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If building a fabrication business is an ambition of yours, then it is a good idea to go about this in a sensible way which avoids the main pitfalls and efficiently overcomes the biggest challenges you face.
To that end, here is a look at the steps involved in this process and the considerations to keep in mind as you launch your latest commercial endeavor.
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Create a business plan
Even if your shop will essentially be a one-person operation in its earliest guise, you should still create a business plan that outlines what you want to achieve as well as how you will go about reaching your goals.
You will need a framework like this not only to guide your decision-making going forwards, but also to help convince any prospective lenders and investors that your fabrication shop concept is viable. Without a business plan, getting the seed money needed to kick start your business could be tough.
Invest in the right machinery
Most people who establish fabrication shops will know what kind of gear they need to complete the projects they expect to tackle, so the real challenge in this respect is finding a reliable dealer and getting equipment in a cost-effective way.
For smaller shops, it may make sense to opt for second hand equipment because of the savings that can be made compared with new machinery. So long as you buy a well maintained and appropriately capable kit, you should be better off buying second hand.
Another consideration is the size of the equipment, since space may be limited and you need to optimize how you use every inch of your fabrication shop. Check the dimensions carefully before committing to avoid frustration further down the line.
Secure the relevant certification
Being certified in the right skills and processes is not just about making you a better fabricator; it is also a good way of proving to prospective clients that you have the abilities and experience to fulfill their needs, even if your business is new.
The Fabricators & Manufacturers Association is one of the most recognized providers of certification in this arena, and even if you have previously participated in training and development, it still could be sensible to blow the cobwebs off with a refresher course before you dive into launching your shop.
Create a digital presence
Businesses of all sizes and across every industry need to leverage the digital marketing tools that are at their disposal if they want to connect with customers and turn a fledgling operation into an established brand. This is certainly true of fabrication shop owners, and social media platforms offer excellent opportunities for start-ups in this sector to gain traction by sharing content related to the manufacturing and craft processes they deploy.
In addition to creating accounts on the likes of Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for your business, you also need to have a website where customers can find out more about your services and even place orders. Do not skimp on a sub-par site, because this can reflect badly on your business, especially as customers become more web-savvy and aware of how a high quality site should look.
Finally, remember that word of mouth marketing is also an impactful tool for small businesses, both in the digital space and in the real world. Serve your first customers well and they will help to spread the word, which will generate the momentum your business needs to succeed in the long term, even if this is your first time taking the helm as an owner.