My plan was to start a small business in Salisbury back in 2007 after I'd moved here from Southampton. I'd always had an interest in computers so it was decided that it would be a small repair business offering that service in the City.

I got in contact with an organisation called Business Link and had a very informative meeting with one of their new business advisors. We discussed various options available for new starts and how to register with HMRC for tax purposes as well as advertising options such as a website.

Start A Small Business At Home In Salisbury

The best option was to start a small business at home in Salisbury and to see how it would develop. I had a spare bedroom available at the house that could be used as an office and workshop for repairs, it would be a lot cheaper than renting an office space in Salisbury.

As I was going to be a self-employed sole trader, I contacted HMRC and registered for self assessment. I also registered for a Government Gateway user ID and password so that I could sign into my new HMRC account.

A short time later I received a letter with my Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) number that I would need for tax returns. I didn't need to become VAT registered as I never expected to earn enough.

I also had to come up with a business name but didn't want anything fancy. In the end, I simply used the key words that someone was likely to type into a search engine if they were trying to find the services that I was offering.. Salisbury Computer Repairs seemed like a good idea for a business in this City :)

Advertising My Small Business.

If I wanted to get any customers for my new business then I was going to have to advertise. Flyers and leaflets seemed like a good idea so I had some printed up along with some cards. I spent a lot of time walking around the streets in my local area, posting flyers through letter boxes although I suspect that many ended up in the rubbish bin.

I also contacted the Salisbury Journal and arranged for a small advert to appear in the trades section of their newspaper each week. The advert, along with the flyers, seemed to do the trick and my phone was soon ringing. I was now getting fairly regular phone calls from customers and my small business was starting to make some money.

I also decided that I needed a website to be able to advertise my services online but there was a problem. I didn't know anything about them or how to create a website.

I did some research online and discovered one of the website builders that I could use to create my own site. It wasn't long before I found out that it wasn't appearing on the first page of Google's search engine results pages (SERPS) for obvious search terms that anyone would type if they were looking for computer repairs in Salisbury.

In the end, I bought a web hosting package, registered a suitable domain name for the business (Salisbury Computer Repairs) and built my own website. I also learned about search engine optimisation (SEO) and it wasn't too long before my website was on page one of the results.. As far as I'm concerned, if you're starting a small business, budget for a website if you can and/or use Facebook to advertise.

That's a brief guide to how to start a small business in Salisbury. Good luck.