Starting a Business in London? Here’s What You Need to Know

For any new innovator and entrepreneur, starting a new business venture is both an adrenaline adventure and scary challenge. Most new businesses will fail at the first hurdle, usually within the first year or two. A staggering 58% of businesses started in 2013 were gone by 2018, with fewer than half of UK start-ups not making it past the first 5 years. If you have any chance of beating these odds, then you need to form your business in the right way.

Being based in London, you will need a plan from the get go. We have gathered together some wise words of advice when forming your London start-up. Here, you will find out what is considered the essential ingredients of success to be for any new start-up who launch in the nations capital.

Form a Solid Business Plan

Before you even think of a company name or design your little logo’s, you must have a solid business plan to work from. Do not fall into the trap of assuming that you can just set off and wing it then work things out as you go; it is a definite recipe for disaster. Have a plan in place before you start, you’ll be smooth sailing from then on out.

When you start to draft up your business plan, it shouldn’t be complicated at all. One thing you have to remember, the plan isn’t set in stone, you can always update it later on if you want or nee to. Infact, treat changing your plan as a good thing, it’s a necessity to update it depending on the evolving circumstances surrounding your business. It should outline the specifics such as important milestones and financial goals as well as when you are expecting to achieve them. If you’re lucky enough to, you can achieve these goals ahead of schedule, allowing you to update your plan to aim for something slightly more ambitious, not anything to spectacular where you end up over-estimating yourself. But similarly, if you fail to hit these targets then you can recalculate them into something more realistic.

Scope Out the Right Location

Choosing the right office space for your business is tricky, but essential, so take your time. Not only do you need to look for somewhere that is suited to your business in a practical sense but you also want somewhere that you customers can access easily. The first thing you need to do when choosing your property is to make a list of essential requirements, this will be the price of the office space, the exact amount of desk space you want, the layout, location, building and any other feature that you require for your business property.

You have got to remember to factor in your long-term plans and your expectations for growth. Before you commit to a contract for a property, you should know whether you are committing to it in the short-term and the long-term. After starting up, don’t feel like you are doing something bad if you feel like packing up and moving out to somewhere bigger and better later on.

Oxford Street Marylebone

One more big decision you must make is whether you are going to buy or rent. If you rent a business premises, then you won’t have to invest quite as much money upfront, but you will have to make regular rent payments. Remember that rents can change as well, even if you think you’re getting a good deal now, you might find yourself paying more in the future.

Knowledge Equals Prepared

London is a bustling city with a never ending and vibrant history, something that businesses in the city should be taking advantage of. If you go to London today, you will see many multinational companies operating on the main thoroughfares but will also see smaller businesses operating throughout London. If you have picked the right property for you and your business, it would be wise to know a little bit of history about it to really get to grips with what you’re going to be working in. You might be surprised by what you find, but it is also possible to incorporate some of that history directly into your business.

When forming your business, it is always a good thing to tap into the history that lies within the surrounding areas, it will always instantly win you friends among the locals and can make your business way more appealing to them. However, if you neglect the history and disregard it for what it is, you may find you and your business butting heads with people you may want to have on your side. Finally, if you require any assistance on improving or rebuilding the property, it will be essential that you do so with respect for the local area.

Smart Marketing

One of the biggest aspects that poses a big hurdle for many businesses is kickstarting a proper marketing strategy. Any new business is going to be vulnerable during its earliest days. During this time, making the wrong moves can have a catastrophic impact on your business. When you end up just throwing money at ill-conceived marketing campaigns, the business will not start off on the foot you wanted to it.

You don’t need to spend your last pennies on a brute force marketing strategy, just try to think of a smarter and more efficient way of progressing your business. As an example, if you take a data-driven approach, you will be able to massively increase the effectiveness of the campaigns you’re creating. For any startup businesses, being able to gather the necessary statistics to propel the strategy can pose a hurdle. However, you don’t need to have access to huge databases in order to initiate a driven campaign.

Market research has been an important principle in business since long before we put data at the heart of everything and it is still an important undertaking today. Even a basic level of market research can give you exactly the kind of data you need to inform the direction of your initial marketing campaign.

Wisely Choose Your Name

Don’t underestimate how important your business name will be in your chosen industry, it will determine your initial success and, in the future, too. No matter how good your name is, it will stick with your audience forever and can be used as a useful marketing tool.

A good business name isn’t just memorable, but more than that. There are 3 essential components that any good business name needs to have. It will have to be pronounceable, able to roll of the tongue and be enjoyable to look at. Part of this will then come down to marketing, branding and presentation. But, even when you strip away all the fonts, graphics and have it down to its bare bones, the name should be able to stand on its own two feet. If it can’t do this and is only memorable with fancy edits and images, it will not stick in your customers minds. A forgettable name is not much use to you.

Don’t Rush a Logo

Alongside your business name, your company logo will also be an important factor in determining your success. No matter where your business is located, there is always some history that you can raw inspiration from when designing your logo. The priority and focus point of the logo should be how the name is presented to your audience, but some deeper meaning is also worth adding in, too.

A good logo is definitely remembered, but it should also communicate a particular aspect about your business. For a startup business, it is a good idea to pick a logo that conveys what your business does and the type of market you’re in. Just don’t over complicate it too much just yet, have something simple to entice your audience. Forming all of these points into one little static image isn’t going to be easy, but that’s what makes it fun!

Forming a business in London is never going to be a simple and straight-forward process, with many challenges along the way. However, with these unique challenges, comes unique opportunities. Businesses that present and play their cards right will find that the nations capital will bring a huge advantage to them and their venture. If you have a solid business plan to work with from the outset, you will find your journey so much easier. Before you start committing financially to your business decisions, make sure to carefully research and consider all your options.

Are you looking for a workspace for you start-up business? Or do you just need some inspiration? London Offices can help, give 020 7166 7981 a call today and we’ll be happy to help.