There are only 5 principles you need to learn and follow in order to be successful in business.
These principles are in no particular order, rather, all must work together in order for you to succeed in business. These principles are as essential for small business as they are for large business. Fortune 500 companies follow them as does any successful Mom & Pop store.
Capital is the money you need to operate your business. The US Small Business Administration estimates that 75% of all businesses that fail cite lack of capital as their primary reason for failure. Without the cash you need to pay for advertising, materials, utilities, taxes, insurance, licenses & permits, wages, etc. you won't be in business.
Estimate the amount of cash you need and keep an additional 30% in reserve for emergencies and unforeseen expenses and you should do all right.
If you need $100,000 to cover your expenses and open your business, add an additional $30,000 to cover the things you can't predict.
And I like to add this axiom: "If you can't afford the marketing, you can't afford the business."
Nothing happens until you sell something. You may have a first class product (in your mind) but if no one else wants it, you will just have a lot of products taking up space. Research your market, locate that gap - that essential item that people want and you can deliver and begin marketing it.
We are all familiar with the many hundreds, thousands and perhaps millions of websites offering products and services for sale. The only websites that make money are the ones that have a steady stream of customers buying something.
If you don't have customers, you don't have a business, it's that simple.
The only reason you are in business is to sell something. Whether it's a tangible product or an intangible service, you must have a high quality product to offer your customers in order to keep them coming back for more.
You could always rip off your customers. But we all know this is wrong and, in most countries, illegal. Besides how often can you rip someone off? Sooner or later you will reach a point of diminishing returns where your ability to rip people off meets against the awareness of the marketplace and you won't be able to sell anything. All thieves reach this point sooner or later. Don't be a thief. Produce and market the highest quality product or service you can and the market will always accept you and reward you.
A business is a system of systems. This requires organization, planning and creativity. If you start a small business and you don't have the systems in place to free yourself from working that business, your business will enslave you just as thoroughly or even more thoroughly than any job.
One of the reasons many people cite as the reason they start a business is to enjoy their lives and have more free time, but one of the biggest reasons for people giving up their business is that they find they are working from dawn to midnight 6 or 7 days a week. The time they thought they would be obtaining is in fact an illusion, a chimera they can not hope to find.
There is a book that can help you develop the systems you need to free yourself from working in your business everyday. This book is "The E-Myth Revisited" by Michael Gerber.
No business will survive without someone having the skills to operate that business successfully. Whether the owner has these skills or he/she hires people who do have these skills, the requisite skills are necessary for the business to carry on.
All these principles are necessary for a business to be successful. Almost no one knows all these principles alone. Each person must partner or team up with others who can bring something to the table. Find others who want what you want and who can fill in those principles you lack. This may require just a few people or it may require hundreds. But whatever it takes is what it takes. Do it and be successful, do not and fail.