When starting a small business there are many factors to consider to ensure you get the best possible outcome.
A business plan may be time consuming to create, but it will give you a crystal clear direction on where you are headed and what you expect out of your business, and will also offer your stakeholders confidence in what you are doing.
Firstly you need to do research on your business, look about for any other businesses who offer similar services in your area, this will allow you the knowledge of your competitors, and also give you an idea of the pricing you can charge.
You will also need to advertise, there are many cheaper alternatives such as social media, which can be used to expand your reach. Also be aware of who you need to advertise with to grab the attention of your clients, there is no use advertising in a bridal magazine if your a mechanic.
If you are running your small business from home, also remember what it was like going to work, you need to dress in an appropriate manner, and separate your work space to your home space. Also keep phone calls and interruptions to a minimum, these people are taking their time to come to you to build your business, show them the same respect.
Ensure your environment is also professionally presented, what ever business type you are offering it needs to look like you are taking it serious.
The most important thing in my eyes, is to also be aware of the 'runnings' of your business, make sure you have registered your business and business name with the appropriate people, and also with the tax department in your area. I also like to make sure I keep check of all my quotes, invoices and receipts, this will not only allow smooth sailing, but also be a life saver when it comes to tax time.
And finally enjoy what your doing! Welcome new customers and build a relationship with existing one's, let them feel like your are excited about having them as clients, and will be there to support them if any issues arise.