Every year in the United States, over half a million businesses open up.

If you’re an entrepreneur who has recently set up a business, thumbs up! However, one of the things you’ll quickly learn is you need to protect your business’s assets.

Risks are everywhere.

A severe storm can run down your business premises and damage your equipment and stock. Or an electrical fault can cause a fire that reduces your business to ashes…

You need to know how to protect your assets from such risks.

In this article, we’re telling you how to do it

Make Strategic Decisions Right From the Start

The hard work of protecting a business doesn’t start when a business is up and running. It starts before it even opens its doors.

One important aspect to consider is the location of your upcoming business.

You see, most business owners focus on finding a location that’s has a high number of potential customers and a low number of competitors. Sure, setting up a business in such a location is a smart move, but what if the area is prone to earthquakes or floods? A severe weather event can bring your business to its knees.

As such, you must consider the safety and security of a location when opening a business. If there’s an imminent threat to your assets, you can opt to find another location that’s less prone to the physical risks you’re avoiding.

Alternatively, you could set up an online business. Web-based enterprises typically aren’t vulnerable to physical risks such as adverse weather.

There are four types of legal structures for business:

  • Sole proprietorship
  • Partnership
  • Limited liability company
  • Corporation (S & C corporations).

Every structure has an impact on your liabilities as a business owner.

As a sole proprietor, you’re fully responsible for your business’ debts and other liabilities. If someone sustains injuries while on your premises, they have a right to sue you for compensation. If you’re unable to pay a business loan, your creditors can come after your personal assets.

Unlike a sole proprietorship, a partnership can offer some liability protection. If you choose to become a limited partner in any business partnership, your liability for the business debts cannot exceed the value of your investment.

A limited liability company, like a limited partnership, protects you from the company’s debts when its liabilities exceed the capital you invested.

Corporations offer the best liability protection. Under the law, a corporation is an entity that’s fully responsible for its debts.

While some of these legal structures can protect your personal assets, they can also protect a business’s assets. If you register your business as an LLC, for example, it’s easier to file for bankruptcy protection when someone is after its assets.

Also, setting up an LLC is ideal especially when real estate asset protection is your primary goal.

Purchase Adequate Insurance Coverage

In business, some risks are simply unavoidable.

Weather catastrophes, for instance, can happen anywhere, regardless of whether a certain area is known to be prone. Or burglars can break into your business and steal valuables, regardless of the security measures you had put in place.

This is where business insurance comes in.

Although there is general liability insurance, there are different types of business insurance policies you can purchase to cover specific areas in your business.

There’s worker’s compensation insurance to pay for your employees’ healthcare expenses and loss of income when they get injured on the job. There’s product liability insurance to protect your business from claims arising from injuries caused by product malfunctions.

Other types of business insurance coverage include:

  • Property insurance
  • Vehicular insurance
  • Business interruption insurance
  • Cyber insurance
  • Professional liability insurance.

Business insurance costs money. The more coverage you need, the more money you need to pay. If you’re anything like most small business owners, you might be tempted to forgo purchasing insurance, unless it’s mandatory.

Don’t make this mistake.

When you want to protect your business, then the cost of insurance is worth it. A single lawsuit, for instance, can drive your business into bankruptcy.

Enter Into Proper Contracts

In the course of business, you’ll enter into contracts with various parties.

These contracts can expose you to risk and leave your assets vulnerable. For example, when you into a financing agreement with a lender, your real estate assets could be on the line in the event that your business defaults on the loan.

Entering into a proper contract can be all you need to protect your assets, even if you’re unable to service the loan. If you can manage to agree in writing that your physical assets cannot be claimed under any circumstances, then your lender will have no right to come after them. If they do, you can sue them in a court of law and win.

Keep an Eye on Employee Fraud

Sometimes it’s rogue employees who’re the biggest threat to your business and its assets.

As an employer, it’s your responsibility to curb employee fraud. Developing effective protocol policies and installing security and surveillance systems at your premises will go a long way in preventing internal theft.

Don’t Mix Personal Assets With Business Assets

Small business owners, especially those running sole proprietorships, have a tendency of mixing personal assets with business assets. Doing this is like shooting your business in the arm.

In case you have some personal liabilities, like a secured personal loan, lenders can come after your business assets because you haven’t separated them from your personal assets.

How to Protect Your Assets Simplified

You’ve worked so hard to open a business and acquire valuable assets. Don’t leave them exposed to risks. With this guide on how to protect your assets, you now know how to keep what belongs to your business under lock and key.

Keep reading our blog for more small business tips and insights.

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Do Apps Still Make Money? Here is What 6 Developers Think

The app market is extremely saturated. But the mobile market is still gathering momentum..fast. Mobile apps have changed how we work, live, connect and what we do for entertainment. Mobile apps will continue to shape the thoughts consumers, small businesses, enterprises, and even the government.

Forrester expects that more than 25% of companies will use mobile not as a channel, but as a fully integrated part of their overall strategy. They believe 2016 will be the most consequential year for companies on the path to customer obsession, and that includes adapting empowered customers who expect to get anything they want immediately, in context on their mobile devices.

There is still a lot of demand for apps. Mobile apps have evolved beyond providing just information. Artificial intelligent and voice-based personal assistants are inspiring conversational and smart apps.

But most app developers are struggling to get attention. Majority of app developers don’t get rewarded for their efforts. Most apps don’t generate profits but serve as an extension of an existing business. And he vast majority of apps are free.

In-app purchases and advertising allow app creators to make money off their free apps. There are only few hits though. Here is what some redditors think about the prospects ofaunching an app.

1. kevinbracken

Absolutely, yes they do. I sold my fitness app last year to a larger company, and know many people whose app-based companies are making money.

However, the thing that many people fail to realize is that you are not building “an app,” you are building a business, and mobile is simply the fastest-growing channel in the world. You can do your own research but in the not-so-distant future, mobile will make up the vast majority of all web traffic and online sales.

To answer the second part of your question, if you have limited resources, absolutely target iOS. Notice how when new, serious companies with venture financing and previously successful founders start companies, they launch iOS apps first. Reasons:

  • iOS users download more apps
  • iOS users spend considerably more through their phones
  • iOS users know they are iOS users. Don’t underestimate the importance of this: many Android users simply buy the cheapest phone and don’t spend much time thinking about downloading apps, would never put their credit card number in a phone, etc.

2. austincha

I created some apps for both the App Store and the Google Play store. The App Store is strict on the quality of apps they allow to be uploaded, so I then just focused on Android apps. I made simple games and even some Live Wallpaper apps. My best games only made a couple hundred dollars and the LWPs made about a hundred.

I’ve stopped creating apps because the payout wasn’t worth the time and effort I put into coding the apps. I’ll have to say 99% of the app developers out there are not making money for the time and effort they put into the apps.

3. ZeikCallaway

Android developer here. As others have pointed out, apps can still make money, but the days of just having an app for money are pretty much over. Apps become exponentially more powerful, and likely to be used if they’re complimentary to a bigger software or service.

Also when deciding Android vs iOS, if you can, you should target both because they’re pretty even as far as market share. If you had to pick just one to start, I can’t tell you which is better but from my perspective and experience, Android seems to be gaining more market share albeit very slowly but, iOS will have a more consistent experience.

In other words, some Android devices may not work with your app the way you expect, so even they do take a strong lead over iOS devices there will still be a number of them that have problems.

4. RPN

Of course they still make money. Actually now more than ever as every year the worldwide app revenue grows exponentially. AppAnnie predicts that gross revenue across all app stores will eclipse $100 Billion in 2020.

The problem is that it’s now more competitive than ever. For an independent developer it is getting increasingly difficult to make a living building apps.

5. EatSafeUK

A lot of people have a weird view on apps as if they are magical no effort cash cows. But you have to see it for what it is, simply a distribution platform.

Can you build an app, throw it out there and effortlessly get millions of downloads and rake on money? No.

But if you are developing a solution to a problem that is best served with mobile then an app is appropriate. My research for my current project showed that the problem was biggest when people were out and about, so a mobile app works best.

But it’s just the distribution method. The rest of the business is the same as before; you need to identify customers, you need to effectively promote, you need to push yourself in front of people.

The app store is too saturated to expect to be discovered there. But just like a real store, the brands on the shelves do everything they can to get you to want to buy their products before you ever get through the door. Its the same in the app world.

iOS does seem to have a less price sensitive user base though, so if you want to charge for the app they’re the best people to target.

6. the_brizzler

They haven’t died down. It is just harder for the average guy or gal to make sure it is discovered. Sort of like websites…anyone can build a website…but how do you get visitors?…well that takes some marketing and strategy.

There are plenty of people making a decent living making niche apps that serve a specific purpose. But if you are trying to make a flashlight app…forget about it…apple won’t even let you publish it since there are already too many. So you just have to be smart about what you make and how you get people to find your app.

Related: 6 Easy Steps to Get Funding for Your App Startup

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