5 Reasons Start-Ups Fail

Start-Ups Fail - Complete Controller

Start-ups have been the hyped-up success story of the former decade, with a few new companies not just hitting it big, but changing the face of business development. But for every successful start-up, countless others fail, sometimes mysteriously and often unobserved. No one goes into business expecting to fail, yet a good number of new start-ups do. To understand what causes failures, listed below are the top five reasons why start-ups tend to fail. Check out America's Best Bookkeepers

Market Problems

A primary reason why new businesses fail is that they run into the problem of there being little or no market for the product that they have built. Here are some common indications:

  1. There is not a convincing enough value proposition to cause the buyer actually to commit to procuring. Good sales reps will tell you that to get an order in today’s challenging circumstances. You have to find buyers who have their “hair on fire” or “in thrilling pain.” 
  2. The market timing is not right. You could be ahead of your market by a few years, and the public may not be ready for your specific resolution at this step.
Luckily, you may have had the funding to last through the early stages, but the market size of people that need your services and have funds to come to you is not large enough.

Business Model Failure

One of the most common causes of failure in the start-up world is that entrepreneurs are too optimistic about how easy it will be to acquire customers. They assume that, because they will build an interesting web site, product, or service, they will beat a path to their door. That may happen with the first few customers, but after that, it quickly becomes an expensive task to attract and win customers if you do not have a proper business model in place. Check out America's Best Bookkeepers

The Capital Efficiency “Rule”

 If you would like to have a capital-efficient business, it is essential to recover the cost of acquiring your customers in less than 12 months. Wireless carriers and banks break this rule, but they have the luxury of access to cheap capital.

Poor Management Team

An incredibly common problem that causes start-ups to fail is a weak management team. A good management team will be smart enough to avoid these reasons.  Weak administration teams make errors in multiple regions:

  1. They are frequently ineffective in strategy, building a product that no one wants to buy as they failed to do enough work to validate the ideas before and during development.
  2. They are usually poor at execution, which leads to issues with the product not getting built correctly or on time.


Running out of Cash

A fourth primary reason that start-ups fail is that they run out of cash. A vital job of the CEO is to understand how much money is left and whether that will carry the company to a milestone that can lead to successful financing or cash flow positive. Check out America's Best Bookkeepers

Product Problems

Another reason new businesses fail is that they miss the mark in developing a product that meets the market’s needs. This failure can either be due to simple execution or a far more strategic problem, which is a failure to achieve Product/Market fit. Most of the time, the first product that a start-up brings to the market won’t meet the market need. It will take a few revisions to get the product/market fit right in the best cases. In the worst cases, the product will be way off base, and a complete re-think is obligatory.


Some start-ups prosper, yet so many fail. And it is a failure that teaches us the best lessons. Many other reasons start-ups fail, but these five came up as most common when inquiring about the founders and team members involved in the start-up ecosystem. Should your start-up fail, it’s worth spending some time understanding what went wrong and learning from your mistakes to make it the next time.

Check out America's Best Bookkeepers About Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual bookkeeping, providing service to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud-hosted desktop where their entire team and tax accountant may access the QuickBooks™️ file, critical financial documents, and back-office tools in an efficient and secure environment. Complete Controller’s team of certified US-based accounting professionals provide bookkeeping, record storage, performance reporting, and controller services including training, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, process and controls advisement, and bill-pay. With flat-rate service plans, Complete Controller is the most cost-effective expert accounting solution for business, family-office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity. Check out America's Best Bookkeepers