With so many businesses out there, it’s easy to assume that getting set up yourself shouldn’t be all that hard. You may think it’s as easy as securing a location, ordering your stock and then waiting for the customers to come flooding in. Well, not exactly. There’s much more to it than that, and there are many costs involved that you’ve probably not even thought about. Here are just five to work into your budget.

Insurances and licences

Opening a business isn’t as simple as creating or sourcing a good product, opening your doors to the public and selling it. There are all kinds of insurances and licenses you need to secure first. You need licenses for everything from hanging signs outside your premises, to playing background music in your store. You need insurances to protect your staff and the public from any harm that could come from your business. This includes everything from workplace slips and trips to faulty products or a customer having an accident on your premises. Get this wrong and you could end up massively out of pocket, even to the point of bankruptcy. According to Judge Diane Ritchie, many cases can be resolved through mediation rather than going to court, but it’s just not something you’re able to risk as a business owner.


Marketing is something that can really catch out new business owners. Most will be aware that they need to do some form of promotion but have no idea how much these things cost. It’s not as simple as handing out a few flyers these days and hanging up posters, you need to be sure that you’re ranking in search engines for the right keywords, that you’re being promoted across social media and that you’re part of the remarketing network on Google. Unless you know how to do these things yourself then you’ll need to pay a company to do it all for you which is another cost. Your advertising budget will be bigger than you might think, make sure this is something you’re aware of when you’re setting up.

Recruitment costs

Hiring staff is expensive. It’s not just paying their wages that you need to think about; you have to advertise for jobs, spend time scouring CVs, contacting potential candidates, holding interviews and then eventually paying to train the right person. Time is money, and it can be a very time consuming and costly process finding the right staff.


As a business owner you’ll know that you’re responsible for doing your own taxes. But on top of this, you’ll need to pay a tax accountant to do your return for you, on top of any other costs. Depending on your earnings you may need to pay VAT, and some countries have additional costs such as national insurance. Work it all out and be in the know so you can budget correctly.

Card fees

Paying by card is hugely preferred by customers these days. Research shows that very few people carry much cash with them in the modern world, and so by not accepting card payments you’re missing out on customers. However, you might not have budgeted for the fact that your card machine provider will take their cut for every transaction you make. Another thing to bear in mind.