How Immigrants to Canada Can Start a Business

How Immigrants to Canada Can Start a Business

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Are you an immigrant to Canada hoping to forge a better, more fulfilling life by starting a business? Getting a startup off the ground requires a lot of preparation and hard work, and there are even more steps to take when you’re coming to the Great White North from another country.

Nonetheless, you can tackle these steps and navigate the challenges with confidence if you stay dedicated and tap into the resources available to you along the way. Victoria Web Solutions has some practical advice for how you can do just that:

Planning the Business

Every successful business begins with a great idea. Take an assessment of your knowledge and skills, and research current trends. If you can’t think of anything that contributes something new to the market, then brainstorm how you can improve upon an existing product or service.

Once you have a solid idea, turn it into a business plan. This document will include any information that’s relevant to the company you will be launching. Your business plan will be critical when it comes time to get funding from lenders and investors. However, the process of creating the document will also provide you with insight into how viable your idea is.

In the course of building the framework for your venture, you will also need to contemplate basic business practices. While tasks like accounting for small business sound simple on the surface, there are many factors involved, like establishing an employee time and business expense tracking system and keeping proper records for tax purposes. Look into software solutions that allow you to stay focused on building your business, rather than getting bogged down in the behind-the-scenes details.

Another tech solution worth considering is a new phone for conducting business when you’re on the go — in which case you’ll also want to get a good device cover to safeguard your new investment. The last thing you want is to drop your phone and end up with a cracked screen or to have it damaged by liquids.

Creating a Website

You’ll have your fair share of legal hurdles as you make your way to business ownership in Canada. But before you even get all of that stuff sorted out, get a head start on marketing and building your brand. This means creating a unique and catchy business name, as well as an attractive logo and other branding elements.

Once you have your initial branding in place, start building a website and focus on digital marketing. These days, having an engaging, attractive, and easy-to-use website is critical for small businesses, as is a presence on social media. Unless you have ample experience in web design, your best bet is to hire a professional designer like Victoria Web Solutions to handle it for you.

Determining a Legal Structure

Choosing your business structure is one of the legal responsibilities you will need to handle when starting your company. In Canada, there are three primary structures to choose from—sole proprietorship, partnership, and corporation. Evaluate your needs and pick a structure that provides the liability protection and tax advantages you’re looking for. Additionally, Ownr can walk you through all the steps of incorporating a business in Canada so that you don’t miss anything.

Obtaining a Visa and Funding

Canada’s Start-up Visa program is very popular among immigrant entrepreneurs. Look to resources like to learn about the program, and figure out if you will qualify.

While you’re at it, start researching your funding options. From government small business loans to venture capital, from angel investing to crowdfunding, you have a wide array of options to consider.

Navigating Challenges

Finally, if you plan on seeking funding from lenders or banks, you’ll need to consider your credit score. And if you’re new to Canada, you may not have a long credit history built up with banks. To quickly boost your credit, get a new credit card and use it responsibly. Also, keep your credit utilization ratio in a healthy range.

Another way to minimize the obstacles throughout your entrepreneurship is to embrace your local culture. This is true whether you’re in Canada or in any other country. Get involved in the community, develop relationships with people, and learn about what your neighbors care about. Lastly, find a local mentor who can share wisdom and connections with you on your journey.

As with moving to anywhere else, coming to Canada and starting a business will present challenges. But as long as you take the necessary steps and utilize the resources available, you can put yourself in a good position to succeed. Just remember to get to know your community, as it will play a critical role in the success of your small business.

Victoria Web Solutions offers the very best in website design and maintenance. Contact us today to get started!


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Patrick O'Keeffe

Patrick is the founder, developer and chief blogger of Victoria Web Solutions. Passionate about technology, design and customer satisfaction. Read more about Patrick on his Team page.

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