10 Steps To Starting A Business In Canada

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A small business in Canada is a great way to start out on your own. You’ll make an impact while you create something new. 

How to start a small business in Canada?

Start Your Own Dream

You may be excited about the prospect of starting a new business in Canada, but it’s important to make sure that you’re passionate about the product or service that you’re offering. If you’re not excited about your idea, then it will be difficult to maintain your enthusiasm throughout the long process of starting a business.  

So, here are answers how to start a business in 10 steps

1. How to Find a Business Idea

  1. A good place to start is looking at what you know well. Are you skilled at something? Do you have skills that others don’t have? If you’re not sure, try to think back to your childhood. What did you enjoy doing as a kid? What were some of your favorite toys? Why do you think you enjoyed them? Chances are, if you’re still enjoying those things now, they might make great businesses. 
  2. You’ve probably heard people say that ideas come from everywhere. Most ideas come out of nowhere, and they come from inside us. So, if you want to get creative, go outside and look around. Watch nature. Take walks. Go to museums. Look at art. Read books. Talk to people. Ask yourself questions. And then ask yourself again. Keep asking until you find the answer. 
  3. Don’t worry about being perfect right away. Start small, and build slowly. Make mistakes. Learn from them. Then move forward. 
  4. When you’re thinking about starting a business, think about who you’d like to work with. Who would you love to help? Who could use your services? Think about people who need help, and who you feel passionate about helping. 
  5. If you’re going to start a business, make sure you tell someone first. Tell your friends and family. Let them know what you’re planning. Get their opinions. Ask them if they think you should do it. 
  6. Be realistic about what you can accomplish in a year. Try to set goals that are achievable. Set a deadline for finishing each goal. Then break down each goal into smaller steps. Each step may take several months, but once you finish one step, you’ll feel accomplished. And when you hit the big milestones, celebrate! 
  7. Remember to have fun. Enjoy the journey.


Selection of Business Name. Business in Canada

2. How to prepare your business plan?

  1. What is a Business Plan? 
    A business plan is a document that outlines the vision, mission, goals, objectives and strategies of a company. A business plan provides a road map for the future success of the business. 
  2. Why do I need a Business Plan?
    The purpose of having a business plan is to provide a road map for the long-term success of your business. By understanding where you want to go, you can make sure that you are heading in the right direction. You should always have a plan before you start any project. If things don’t work out as planned, then at least you will know what went wrong and how to fix it. 
  3. How to Write a Good Business Plan? 
    There are many different types of business plans. However, the basic format is similar across the board. In order to write a good business plan, you need to first understand who your target audience is. Who is going to read your business plan? Are they going to buy your products? Do they just need information about your business? Once you know who your target audience is, you can create a unique business plan that will appeal to them. 
  4. How Long Should My Business Plan Be?
    Your business plan should be no longer than 10 pages. Anything longer than that is probably not necessary. You may find yourself going over the page limit if you try to put everything in the plan. But, remember that too much detail can also be a bad thing. Your plan should focus on the big picture and give enough details to help people understand your idea clearly. 
  5. Where Can I Find Help Writing my Business Plan? 
    If you are looking for someone to help you write your business plan, you can check out local community colleges. These schools often offer free classes on writing business plans. There are also online programs that you can take to help you learn how to write a successful business plan. 


3. How to choose a type of business ownership in Canada?

In Canada, there are several different types of business ownership structures. These include sole proprietorships, partnerships, corporations, and co-operative. Each type of business ownership has its own advantages and disadvantages. When choosing a business ownership structure, it is important to consider your company’s specific needs and objectives. 

What is Sole proprietorship? 

A sole proprietorship is a small business that is owned and operated by one person. The owner of the business is known as the sole proprietor. Sole proprietorships are the most common type of business in Canada. In fact, more than 80 percent of all businesses in Canada are sole proprietorships. Most sole proprietorships are small businesses, such as mom-and-pop stores or home-based businesses.

The owner of a sole proprietorship has complete control over all aspects of the business, from its day-to-day operations to its long-term direction. However, the owner also bears all the risks associated with the business, including financial risk. This can make it difficult for a sole proprietor to obtain financing from banks or other lenders. Nevertheless, many people choose to start a sole proprietorship because it offers them the opportunity to be their own boss and control their own destiny. 

What is a partnership? 

A partnership is a small business with two or more owners. Partnerships can be between individuals or between organizations, and they are a popular way to structure a small business. The owners of a partnership share responsibility for the business, and each owner has an equal say in decisions. Partnerships can be informal, with a simple verbal agreement between the owners, or they can be formalized with a written partnership agreement.

One advantage of a partnership is that it allows business owners to pool their resources and expertise. Partnerships can also be flexible, allowing owners to tailor the arrangement to their specific needs. However, partnerships also have some disadvantages, such as the potential for disagreements between partners and the possibility that one partner could overpower the others. When deciding whether to form a partnership, small business owners should carefully weigh the pros and cons to determine if it is the right structure for their business. 

What is a corporation? 

A corporation is a type of business that is owned by shareholders. The shareholders elect a board of directors to oversee the company, and the board hires a CEO to manage the day-to-day operations. A corporation can be either small or large, and they can be publicly traded or privately held.

Businesses can become corporations through incorporation, which is a process of filing paperwork with the province in which the business is located. Incorporating protects the business owner’s personal assets from being taken away if the business is sued. Many small businesses choose to incorporate because it makes it easier to raise money from investors and to sell shares of the company. 

What is a cooperative? 

A co-operative, also known as a co-op, is a small business that is owned and operated by a group of people. This type of business model is often used by businesses that are community-based or have a shared belief system. For example, many food co-ops are started by people who want to support local farmers and small businesses.

Co-operative businesses are typically owned and operated by their members, who share in the profits and losses of the business. This type of business model can be an attractive option for small business owners because it allows them to pool their resources and share the risks and rewards of owning a business. 

Registering your business with the government

You may have to register with the government before you start operating your business.
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4. Business name ideas

How to find a good business name?

Your business name should not only reflect who you are, but also what you want your company to stand for. Your business name should be catchy yet memorable, and it should represent your brand. You may think that choosing a good business name is difficult, but it’s actually quite simple. Here are some tips to help you choose the best business name for your company. 

  • Start with a word or two that describes your product or service. 
    Make sure you keep those words short, just enough to describe what you do. If possible, use these words in combination with others to create a unique name. For example, if you’re making custom jewelry, you might consider calling yourself Custom Jewelry Creations
  • Consider using numbers instead of letters.
    Numbers have a certain ring to them, and they make your business name sound professional and trustworthy. You could call yourself 1st Choice Designs, or you could go with something like 123 Custom Designs
  • Avoid using names that are already taken.
    There are many different companies out there named after famous people, places, or things. If someone else is already using your desired name, then you’ll have a hard time getting it registered. Also, avoid using names that are offensive, racist, sexist, homophobic, or otherwise inappropriate. 
  • Keep it clean.
    Don’t use swear words, racial slurs, sexual innuendos, or anything else that would offend anyone. Remember, your business name is going to live on forever. So, don’t pick a name that’s going to hurt anybody’s feelings later on down the road. 
  • Be original.
    There’s nothing worse than having a business name that sounds like everyone else’s. Try to find a name that isn’t used anywhere else. After all, if someone else does already own the name, then you won’t get to register it. 
  • Choose a name that reflects you and your business.
    A lot of entrepreneurs spend a long time thinking about their company’s name before they even start building their business. But, don’t worry; once you’ve chosen a good name, you don’t need to change it again. Use your business name for everything — including your website address, e-mail addresses, business cards, phone message, phone number, social media profiles, etc. 
  • Be careful when choosing a domain name.
    Think about how you’d feel if somebody else owned your favorite website address. Would you still visit it? If not, then you shouldn’t choose a similar domain name either. Instead, try to find a unique domain name that works well with your business name. 
  • Get creative.
    If you’re having trouble coming up with a great business name, think outside the box. Maybe you should consider using a nickname, a phrase, or a funny saying that relates to your products or services. Or maybe you could take inspiration from someone else’s business name. For instance, if you were inspired by the name of a popular clothing store, you could name your company Something Else Clothing Co. 
  • Have fun!
    Once you’ve decided on a business name, let loose and enjoy naming your company. Go crazy and play around with different combinations until you find something that works. 
King Optical Glasses Kitchener


5. Do I need to get licenses to start a business?

Yes, you do! You need a license to sell any product or service in Canada. There are three types of licenses: federal, provincial, and municipal. Each province and territory has their own licensing requirements, so make sure to check with your local government before starting a business. 

Federal Licenses 
The federal government requires businesses to have a federal license if they wish to sell products across provinces and territories. A federal license is only required if the business sells its goods or services across borders (i.e., between provinces). If the business does not cross borders, then it does not require a federal license. 

Provincial Licenses 
A provincial license is required for businesses selling goods or services within a single province. In order to obtain a provincial license, the business must first apply for a federal license. Once approved, the business must then apply for a provincial license. 

Starting up is tough but you’ll get there!

6. Business bank account for your business

Business Bank Account

A business bank account is a type of checking account offered by banks to businesses. These accounts provide many benefits including access to loans, and convenience. Businesses often use these accounts to pay bills, deposit money, and store cash. 

Do I Need a Business Bank Account? 

Most small businesses do not require a business bank account. If you have a personal bank account, you can open a business bank account using your social security number. You may also want to consider opening a business bank account if you plan to take out a loan to fund your company’s operations. Banks offer different types of business accounts depending on their lending policies. Most banks will allow you to open a business account without needing a business license. However, some banks may ask for proof of incorporation. 

Benefits of Having a Business Bank Account 

There are several reasons you should consider opening a business bank account. First, having a business bank account makes it easier to receive payments and deposits. Second, you will benefit from lower fees than those charged by check-cashing services. Third, you will save time and money by avoiding the hassle of writing checks. Finally, you will avoid penalties for overdrafting your account. 

Types of Business Accounts 

You can choose between two types of business bank accounts: traditional checking accounts and demand deposit accounts (DDAs). Traditional checking accounts are similar to regular checking accounts. You write checks and make withdrawals at ATMs. DDAs are designed specifically for businesses. You can withdraw funds directly from your DDA using a debit card. This means you don’t need to wait for your paycheck before accessing your money. 

How to Open a Business Bank Account 

If you already have a personal bank account with a local bank, you can apply for a business bank account online. To get started, visit the bank’s website and click the link labeled “Apply Online.” Next, enter your information and submit your application. Once approved, you will receive instructions about how to set up your account. 

For More Information About Opening a Business Bank Account 

To learn more about opening a business bank account, contact your local bank or credit union. Many financial institutions offer free informational seminars. Call or stop by the bank branch to learn more about the types of business accounts they offer. 


7. How to Finance your business

You need money to finance your business, but where do you get it? 

There are a few options for financing your business. You can take out a loan, use personal savings, or look for investors.  Taking out a loan is a common way to finance a business. You can go to a bank or other financial institution and apply for a loan. 

If you have some money saved up, you can use that to finance your business. This is called using personal savings. 

Another option for financing your business is to look for investors. You can find people who are interested in investing in your business. This can give you the money you need to start and grow your business. 

For many entrepreneurs, the process of securing financing can feel like a daunting task. But it doesn’t have to be. Just like brushing your teeth, the key to success is consistency and having a good game plan. Here are a few tips to help you get started on the path to financing your business: 

  1. Do your research
    Before you start approaching potential investors, it’s important to do your homework. Know exactly how much money you need to get your business off the ground, and have a solid plan in place for how you’re going to use it. This will not only make it easier to sell investors on your business, but it will also give you more confidence when presenting your case. 
  2. Build a strong team
    One of the best ways to attract investors is by assembling a talented team of individuals who believe in your business. Surround yourself with people who are passionate about what you’re doing and who have the skills and experience to help you achieve your goals. 
  3. Create a compelling pitch
    When it comes time to actually sit down with potential investors, you need to be prepared. Have a well-crafted pitch deck that tells the story of your business and outlines why it’s worth investing in. Remember, first impressions matter, so make sure your pitch is engaging, informative, and persuasive. 
  4. Be realistic
    It’s important to be realistic when seeking financing for your business. Don’t ask for more money than you actually need, and don’t overpromise on what you can deliver. If investors don’t believe that you’re being realistic about your goals, they’re unlikely to take you seriously. 
  5. Have patience
    Securing financing can be a long and difficult process, so it’s important to have patience. Don’t get discouraged if things don’t come together overnight – Rome wasn’t built in a day! Stay focused on your ultimate goal, and keep moving forward even when things get tough. With hard work and determination, you’ll eventually get the funding you need to take your business to the next level. 


8. Business Insurance

For the purpose of starting a small business, insurance is not mandatory. However, if you are going to run any kind of business, then it is advisable to have insurance coverage. If you already have a business, then make sure to check your current policy to ensure that you are covered for what you want to do now. 

If you own a small business, it is advisable to get insurance coverage because if something happens to your business, it could affect your personal finances and credit rating. You might even lose out on income that you were expecting. 

It is also a good idea to get insurance before you open your business, especially if you are planning to invest money in your business. 

There are many types of insurance policies available, including general liability, commercial property, professional services, errors and omissions, and workers’ compensation

General Liability (GL) Insurance 
This type of insurance covers legal liabilities arising out of bodily injury or property damage caused by an insured person or organization. 

Commercial Property Insurance 
This type of policy insures buildings and equipment against fire, theft, vandalism, and natural disasters. 

Professional Services Insurance 
This type of plan covers professionals who provide their expertise to others. 

Errors and Omissions Insurance (E&O) 
This type of policy helps individuals and organizations pay damages resulting from negligent or fraudulent conduct committed by them. 

Glenn Stewart Insurance Specialist
Chartered Insurance Professional (CIP)

“Small business owners wear many hats. The duty to purchase insurance for their business is important, as insurance is a risk management tool. By purchasing insurance for your business you “sell” some of the risks, in certain amounts, to an insurance company. Mitigating or eliminating risks for your business is of paramount importance. So, when purchasing insurance you need to weigh the options, the types of coverage available, the carrier, and of course, the cost. An often overlooked tool in this process is selecting your agent or broker.”

— Glenn Stewart, CIP, CRM, CHS, CEA

Learn about business insurance from Glenn Stewart, CIP, CRM, CHS, CEA. Glenn has been in the insurance business for over 40 years dealing with business owners and helping them with their insurance coverage needs and protecting them from their risks.


9. How to choose a location for business?

Location is always a huge factor in any business. And if you have chosen to start a small business, location is even more important. If you want your business to succeed, then you need to make sure that you find the right location. You need to consider factors like zoning laws, proximity to customers, local businesses and infrastructure


Zoning Laws 
If you live in a city/town that has a zoning law, then you should check out what kind of rules they have. Do you know how many restaurants are allowed? Is it possible to open a car service in your town? Zoning laws vary greatly across different provinces, so it is best to research them before opening a store or an office. 

Proximity to Customers 
Modern consumers are becoming more educated about their options when choosing where to purchase any products. So, if you are going to open a computer store, it is best to choose a location near the major highways and major cities. Also, a good location would be close to schools and universities. 

Local Businesses 
A good location is not only important for having access to the general public, but also to local businesses. If you plan to sell edibles or concentrates, it would be helpful to locate near bakeries, coffee shops, grocery stores, pharmacies, etc. 

When choosing a location for your small business, you will need to take into account things like electricity, water, internet, security (especially around the time of day you will be open), parking, etc. 

Business Location Selection

10. Marketing for new business

We know that it can be hard to market and promote your business. With so much on your plate, it may be difficult to find the time to do everything yourself.

There is no one size fits all when it comes to marketing for new businesses. But there are some general principles that can help get your business off on the right foot. 

First, you need to identify your target market. Who are your potential customers? What do they need or want? How can your product or service meet their needs? 

Once you have a good idea of who your target market is, you need to create a marketing plan. This plan should include both short-term and long-term strategies for reaching your target market. 

Finally, you need to execute your marketing plan. This includes everything from choosing the right advertising channels to designing compelling marketing materials. 

How to promote your business?

Marketing for a new business can be a daunting task. There are a multitude of ways to promote your new business, but which methods work best?

One of the most effective ways to market a new business is through online channels. A well-designed and optimized for search engines website and strong social media presence can help you reach a large number of potential customers. In addition, using paid advertising platforms such as Google AdWords or Facebook Ads can help you target specific customers who are likely to be interested in your product or service.

Another great way to market a new business is through print media. Flyers, posters and other print materials can be used to reach a large audience quickly and easily. Additionally, print media can be an effective way to generate leads and drive traffic to your website or physical location.

Ultimately, the best way to market a new business depends on your specific needs and goals. However, using a combination of online and print media is often the most effective strategy.


As a small business owner, it can be difficult to get your business noticed. Joining online groups and networking with other businesses can help you reach a wider audience and promote your business. By sharing your story and connecting with other business owners, you can create valuable relationships that will help you grow your business.

Networking groups can be extremely beneficial for small business owners. Through these groups, small business owners have the opportunity to connect with other like-minded individuals, share ideas and best practices, and get advice and feedback. In addition, networking groups can provide small business owners with a sense of community and support. Here are five ways in which small business networking groups can be beneficial: 

  1. Networking groups can help small business owners connect with other like-minded individuals. 
  2. They can help small business owners share ideas and best practices. 
  3. They will help small business owners get advice and feedback. 
  4. Networking can provide small business owners with a sense of community and support.
  5. Online groups can help small business owners connect with potential customers and clients. 


The Canadian Networker started in 2011 offering monthly networking, as well as vendor events, workshops, speaker series, coaching one on one, a radio show and many written articles by founder Janet M Benedict. Through connecting many entrepreneurs and others, the success many experienced was largely due to networking and continues today.  Whilst the pandemic affected us all, events were available online using the various platforms offered.

Eighteen months ago The Canadian Networker created an online meeting called Tuesdays at Noon. This weekly event held every Tuesday from noon until 12:50 has attracted people in various fields and locations.  As pandemic concerns have lessened, the last Tuesday of each month as become an in-person event at a popular restaurant in Kitchener. There is no charge for meetings except getting your lunch once a month should you come to the in-person event. Our online meetings attract local and people from across Canada and worldwide.

To join any of our weekly meetings on Zoom and for more information visit https://www.facebook.com/events/982321115965379    or   The Canadian Networker website https://www.thecanadiannetworker.ca/

Creating a presence online will also help you attract new customers and build brand awareness. Businesses that take advantage of networking and online groups can benefit in many ways. So if you’re looking to grow your business, don’t forget the power of networking!

Sergey Pavlov
Digital Media Specialist, SEO


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