How to Start a Small Business in Kenya – 2020 update

There are so many possible ways on how to start a small business in Kenya. People choose to engage in small businesses for various reasons such as having a small capital or even limited working space.

There are tons of different Small business one can do in Kenya. Some of them include snack shops, groceries, delivery services, food bars, wines and spirits or more.

Are you interested in starting a small business and stuck on coming up with the best steps to start one?. This article will guide you to successfully implement a small business of your choice.

Related: 10 Profitable Business Ideas in Kenya (Updated 2020)

How to Start a Small Business in Kenya

1. Come up with a business idea

Having a business idea helps you understand the type of business you want. Having an idea in mind will save you to have someone advise you on what to do.

You can get ideas through brainstorming with close friends, family or people close to you that you trust. If you have so many ideas, they can help you settle on one that is ideal and doable.

2. Make a plan

You need a plan in order to make your business idea a reality. Having a business business plan will guide your business from the start-up phase through establishment and eventually growth.

The good news is that there are different types of business plans for different types of businesses.

 A business plan can give you clarity about what you hope to achieve and how you plan to do it. You can even create a working business plan and improve it over time.

3. Do Your Research

Once you have an idea in place, the next thing you need to do is market research.

You need to have such questions like ” Does this business sit well with the market? how does the market demographics affect the kind of business you are to open”

They are important because they base your business into reality. For instance, if you are opening a grocery it is important to also identify if people around you shop for groceries so that won’t go into loses months ord days after opening.

In order for a small business to be successful, it must solve a problem. It must as well fulfil a need or offer something the market wants.

You can do your research through focus groups, and even trial and error methods.

As you explore the market, some of the questions you should answer include:

  • Is there a need for your anticipated products/services?
  • Who needs it?
  • Are there other companies offering similar products/services now?
  • What is the competition like?
  • How will your business fit into the market?

4. Small Business in Kenya – Have a budget

Generally, a small business doesn’t require s much money as a large investment. In most cases, you will need to have funds to clear the operation license and any other small expenses like rent.

Most importantly, plan a budget with all this into consideration. For a small business to thrive, have a backup plan, mostly an amount of money that can bills for the business while in the start-up phase.

This will help the business pick up if there is little or no concentration on the initial profits. Additionally, the initial amounts made in the business helps fix any loses if they occur so that you don cripple down on the first loss.

5. Pick a name for your business

Having a business name is important because it plays a role in almost every aspect of your business. So it should definitely be a good one.

While picking the name, make sure you think through all of the potential implications as you explore your options.

It is important to check if it’s trademarked or currently in use to avoid such implications like copyright infringement.

6. Choose a business structure

Your small business can be a sole proprietorship, a partnership, a limited liability company (LLC) or a corporation.

The business entity you choose will impact many factors from your business name, to your liability, to how you file your taxes.

You may choose an initial business structure, and then reevaluate and change your structure as your business grows and needs change.

7.Register your business name

This is important because, if you don’t register your name, someone might use it and sue you for copyright infringement or worse get the business off you.

A sole proprietor must register their business name with either their state or county clerk. Corporations, LLCs, or limited partnerships typically register their business name when the formation paperwork is filed.

8. Small Business in Kenya – Get Licenses and Permits

Paperwork is a part of the process when you start any business in Kenya.

There are a variety of small business licenses and permits that may apply depending on the type of business you are starting and where you are located.

You will need to research what licenses and permits apply to your business during the start-up process or visit the county revenue offices for more clarification.

Read: 10 Booming Businesses in Kenya 2020

9. Set up your business location

Depending on your type of business, you need to have a strategic location where your clients can find you with ease. Remember you re just starting a business with no actual clients at hand.

A good location will sell out your business more than advertising can do if it is strategic enough.

You can set your business from including a  home office, a shared or private office space, or a retail location.

You will need to think about your location, equipment, and overall setup, and make sure your business location works for the type of business you will be doing.

10. Develop your product/services

This is the final stage of the business after everything else has been set up. At this stage, you need to set up prices and product packaging as well as competitive marketing techniques.

While making the final decisions, focus on the quality of the products and the prices. This is where most competitors if not keen can knock you off.

Your best option isn’t necessarily to make the cheapest product, even if it lowers manufacturing cost. Also, you need to make sure the product can grab someone’s attention quickly.

The initial sales might not be as gradual but once you stabilize and stick to your producers you will do more sales.

How to Start a Small Business in Kenya: Conclusion

There are a million different ways to start a small business in Kenya. Besides starting from scratch, You can acquire another business, start targeting a new market and gradually expand your offerings.

Also, consider having some key attributes that will keep your business flowing for instance:

Have full control of your business.  If you leave the development up to someone else or another firm without supervising, you might not get the thing you envisioned.

Hire specialists who are awesome at the exact thing you want. such people can be not a jack-of-all-trades type.

Listen to your clients/customers more. You will find out what they want and need, and from them, you will learn to improve on your products to make that happen.

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