If you have business sense, your small business may thrive.
You’re officially a businessman once you have the required permits and licenses. Once you are incorporated and offer a legal product or service, you can call yourself a successful business owner. It’s another thing to keep a successful business up and running.
Your business’ viability can be protected if you pay attention to critical administrative tasks, such as maintaining relationships with high-quality vendors. The top reasons new businesses fail include needing a strategy or a plan to expand the company to meet the growing demand.
According to stats published in 2019 by the Small Business Administration (SBA), about 20% fail within the first year. Half will be gone in five years.
You can prevent becoming just another statistic by following these tips.
The difference between boom and bust can be determined by documentation quality, time management, and automation of repeatable tasks.
Maintain accurate business financial records: Enter every transaction (customer bills and vendor payments into the appropriate account at least weekly) and keep an eye out for the bottom line. For bookkeeping and taxes, keep copies of all receipts for cash and payments.
Keep (and set) deadlines: Manage administrative tasks with project-management software. This allows you to assign tasks, upload documents to a central repository and create deadlines.
Plan in advance: Schedule your social media campaigns using scheduling software. Email marketing automation can be used to follow up with new leads. Slack and Microsoft Teams are great tools for communicating quickly with your team. You don’t have to hold a meeting if you can explain something in an email.
Be flexible. Slow-moving businesses need help to stay relevant. Agile companies can pivot quickly in response to market changes. Be willing to adjust your course and lean on data. Listen to the four customers’ feedback; be open to your opinions.
Let’s say, for example, that you have conducted interviews with potential customers and discovered that your product needed to be better received or the market needs to be more significant. Refrain from clinging to a business concept that isn’t working. If your business model isn’t working, you may need to consider changing it.
You can switch from the outdated WordPress theme you’ve used for years to a responsive design if your site isn’t getting enough traffic.
Automate as much as you can.
Automating repetitive tasks can save time and prevent small details from falling through the cracks. Have you recently met a potential client at a business networking event? Use your CRM tool to email any new leads visiting your site or follow up automatically with them within 24 hours. Automate your bookkeeping to save time.
Send an automated email to encourage shoppers to finish their purchases. Learn how to automate your payroll management using Excel if you do not use payroll software.
Need help providing 24/7 customer service? Create a chatbot to answer customer questions outside of regular business hours.
Keep a personal touch.
Small businesses can offer a unique personal touch, especially if they have a small staff or are run by the owner. Thank-you cards written by hand can go a very long way. You can also include a small gift with the purchase or give away freebies for reviews.
You can personalize your services using the CRM software to keep track of customer details. Say you are a jeweler and recently sold a customized engagement ring. After marrying, you can send the couple a simple wedding gift and a discount for future purchases.
Protect your intellectual property.
The intellectual property combines trademarks, patents, and copyrights that distinguish ecommerce businesses.
Small businesses must protect designs, business plans, and trade secrets. A competitor who copies your product can damage your reputation and erode your market shares. It’s essential to consult an attorney before registering a trademark or applying for a patent. This will help you understand the legalese and prevent mistakes that could lead to your application being denied.
You should have a fantastic website.
It’s your website that is at the heart of your business. If you don’t have a physical shop, it will be the only way for customers to purchase from you.
It is sacred. Limit colors, pop-ups, and banner ads. Invest time into SEO. Branding is essential to consider before you create a website. Branding creates trust and helps you stand out from your competition.
Your brand’s value proposition should be stated upfront to help new visitors better understand what you have to offer. DuckDuckGo, the popular search engine, is a good example. The homepage of the search engine DuckDuckGo states: “Search without being tracked.” This is an excellent appeal for consumers today who are worried about privacy.
Hire a professional photographer to take pictures of your products. Write detailed product descriptions. Please focus on the benefits of your products, highlight their key features, and tell stories when possible.
Data analytics is not something to be scared of.
The performance of a business can be measured by web analytics, social media, customer relationship management (CRM), and financial analytics.
If your website converts leads, you can see how many monthly customers you attract. You can also find out if people are enjoying your social media and if you need to spend more money.
It is essential to be aware of these things. 67% spend more than $10,000/year for analytics. You can only improve something if you know how to measure it.
Here are some tips to help you get started if analytics is intimidating.
Use CRM data to understand your customers better. What are their purchasing habits? What is the average value of an order? What is the next purchase likely to be?
How to assess your site’s health: What is the website’s bounce rate? What product pages are the most or least popular? Heat maps can help you identify where users tend to hover on your website.
How to determine if social media is working for you? Which posts are the most or least engaging? What is your ROI if you use social media posts that can be purchased?