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Most Recent Questions in Starting a Business

We Launched. What's Next?

It sounds like everything is set. Now, you need customers. Your next move will depend on what you're selling. Are you in a high "traffic" area? Do you have all the names and contact... (more)

How Do I Design a Prototype?

Start with your own industry and see if you can find someone who will build something for you directly, or can refer someone who can "freelance" for you. You can also use the internet... (more)

Can I Protect My Idea Without a Patent?

This is a tough situation. Patents just aren't that protective anymore. I own a corporation and I stopped signi (more)

How Do I Relaunch a Defunct Business?

Any time you want to launch or resurrect a business, you have a couple legal issues to consider when choosing a name. First, you want to be sure that the name is available with your state's... (more)

How Much Does it Cost to Launch a New Product?

Numbers are the language of business. It is critical to "know your numbers" on the expense side before plunging into any business venture. You're talking about starting something... (more)

Where Can I Get Help Launching a Website?

It's good that you're considering professional advice at the beginning of the startup process. As a professional advisor myself, I'm often consulted only after a business has launched and... (more)

How Can I Raise Money for My Nonprofit?

Start by contacting a local shipper or a local franchisee of a larger shipping company. Ask if they might like to partner with you. Another option would be to contact an individual donor and ask... (more)

How Do I Use Benchmarking in My Business Plan?

Benchmarking based on available information about similar companies in other markets can be a useful way to add granularity and credibility to your business plan. Depending on how much information... (more)

Should a Startup Hand Over Control to an Investor?

It sounds as though you're being asked to sell a controlling interest in your business for $1,000. Is that all you're worth? That sounds like a no-brainer. I wouldn't give away a 55 percent... (more)

What Are the Best Titles for Company Founders?

A limited liability company (LLC) is a flexible form of business entity that blends elements of partnership and corporate structures. Because you're not bound to the usual type of corporate... (more)

How Do I Decide Which Business Idea I Should Pursue?

It's a tough call, but my advice it to just pick one and get started. You simply won't know what works or what doesn't until you start working with your ideas and seeing if they are useful and of... (more)

Do You Need a College Degree to be an Entrepreneur?

A number of people might argue that a college education isn't necessary, but I think it is important to get a college degree before becoming an entrepreneur. The education you receive may or may... (more)

How Many VC Firms Should a Startup Pitch?

Your first objective should be to make sure you have an investment opportunity that will be of interest to venture capital firms. If your startup isn't scalable, defensible, have high growth... (more)

How can I obtain startup money?

That’s a pretty open-ended question, but to help guide you, I'd turn back around and ask you if you already have a business plan for your product or service? If so, great. Investors not only... (more)

How can I turn an idea into reality without any business savvy?

My experience is that you need a basic understanding of business if you want to be successful in business, because without knowledge and applied action, you leave yourself open to being taken... (more)

What's the best way to start a breakfast cafe in the recession?

If I were you, I would start observing the competition. In your case, the competition might not be other breakfast cafes, it might be McDonald's or Denny's or any restaurant that also serves... (more)

How can I find VCs for a website startup?

Congratulations on wanting to start a new website. While I don't know much about venture capital or getting funding (I built my business the old-fashioned, bootstrapping way), I can say that... (more)

How can I find start-up grants for small business?

First off thanks for your patience on this answer. I wanted to do some research and be sure I could give you the best answer for your particular question as I am not an SBA agent or specialist.... (more)

What's the best way to find a business partner?

It sounds like you need an employee who is a young go-getter, not an entrepreneur. You will never be the exclusive customer of an entrepreneur--especially if they are talented at what they do. They... (more)

Is a hot dog cart a good choice for profit and growth?

Hot dog carts rely heavily on foot traffic for revenue, so just like a retail store, location is key. With that said, a hot dog stand can be very profitable. According to a recent article by ABC... (more)
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