Starting your own business may seem like an impossible task, but with the right resources and the dedicated time and effort, your entrepreneurial dreams can become reality. No one said it will be easy, however. Trusting yourself, knowing your business strengths and weaknesses — and working to improve on them — is the first step to success. It’s also important to surround yourself with the right support system — friends, advisors and the right online tools to help you on your way. With this mind, we’ve partnered with Desjardins to list five tools that will help you plan for the business of your dreams.
Plan Your Business
When it’s time to share your idea for a business with a partner or financial institution, you’ll need to ensure your business plan is designed for success. Plans can come in all shapes and sizes, but often share common characteristics. There are online tools out there that can make developing a successful business strategy that much easier. The Desjardins Interactive Business Plan, for example, can help. The step-by-step tool can help you create your plan from scratch and provide tips and tricks to develop a more comprehensive understanding of your business goals and requirements. It also helps you avoid mistakes and start your project with ease.
Manage Your Business
Looking for a fast and easy way to monitor your invoices and expenses? There are a wide range of online invoicing tools, budget trackers and smartphone apps that can help you track your invoices, manage your expenses and ensure your clients are paid on time. There’s the Desjardins’s Billing and Expense Tracker tool that’s specifically designed for small businesses and self-employed workers. It helps you manage invoices and expense accounts for free while allowing you to access all information from your mobile device, tablet or computer.
Register Your Business
Depending on the province and territories you live in, you need to officially register your business. What’s the name of your company? What service do you provide? What type of business structure will your company adopt? Checking out the Canada Revenue Agency’s online business site or Québec’s business registry, Le Registraire des entreprises, can help answer your questions and ensure you’re registering your business the right way.
Promote Your Business
Facebook and Twitter are great platforms to amplify your message. Promoted posts, website blogs and free website hosting tools are all ways you can develop an online presence for your company. Not only can they help get the word out, they can help with marketing and building your audience as well.
Track Your Business
There are a plethora of goal-setting and tracking applications online that can help you create timelines and deadlines for ensuring that you are on the path to success. GoalsOnTrack, for example, is a free mobile app that helps you create a template for tracking your project.
These are just a few great tools to help you on your journey for creating a business that you can be proud of. Just remember, creating a business that lasts will take a lot of time, willpower and hard work. Using online resources like the Desjardins Business online hub can help to avoid common pitfalls and help you on your way, faster.