How to Get Your Small Business Up and Running: 4 Tips for Parents with Disabilities


A few occurrences have made it easier than ever for people from all walks of life to start a small business. First, people are fed up with trying to find a work-life balance, so they go into business for themselves to plan business around family. Second, the gig economy is booming and enticing people to start businesses to gain even more flexibility in their schedules. Third, e-commerce is boosting businesses and helping small business owners become even more successful in a shorter amount of time. If these reasons sound perfect for parents with disabilities to take steps to get your small business up and running, you’re right. Our tips will help you get started.


1. Find Your Niche


The only way to give yourself a leg up when starting your business is making sure you find your niche from day one. Entrepreneur recommends five steps for doing so:


  • Identify your interests and passions to increase your odds of sticking with your business
  • Identify which problems you can solve for customers and determine how your services or products will solve them
  • Research your competition and determine how to make your business unique
  • Determine the profitability of your niche by browsing top products in it and ensuring there isn’t an overabundance of products
  • Test your idea on social media to tweak your product, service, message, offer, etc.


2. Give Your Business a Proper Name and Brand


Think about the businesses you deal with on a daily basis, and the names of companies that your children know. What makes them resonate with you? Why do your kids think of those business names first? Believe it or not, your business name can make or break your company because it has “numerous branding, marketing, and web implications,” according to Smarta. The name you choose must be memorable, make a good first impression, and be web-friendly. You also need to ensure that your new business name is available as a domain.


Don’t become overwhelmed when it’s time to name your business. Fortunately, there are several free online business name generator tools available that produce hundreds of options with a single click. Most ask you to enter a keyword that captures the core concept of your company, and they display names for you to choose from that also are available as domain names. After all, you want to own every aspect of your business, including its web presence.


Of course, you will be on a budget when you are in the process of getting your business up and running. You can brand your business without breaking the bank, according to HubSpot. The tricks involve knowing your buyer personas, developing an identity and voice, creating a consistent social media presence, providing informative, high-quality content on your blog, prioritizing customer service, and taking advantage of co-branding. Luckily, you can complete most of these branding tasks by creating and maintaining a business website.


3. Set Up a Productive Work Environment


The most budget-friendly way to run your business is doing so from a home-based office, at least in the beginning. Be sure yours not only accommodates your disability, but also sets you up for success by choosing a space in your home that’s away from high-traffic areas so you can work in solitude. Angie’s List also suggests these tips for ensuring maximum productivity:


  • Keep distracting objects, like TVs and gaming systems, out of your workspace
  • Make smart investments in functional equipment that will keep your business running smoothly, like upgrading to a faster computer or a combination scanner/printer
  • Fill the room with lots of natural light, which will keep you alert and prevent you from feeling isolated


4. Look for Grants and Other Funding Opportunities


If you are concerned about startup costs for your new small business, look into grants and other funding opportunities that are available for people with disabilities. It’s worth noting that some programs are designed to help people who are unemployed, so don’t worry if you’ve quit your job to start your business. Also, some grants are available specifically for women or veterans with disabilities, so be sure to look into those opportunities if you are an entrepreneur who falls into those categories.


Generally, local and state grants are available more readily for individuals with disabilities who want to start a business. Federal grants, on the other hand, often are awarded to local and state agencies and organizations that help entrepreneurs, so start by visiting them. You also may find grants available in specific fields, so be sure to ask about them, too.


Parents with disabilities can get their businesses up and running and achieve a better work-life balance that suits everyone’s needs. The keys are to find your niche and carefully consider your business name and brand. Then, set up a productive home-office environment and get the money you need to get your business off the ground by looking for grants and other funding opportunities.