September 11th, 2017

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Feel like you can’t start your own business with loans and investors? It might take less money than you think. According to a survey by Intuit, most small businesses start with $10,000 or less. That’s good news for small business owners who think they need hundreds of thousands to get their company up and running. But $10,000 is still a big chunk of change. You can bootstrap your business paycheck by paycheck while still making your startup seem bigger than it really is. Here’s how.

Working woman

Restrategize your website

Your website is often a customer’s first impression of your business. But before you spend several thousand dollars in a website redesign, look at tools you can use on your own to make your business seem ultra professional.

WordPress and Squarespace are relatively easy to learn and come with plenty of free templates and resources. Opt for a clean, responsive layout that features a professional business phone number, your photo and About page. You can even snag a dedicated phone number from Google Voice for free.

Upgrade your telecommunications

At some point, your smartphone or dedicated Google voice business phone number won’t be enough to make your startup seem bigger than it really is. Set up a virtual office and pay only for the extra telecommunications features and services you need.

For example, 8×8 offers VoIP business phone services can create a virtual office desktop to integrate a business softphone with visual voicemail, a corporate directory, instant messaging and video calling among other professional features like web conferencing and social media. When you combine these features with exemplary customer service, your customers feel like you’ve got it together and are running a thriving business.

Send professional proposals

Clients expect a professional-looking proposal to review your offering, price and more about your company. But it’s more than putting a slick logo on a Word document with a price breakdown and sending it to a client.

There are plenty of low-cost tools on the market that can do most of the tedious work for you. PandaDoc offers straight-forward and easy-to-customize templates and collaboration tools. Pick and choose from a library, add your own content and images, share with your team and send off to clients. It’s also a quick way to get them to say yes and digitally sign on the spot instead of waiting around for a response.

Hire a virtual assistant

Outsourcing time-consuming tasks like data entry can free up more time to focus on your business. A virtual assistant can take care of the little details of running your business without needing to hire full-time help.

Sites like empower business owners to find the help they need that meets their budget. Whether you need someone part time or full time, you can find highly skilled professionals that only focus on the type of work and during the hours you need.

Get legal advice

You can get the right legal advice about your business entity and any other issues without retaining a private lawyer. Instead, get advice by asking lawyers just a few questions, learning how to incorporate your business or creating legal documents. Rocket Lawyer helps manage legal needs online by connecting people with reputable lawyers and only paying for services they need.

Temporarily upgrade your office space

There’s nothing wrong with running your startup out of your home, but at some point, you’ll need to hold meetings with clients or investors, run a workshop and meet with team members face to face. While co-working spaces have long been have for freelancers looking for more space, you can now rent entire conference rooms.

Companies like Desks Near Me can connect you with single desks or entire conference rooms near you.

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