If you’re anything like me, you’ve researched and researched how to start a business with limited funds. While some sites intend to show you, i.e., ‘How to Start a Business with No Money’, only to click, go to read the info and end up wondering where is the part about limited funds money? Needless to say there aren’t many articles out there that show you how, until now.
I’ve been in business for 7 years. I was stuck between never having the time to commit fully and not having the energy. After quitting my job in May of 2013 due to high risk pregnancy, my second income was gone. I was low on money and tired of having my business just kinda dwindle so I made the decision to commit to it fully regardless of how much money I had. My number 1 source of income came from the fathers of my children. Yep, child support. Here’s how:
- 1 income. I was receiving a check every other week. With 3 girls you can imagine how far that money was going so naturally I had to save for a few months. A total of $400 a month was all I had and if I wanted to make my vision work, I had to make that due. I was living with my mother so that freed up some of the money that would have otherwise been used for bills, also my mother believed in me and wanted to see my vision come to life and wouldn’t really ask for help. I have 5 brothers and sisters that stepped in from time to time that helped with anything my girls did need. After taking $200 out of every month for them, I used the rest for building, buying books, attending an event…etc.
- Bargain. I researched how to buy and where to buy a website and domain. Web Hosting Hub was offering both for $19.99 a month. That was too high for me, but it had a lot to offer so I did some bargaining. I realized that they don’t want you to leave their site without purchasing a domain so each time they offered me a number to purchase that I couldn’t afford, I hit the exit button until I got the price I knew for sure that I could afford monthly; $4.99. Yep right up my alley. Purchased.
- Webdesign. I could not afford a web designer 5 years ago. So I did the next best thing, I taught myself how to set up and design my own site. The colors, the layout and the style. I read and read and read on how to do it all along with watching a few tutorials that came with purchasing the site. After I got the hang of it I was able to change the site as frequently as I liked.
- Time. I would literally be up all night developing my vision. That included, writing, taking notes, attending a webinar, research. I slept maybe 3-4 hours at night after my girls went to bed and I was back up and back to work. I also mainly worked from 8am to 2pm while my girls were in school minus the times I had to stop to feed or hold or change or play with my months old daughter. I did not waste a minute. I couldn’t afford to.
- Heart. I was not scared. You can’t be. Either you’re gonna do or you’re not. There is no in between. You can’t afford to listen to anyone’s ‘your not going to be able to with kids’ or any of that other nonsense. Just gotta go for it. Take a chance.
- Books. Whenever it was time for me to receive a gift like birthday or Christmas I’d make it known that who ever was buying the gift should buy me the book I needed instead. I made this a general rule; if you want to get me a gift get me a book that will aid in the building of my business. Eventually I had a book shelf on all things, business, entrepreneurship, starting a business, EIN, website maintenance, business license, marketing, branding, naming…etc.
- Snoop out event attendees. If you cant afford to attend an event, go to the person hosting the event and seek out the commenters who said they were going to attend. Go to their page or search the hashtags and take notes that way. Hashtags make you feel like you are right there with everyone else. You learn a lot.
- Blog. Consistently. Atleast 2x a day for 7 days you need to be updating your site with more information. If you want to establish yourself as an expert you have to give what you want people to know you do.
- Join social media. Regardless as to how saturated you think social media is, it works and it helps. I’m an introvert so I had to take baby steps. I started with Twitter because I could essentially let the world know about my business and not show my face in the process. I moved on the Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Periscope and LinkedIn.
- Get to know other people in your field. Everyone doesn’t need you to have thousands of followers to connect with you. Most want genuine connections with goal-oriented genuine people.
It admittedly takes money, yes, to start and operate a business, but if you don’t have thousands or even hundreds of dollars to put into a business, but you have the drive, the idea, the vision. Go for it. Believe in it. Have faith in it. And take my advice above. Start with what you have and move from there.