November 2007
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Day November 1, 2007

New Small Business Idea: Be A Niche Authority

This is a fun, flexible way to stay involved and great for any CV should you ever want to go back to work for someone else - although I doubt that very much.Long before you make it into the top 100 blogs of just about anything, you will find people willing to pay you money for ads, white papers, speaking at events, invite you to product launches, etc. - you will be an authority in your field, it's just a question of time and passion.You do not necessarily have to be that good at writing itself (look at me!), use a spell-checker - but be passionate about your topic and people will read your blog and respond. It is the a great feeling to communicate with your readers world-wide.One final point, blogs are being sold like hot-cakes for serious amounts of money these days, do not under estimate the selling potential of a venture like this!So just one question then - what are you an Authority in - tell me, I will read it?

New Small Business Idea: Local Fast Food Portal

Just start out with a simple service and then develop your business further.For example, you could start a simple website and put fast food restaurants and their complete menu online, to generate online orders for them, some places do it themselves, most small ones don't.Charge for the privilege a fixed fee per month and then advertise your site locally: talk to the local newspaper, they are always looking for stories,drop leaflets in neighborhoods,blog about it on the internet with a strong local focus.Then see where the road leads you, here are two ideas: you could develop your online portal more for other services and become portal for events, jobs, accountants and so on;you could deliver the fast food for restaurants who do take away, but do not deliver.I guess you can see what I'm driving at. One other benefit here is you can start this on the side, while you still keep your job, until you can afford to do this full time.Remember to plan your venture from day one, start making money first, bootstrap and enjoy the ride.

Q & A: What questions should I ask my accountant before I start my business?

Choosing an accountant/CPA is probably one of the most important decisions to get right, because you are unlikely to have an accountant's grasp of taxationcompany lawdealing with the tax authoritieswide range of knowledge about small business.You need to make sure you find an accountant/CPA who concentrates on small business and start-up business, like SOHO-, SME, SMB-, Micro-, Lifestyle-, Home-, DIY-, Hobby-, Boomer- or Personal business, like professional, contractors, freelancer, self-employed, sole-trader and virtual assistants before you make any appointments.Another aspect is size, make sure you are not "one among millions" sort of speak, smaller accountants practices are often more in tune with your small business needs, because they are a small business too.Here are some questions I would be asking when starting out with a new business venture: Should I start my business as a sole-trader, partnership or limited liability company?Can you help me to find and raise finance? (Read about bootstrapping first!)Will you help me with setting up my cash-flow forecast?When do I need to register for VAT (UK), GST (Australia) or when do I need to charge sales tax (US)?Am I ready to start trading, or should I wait?Do I need to choose my financial year and trading year end date?Are you going to do my bookkeeping and accounting work?Will you work online with me, so we both can be up-to-date with my business progress?Will you deal with my employment issues, pensions, annuities and insurances for me?Will you help me to understand more and more of these issues myself, and will you be available for advice if and when I need it?There are many more issues to consider and they depend on your business, that is where your accountant will help you too.

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