How to Develop a Successful Business Idea

IL business attorney, Illinois business lawyerMost of us, at some point or another, have had those fleeting thoughts about a product or service that could serve as the foundation for a new business. On the other hand, maybe you have watched another company offer goods and services while knowing that you could do it better. So how does one go from the “idea” phase to the “action” phase of starting the actual business based on the idea? There are, of course, many steps, but the first important one is to determine whether or not the idea is truly marketable.

What Is Your Idea?

Not every business idea is going to grow into the next Microsoft or Google, and that is okay. A successful service or product is not necessarily going to break records or reshape the world as we know it. In order to be profitable, your idea simply needs to solve some type of problem for those you intend to reach.

With that in mind, you need to think about what your idea actually is. Is it a physical item that you intend to manufacture and sell? Is it an improvement on an existing product? Or perhaps, it is a service that you expect to provide for your clients in exchange for payment. No matter what you have in mind, a clear understanding of the idea is critical.

Learn as Much as You Can

Before you launch your business, you will need to research the viability of your idea and how it might fit into the current economic landscape. For some people, industry reports and formal market research studies are appropriate, but it is important to look at more than numbers. You should also talk extensively with friends, family members, and trusted business associates regarding your idea. Be sure to look beyond the friendly and supportive comments and to hear what they are saying about whether they would spend money on your idea. If you want a forum with fewer personal entanglements, there are thousands of message boards and other resources available online where entrepreneurs from all over the world discuss ideas and share their perspectives.

Keep Yourself Organized

By its very nature, an idea is nebulous, and even if you have jotted down a few notes, there are many factors that you will need to consider as you take your idea from a concept to a business plan. As early as you can in the planning process, starting writing things down. Make a list of potential advantages and disadvantages, and keep track of any challenges or opportunities that arise along the way. These records will serve as the basis of your business plan, even if you need to put the idea on hold for a time and you decide to come back to it later.

Work With a Wheaton Business Lawyer

If you have a possible idea for a new business, it is never too early to speak with an experienced DuPage County business law attorney from Stock, Carlson & Duff LLC. Our team will provide the guidance you need and help you build your new venture from the ground up. Call 630-665-2500 for a confidential consultation today.

 

Sources:

http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/225513

https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesbusinesscouncil/2019/10/30/nine-ways-to-figure-out-if-you-have-a-winning-business-idea/

What Permits and Licenses Do I Need to Start a Business in Illinois?

IL business attorney, Illinois business lawyer, starting a business in ILWhen you decide to start a business, you will experience many challenges and important decisions early on, from securing funding, to attracting clients, to determining the type of business entity you should establish. As you go through the process, you should be sure not to overlook the importance of obtaining the permits and licenses your business will need to operate in compliance with the laws and regulations for your area. A business law attorney can help you identify the permits and licenses you will need and guide you through the process of getting them.

Common Business Permits and Licenses

Different permits and licenses are necessary depending on your business’s location, industry, and the products or services you provide. There are likely others that your business will need to pursue, but some of the most common examples include:

  • Building permits: When deciding on a location for your business, you may need to obtain a building permit for the new construction of a building or addition or the remodeling of an existing space. Specific building permit requirements can vary from county to county, but in general, you will need to ensure that your space meets health and safety requirements and that your type of business is acceptable for the location’s zoning requirements.
  • Sales tax permits: If your business will sell tangible products or certain kinds of services in Illinois, you will need to register through the Illinois Department of Revenue to obtain a sales tax permit. Your registration must include any location from which you will sell, and if you expect to have significant sales outside of Illinois, you may need to apply for a permit in other states as well.
  • Liquor licenses: If your business will sell, produce, or distribute alcoholic beverages, you will likely need to obtain liquor licenses with multiple entities. Alcohol sellers, such as restaurants, bars, and liquor stores, will need a local license for the municipality in which they are located, and alcohol producers and distributors will need a federal permit from the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau. All alcohol businesses in Illinois will also need to obtain a state license through the Illinois Liquor Control Commission.

Contact a DuPage County Business Law Attorney

If you know that your new business will need any of these permits or licenses, or if you need help understanding and obtaining any additional licenses, The Illinois Law Office of Stock, Carlson & Duff LLC can assist you. We are committed to helping Illinois entrepreneurs achieve their business goals while maintaining appropriate legal standards. Contact a Wheaton business law attorney today at 630-665-2500.

 

Sources:

https://www2.illinois.gov/business/registration-licenses-permits#k=#s=49

https://www.dupageco.org/building/

https://www2.illinois.gov/rev/research/publications/pubs/Documents/pub-113.pdf

https://www2.illinois.gov/services/ILCC/Liquor%20License%20Forms%20and%20Applications

Should I Franchise My Illinois Business?

Illinois business lawyer, IL business attorneyIf your business is growing more and more successful by the day, you may be thinking about franchising. The benefits of franchising your business can be enormous, but franchising before you are ready can be disastrous. It can be hard to know whether now is the right time to expand your business. As with any business-related decision, the decision to franchise should not be taken lightly. You will need to take an honest look at your business’s strengths and weaknesses as well as your own ambitions and personal goals before you can know whether franchising is right for you.

Is Your Business Replicable?

Franchising can be a great way to expand your company without needing a large capital investment. However, not just any business is able to be successfully franchised. Is your business unique enough to be marketable?  Do you have a sustainable competitive advantage? Even more importantly, how replicable is your business? If the success your business has enjoyed so far is the result of a smart business model and unique, in-demand products and services, you may be able to replicate this success in a second location. However, if the business’s success is the result of its current location or your own dedication to 15-hour workdays, you may not be able to duplicate the success in a franchise location. Keep in mind, a franchise location must be lucrative enough to pay royalties and still leave the franchisee with a decent profit.

How Involved Are You in Day-to-Day Operations?

Another key question to ask yourself when considering franchising is what you want your own role to be in your business. If you are the type of business owner who likes to personally open and close shop every day, how willing are you to take a step back from daily operations in favor of a management position? Being a franchisor will involve a great deal of time and energy. There may simply not be enough time in the day for you to continue having a high level of day-to-day involvement in the original location while also managing franchise locations. On the other hand, if you have a staff with the leadership skills and business knowhow to run things in your absence, you may have the freedom to take on the responsibilities of being a franchisor.

Contact an Illinois Business Lawyer

At Stock, Carlson & Duff LLC, each of our skilled Wheaton business law attorneys have more than 40 years of legal experience. Whether you need help with franchising your business, buying or selling a business, creating an effective employee contract, or other business law needs, we will provide legal guidance you can depend upon. Call our office today at 630-665-2500 today and schedule a confidential consultation to learn how we can assist you.

Sources:

https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/71886
https://www.forbes.com/sites/stevenbeagelman/2019/03/28/how-and-when-to-franchise-your-business/