Posted: Wed 10th Jan 2024
If you dream of starting your own business and being your own boss, you're not alone. Thousands of people across the UK and Ireland are taking the plunge into entrepreneurship and setting up new ventures with ambitions of success.
But if you were to step into the world of business ownership, would you know where to get all the support and guidance you might need? This is where the StartUp UK programme can help.
In partnership with Monzo Business, StartUp UK is providing brand-new resources, in-person events, downloadable guides and virtual entrepreneur meet-ups. If you're interested but aren't yet signed up, you can join StartUp UK for free now.
In the meantime, here are our top tips for getting a new business up and running in 2024:
Complete guide on how to start a business in 2024
Master your business plan
Start by writing your business plan. It should include information on your:
business idea – what do you plan to sell?
target market – what customer group will you serve?
operations – what do you need to get started?
friends – who is in your support network (for example, do you have an accountant or an assistant?)
If you need help getting this all down on paper, why not download our business plan template?
Choose the right business structure
Generally, you can run a business as a:
Not sure which one would suit you best? Read our guide to registering a new small business.
Set a budget and draw up a financial forecast
Budgeting and forecasting are a vital element of business finance.
Budgeting is important for identifying where to cut or increase spending, developing realistic goals, and encouraging investors and lenders. Download our budgeting template
A financial forecast is a projection of what your business may achieve. It is just a prediction but should help you to prepare for your business's future and financial health.
Get your business admin under control
Mastering your business admin is crucial for protecting your business.
One key element is intellectual property (IP). When you start a business, you'll likely have at least one form of IP – this might be a trademark, a patent, copyright or a registered design, for example.
You may also need business insurance, depending on the type of business you're setting up. There's a wide range of business insurance available, but some might not be relevant to your particular venture. Learn more in our guide to business insurance.
Know your customer
It's important to know where you want to take your business and what goals you have. If you know where you're going, you're more likely to get there! Goals give you clarity and help you focus.
Here are some tips on how to set effective goals for your small business. You can also watch our webinar, in which we break down how to create a 90-day roadmap you can use as a guide to set impactful business goals, overcome challenges and give yourself direction for meeting your targets.
Learn how to sell
Seems obvious, but to have a business you must be able to sell your products or services. You do this by understanding what goes into the sales process.
Get started with these simple tips from StartUp UK on how to make sales. Read our guide to getting your first sales as a new business, then watch our webinar on how to grow your sales using online and digital methods.
Use the power of social media
Social media is one of the most popular routes to advertising your business online, and there are many free social media channels with which you can get started.
You can download our free guides to starting a business on:
Learn digital marketing
Digital marketing is key to growing a business. It teaches you how to communicate with your customers and build a relationship with them online.
Watch our webinars and learn the four things you need to know about digital marketing, and find out how to create a digital marketing strategy with no budget.
Make sure you have a good work-life balance
Starting a business can take up a lot of time, so it's important to manage your time and learn the importance of boundaries and balance.
Find out why starting a business can help you lead a better life, and watch our webinar on how to create a work-life blend as a business owner and entrepreneur.
Support you can get from the StartUp UK programme in 2024
StartUp UK is a pioneering scheme, providing free tailored support to the next generation of start-up entrepreneurs. Backed by the UK government and supported by Monzo Business, the programme delivers the following:
Events and workshops:
Virtual workshops take a deep dive into business topics such as marketing, business planning and branding
Lunch and Learn webinars provide top tips and inspiration
StartUp Saturday events are one-day in-person events where you can learn everything you need to start a business
Downloadable templates and guides: Free practical resources to support you with the fundamental tasks of getting a business going.
E-learning: Access a free programme to learn all the essentials of starting up a business. The courses cover everything from coming up with an idea, to marketing on a budget, to acquiring your first customers.
Money-saving offers: It's possible to start a business on a small budget. Find great offers and discounts on the small business tools and technology you need.
Access support to start your business
Visit the StartUp UK hub for resources that give you the education and inspiration to get started on your entrepreneurial journey.