STARTING A BUSINESS
STEPS TO START A BUSINESS
The first step in starting a new business is to decide what the name of your company will be. Give this some thought as this will be the name your customers, suppliers and all other third parties know. If you have a website, this will also be the name of your website (domain name).
Try and keep your name easy. You want people to be able to remember it.
Once you have decided on a name, you can register your name with CIPC (Companies and Intellectual Property Commission).
Once you have reserved a name, you can then register a company. In South Africa, the usual form of company is a Private Company or a (Pty) Litd, which stands for Private Limited company.
The person forming the company (the first shareholder), is known as the incorporator. This person can be a natural person or a juristic person (human being or a company). Further members will also be shareholders, but not known as an “incorporator”.
A Private company must have at least 1 shareholder and 1 director. On incorporation of a company, the “incorporator” will be automatically appointed as the first director. You of course have the choice to appoint someone else as the director.
The difference between a shareholder and a director, is that shareholder owns the shares, whilst a director does not. A director is a person who is appointed to make the day to day decisions in the company. If a shareholder is appointed a director. That person will hold to capacities, one as shareholder and one as a director.
If you have more than 1 shareholder it is advisable to have a shareholders agreement regulating the rights and obligations of the shareholders.
Every company should have a business plan. A good Business Plan will include some of the following:
1. The Objectives of your business – what does your business do?
2. Is there a market for your product? Who is that market?
3. Is there a need for your product? What problem does your product solve?
4. What capital do you need to get your business started?
5. What are your projected profits?
6. How will you advertise your business?
7. Who are your competitors?
8. What are the legal requirements for your business?
In order to compete, every business should be online nowadays. Customers look online / google for the products or services they require.
The first step in getting a website is to register a domain name. A domain name is the name of your website, or the address people will enter in their browser to find your business. The domain name should be the same as your company name or a name that people will identify with your company.
In order to have a website, you need to have the website hosted. Website Hosting is a type of Internet hosting service that allows individuals and organizations to make their website accessible via the World Wide Web.
What you get with hosting:
1. Data Storage: When you have a website, each page includes data and images. These pages, with their data and images need to be stored somewhere. The hosting company will therefore provide this data space.
2. Email Address: With your website, you also want an email address for people to contact you.
3. Website software: In order to build your website, you will need software which enables you to build the website. The Legal Web Online builds all its websites using WordPress.
At The Legal Web Online, we offer free domains with our hosting plans. You can get your hosting and domain name all in one at the same time.
We also offer Websites, Hosting and Domain Name plans.
Now that you have a company, a domain name and a hosting plan, its time to design your website. Your website can be a simple 1 page, a 3 page, a complex website and/or include an online store. It all depends on your business and requirements.
For a start up a 1 page website is becoming quite popular. This page will include About your business, your services and your contact details.
If you have a portfolio then you will require more pages.
If you wish to sell online, then you will also require more pages and in adddition extra software which allows you to set up an autmoated shopping process. At the Legal Web Online, we use Woocommerce.