Making the leap from solo glass contractor to small business owner is both exciting and intimidating. While there's a lot to consider when growing your business, stay positive — glass isn't going anywhere! It’s an increasingly popular architectural feature in both residential and commercial projects and it makes sense to try get in on that action.
With so many glazing businesses in the market, what do you need to consider when trying to grow your own glass operation? We’ve compiled a list to help you get started.
A business plan
A new business that has a business plan is statistically more likely to succeed than one that doesn’t — don’t skip this step! You may feel like you have a good understanding of the landscape and who your potential competitors might be, but it’s important to get this down in writing and do some additional research in case there are other players out there you weren’t aware of.
Think carefully about your glass and hardware suppliers and do you research to ensure you’ve found options that are a good fit for your business. This may be a process of trial and error — don’t just be tempted to go with a supplier because they’re the cheapest, it may cost you more in the long run.
You'll also want to ensure you've done the necessary research into the licensing and permits required to operate in your area and any insurances you may need so there are no nasty surprises further down the line.
Funding your business
Figuring out how to fund your new venture is a necessary evil. Ensure you’ve thought about everything you’ll need to get started (tools, transport, computers, software etc) and priced it all up accordingly. Then investigate your options for obtaining funding, whether that’s getting investors on board, taking out a business loan, crowdfunding etc.
Managing your accounts
You don’t need to hire an accountant right off the bat, but you’ll thank yourself later if you’re diligent about your bookkeeping from the outset.
There are a great range of accounting programs on the market worth considering and you'll definitely thank yourself for setting up a robust, easy-to-use system when it comes to tax time!
A great company name and brand
This is the fun stuff! You’ll want a business name that sets you apart from the competition and you will need to do your research to ensure you’re not encroaching on someone else’s copyright.
Once you've established your brand, it's important that you stick with it. Check out our 3 easy brand consistency tips for glaziers.
We know we're a little biased but hear us out! Having a great point-of-sale system (such as Smart-Toolbox) in your glazing business right from the outset will set you in good stead with your customers going forward and get your admin and operations off to a flying start.
When you're first getting your glazing business off the ground, you don't want to be spending the bulk of your time and energy on administration. You need to be out in the community finding customers, completing jobs and networking! Good point-of-sale software will keep the administrative side running smoothly so you can focus on establishing your business.