Starting a new business comes with a bunch of scary expenses. Thankfully, we’re in 2016, and there’s a bunch of technology and innovations that can help ease this financial stress.
You could need a cash injection to get your business started, or to get started on a dream project. You may also need money-saving freeware to conduct day-to-day business. Whatever it is, these items should help you out.
Starting Up: Online Crowdfunding
The stories about this are everywhere. Someone out there had a dream about starting a business from some crazy invention they’ve made, and somehow managed to get the public to fund them. How did they do it? The answer is usually crowdfunding.
There are now loads of online crowdfunding platforms. Kickstarter is the most famous. There’s also Indiegogo, Headstart, FundRazr and tonnes more. But how do you actually find success on these things? The real challenge is coming up with a campaign that will capture the hearts and minds (and cash) of thousands. This means that your idea needs to be particularly imaginative and/or needed.
Business startups are often hesitant about Kickstarter as it seems to be more creative-based. This is largely true. It’s the go-to for videogame developers, and was the funding method of the Oscar-nominated film Anomalisa. There are platforms that lean more towards business ventures. There’s equity crowdfunding, where investors receive equity in the company that is raising funds. There’s also debt crowdfunding, where a company borrows money and must repay it (usually with interest). Such platforms include AngelList, Crowdfunder, CrowdCube and EquityNet. Check out all the different options here.
Whichever way you go, the funding is usually based on incentive. That is, investors will pledge a certain amount of money, and if the project gets funded then the investors receives something from you. This size and value of this will usually be determined by how much money they pledged. With the more business-oriented ones, the perks are usually shares and repayments with interest.
Appearances: Mail Forwarding Service
A mail forwarding service allows you to get an address in an attractive location without having to be at that address physically.
You may be wondering what the use is in that. This is about keeping a professional image. Getting offices in the raging business hearts of cities is extremely expensive. Why do you think that Starbucks charges so much money for a sugary coffee? It’s because the landlords charge them extortionate fees for renting that property, so they have to push their prices up to make up the cost. The thing about addresses in London and Silicon Valley and New York City is that they look impressive. Having an office right where all the business action takes place is a sign of exciting professionalism.
Mail forwarding services, or virtual addresses, can be handed out to customers or clients. When they send you mail, it will go to that expensive address in the city. Some services will scan the envelopes and send the mail image files to you by email. Some will just send the mail straight to you. Either way, you can keep your business at home or in the cheaper outskirts. You can look into mail forwarding services at Your Company Formations – Registered Office Service.
Project Management: Going Cloud-Based
Cloud computing can save you loads of money. A physical server infrastructure is expensive, so storing everything online works out cheaper. It also makes it easier to collaborate remotely. Several users can access and edit the same documents over the cloud. Going about it with custom-built servers gets tricky when you need to add more space. Adding gigabytes at a time involves manual tinkering and high costs. With cloud storage, getting a company to add extra space allowance to your account is easily and usually inexpensive.
So what’s out there for you? Pretty much anything you need. Google Drive is the go-to for many companies. It provides professional email hosting along with collaborative editing of word documents and spreadsheets. You can also get cloud-based software for holding virtual conferences using webcams and microphones. This is great if everyone is working remotely from home. It means not having to reserve meeting space or getting everyone to travel to one location!
As long as you keep informed about what you’re downloading, there’s little limit to what you can get. CNET Downloads has been a favourite for free, useful software for over a decade. Keep an eye out on there, as well as on the customer reviews. Do make sure your antivirus is up to date before you start downloading willy-nilly, though!