According to Business Insider's Infographic, The State of U.S. Small Businesses, there are 28 million small businesses in the United States. This accounts for over 22 million self-employed individuals. If you have been considering becoming a part of this growing number, here are a few easy steps to get started in the New Year.
Step 1 - The Write Move
The next time that you have that million-dollar aha moment, don't brush it off. Write your idea down on paper. Consider the name of your business. Envision your logo, and the colors you'd like to use. Who will your audience include? Think about your potential customer and the need that your business will meet. It only takes a pen and a pad to start the process.
Step 2 - Make it Official
Register your business with your local secretary of state office. Registration fees can range between $40 and $500. This varies based on your location. You'll need to decide on a business entity type and a name. You can register a business as a limited liability corporation, a partnership, a non-profit organization or a corporation. Many business owners consult with an attorney to help them make the best decision. Also, there are numerous online resources available with just a few clicks. Do your research, prepare your articles and make it official.
Step 3 - Take a Number
The next thing you'll need to do is visit IRS.gov. The site outlines an easy application process to apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN). Upon completion, you'll be able to download a copy immediately to print or save for your records. This number is issued for tax administration and allows you to start building business credit. You'll also need it to move on to the next step.