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For a successful business, you need a viable business idea, the skills to make it work and the funding. Discover whether your idea has what it takes.

Forming your business correctly is essential to ensure you are protected and you comply with the rules. Learn how to set up your business.

It is likely you will need funding to start your business unless you have your own money. Discover some of the main sources of start up funding.

Businesses and individuals must account for and pay various taxes. Understand your tax obligations and how to file, account and pay any taxes you owe.

Businesses are required to comply with a wide range of business laws. We introduce the main rules and regulations you must comply with.

Learn why business planning is an essential exercise if your business is to start and grow successfully, attract funding or target new markets.

Marketing matters. It drives sales and helps promote your brand and products. Discover how to market your business and reach your target customers.

Some businesses need a high street location whilst others can be run from home. Understand the key factors from cost to location, size to security.

Your employees can your biggest asset. They can also be your biggest challenge. We explain how to recruitment and manage staff successfully.

It is likely your business could not function without some form of IT. Learn how to specify, buy, maintain and secure your business IT.

Few businesses manage the leap from start up to high-growth business. Learn what it takes to scale up and take your business to the next level.

Also in the news this week - 18 November 2016

18 November 2016

Why marketers are losing focus at work

A new study into workplace distractions by Workfront has found that UK marketers are increasingly spending large portions of the work day on tasks other than those that they were hired to do; only 36% of their day is spent on primary job duties. The top three things that get in the way of core tasks include meetings (64%), excessive emails (62%) and excessive oversight (42%). Respondents said their productivity would improve if they had fewer interruptions (29%), more efficient work processes (23%) and more/better qualified people and resources (20%).

Online video prompts people to buy

Three-quarters of consumers say that watching a video on social media affects their purchasing decisions, according to research from Brightcove. A poll of shoppers in the UK, France, Germany, the USA and Australia found that 46% of viewers have made a purchase as a result of watching a branded video on social media. The popularity of social video is rising - 67% of respondents said they watch more video on social networks than they did a year ago; the average consumer now watches 49 minutes of social video every day.

Could Brexit make us more entrepreneurial?

New research released by Amway to coincide with Global Entrepreneurship Week (14-21 November) has found that 55% of British entrepreneurs think our exit from the EU will encourage more individuals to set up their own business. It also reveals that 80% of British business owners have plans to set up another new business, 36% will be recruiting more staff and 40% plan to open new premises.

The power of user reviews

Eight out of ten consumers trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation, according to the latest Local Consumer Review Survey by BrightLocal. The results show that 91% of consumers now read reviews - up from 71% in 2010. However, 90% of consumers read fewer than ten reviews before forming an opinion about a business, and 73% think that reviews from more than three months ago are no longer relevant. The good news is that seven out of ten shoppers say they will leave a review if asked to.

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