Books to Finance Your Business
Your Guide to Starting & Self-Financing
Your Own Business in Canada
Revised 2016- 2017 Edition
By: Iain Williamson
Published Aug. 2016
ABOUT THIS BOOK
THIS REVISED AND COMPLETELY UPDATED BOOK shows you how to start and self-finance your own business in the digital age. Technology has made starting your business much easier than was the case a mere 30 years ago. Social media has made it much easier for your start-up to inexpensively compete with huge corporations.
What does it take to go out on your own and where can you find ideas to start your business? You could manufacture your own products or sell other peoples’ products. Alternatively, you could offer a service. But first, you have to find out if you can sell your products or services and if there is a market for them. Find out where to obtain the latest marketing information and how to establish your marketing strategy. This 2016/2017 Edition has been updated and revised to reflect the many changes that have taken place in the sources of marketing and statistical information.
It covers the registration and legal form you can choose for your business. It also points out how the Government will tax it. It will help you set your objectives. Consider the advantages of operating out of your home and be cautious of leasing commercial premises.
Computer hardware and software can help you run your business more efficiently and save time and money. Accounting software will help you deal with your financials and taxes. Customer Relationship Management software will help to grow your business by helping you to communicate with your customers more effectively. Learn how to create your own website and how to sell your products online; through eBay, CraigsList, Etsy, as an Amazon Merchant or through the electronic classifieds.
Find out how much money you really need to get started. Can your business bootstrap itself once it is up and running? Take a look at how crowdfunding could help you. Learn about cash management and cost control. Find out what to do if your business runs into financial trouble.
Author, Iain Williamson, is an entrepreneur, business consultant and seminar leader. His views have appeared in many newspaper articles. He has also been the guest speaker on a CBC Radio phone-in show on starting a business in a recession. In addition, he has appeared on television shows such as: CBC TV's Venture; TVO's MoneysWorth, and Canada Tonight of BCTV and CHCH Television.
Iain spent five years as a financial analyst and knows what makes business tick. For fourteen years he operated his own businesses in importing, high technology and manufacturing. He is now a small business consultant and also owns a book publishing business. He writes from his personal experience in the trenches, as an entrepreneur and consultant, and shares these insights with you. He holds degrees from the Universities of St. Andrew's in Scotland and Oxford.
His book should be at the top of your must read list if you want to start and self-finance your new business and compete in the digital age.
Your Guide to Starting & Self-Financing Your Own Business in Canada: 2016-2017 Edition; by Iain Williamson; 322 pages; softcover; ISBN 978-1-55270-743-2; ISSN 1191-0518; published in Aug. 2016; Canadian $64.95.
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CHAPTER 1 - Join the Entrepreneurial Revolution!
The State of Entrepreneurship in Canada
What do we mean by a "Small Business"
Small Business as a Creator of Jobs
The "Independent Contractor"
What is an Entrepreneur, Anyway?
What is the Canadian Government’s Part?
Why do People Become Entrepreneurs?
CHAPTER 2 - Have You Got What it Takes to Become an Entrepreneur?
What it Takes to Become an Entrepreneur
No Regular Pay Cheque if You Run Your Own Business
Determination and Enthusiasm are the Hallmarks of Successful Entrepreneurs
A Close Regard for Detail
You Need to Be Prepared to Learn New Skills
Be Prepared to Learn from Your Mistakes
Accept Criticism Gracefully
Are You a Risk Taker?
Small Business Failure Rates
CHAPTER 3 - Where to Find Ideas to Start Your Business
Narrow Down the Search
An Example of a Search
What do People Want?
Print-on-Paper Trade Magazines and e-Magazines
Visit Manufacturers’ Websites to Get Ideas
Visit Retail Stores and the Websites of Retail Stores to Get Ideas
Foreign Trade Commissioners
Buy on eBay Wholesale and Sell Individually
Store Your Ideas
Negotiating Prices for Resale Items
Selling on a Consignment Basis
Make Sure Manufacturers Can Back You Up
Be Aware that Some Business Activities are Regulated
Pay Attention to Disruptive Technologies!
Just Look Around You!
CHAPTER 4 - What’s Involved in Developing a New Product on Your Own?
Make Your Own Products
How Do You Protect Your Invention?
How Can Patents Protect You?
Patents in Plain Speak
Patents in Canada
What Is a PCT Application?
Copyright in Canada
"Fair Use" and "Fair Dealing"
The Significance of Patent or Copyright Protection
Create a Working Prototype
CHAPTER 5 - What’s Involved in Selling an Existing Product?
Set Yourself Up as a Manufacturer of an Existing Product
Sell a Domestically Produced Product
Sell Imported Products
Post, UPS, FedEx, DHL
Do-it-Yourself Customs Clearance
Paying for Imported Goods
Cash in Advance (CIA)
Cash on Delivery (COD)
How a Letter of Credit Works
Irrevocable Letter of Credit
Financing with Bankers Acceptances
A Word of Warning on Letters of Credit
Documents on Payment
Documents on Acceptance
CHAPTER 6 - What’s Involved in Starting a Service Business?
Services Can Cover a Wide Spectrum
Selling Real Estate
Bricks-and-Mortar Retail Stores
Computer Repairs, Installation, Web Design
Digital Photography and Film Making
Book and Magazine Publishing
There’s More and More
CHAPTER 7 - Is There a Market for Your Product or Service?
The World's Best Mousetrap
"Gut Feel" Marketing
The Importance of a Market Survey
The Challenge of Market Surveys for New Technology
How to Conduct Your Market Survey
What Should Your Marketing Survey Tell You?
CHAPTER 8 - Sources of Marketing and Statistical Information
The Importance of Statistical Marketing Information
Statistics Canada (StatsCan)
U.S. Census Bureau
UK Office for National Statistics (ONS)
Eurostat Yearbook 2016
CHAPTER 9 - Develop Your Marketing Strategy
Get to Know Your Competition!
Your Marketing Strategy
Methods of Distribution
Packaging and Merchandising
Advertising and Lead Generation
Your Marketing Plan
CHAPTER 10 - Legal Form of Your Business and the Government Wants to Tax It
Choose a Great Name!
The Legal Structure of Your Business is Important
Limited Liability Partnerships
Tax Aspects of Limited Partnerships
Joint Venture (or Undeclared Partnership)
Federally Incorporated Company
The Importance of Structure if You Are Seeking Financing
Obtain Your Business Number (BN)
Corporate Income Tax
Small Business Income Tax Rates
Logo, Business Cards, Letterhead, Legal Documentation, etc.
CHAPTER 11 - Set Your Objectives
Where Do You Go Now?
Setting Your Strategic Objectives
Are Your Strategic Objectives Realistic?
The Peril of Too Many Objectives
Monitoring and Altering Your Strategic Objectives
CHAPTER 12 - Operate Your Business From Home or From Commercial Space
Home-based Businesses are a Popular Idea
Home-Based Businesses are Survivors
How Legal is it to Work Out of Your Home or Apartment?
Save on Commuting Time
Bricks-and-Mortar Retail Space
Watch Out for the Lease Renewal Trap
Locating in a Mall
Find Yourself a Good Lawyer
CHAPTER 13 - Choose the Right Computer to Run Your Business
What to Do Before You Choose the Computer Hardware for Your Business
Find Out the System Requirements for the Software You Wish to Purchase
The Central Processing Unit (CPU)
Random Access Memory (RAM)
Cards and Other Boards
The Data Storage Devices
Hard Disk Drives (HDDs)
Removable Hard Drives
Flash Memory Cards
Desktop, Laptop, Netbook or Tablet?
Communicating with Your Computer
Mice, Trackballs and Graphic Tablets
Optical Character Recognition (OCR) Software
Be Alert to the Cost of Colour Toner Cartridges!
All-in-One Printer-Scanner-Fax Machine
Surge Protection and Power Backup
New or Used?
CHAPTER 14 - Computer Software to Help You Run Your Business More Efficiently
Run Your Business More Efficiently
What is an Operating System?
The Various Flavours of Windows
Adobe Creative Cloud
Business Planning Software
Clip Art and Click Art
Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP)
Save Money by Staying Behind the Technology Curve!
The Perils of Obsolescence
Total Cost of Ownership
CHAPTER 15 - Canadian Accounting and Tax Software
A Review of Accounting Software
MyInvoices & Estimates Deluxe
Sage 50 Premium Accounting
Sage 50 Pro Accounting
Sage BusinessVision Accounting
CHAPTER 16 - Use Customer Relationship Management to Stay in Touch with Customers and Prospects
Why "CRM"is so Important
Maximizer CRM 2016
Microsoft Dynamics CRM
The Role of Video Conferencing in CRM
Keep Track of Your Mailing Lists and Orders Received
CHAPTER 17 - How to Create Your Own Business Website
The World is Your Oyster
Register Your Domain Name
It’s Easy to Create Your Own Website
Web Design Software
Include Links to Your Social Media Sites
CHAPTER 18 - How to Sell Your Products Online
What is E-Commerce?
Your Shopping Cart
Your Methods of Receiving Payment
Offer Alternative Ways for Your Customers to Order and Pay
Security of Transaction
Main Types of E-Commerce Software
Stand-alone E-commerce Software
Other Shopping Cart Software Programs
CHAPTER 19 - Sell Through Others: Kagi, Amazon, eBay, Craigslist, Etsy, Kijiji
Hosted E-commerce Solutions
Become an Amazon Merchant!
eBay: The World’s Largest Auction
Types of eBay Auctions
Second Chance Offer
Open an eBay Store
Requirements to Open a Store
Naming Your Store
Building Your Store
Keep Track of How Your Store is Doing
Where to Learn More About eBay Auctions and eBay Stores
CHAPTER 20 - Use Social Media to Grow Your Business
The Huge Surge in the Use of Social Media
How Can You Use Social Media in Your Business?
Caveat: Social Media is "Social" not "Business Media"
Social Media as the Great Equalizer
Watch Out on Paid Advertising
Don’t Treat All Social Media as the Same
Is Social Media Worth The Time?
The Big Shift to Mobile
Don’t Forget to Analyse Your Results
Your Social Media Plan
CHAPTER 21 - Identify Your Financial Requirements
What’s Your Start-up Going to Cost?
Use Cash Flow Projections to Calculate Your Needs
Will Your Cash Flow be Adequate?
Can Your Business Finance Itself?
The Importance of Knowing What You Need
Observations on Start-up Capital Needs
How Long Will it Take to Arrange Financing?
Costs to Raise External Financing
Is There a Contingency Plan?
CHAPTER 22 - Your Financing Challenge
The Challenge of Self-Financing
Challenges of the Search
Changing Requirements During Growth
Understatement of the Need
The Need for Growth Capital
CHAPTER 23 - Can You Bootstrap from the Get-go to Provide Enough Financing?
How Far Can You Go it Alone?
You’re Not Alone!
How Much Money Does it Take to Start?
Can You Supply You Own Capital?
Some Preliminary Considerations
The Personal Financial Statement
What is Bootstrap Financing?
A Question of Comparative Risk
Your Pricing Strategies
Can Licensing Reduce Cash Outlays?
CHAPTER 24 - Credit Cards, Love Money and Crowdfunding
Financing While Working Elsewhere
What is Crowdfunding?
Crowdfunding by "Micro-Angels"
The Basic Concept Behind the Rewards Model or Perks-Based Crowdfunding
A KickIn Crowd
Going Beyond the Start-up Stage
CHAPTER 25 - Lines of Credit and Some of the"Barriers" You May Face
What is a Line of Credit?
CHAPTER 26 - How to Manage Your Cash and Inventory
Cash Management 101
Collecting Monies Due
Set up a System to Control Your Receivables
Inventory Management for Retailers
CHAPTER 27 Make Sure You Control Your Costs
The Importance of Cost Control
Your Energy Costs
Your Transportation Costs
Your Travel Costs
Your Communication Costs
Your Advertising Costs
Theft and Shrinkage
Your Rental Space Costs
CHAPTER 28 - Self-financing If Your Business Gets into Difficulty
Small Business Failure Rates
If Your Business Gets into Difficulty
Reduce Your Cash Outlays to a Minimum
Layoff Your Staff
Reduce Your Space Requirements
Reduce Your Scale of Operations
Eliminate all Unnecessary Expenses
Stretch Your Accounts Payable
Speed up Your Accounts Receivable
Liquidate Your Inventory
Sell Your Assets
Consider Sale-Leaseback Arrangements
Convert Demand Loans Into Term Debt
Try to Convert Debt to Equity
Arrangements with Your Suppliers
Informal Proposal to Creditors
Changes to the Bankruptcy Act
In the End
CHAPTER 29 - Plan Your Business and Locate Outside Financing If You Need It
You Have to Prepare Yourself
Ways to Raise Venture Capital
Ways to Raise Debt Financing for Your Business
Ways to Finance Your Business By Giving Up Some of Your Ownership
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