The first thing one can often expect when they start their own business is to work more than forty hours a week for at least the first year, as well as to make little to no profits. A bleak prediction, perhaps, but more than a third of all businesses in the United States fail after the first year for one reason or another. Small businesses in the United States tend to not make much, if any, profit after their first year and a half. If you want your business to survive the first crucial twelve months, you will have to put in the extra work, because you can bet your competition is.
Because your business likely won’t make much profit in its first year or so, you will have to save up enough of your own money, or borrow enough to keep your business operational for at least six months without seeing a dime of income. This is to ensure that you can keep your business open while you build customers and begin to establish a reputation in the local community. Successful businesses are built on both the development of relationships and fulfilling customer expectations. Your business has to meet and/or exceed customer expectations on a consistent basis, as well as to build relationships with both customers and other businesses in order to stay afloat. This means keeping your doors open long enough to bring in customers, and to provide them with the products or services they need.
Another key for small businesses, at least these days, is a strong web presence. Even if you have a brick-and-mortar store with many “on-the-ground” customers, one of the only ways to really expand in today’s web-driven economy, and to remain competitive, is by drawing people to your website. At the very least, people who aren’t familiar with your physical location need to be able to find you.
Russell Sergent has been a successful businessman since he graduated from high school over 27 years ago. Sergent’s company, Pro-Source Distributors, supplies over five hundred clients with janitorial supplies.