A Comprehensive Guide to Launching Your Startup

  • Aamir Qutub
  • | CEO of Beyond Grades
  • | Updated on February 26, 2024
Guide to launch you startup


Starting a startup takes hard work, but once your startup becomes successful, all that hard work feels incredibly rewarding.

There’s no silver bullet for guaranteed success for startups, but you can use some strategies to up your game in this cutthroat business world.

This guide is for individuals, partners, or groups thinking about starting a startup or already working on one. It will take you through the entire entrepreneurial process, from ideation to launch.

Do you want to know how to build a startup from scratch? Perfect!

But before that, let’s start with the basics.

What is a Startup?

Startups help turn problems into products. They observe real-world challenges and actively contribute to finding solutions and making people’s lives better.

In short, startups revolve around a problem and their product is derived from the problem it caters to.

Also Read: How to build a successful startup?

Types of Startups

Types of Startups

  1. Small-to-mid-sized business startup
  2. Large business startup
  3. Scalable startup
  4. Social startup
  5. Lifestyle startup
  6. Acquirable/buyable startup

Categorization by Size

  • Small-to-mid-sized business startups
    These are smaller companies with restricted resources and smaller teams. They are flexible and provide personalized services but have a cap on the number of employees, not exceeding 2,000.
  • Large business startup
    These startups have big plans to make a significant impact on their industry and solve major problems.

Categorization based on industry

  • Scalable startup
    These businesses aim to grow and make lots of money and have plans to expand and become much larger in the future. Examples are Facebook, Amazon, and McDonald’s.
  • Social Startup
    They focus on solving social, cultural, or environmental issues. They can be for-profit or rely on donations.
  • Lifestyle Startup
    These are local businesses that provide a steady income. They serve specific customer groups and may not expand widely.
  • Acquirable/Buyable Startup
    These startups start small but aim to be acquired by bigger companies, focusing on niche markets and solving specific problems.Now that we’ve learned about the various types of startups. Let’s learn how to start a business from scratch.

How to build a startup from scratch?

Starting a business for the first time might seem scary because it needs a lot of effort and careful planning. Did you know that only about 50% of all businesses make it past five years?

However, there’s no need to be concerned because there are several essential strategies that startups can adopt to launch their business successfully, including ideation, product development, startup structuring, funding, pivoting, marketing and launching.

Let’s know about these strategies in detail.

Part 1: Ideation

How to choose a startup idea?

Deciding upon a startup idea is a significant choice. The following are some guidelines to assist you in selecting the right one:

1. Identify a problem

Imagine a world where every problem is an opportunity for a startup idea.

A world where entrepreneurs are constantly on the lookout for ways to make people’s lives better by solving the big and small problems that we all face.

This is the world that Paul Graham envisions when he says, “The way to get startup ideas is not to try to think of startup ideas. It’s to look for problems, preferably problems you have yourself.”

The best startup ideas come from solving real problems. When you start with a problem, you have a built-in customer base. You know that there are people who need your solution because you need it yourself.

And when you’re passionate about solving a problem, staying motivated and focused is easier. You’re also more likely to have creative insights and come up with innovative solutions.

Here are a few examples of startup ideas that came from solving problems:

  • Airbnb was founded to solve the problem of finding affordable and convenient accommodation while traveling. The company applied the lean startup approach to test its idea.
  • Uber was founded to solve the problem of getting a taxi ride quickly and easily.

These are just a few examples, of course. There are endless opportunities to start businesses that solve problems.

So, if you’re looking for a startup idea, start by looking for problems.

If you are interested in tech startups, also read: How to Get Awesome Ideas for Tech Startups.

2. Come up with a solution

This automatically flows from the problem we were talking about in the first point. Find a solution to a problem that you care about. To start, look at what already exists in the industry related to the problem. This means examining current products or services that are available. Consider whether there is a gap in the market that you could fill or if you could improve upon existing solutions.

For example, Elon Musk founded Tesla to solve the problem of climate change by accelerating the world’s transition to sustainable energy.

Travis Kalanick got the idea for Uber when he was stranded in Paris without a way to get a taxi. He realized that there was a need for a more convenient and reliable way to get a ride.

3. Consider your knowledge and skills

Think about your skills, knowledge, and experience. What are you good at? What do you know a lot about? What have you learned from your past jobs, projects, and hobbies?

Once you have a good understanding of your experience and expertise, you can start to brainstorm ideas for startups. Think about problems that you or other people have had, and look for ways to solve them using your unique skills and knowledge.

4. Get feedback from customers

One of the best ways to come up with startup ideas is to talk to people you know and ask them about problems they want to be solved. This can lead to ideas that are based on real customer needs.

Picking a startup idea is just the starting point. It’s all about putting in the work and staying committed to making that idea a successful business.

“Is having an idea sufficient for a successful startup?”

No! While a great idea is crucial, success hinges on various factors such as market research, execution, product quality, marketing, funding, and more. 

However, the first step is to analyze if your idea is really worth it! 

Will your startup idea work in the market? 

And an effective approach for this evaluation is through the Lean Startup Methodology. 

What is Lean Startup Methodology?

Lean startup methodology

The lean startup methodology is a way to build businesses and products by quickly figuring out if a business idea works. It’s about shortening the time to develop a product and determining if the business model is good. This method is all about learning what customers want and need and avoiding spending time and money on products that no one is interested in.

Here is a simplified explanation of the lean startup methodology:

  • Start with a hypothesis. What problem are you trying to solve? Who is your target customer? What value are you providing your customer through your startup?
  • Create a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) – the most basic version of your product. This lets you test your ideas and see if they work in the market.
  • Get feedback from customers. Use your MVP to get feedback from potential customers and learn what they like and don’t like.
  • Iterate and improve your product. Take the feedback from customers and make your product better. Keep going back to steps 2 and 3 until you have a product that customers really love.

The Lean Startup Methodology is a proven way to build successful businesses. It helps avoid wasting time and money by creating products customers want.

Here are some examples of how companies have used the lean startup methodology:

Airbnb started out by offering air mattresses on the floor of the founders’ apartment. This allowed them to test their hypothesis that people would be willing to stay in someone else’s home if it was affordable and convenient.

Stripe started out by offering a way for small businesses to accept online payments. This allowed them to test their hypothesis that small businesses needed a simple and affordable way to accept payments online.

In Lean Startup, we use tools and measurables to see how customers respond and build a business model. One key tool is the Business Model Canvas.

What is a business model canvas?

A business model canvas is a concise, one-page visual representation of the essential elements of a business. It is a tool that can be used to design, develop, and test new business models or improve existing ones.

The business model canvas is helpful for entrepreneurs and business owners as it guides them in thinking through all the crucial aspects of their business. It can also be used to communicate a business model to investors, partners, and other stakeholders.

Once you have completed the business model canvas, you will clearly understand all of your business’s key aspects. You can use this information to make well-informed decisions on expanding and improving your business.

How to write a business model canvas?

Business Model canvas

A business model canvas is like a single-page blueprint showing the essential elements of a business. It’s a tool to create, develop, and test new business ideas or improve existing ones.

How to evaluate a startup idea?

Following are the steps to evaluate a startup idea:

  • Problem: Identify a real problem that people face.
  • Solution: Make sure your idea solves this problem.
  • Market: Check if there are enough people who need your solution.
  • Competition: See if others are already doing something similar.
  • Unique: Make sure your idea is unique or better than the competition.
  • Costs: Calculate how much it will cost to start and run your startup.
  • Revenue: Estimate how much money you can make from your idea.
  • Feedback: Talk to people and get their opinions on your idea.
  • MVP: Create a simple version to test with real users.
  • Iterate: Keep improving based on user feedback.

You can also evaluate your startup idea with the help of the business model canvas.

Part 2: Product Development

What is an MVP?

MVP stands for Minimum Viable Product. This refers to a version of a product that only includes the essential features, making it usable for early customers.

The purpose is to gather feedback for future product development. Emphasizing the release of an MVP helps developers avoid prolonged and unnecessary work. Instead, they iterate on working versions and respond to feedback, challenging and validating assumptions about a product’s requirements.

The goal of an MVP is to test a product idea with real users as quickly and cheaply as possible. This allows the team to learn what users like and don’t like about the product and to make changes before investing too much time and money into development.

Some examples of MVPs include:

  • A landing page with a sign-up form to gauge interest in a new product.
  • A prototype of a mobile app with only the most basic features.

How to build a minimum viable product?

You can build a minimum viable product by following these steps:

1. Conduct Market Research

The first and most crucial step in creating an MVP is doing some research on your potential customers. This helps you understand what the people you want to sell to really want in a product or service, as their needs keep changing.

How to do market research for startups? 

To do market research for startups, you can follow these steps:

  • Set clear goals.
  • Define your target market and its needs.
  • Collect data (primary and secondary).
  • Analyze data for trends.
  • Make conclusions and recommendations based on the data.

2. Identify Your Target Users

Who are you building the MVP for? What are their needs and wants? Once you know your target users, you can start to design an MVP that meets their needs.

3. Prioritize features

All features are not of equal importance. Some features play a more crucial role in achieving your goals than others. Prioritize the features that are most important for your MVP.

4. Build your MVP

Once you know what features to include in your MVP, you can start building it. This may involve coding, designing, or developing a prototype.

5. Analyze the Feedback

Once your MVP is built, you need to test it with real users. This will help you learn what users like and don’t like about the MVP and identify improvement areas.

6. Iterate and improve

Once you’ve collected user feedback, it’s time to start improving your MVP. Keep testing it with users, making changes as you go until you’re satisfied with the product.

Part 3:Startup Structuring

How to protect your startup legally?

If you want to protect your startup legally, you will need to follow these steps:

  • Register your business with the government. This helps define your business’s legal status.
  • Choose the right structure. Decide if you want to be a sole proprietor, LLC, or corporation. Each has different legal rules.
  • Use contracts for everything, like partnerships, employees, and customers.
  • Protect your ideas and brand with patents, trademarks, and copyrights. They stop others from copying you.
  • If you collect customer data, have a privacy policy. It tells people how you’ll use their information.
  • Follow laws and regulations related to your industry. Different businesses have different rules.

Legal protection keeps your startup safe and running smoothly. When in doubt, ask a lawyer who specializes in business law. They can guide you.

How to set up a core team for your startup?

Building a solid team for your startup sounds simple, but it’s actually pretty tricky. When you are on a tight budget, attracting top-notch talent becomes a real challenge. The smart move? Start with personal recommendations and connections – that’s your best bet for assembling your initial team.

Wanna know more about teams and teamwork? Read this blog: How to Be a Team Player?

How to find a co-founder for your startup?

Choosing your co-founder is a big deal in the startup world. As an entrepreneur, take your time and think hard about it. It’s a decision that needs careful consideration.

Finding someone passionate about starting a business can happen in many different places. You can search for a co-founder for your startup in places you already know, like your classmates or colleagues who also love startups. You can also meet potential partners at startup events or online in groups talking about startups on social media.

Part 4: Funding

How to raise funds for your startup idea?

Starting a business needs money, whether it’s a small or big one. Having funds gives your business a strong foundation and allows it to grow. Getting money for a startup can be tough, but we’ve made it simple. Here are some types of funding for startups.

Types of funding for startups

Startups can secure funding through various methods:

  1. Debt: Obtaining small business loans from lenders.
  2. Grants: Financial awards from the government (federal, state, local) based on competition.
  3. Crowdfunding: Collecting small contributions online from individuals.
  4. Venture Capital: High-risk investments in startups with significant growth potential.
  5. Angel Investors: Wealthy individuals offering small to substantial investments.
  6. Series Funding: Raising capital in rounds, starting from seed funding to Series A, B, C, etc.

So, these are different ways through which you can get money for your startup. You can pick the one that works best for your business.

For additional information on startup funding, read this blog- 4 Ways To Get Your Startup Funded.

Have you ever heard of startup incubators?

Startup incubators are organizations that help early-stage businesses and startups in getting started. These resources can include mentorship, funding, office space, networking opportunities, and other forms of support. A startup incubator aims to help these businesses become successful and self-sufficient. 

Part 5: Pivoting

What is pivot in a startup?

A pivot in a startup means changing your business idea or strategy to something new when you see that your original plan isn’t getting the results you want.

Imagine you start a company with the idea of selling fancy shoes, but then you notice that people are more interested in your fancy shoeboxes. Instead of sticking to shoes, you focus on making and selling those beautiful boxes because that’s what’s really catching people’s attention. That’s a pivot.

When is the right time to pivot?

Companies should only consider pivoting when there are no other options left. Here are some signs that might indicate it’s time to consider a pivot:

  • You’ve invested a lot of money and resources but aren’t seeing significant progress.
  • Customers aren’t responding to your products as you expected.
  • A lot of competition is making it tough to stand out.
  • Your company’s growth has hit a roadblock.

Part 6: Marketing and Launch

A successful startup is backed by a powerful marketing strategy. This strategy defines where, when, and how you engage with potential customers to promote the brand.

Your marketing strategy should convey a positive message that resonates with customers, motivating them to choose your business.

Consider the core purpose of your business and use it as a guiding principle for developing your startup’s marketing strategy.

Types of Marketing Channels

Some of the popular marketing channels are:

  1. Social media
    Navigating the modern business landscape requires a strong social media presence. Startups can boost their brand using the power of social media marketing.
  2. Digital advertising
    With the help of digital advertising, startups can leverage images, audio, and video marketing to captivate audiences, showcase products, and build their brand presence online.
  3. Search engine optimization (SEO)
    SEO is a critical part of the marketing strategy of startups because it increases the visibility of a website on search engines. Successfully optimizing web content can boost traffic and conversion rates.
  4. Email marketing
    Email marketing is a powerful tool for startups to engage with their audience. It allows them to encourage people to sign up for services, send regular newsletters for sale announcements, and personally reach out to clients for referrals.If you want to learn more about this, try reading “Traction.” It not only explains key business principles but also offers practical tools to understand your business and plan ahead.


Now that we are at the end of this ultimate guide to kickstarting your startup journey, with the knowledge to turn your dreams into reality, you have the tools to safeguard your startup from failure.

Hope you have learned how to build a startup from scratch. Let’s get into action! Take that first step, put what you’ve learned into practice, and witness your startup taking flight.

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Have you been dreaming of building your own startup? It’s time to take action! Join my workshop right away to make those startup dreams come true.


Aamir Qutub Aamir Qutub, the founder and CEO of Beyond Grades, has a sincere passion for innovation and startups. With over a decade of experience in entrepreneurship, he has successfully co-founded 4 technology startups and invested in dozens of other startups, focusing on real-world problems and their solutions. When not juggling with his reports and presentations, he loves to create unconventional recipes and cherish moments with his family.


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