A Step-by-Step, How-To Guide for Starting a Business

The Startup Roadmap presented by SCORE and FedEx outlines each step in starting a business with information and resources on the most difficult tasks. It also contains tips for working "With Your Mentor" on each topic.

Are You Ready to Start Your Business?

The path to business ownership is an exciting journey. As you embark on your journey, you need a few things to successfully reach your destination. First and foremost, you need a good roadmap or GPS to successfully navigate your way.

The Startup Roadmap, sponsored by FedEx, guides your journey, from your business idea through opening your doors to customers.

Whatever startup route lies ahead of you, the Startup Roadmap provides direction along the way. It will help you chart a course to success, minimizing detours and dead ends so you can get to your goal faster. 

This Roadmap will take you from the initial step of defining your business idea through your ultimate destination: launching your business. In each chapter, we’ll teach you what you need to do and give you the resources and expertise you need to get it done.

The program is flexible, letting you make the business startup journey your own, focusing more on some chapters and less in others. It eliminates fears and intimation and offers a clear vision on how to achieve your business startup goals—especially if you work on it with a SCORE mentor. Entrepreneurs who work with a mentor are five times more likely to start a business than those who do not have a mentor.

Wherever you are in your startup process, SCORE can help.

The Startup Roadmap includes these 12 chapters, but you do not have to take them all:

Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap Chapter 1: Starting Your Journey

Congratulations on taking the first step towards starting your business! Even though many steps lie ahead, our Startup Roadmap can guide you along the journey. Read more


View Course
Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap: Chapter 2 - Are You Ready to Start a Business?

In chapter 2 of the Startup Roadmap, you’ll conduct a thorough self-assessment to confirm that you have what it takes to start a business. Read more


View Course
Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap: Chapter 3 - Defining and Validating Your Idea

In the third chapter of the Startup Roadmap, you’ll define your business idea in detail by completing SCORE’s “Simple Steps for Starting Your Business” program. Read more


View Course
Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap: Chapter 4 - Business Plan or Business Model Canvas?

In the fourth chapter of the Startup Roadmap, you’ll create a business plan that maps out a detailed blueprint for getting to your goal of owning a business. Read more


View Course
Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap: Chapter 5 - Finding Funding

In chapter 5 of the Startup Roadmap, you’ll assess how much money you can contribute and how much you’ll need to get from outside sources for your startup. Read more


View Course
Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap: Chapter 6 - Setting Up Your Business

In this sixth chapter of the Startup Roadmap, you’ll take the first, exciting steps toward making your business plan a reality. Read more


View Course
Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap: Chapter 7 - Accounting, Insurance, and Legal Considerations

In chapter 7 of the SCORE Startup Roadmap, you’ll establish your administrative and operational structure and processes. Read more


View Course
Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap: Chapter 8 - Marketing Your Business

Chapter 8 of the SCORE Startup Roadmap details how to market your business and find your first customers. Read more


View Course
Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap: Chapter 9 - Pricing, Sales, and Distribution

Are you confused on how to price, sell and distribute your products or services for your startup? Watch chapter 9 of the Startup Roadmap for tips. Read more


View Course
Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap: Chapter 10 - Setting Up Your Physical Location

Choosing your startup company’s brick-and-mortar location is a crucial decision. Watch chapter 10 of the Startup Roadmap for tips. Read more


View Course
Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap: Chapter 11 - Staffing Your Business

In chapter 11 of the Startup Roadmap, you’ll think through the costs and benefits of hiring workers, either employees, independent contractors or both. Read more


View Course
Course on Demand

The Startup Roadmap: Chapter 12 - Open for Business

In the last chapter of the Roadmap, you’ll prepare for your grand opening and learn important steps to keep your business running smoothly in its first year. Read more


View Course

Each chapter of the Startup Roadmap contains:

  • Steps to Success: A series of steps you complete in order to move on to the next chapter. Each step contains concrete, actionable tasks to complete, as well as information to help you. Some steps include recommended homework; your mentor may recommend additional work. 
  • With Your Mentor: This section provides suggested topics you can discuss with your mentor. This might include questions you can ask or recommendations on what types of mentors might be best to help you with the current topic. 
  • Resources: Information and resources, including tools, templates, and online workshops, to help you learn more or complete the steps in that chapter. 

To reach your destination faster, work on the Startup Roadmap with a SCORE mentor.

Like an experienced tour guide, your SCORE mentor can point out things you might otherwise miss, offer insider suggestions and shortcuts, and help you make the most of your journey.  

If you dream of business ownership and want clear directions to reach your destination successfully, start the SCORE Startup Roadmap today. And if you work with a SCORE mentor, you don’t have to travel alone.