Starting a new business

Starting a business is easier than you think. Use these 12 easy steps to jump-start the process of launching your company.

Planning for every aspect of your business and having expert resources available is key to success. This guide will show you the steps to follow and the resources at your disposal.

Step 1: Plan ahead before going into business

Is the timing right for starting your business? Complete our simple, five-minute questionnaire to find out if you're on the right track. -From the Small Business Development Center (MSBDC)

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Step 2: Write a Business Plan

Every great business begins with a plan. And while that plan will evolve over time, this initial document will serve as your guide over the next 3-5 years. Click to view a collection of short articles on creating your own business plan. -From the U.S. Small Business Association (SBA)

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Step 3: Get Training and Counseling

Starting a business can be tough, especially if it's your first time. Let us help you and your business succeed through training, counseling, and other assistance - all geared towards business owners. 

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Step 4: Choose a Location

Whether you're new to Massachusetts or simply researching new locations and opportunities for your business, this section will help you gather the data and statistics you need.

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Step 5: Research & Obtain Financing

Here you'll find resources and information on a wide range of funding and financing options available to Massachusetts businesses. 

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Step 6: Choose a Business Structure

Sole proprietor? Corporation? LLC? One of your first business decisions is deciding how to structure your company. Go here for a clear explanation of your options. 

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Step 7: File for a "Doing-Business-As" Certificate

A "Doing-Business-As" Certificate (DBA) is a quick and simple way to set up your business through your town or city clerk's office. Click here to see if it's right for you and for simple instructions on how to file. 

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Step 8: Register Your Business with the State

Corporations, LLCs and other business entities need to register with the Secretary of the Commonwealth before beginning business in Massachusetts. Annual updates are usually required as well. Click here to begin and/or update your filings. 

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Step 9: Obtain an Federal Employer Tax ID (EIN)

Prior to registering your business with the state, you'll need an "Employer Identification Number," issued by the IRS. Obtaining one is free, and can be applied for easily online. 

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Step 10: Become Familiar with Tax Rules & Regulations

Understanding and managing taxes is an important part of running a successful business. In this section you'll find all you need to know on this vital topic. 

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Step 11: Obtain Business Licenses & Permits

Successful businesses stay current and complete through federal, state and local rules and regulations. Use this section to make sure you're up to speed and up to date.

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Step 12: Understand Employer Regulations & Responsibilities

Here you'll find information and resources related to the hiring, training and managing of employees in your business. 

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