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Most Recent Questions in Starting a Business

I've built a protype for an invention. Should I form an LLC or full corporation and patent it? Or should I seek a large company in the industry to sell the rights to?

Every state and locality has different regulations for corporations and LLCs. You'll definitely need to contact someone in your locality for that information. As far as selling, you'll need to... (more)

How do I determine my target market for an accounting and tax service business?

Some good places to start would be people, then businesses, then nonprofits, then geography. That list is not exclusive, but helps you segment. In terms of people, will you work with tax... (more)

What information do I need about a new product idea before contacting a market research firm?

First off, you need to be fairly specific about your product and the type of audience you are targeting before you get into any market research. Most research is qualitative--meaning you’ll get... (more)

I'm just getting into network marketing with a truly incredible product. I would like a definition of what network marketing is and how it works.

Network marketing is simply a distribution system for products or services, where you are paid to both sell the product/service and to recruit more direct sellers. Short-term income is made from... (more)

What's the best way to expand my business to the U.S.?

Go through your friends first, get your customer base up and running, and then invest in an office "on the ground." There is less risk through existing businesses--and you may also be... (more)

Who can help me to process, sell and distribute a product?

You’ll probably have to go it alone at first, especially if you don’t want to sell the recipe. Find a local vendor who can produce it for you, then get a list of 20 or so retail businesses you’d... (more)

I want to start a business to license a product that is patent-pending. What resources will illustrate the steps to take?

This is why so many people recommend developing a business plan. It's time to settle down and think through the steps. Resources? You've asked this question at, which is one of the... (more)

Do angel investors invest in companies that have just an idea?

Not likely; you'd have to have a team together and committed, plus a solid business plan. You'd also have to have a convincing argument that all it takes is investors' money for this idea to become... (more)

How do I pay my consultants if my customers drag their feet on paying my company?

Typically, your category of firm can ask for a deposit upfront before you start work (usually 50 percent of the project fee) as a way to help with cash flow. You also say your consultants would... (more)

Where can I find information to help me calculate estimated sales growth for an e-commerce store?

Sales growth for this type of business is based on traffic to the website, and you should be able to find traffic statistics and subsequent click-through rates--which you may be surprised to find... (more)

What are the top three most important things to do when opening a business?

Interesting question. 1. Offer something people want and will pay for. 2. Plan the details. 3. Follow the plan until you have to change it--and you will have to change it--and then... (more)

How can I market an idea I feel would be beneficial to parents when shopping with their children?

Honestly, this isn't what you want to hear, but you can forget that dream of just selling that picture in your head. You don't own it until you have a patent or a business built around it, and even... (more)

how would I go about showing my product to potential Investors?

It starts with a business plan; then you do an investor search, get an introduction, present a summary of the plan and, if the investors are interested, the plan itself. With that I just summarized... (more)

What degree looks better to an employer, an entrepreurship degree or a finance degree?

That depends on the employer and the type of employment, particularly the job description. There is no general preference one way or the other. (more)

What kind of clientele should I focus on for my cleaning business if I am only available evenings and weekends?

Your hours would be perfect for most commercial and office clients, who don�t necessarily want their busy offices cleaned during work hours--so you may want to change your target audience.... (more)

Starting a new product line

Yes, that's why people suggest that a business plan is a good idea when you're starting a business. As part of the process, you think through what you need to spend on items such as legal costs,... (more)

What business ideas would you suggest for a small town in a developing country?

Wow, there are so many you can begin. The best bet is to look at three things to make the decision: 1. What are your skills, the things you are good at? 2. What do you enjoy; what are you... (more)

What are the pros and cons of a product-based business?

Pros Chance of making much, much more money Control your own destiny Control Cons Lots of uncertainty Chance of losing money Lots of hard work Ride in som (more)

How can I sell business ideas or investment ideas without becoming an entrepreneur myself?

Forget it. The idea has no value. If it's worth anything, a thousand other people have the same idea. You don't believe me? OK, prove it. Prove me wrong. Make your idea work. Find a management... (more)

What locations would be ideal for my law offices?

The most desirable location depends on the type of law you practice. Select your location based on the kind of clients you wish to attract. High profile corporate clients may look for the... (more)
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