3 Important Things To Know Before Starting An Equine Business
You might think that loving horses is the only thing you really need to start a successful equine business, but the truth is that there are many other things to consider, and whether you’re planning on starting up a riding school, a tack shop, freelance grooming, or anything else, it’s crucial to be aware of some incredibly important elements of business before you start spending money and before you make any critical decisions.
Being involved in an equine business is supremely fulfilling, and as well as this, it can provide you with a stable income for many years to come. However, this will only be the case if you wait until you’re ready to launch and you don’t rush into anything, no matter how excited you might be. Read on for some helpful advice to help you plan ahead.
Have A Business Plan
It is possible to run a business without having a business plan in place. However, although it’s possible, it’s not recommended because the business you’re running will be slow to grow, will come across all kinds of difficulties and obstacles, and will more than likely run out of money before it can even really get started.
A business plan might mean that you have to stop and think carefully about every aspect of your business which isn’t going to be something everyone enjoys, and it might mean that you have to delay your launch, but it will be worth it. Your business plan will give you a much better idea of how you intend to grow, how much money you’ll need (and how much you might have to borrow), and the ultimate result of the business. Running the business itself will be much easier with this document to refer to. If you need to raise money to start your business, a business plan will often be requested & prospective landlords (if you are renting a shop or yard) may ask to see it too.
Charge What You’re Worth
Underselling yourself in business is one of the worst things you can do. By the time you realize that you’re not making enough money, it’s going to be hard to put your prices up because you may already have a loyal customer base. This is why it’s so important to understand your pricing from the start and get it right.
You’ll need to consider your outgoings first and ensure that you can cover those. This is going to include the money for all of the equipment that you use, the time of you and your employees, different types of insurance to keep your business safe such as professional indemnity insurance and so much more. We recommend that you make a list of these so that you don’t lose sight of how much money it costs you to run your business in the first place.
Then you’ll need to think about any upcoming costs and charge enough to have the money for them. Profit is massively important; how much do you need to make? Charge accordingly.
If your business plan includes improving your facilities in the long term, perhaps by installing steel framed buildings to give yourself more stabling or even an indoor riding arena, you’ll need to ensure you’re charging enough now to be able to set money aside for future capital improvements.
Learn From The Competition
One thing to remember is that you are sure to have at least some competition no matter what kind of business you start. Since many people out there love horses just as much as you do and can see themselves running an equine business, don’t be surprised to find that others are launching similar products and services to you.
The key is not to get hung up on how similar these businesses are but instead to look at the differences and learn from them. You can see what people are doing that brings them attention and sales, and you can even see what they are doing that is pushing people away. By learning from the competition in this way, you can boost your business and overtake them quickly.
Similar businesses who are based in a different geographic area are often happy to give advice. After all, if you are a horse dentist in the UK, you are unlikely to be fighting for clients with a horse dentist in the USA so why not exchange notes on what’s working as well as what’s not working in your respective businesses so you can both improve. With over a 1000 different horse businesses in the Equine Business Association, it’s a great place to network and learn. Not a member yet? Click here to find out more about how membership can benefit you.