North Carolina Business Startup Guides
Opening a Business in Durham, North Carolina
Contemplating starting a business in Durham, North Carolina? We walk you through the process of opening a business in Durham.
Are You Sure You Want to Do This?
An entrepreneurial life is hard work, much more challenging than working as an employee. Are you sure you want to start a business?
While entrepreneurship has become a popular career choice, we recommend you do the following before you take the plunge:
- Talk to other entrepreneurs in Durham. Ask them candidly what it's like to run a business.
- We recommend reading Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs. For aspiring new entrepreneurs, it's a must read article.
- Seek the advice of somebody who knows you well. The people who know you best are often in the best position to tell you bluntly whether you will be a good entrepreneur.
Durham, North Carolina Demographic Information
Durham has an active business community that includes small businesses, mid-sized businesses and large businesses.
To give you a better feel for Durham demographics for small businesses, we have tabulated the small business sizes, based on number of employees, for business in Durham.
As a new Durham entrepreneur, you may also be interested in the table below. It shows how many businesses there are in Durham for each business category. By looking at this chart, you can get a general sense for how much competition there is in the business niche that you are pursuing.
Is a Franchise Opportunity Right For You?
Visit the business district of Durham and it's apparent that franchising has become a very popular way to start a business. But is franchising the right option for you?
Our advice is to evaluate the possibility of your buying a franchise opportunity. We have many articles on franchises, such as Buying an Existing Franchise. Become a franchising expert of sorts by reading more of our Articles on Franchising.
To learn about specific franchise opportunities, check out our Franchise Directory.
Sample franchise opportunities include Symposium Café and Country Kitchen International. Alternatively, you can browse franchise categories, such as Child Photos and Portraits Franchises and Financial Services Franchises.
Note on Durham Franchise Opportunities: You will need to contact franchisors directly to see if their franchises are available in Durham.
Choosing a Company Name
A good company name can give a big boost to a new startup. It might seem like an easy thing to do, but there are many things to consider when naming a business.
We strongly advocate that you make sure the ".com" domain name is available for your company name. Every business needs a strong Web presence these days, and having a non ".com" domain means somebody else may outrank you in the search results for your own company name.
To get up to speed on what makes for a good company name, we encourage you to read this useful article: Branding Advice.
On a final note, given that you are planning on starting a business in Durham, it's critical that you ensure that your company name has not already been claimed by another North Carolina business.
Don't Forget to Create a Business Plan
Having a business plan is essential in laying a solid foundation for your business success. Simply put, a business plan describes what you plan to do with the business and how you plan to do it. Failure to write a business plan makes you more prone to becoming a business failure statistic.
If writing a business plan is on your to-do list, be sure to read Expert Advice on Business Plans. You should also take advantage of free counseling sessions provided by your local SCORE chapter in North Carolina.
Where to Get Money to Start a Company
Raising money to fund your new Durham business requires strong organization skills and perseverance. If you don't have a rich uncle to fund you, you'll need to be creative in how you approach your fundraising efforts.
To learn about raising money, we recommend you read the fundraising articles on our site, such as Getting a Small Business Loan.
Marketing Your New Business
To rise above the crowd in Durham and build your business, having an excellent marketing plan is fundamental to your beating the competition.
You can learn plenty about marketing on our site. Newspaper Advertising Costs is an article that will generate a few thoughts on your marketing plan. That's just one of the many useful articles we have on Marketing a Small Business.
Durham Entrepreneur Interviews
Here, we'll keep a running list of interviews we've had with Durham entrepreneurs.
As an entrepreneur in Durham, you won't be working for the boss anymore. You are the boss.
Owning your own business will be a daunting task, but you can do it.
This site is all about helping entrepreneurs in Durham and elsewhere to achieve real success. We believe entrepreneurship is an amazing engine for job creation in Durham, neighborhood development and overall economic health.
More Entrepreneurial Resources for Starting a Business in Durham, North Carolina
Here are more links that we believe will help you be successful in starting a business in Durham.
- Resources for Durham, North Carolina Entrepreneurs - Browse a variety of resources we've collected to assist Durham entrepreneurs.
- North Carolina Entrepreneurial Resources - We've gathered state-level entrepreneurial resources to help new entrepreneurs who are based in North Carolina.
- North Carolina SBA - With offices in Charlotte, Wilmington, Raleigh and Asheville, the SBA organizes many events and provides useful resources for new entrepreneurs and growing businesses throughout North Carolina.
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