There are so many tasks to do and plans to make when you’re setting up a new business that it can sometimes seem overwhelming. Where do you start, and what do you do first? The Internet is full of helpful websites giving advice and offering services to aid you in your venture, but whose advice do you take when you’re being told two different things? This overwhelm can slow down your progress rather than helping you, so try going back to basics and dealing with the essentials first.

Create a first-class business plan

This document is the foundation of your venture, detailing what you are doing, how you plan to do it, and predicting the outcomes of your actions. It will help you get investment, and it will guide you every step of the way. Your business plan needs to be accurate, complete, and serve as a focus for what you’re doing and where you should be, so take as much time as you need to get this document right.

Get some good accounting software

Keeping your books can be time-consuming and tedious, and if you get it wrong, you can end up in all sorts of trouble. Investing in accounting software that automates all your functions, links to your customer accounts and business bank account, and generates all your financial documents for you saves you time, should be reliable, and will make life much easier when doing your tax returns. You will also be able to run reports that give you insight into how your business is performing, a valuable tool for making adjustments and improvements.

Get a killer website

Not many businesses will thrive these days without a website, but that doesn’t mean you have to spend thousands of dollars on a bespoke site. Website builders are far more sophisticated now, and there are numerous add-ons that enhance the functionality of basic sites. The type of site you need will depend on the business you run, so you may want to use a retail platform like Shopify or Etsy rather than having your own site. There are plenty of free or low-cost tools on the Internet that can help you construct an effective site, for example, you could use a domain authority checker to see how well possible URLs would rank in search engine results.

Do your research

This tip applies to all the facets of your business. Unless you find out enough relevant information you’ll be working in the dark, and you need to have as much knowledge as possible in order to make the best decisions. That means finding out about your competition, your industry, your customers, market conditions, supply chains, pricing, staff relations, budgeting, marketing, and every single aspect of the business operation.

Never stop learning

Wherever you are in life, you should never stop learning; actively seeking out new information, better evidence, and new ideas. If you think you know it all, you will be wrong; no-one does. Your business will stagnate, and is unlikely to reach its full potential. Be an active learner all your life, and you will be successful and respected.