Being a small business owner is no easy feat, but having a home set that allows you to be productive, work efficiently, and have everything you need on hand can go a long way. Whether you’re in digital marketing, sell your own custom art prints, or sell handmade jewelry, your routine and setup at home should be designed in a way that supports your business, not hindering it.
If you’re just getting your business up and running, it can be difficult to know where to begin, but don’t let that stand in your way of being a self-employed business owner.
It’s true that over time you will be able to better figure out how to conduct business at home like anticipating what you need, what production layout works best for you, and what tech is recommended for businesses in your industry, but we’ve curated a list of 9 tips for running your business at home that will help you get off on the right foot.
Getting Set up for Success
For many people, running a business from home isn’t as simple as sitting down on the couch with a laptop and getting to work. There needs to be strategy and set up, much like you would in a normal work environment. Getting set up for success starts with:
- Following a Schedule: Creating a schedule that you stick to (at least for the most part) is about both holding yourself accountable and helping you maintain a healthy work-life balance. When you create a schedule for yourself, keep in mind what work hours you’re typically most productive, as well as factors of your lifestyle that might impact how long or what hours you can work.
- Creating a Work-Only Space: Setting boundaries with yourself and others is important, and one of the boundaries is a work-only space. This will allow you to have a distraction-free space to work in and allow you physically divide your work and personal time. If you use a lot of equipment or need a place to spread things out, make sure the room you set aside can fit everything you need.
- Prioritizing Comfort: One of the biggest factors that limits productivity is discomfort. When you’re focused on how bad your back, neck, and wrists hurt, it’s hard to stay focused on what you’re doing. To make sure you’re comfortable, invest in an ergonomic setup—this includes your desk height, chair, and more. If running your business requires you to be on your feet for most of the day, get a standing desk and foot pad for support.
Invest in the Right Tech
Running your own business is a challenge, but technology is your friend. By investing in the right equipment, gadgets, and software, you can streamline your workflow and be more productive. For starters, you should consider:
- A Powerful Computer: When it comes to storing data, designing, and working on your computer, you need a lot of processing power. That’s why your home business office should be equipped with a computer tower. You’ll also want to think about other accessories that make working on the computer much more efficient and enjoyable.
- Wireless Headphones: Even if your home office that serves as head of operations is isolated from the rest of the house, it can be difficult to tune out other occupants and remain focused on the task at hand. A pair of high-quality wireless headphones can be invaluable to keeping distractions from interrupting your workday.
- Fast Internet: When it comes to running your business from home, skimping on your internet services is not where you should cut corners. Having high-speed internet that is able to handle your data usage is essential to ensuring that you are able to remain productive, keep all aspects of your business running smoothly, and maintain good customer service.
Other General Tips
These 3 tips are essentials for running a successful home business:
- Do Your Research: Even though your business is based at home, that doesn’t mean you aren’t held to certain standards and regulations. Before you officially start running your business at home, make sure you look into zoning laws, insurance requirements, freelance worker laws, and other factors that may put you at risk of trouble.
- Set a Budget: When you’re working from home you have to contend with the costs of running your business, as well as higher home expenses. For example, it’s likely that your electric bill, grocery shopping, and heating and cooling costs will go up. Setting a budget is important to keep you in the green. You should also make sure to separate the costs of running your business and costs of living.
- Invest in Marketing: Word of mouth from friends, family, and other customers is great for your small business but it might not be enough to achieve the growth you want. That’s why it’s important to invest in marketing, even if you have a limited budget.
Make Your Business Goals a Reality
As you can see, there is a lot that goes into making a home-run business successful, but there are also plenty of resources available to help you along the way.
Following these tips is a good place to start, but before you get started, research your industry and find out what special considerations you should make, which tech solutions you need, and what organizations or support exists for your niche.
Creating a sound foundation by following best practices now, will pay off in the long run