Start Your Business: A Step-By-Step Guide
Starting your own business can be a scary venture, but when done properly it can also be the most rewarding one.
No matter what stage you are at currently, this guide will help you follow a more structured approach and ensure you are on the track to success.
The big idea
Your business idea is the seed that will bring you fruits for many years to come. It’s possible that you have come here today because you already have an idea or maybe you are still looking for one. If you are in the former group, congratulations, you are already way ahead of a lot of people, but if you are in the latter group, don’t worry, you are at the right place.
You can start with the industry or niche you are interested in, what skill-set you have that can help in your new business, and how much budget or investment you can make at this stage. Maybe you are interested in sustainability and want to start a side gig of selling eco-friendly products or your years of experience in the HR department of a big company have helped you identify a gap in the industry that you can solve with a product or service.
You can also check our list of low-investment business ideas in UAE to get some inspiration.
Validating the idea
This is one of the most important steps while starting a business & the one that people often pay the least attention to. It is very easy to get excited about your brilliant idea & jump right in, but you need to do research to understand the industry, consumers, their pain points & goals to create a business for yourself and not actually for consumers. So spend a lot of time at this stage to validate your idea before you go in and & make an actual investment into it.
Define your target consumers
Very closely tied with the above step, this stage involves doing a deep dive into your customers & identifying their needs, challenges, goals, demographic details, and purchasing capacity among other things. This will later also act as your guide for branding, messaging, and product/service development.
As important as it is to understand your consumers, it is also to understand your competitors as well. Who are they, what kind of product/service do they offer, how long have they been around & what are their strengths, and weaknesses? You can use different frameworks like SWOT for your competition analysis. This will help you in multiple ways:
- To get a proof of concept
- Find ways to differentiate yourself
Writing your business plan
The next step is to collate all the information above & put together your business plan. Your business plan should include details about your product/services, a summary of your market research, finances, how you envision making money, operations, people involved, consumers, etc.
Choose a name
This is where things get exciting, it’s time to name your baby. Yes, we know it sounds cheesy but running your own business is a lot like having children, it takes that much care & diligence. This is also the step where things will start getting more real for you. While choosing the name, along with being creative & niche relevant, it is also important to check if the name is available for registration & if the related domain name is available. Believe us, we have seen many people get excited about the name only to realize too late that the name is already taken.
Register your company & open a bank account
Now that you have established your business plan & chosen the name, it’s time to formalize the process. One important step will be to choose the legal structure, each country has different regulations. In UAE, the structure also varies depending on the type of company you decide to go for; offshore, free zone, or mainland. This step will also include getting the necessary licenses & permits, registering for tax, and opening a bank account.
To find more about each of these company types & registration processes, check below.
Choose a company type in the UAE
Opening an offshore company
Opening a free zone company
Opening a mainland company
Build your website
Whether you are starting an online business or an offline business, your website will act as your most important point of contact with customers, investors & employees. We advise you to start with something simple in the beginning and then refine it as your business grows.
Final step: Start selling!