Big Mistakes New Small Business Owners Make

And How You Can Avoid Them

We all make mistakes.

This isn’t something to be ashamed of; it’s a simple fact of life.

That said, when you’re starting up a new business, mistakes can mean the difference between the success or failure of your new entrepreneurial venture. While avoiding every error is impossible, there are certainly some things you can do to prevent yourself from falling into some of the more substantial pitfalls.

Making Large Purchases

Getting your own business off the ground can be an awe-inspiring experience.

However, it’s easy to get caught up in this enthusiasm and start making purchases that aren’t in your best interests. Buying the newest tech toys, making an oversized order with the anticipation of customers, team-building trips, and other nonessential purchases.

You need to have the self-control to be able to sit down and ask yourself “do I need this?”

If you manage to avoid making any purchase that’s too large and unnecessary for your business, that can go a long way to help keep yourself solvent.

Every penny counts.

Doing Everything Yourself

We get it. You want to make sure that everything is done right. This is your business, and it being less than perfect is going to keep you up at nights. The fear of someone, somewhere failing their job haunts you, and you can’t find it within your grasp to let others take command. 

However, if you try to do everything, you’re going to accomplish nothing.

You can’t afford to stretch yourself in a dozen directions at once. You need to be able to learn to take a step back and trust that your employees know what they’re doing.

Delegation is the key.

Avoiding Credit Cards

It’s a somewhat common fear of small businesses that allowing credit card purchases will lose them more money from the processing fees than what they would get from the increased revenue.

Here’s the thing though, these days virtually everyone has a credit card.

For better or worse, this is the age of electronic transactions. It’s becoming less and less likely that people walking into your store are going to have cash on hand to make purchases. It’s scary that you have to risk another business fee, but really, is that fear worth losing out on all the revenue you could have gotten from their purchases?

This early in the game, you can’t afford to turn away customers.

Not Saving Up

You don’t know what the future holds.

Business has its ups and downs, and while the ups can be amazing, you need to make sure you’re prepared for those downs.

Having an ample supply of cash in a rainy-day account to help soften the lack of business can mean the difference between a dry spell cutting into profits or meaning the end of your business as a whole. Ideally, you would want this stash to have enough funds for about three months in case of emergencies.

You can’t avoid every mistake, but with this list, you’ll hopefully have a better chance of avoiding the big ones. Good luck!


  • Don’t mix business and personal accounts that can open up a massive mess with the IRS.
  • Keep a detailed budget; don’t make all of your purchases by the cuff.
  • Marketing is your friend; don’t try to avoid it.