Getting a startup off the ground can be very difficult. Firstly, there is the trouble of trying to build everything up from scratch. Secondly, some people who want to create startups have no adequate knowledge of how businesses operate. The challenges people often encounter include how to manage the business, how to handle finances, how to hire new employees, and more. These challenges can be met irrespective of the kind of business it is or what exactly the idea behind it is.
If you have a tech startup, or are planning to launch one, here are some common mistakes you must avoid, so you can conquer your obstacles and grow a successful business.
1. Wrong Choice of Name
The bond between a business and its name is strong. What is the business if not its name? The success or failure of a business depends, to a large extent, on the kind of name it bears. The name gives a first impression to customers or clients. For that reason, great care, consideration, and even consultation, should be made before choosing a name for your tech startup.
While cute and curious names are often preferred, you shouldn’t pick a name for you business simply because it is cute or curious, other factors should be considered as well. For instance, you have to consider how well the name represents the brand, and suggests its benefits. Whether it is easy to remember or spell should also be considered.
Next to business name is domain name. Right now, having a website for you business is no longer optional, it is compulsory, particularly for tech businesses. The kind of domain name you choose for you business goes a long way in determining how search engines will see it. If your URL states www.freeparking.co.nz/domain-names/search for instance, users will want to be sure that when visiting that page, they’ll actually find out what domain names are available and get one that best suits your business.
2. Failure to Research the Market Properly
It isn’t wise to start a business on the sole ground that the idea seems great. Brilliant service or product ideas are good for business, but they are not the only things that will determine whether a business should be started, and whether it will succeed or fail. The best product/service ideas are those that have problems to solve. If the idea has no problems to solve, it means that there won’t be demand for it.
The way to ascertain if your business idea can solve any problems or not, is to research the market. So, before kick-starting your tech startup, be sure to research the market properly, to be sure that it provides solutions to problems. You’ll be making the worst mistakes of your business life if you fail to do so.
3. Poor or No Financial Plan
When you want to start a business, you don’t just take it for granted that money will be flowing in and out accordingly. Prior to the commencement of the business, you have to take time and have its financial life all planned out.
The plan should first recognise the source, or sources, of the funds for the business. Then it should note how much will be spent before the business comes to life, the cost of production, and how much will be spent monthly paying salaries, and for maintenance. Next, the plan should not leave ‘you’ (the owner of the business) aside.
It should be boldly stated in the plan how you want to be earning money from the business, whether or not you’ll place yourself on salary. If yes, will it be monthly or weekly? This is crucial because you can’t be taking money from the business’s purse anytime you want to, simply because the company is yours. That won’t be good for the success of the brand.
4. Being on the Wrong Team
Some businesses can be started by an individual alone, while others require a team, two heads are better than one after all. The kind of team that forms a business has a stake in deciding how long it will be in existence and how successful it will be. This is true of all startups, tech startups not excluded. Launching a business with the wrong team may be as bad as going it alone.
Many startups that would have grown into enterprises have been crippled by the fact that some of their team members left not long after the business started. When forming a business team, care should be taken to select someone who understands, and has passion for, that kind of business. There should also be mutual traits such as discipline, trust, dedication, intelligence, honesty, and more, among the team members. Chances are that you both will work better when you have those traits in common. A difference in those qualities, on the other hand, may be the reason the team parts ways before anything is even really started.
5. Thinking Only Short Term
Many startups fail or struggle because they are myopic about end goals. You shouldn’t get carried away by the immediate demand for the services or products the company will enjoy. It is wise that you also try to find out how long for, and how consistent, that demand will be.
If you fail to think and establish long term goals for a business, the likelihood is that the business will be in high demand today, but out of demand tomorrow. On the contrary, when you set long term goals for a business, you’ll keep on building and refashioning your plans and strategies towards those goals. That helps the business to enjoy continued existence and strength.
Timing is very important in beginning a business. After your research has revealed that there is a market for your product or service, it is important to know the right time to start. Before starting, serious considerations have to be made.
It is not advisable to rush into starting a business the moment you identify the problem it can solve, nor is it advisable to wait for too long. The right time of action should be somewhere in between.
Lastly, before letting your tech startup face the market, make sure that it has all the requisite technical and humans resources to face the demand that it will enjoy. If you take note of these mistakes and carefully avoid them, your tech startup has a much better chance to grow.