Checklist: How to Start a Business with No Money

Checklist: How to Start a Business with No Money

You having a great idea and you want to translate it into opening a business. There is one big caveat, you are short on cash. And for most aspiring entrepreneurs, getting hold of the much-needed capital is usually the biggest challenge.

So how to start your own business without any money?

Lack of funds, should not deter you from pursuing your entrepreneurial dreams. With confidence in your idea and a clear vision of how you are going to execute it, you can do it. Once you have that covered, getting the funds to support your dream may not be as difficult as it seems.

Opening a Business

There are tens of millions of small business in the US alone, and starting a new business to compete in this segment will require hard work and dedication. If you know how to run a business and you have taken the right steps to starting a business, money shouldn’t stop you.

Start a Business With No Money Checklist

Keep Your Present Job

Being practical is extremely important when you are toying with the idea of starting a business. You need a steady source of income before you can set up your business, so it’s advisable to hold onto your current job. By retaining your present job, you will be more secure when you need to take risks.

You will, of course, need to spend extra hours and work harder. But the transition from being an employee to a business owner will be far smoother as you won’t have additional expenses to worry about.

Work on Your Business Idea

Coming up with a great business idea is just the beginning of your journey as an entrepreneur. There are many more steps that you need to take before you can get started. Fleshing out your business idea is one of them, and it’s very critical to the success of your venture.

Is your business idea really unique? What value will it generate? Is it something your target audience really wants? Or is it something you think they’d want? Getting answers to these questions is important to determine whether or not your idea works.

Analyze Your Market and Challenges

You have a brilliant idea that you know will definitely work, but what about your competition? Will it be difficult for a rival to copy your idea and repackage it in a better way? A potential investor will ask you this when you approach them for funding. It’s very important to understand the market you operate in and your competition.

You should first look at the trends and identify challenges that your business may face. The next step is to understand how you are going to address those challenges to stay profitable.

Assess Your Capital Needs

You require money to start your business, but how much do you really need? Without a clear idea you run the risk of coming up with an unrealistic valuation of your business, which will put off investors and get your loan application rejected.

So before you start wondering how you should raise money, you should focus on evaluating your funding requirements. How much do you need to get started? How exactly are you going to use the funds?

Explore Crowdfunding Platforms

Crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter have changed the way entrepreneurs are raising money to fund their new businesses. Whether you want to sell a new software tool or set up an organic noodle bar, you can get people to invest in your business.

Network with People

When you don’t have money to start your business, it’s essential you find the right people who can help. You may attend events and trade shows where you can find potential investors. You may also join various online forums on social networking sites where you can find useful tips and resources to bring your business to life.

Most venture capitalists and investors are quite active on social media, so if you can wow them with your idea you may find a great way to get started on your business dream.

Run a Trial

Want to be sure if your business idea is indeed unique? Run a test and find out. A pilot will give you the confidence you need to take your idea to the next level and mitigate risk. You can start on a small scale by giving away some freebies to a few people in your target audience group to see how they respond.

A small trial can give you some new insights to grow your business and identify challenges that you might have overlooked.

Gather Feedback

If you are planning to get into a completely new business, it would really help if you got a second opinion from someone who knows the market and the challenges involved.

A business idea that looks good on paper may not be that attractive when you actually get into it. An expert’s opinion may help you look at things from a different perspective and gain more knowledge that you may lack.

Secure a Small Business Loan if Necessary

There are several loan programs aimed at helping first-time entrepreneurs set up their business. The Small Business Administration (SBA) operates the loan programs offered by the U.S. government. To qualify for the loan, your business must meet some criteria such as your business must operate in the United States, your business must qualify as a small business according to SBA guidelines, you must operate for profit and you should have a good credit score.

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Shubhomita Bose Shubhomita Bose is a Staff Writer for Small Business Trends. She covers key studies and surveys about the small business market, along with general small business news. She draws on 8 years of experience in copywriting, marketing and communications, having worked extensively on creating content for small and medium sized enterprises.

29 Reactions
  1. Back in the day, this is not even possible. It is amazing how technology can turn things around. It is now possible to produce money without any money at all.

    • Hey sisters I appreciate about that.l need you to help me to succeed like you please.l have a business idea

  2. I will download the checklist. I will come back with ideas on how to start a hobby business with no money, including a crowdfunding campaign.

  3. It is quite amazing how one can start a business these days with little or no fund. Just a lot of passion and the right idea all thanks to technology

  4. If it does not exist, create it. If you have an idea-ideas or skills, think of how to use your ideas or skills to create a business and to put it out there to see what it can attract and what you can create. Many successful businesses started with an idea and that idea has become a success “from one person business to global corporations”. Failure is an attempt at success, if you don’t give up and modify each attempt, then each attempt can become a success.

  5. what is a procedure of starting a business without investing money

  6. Amir Najam Sethit

    It’s possible; This is Possible if your goal is firm. These Strategies are beneficial and efficient. Thank you for sharing this article.

  7. I am trying to start a business on the Arise platform. I am a customer service guru…..funny but true.
    I need funds for state filing and office equipment. I am also a paraplegic so my mobility is very limited but a home-based business would be ideal for me. Does anyone have any specific suggestions for me to raise funds for this. I need about $3500.
    Thank you!

  8. Looking for a mentor please to offer mentorship on how to grow business wise n how to start one… As an aspiring entrepreneur

  9. am very much inspired with these grt shares of wisdom about starting a new venture.thnx. am actually facing it difficult to start my own venture..i really want to start something interns of business but it a bit difficult for me … how do i start a new venture.?


    I am from INDIA now my age is 40 but I want to start a small business but not getting better idea how can I start a business and where I can get better help mean guide line to raise funding from bank and which small business should I can get with small funding.


  11. I would like to help my husband feel he has worth. He does not have a college education but has a super high IQ. He has medical issues that keep him from getting a regular job. He is contacted from time to time by the gov. to correct blue prints and schematics. How can we turn that into a business for him? What would I advertise?

  12. Hi, I am really trying to start my own trucking company doing hot shot services. I know plenty companies that would let me handle their needs but with the cost of living being so high in the city it makes it so difficult to save money to get started with bills and child support. If anyone knows anybody that could help me get a small business loan I would gladly appreciate it.

  13. Very informative post. Even having a huge capital upfront to start a business does not guarantee the success of that business. So these are great tips to start with nothing and step by step make things happen. Thanks for sharing.

  14. Which Crowdfunding out there for Canadian startups ?

  15. Sikuka Munalula

    It is really interesting to learn that what i thought of as being impossible can be possible.

  16. Benson Chidiebere


    But don’t you think hat my location really matters here?

  17. Hi ma quiz is , is’t possible 2 start without a bussines without no money u can share 2 fb as well coz pple r stack somewhere

  18. am in Uganda basically in masaka district aged 22 but i dont know what jod can fit me. am thinking of selling easy sandles on street but can this work, my friends

  19. Hey guys,I wish to build my own bussiness but I don’t have an idea of what bussiness should I open at my young age.

  20. Great stuff, Shubhomita! All of these are super important, especially analyzing the market. A while ago when I was starting my content marketing agency, these steps were essential. I’d also add a few other important tips that saved my neck back then. First of all, make sure to partner up with the right people. The wrong business partner could cost you your business (I learned that the hard way). And secondly, make sure to have the right tools to help your business take off. Good luck y’all!

  21. Hi I want to start my own small business have alot of trade in me but no money to start with I have 3 machines for sewing to clothing and 1 for car industry how do I go about making these dreams of mine come true I have been trying so long but with so many responsibilities at home money is bad I am a working mother and a women with many talents plz help me get my dream of the ground

  22. Hello i am K L Bipin. I am from kodagu is located in Karnataka, India. I have completed my studies not so much but i want about all. So i am not happy to do job in company. So i am thinking that to do own business in my own village so in my village there are so many own business is running. SO i have very confusion that which business have to start and earn money to my happy .so pls tell me and advice me which business have to start and how . i am waiting for your replay and tell me about business .

  23. Nice Stuf!

    Keep going

  24. From my point of view, people who are planning to start a hotel business must consult with a professional service that will be able to provide great strategies. Well, you are also right that it would be best to understand the current market too. Thank you for sharing here that they should incorporate the right software tool in the business as well.

No, Thank You