Starting your own business: difficult, expensive, risky. Right? Of course, all of these factors are true for those looking to launch the next Uber, Amazon or Facebook (good luck with that, by the way), but for those of us with slightly less lofty ambitions, it’s not actually as difficult as you might think, especially with all the tools currently at the average person’s disposal. This is the thrust of 48 Hour Start-up, a new book from Mr Fraser Doherty MBE, the 27-year-old founder of a series of food-related businesses including the popular craft beer subscription service Beer52. In the guide, Mr Doherty argues that you can actually set up a business over a weekend, if you put your mind to it. What’s more, he demonstrates this fact, taking the reader step by step through the 48-hour launching of new brand of porridge called Awesome Oats.
“A lot of people have a dream to start a business, but worry that doing so has to be the decision of a lifetime,” says Mr Doherty, “but I wanted to show that it only needs to be the decision of a weekend.” In setting himself this challenge, he says, he discovered that a great deal can be done in a short space of time, from quickly coming up with an idea that will work, to finding a name and setting up an online marketing campaign. He even manages to prototype his product, and get it in front of customers. And all at very little cost. Key to this process, naturally, is making the most of the wide variety of online resources that exist for would-be businessmen, all of which are either free or cost very little to use. In the course of the book, Mr Doherty recommends a lot of these, but as a taster we thought we’d ask him to pick a few favourites. Scroll down to discover the five sites that will help you to start your next cottage industry.