A Guest Post by Noah Rue
If you’ve wanted to start your own business for a while, you may have been holding off until you had all of your ducks in a row. It can be difficult to find funding, a quality staff, and understand the technology required to grow a business in this day and age, to begin with.
And then, the COVID-19 pandemic hit.
Starting a business is challenging enough under normal circumstances, but the pandemic has certainly made some entrepreneurs hit the “pause” button.
But, if you’re truly passionate about starting a business, you don’t have to stop. You can keep moving forward with your plans and have a successful business, even in the midst of a pandemic. There are plenty of businesses that have thrived throughout COVID-19, and yours can, too. Just make sure you’re aware of a few of the challenges you might face, and you’ll be better equipped to handle them as you get started.
Finding Funding in Times of Trouble
One of the greatest hurdles you might face is being able to fund your venture. As of September 2020, nearly 100,000 businesses were forced to shut down completely because of the pandemic. That number has undoubtedly grown since then. So, investors might not be eager to put their money into a particular business until the economy is stable.
Thankfully, there are other ways of securing funding for your needs, including:
- SBA investment programs
- Help from family and friends
You can also apply for a small business loan by carefully considering the options available to you and then picking the best one or ones for your circumstances. There are different loan programs to choose from depending on your business’ needs, including microloans if you need under $50,000 to get started. Consider setting a few financial goals now and take into account how a loan might impact them in terms of paying it back. How will you define success? What do you expect to make in your first year?
By asking yourself those questions, you will have a better understanding of the type of funding you will need, and a plan to pay it back as efficiently as possible.
Starting the Right Kind of Business
Speaking of getting started, we mentioned earlier some businesses have been able to thrive and grow throughout this pandemic. That is mostly due to the fact that they fulfill a need. Some of the top industries that have actually benefited from COVID include:
- Home improvement
- Pet products
- Home beauty
- Fitness and health
As you might expect, most of these industries thrived due to people spending more time at home. What people need now might be different, but the concept is the same; filling a need. If you have a great business idea that does fulfill a need, consider how you might bring it to life when the economy is still on shaky ground.
If you don’t have adequate funding and aren’t able to hire a staff, you might want to consider starting a business that allows you to work on your own. Working as a solo operator is effective whether you’re a handyman or a blogger. You will need to determine which services or products you offer, set your pricing, and find a way to market to your target audience through social media, a quality website and/or mobile app for convenience, and any other avenue that will show your audience you have a product or service they need.
Is starting a business during a pandemic easy? No. Are there certain industries that may struggle for a while, even in a post-pandemic world? Yes. But, if you have the right kind of business, the funding to get started (even on a small scale), and you believe you have something people truly want, there is no reason you shouldn’t keep moving forward to get your passion off the ground.