Starting an Internet Business the Right Way Gives You a Foundation

There are vital administrative and legal decisions you face when starting an Internet business.

As you begin your venture, it’s easy to find yourself chomping at the bit to get going quickly. However, your small business start up requires legitimacy and a firm foundation first. This is especially true if you want to protect your assets with an LLC or a corporation, if you will seek funding, or if you want to open an online store and find a drop shipper.

Considerations include:

  • What kind of business legal structure is best for your situation? And where do you find online legal documents?
  • How do you go about naming your business?
  • What objectives, strategies and projects will you include in your Internet business plan?
  • How will you track your revenue and expenses for year-end reporting? And where will you do your banking?
One of your first decisions will be the legal structure of your venture. When starting an Internet business, a good place to begin is with online legal documents as well as naming your business. Whichever legal structure you choose, it can affect your decision when you name your business.

Writing an Internet business plan in the form of a one page business plan is a critical exercise for you as an Internet entrepreneur, because it keeps you laser focused on only important activities or building blocks that matter the most to your success. Just the act of writing this plan tests flawed assumptions, and helps you avoid losing real money. (Isn't it better to do it on paper?)Why one page? Because it only includes topics or exercises that matter the most to a start up, and doesn’t waste your time on a writing exercise that is more than what you need at this point.

Accounting is another consideration when starting an Internet business. It is important to keep all of your business records separate from your personal records, and choosing a software program geared to a small business startup will help you accomplish this. In the U.S. the IRS can deny business expenses that are paid through your personal account. And for the same reason, you’ll want to get separate business credit cards. If you choose to keep your own records, QuickBooks and Peachtree are two software programs designed for tracking business revenue and expenses.

During tax season, if you have a sole proprietorship, you will file your business transactions on Schedule C along with your 1040. To get an idea of the information you will need for reporting taxes, you can download it in advance from IRS. This will help you get your small business startup off on the right foot. If you form a partnership or S-Corporation, you will need to file Schedule E, Form K-1, and you can find this form also at the IRS.

While we have touched on many important aspects of starting a new business, there is more to learn. Karen Wardle, an experienced entrepreneur, is someone who understands the importance of getting the foundation right. Her site contains everything you need related to how to start small business. It is rich with in-depth information and filled with good tips and resources if you are in an early stage of business building.

When it’s time to open a checking account, you‘ll want a bank that understands the needs of your small business. While all financial institutions are regulated, they are not all the same. Some banks have chosen small business as their niche. They will be better at understanding your needs when starting an Internet business, and are interested in helping you achieve your dreams. One way to find this bank is to join a local small business association or Chamber of Commerce and ask for a recommendation.
Joining a local Chamber or small business association is one of the best things you can do for yourself! While starting an Internet business is fun and rewarding, you can’t do it in a vacuum. There are times you will feel isolated. There are times you will have questions, and many of these organizations offer workshops that help you fill in these gaps in your knowledge. They also help you connect with others and to make sure your small business startup succeeds. They are there for you!

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