• Steps for Starting a Business

  • Starting a business involves planning, making key financial decisions and completing a series of legal activities. These 10 easy steps can help you plan, prepare and manage your business.


    Step 1: Write a Business Plan

    This written guide will help you map out how you will start and run your business successfully.


    Step 2: Get Business Assistance and Training

    Take advantage of free training and counseling services, from preparing a business plan and securing financing, to expanding or relocating a business.


    Step 3: Choose a Business Location

    Get advice on how to select a customer-friendly location and comply with zoning laws.


    Step 4: Finance Your Business

    Begin making a financial budget of projected income/expense. Find government backed loans, venture capital and research grants to help you get started.


    Step 5: Determine the Legal Structure of Your Business

    Decide which form of ownership is best for you: sole proprietorship, partnership, Limited Liability Company (LLC), corporation, S corporation, nonprofit or cooperative.


    Step 6: Register a Business Name ('Doing Business As')

    Register your business name with your state government.


    Step 7: Get a Tax Identification Number

    Learn which tax identification number you'll need to obtain from the IRS and your state revenue agency.


    Step 8: Register for State and Local Taxes

    Register with your state to obtain a tax identification number, workers' compensation, unemployment and disability insurance.


    Step 9: Obtain Business Licenses and Permits

    Get a list of federal, state and local licenses and permits required for your business.


    Step 10: Understand Employer Responsibilities

    Learn the legal steps you need to take to hire employees and obtain all forms needed when hiring.