Starting your own business is a complicated process. Nothing can ever fully prepare you for all of the work and obstacles involved with being an entrepreneur. The work can be rewarding, but there are also setbacks you will undoubtedly face. Below we will discuss important things to know before starting your business.

Firstly, remember that entrepreneurship is a marathon. Many businesses will fail at first or go a long time without profiting the way they would like. It’s essential to focus on building your company to be great for the long term and learn to adapt to the ever-changing market. Next, ensure that there is a market for your goods or service. Do your research and find out if your idea is profitable. According to entrepreneur.com, every sale should be profitable by at least 50 percent. Also, be honest with yourself and understand that you likely won’t get it all correct the first time. If you dwell too much on gathering information, you can overwhelm yourself and become stuck. Practice trial and error and use different methods to see what works for you. As long as you’re taking action, you can improve.

Funding is crucial, so be patient and make sure you have adequate support. Almost half of small businesses fail due to lack of funding; if you want to survive the start-up phase, wait until you have the proper financing for your business to thrive. Additionally, do not focus on what you want to sell. It’s very easy for entrepreneurs to get so caught up in marketing and selling that they are neglectful towards their customer’s actual wants and needs. Understand your target audience and be responsive to feedback, and positive results will come naturally. That being said, be prepared to pivot. Carefully analyze and vet out your partners to ensure they are the right fit for you and your goals. When working with people, things do not always go exactly to plan, as everyone has their own ideas and ways of operating. Prepare yourself to make quick changes if needed, and make sure your company is familiar with adaptability.

Remember that your customers determine whether or not your business will be successful, not your business plan! So listen to your customers, and embrace the feedback they give. Implement their ideas into your business and create great rapport with your customers so that they remain loyal. Lastly, solve a problem. Hand-in-hand with profitability, your product or service should be a solution to something. There must be a demand for your business in the market, or it’s best to rethink your idea.