the back of your hand and never be afraid of competition!
We wish all those budding entrepreneurs the best of luck with their ventures and hope that you make it big!