You're eager to start your home business and bring in some extra income. Although you're probably bursting with ideas and enthusiasm and want to jump right in, take some time to plan and prepare for your new venture.
Here's a simple checklist you can use in startup phase of your home based business. Feel free to add additional checkpoints of your own!
1) Assess your personality. Are you entrepreneurial type that will do well with your own business? Are you self-motivated, disciplined, and willing and able to put forth effort, time, and money? Are you type that can get up after a failure and try again? There are many quizzes available to help you decide whether or not you're ready for a home business. Try http://quiz.ivillage.com/work ests/areyouready.htm
2) Appraise your skills, knowledge, and experience. Make a list of businesses you think you would be capable of building.
3) Know your interests. If you're doing something you love, you are more likely to work harder and enjoy yourself. A good place to find unique business ideas is here: http://homebasedwork.com/cgi-bin/a .cgi?bizideas
4) Figure out what type of business you want to run. Out of huge number of possibilities, select one that works well with your skills and your interests. An excellent manual with 16 different Internet 'business models' that you can copy is available at http://buildyourhomebiz.com/rd/senze.html
5) Do some market research. Is there a demand for product you plan to sell, and at price at which you want to sell it? After your (projected) expenses, will you be profitable?
6) Check out your competitors. How will you distinguish yourself from them? Why should customers come to you instead of to them? What are they doing right or wrong, and how can you improve upon them?
7) Select a business name. Make sure you don't infringe upon someone's trademark! You can research trademarks at http://www.marksonline.com/ . Consult with a qualified legal professional for more information.
8) Know zoning regulations in your area. Make sure that you are permitted to operate a business from your home. Some areas may also place restrictions on type of business that can be operated from your home.
9) Find out what licenses, registration, or permits you need to operate your home based business.