How Much Does It Cost?

Published on May 5, 2014 by Eric Weld

Surprising Realities of Today’s Business Start-up Costs

Money? It takes money to start a business?

The answer might surprise you. Because it’s not a definite “yes.”

moneyblogOh, you can spend money, of course. You can spend a lot of money starting your business. You can also launch a business on very little money. But the surprising truth is, you can launch a business with next to no money at all.

That is not a typo. With today’s technology and marketing structure, it is possible to build and launch a small business without spending a single dime.

Let’s take a quick look at some of the components necessary for starting a small business, and their costs (or not):

1.  Business cards

No matter what type or size of business you’re launching, you will need business cards. Those little cards provide way more benefit than their minimal heft. Not only are they a necessary piece for handing out broadly, thus starting the all-important word-of-mouth stream (a topic for another blog); business cards also give you instant credibility as a business owner, and provide you with a sense of confidence and legitimacy. Business cards don’t have to cost a nickel. You can design and print them yourself, and there are several online businesses that offer free templates.

2.  Municipal (and state) registration

Is it absolutely necessary to register your business name with your local and/or state government? No. And if you do, it may carry an unavoidable fee (of between $50 and $150), depending on where your business is based. It’s a good idea to register your business, though, to provide a basis for:

  • tax purposes, if you plan to deduct expenses (which you should)
  • name protection
  • business loans or grants

But that’s only a recommendation, not a must.

3.  Website

Is a website an absolute must to start a business? Again, no. But if you plan to conduct any marketing beyond word-of-mouth, a website is strongly recommended. That said, there are, again, many businesses online through which you can build a website for zero cost, using their templates. At the same time, I’ve known entrepreneurs who have launched businesses strictly using (free) social media sites for all their marketing.

It Depends

So, the answer to this article’s headline? It depends. On you, the business owner; on the nature of your product or service (for example, if you need ingredients to build up a small inventory, or equipment and supplies); on your target market; and on how fast you want to grow.

But if you have a great business idea, and have been putting off starting because you think it costs too much to start a business, strike that notion from your thinking. Spending a lot of money to start a business today is an option, not a necessity. With today’s wonderful and myriad zero cost services available on the Internet, it’s possible to launch a business without spending any money at all.

Interested in learning more? Contact me directly, or comment below.