How to let your business thrive and succeed
What do small business owners need help with?
According to Australian bureau statistics, nearly 60 per cent of small businesses fail in the first 3 years of their existence. There are various reasons for failure – lack of funding, lack of a structured business plan, an inadequate management team, lack of infrastructure and lack of marketing.
Small businesses need to understand that it will take some time to establish everything from preparation to planning, building, and growing. This is a very long process, especially if you are starting a business from scratch. To taste success, all factors in the business need to be consistent like finances, introduction of a new product, branding, marketing, management etc.
The present economy is full of choices, every single product a business introduces has more than thousands of similar product options that a customer can choose from. The market is now driven by “wants” and even those are satisfied by a lot of available choices. For a small business to succeed in putting their product or service in front of the potential customers, owners need to do extensive research on each aspect of business for example cash flow, finding new customers, discovering new online businesses, understanding entrepreneurship and more.
There is no definite answer to what a small business wants, applying best practices to the business will ensure business safety in the least. Here are a few areas where owners can focus on:
1. Management Tips
For most small businesses employees are their pillar stones and often employers do mention that “employees are our business” but mere saying is not enough. This generosity needs to be shown while giving them a raise and bonus.
This is not always possible, especially during pandemic time and certainly, for a startup, it is very difficult. When cash flow issues prevent the employers to give out the desired raise to their employees here are three affordable ways that successful businesses employers can use as a reward to their employees:
a. Recognize an employee's hard work
Cash is always great, but the second close thing is recognition of the job well done. For both full-time and part-time employees, being appreciated is very important. A research survey has shown that more than 68% of employees said that being recognized and appreciated in their job is a key factor for job satisfaction.
There are many ways to do this like
- Praise from customers or coworkers can be reprinted in your eprinted/published in your Newsletter/Linked In /twitter/Facebook and other social handles.
- HR can set up some awards to be rewarded to their employees every month like “star performer of the month”, “best performer of the month”,” loyalty award” etc. These awards can be presented to employees in a team event or meeting.
- A simple letter or small gift as a token of gratitude to the employee’s family mentioning how valuable and great their loved one is to the company and the team. This would go a long way in making the relationship stronger.
b. Say Thanks
People loved to be thanked, so a simple “Thank you” can do wonders. It can be a thank you call from CEO/MD, a night out with a team, or some gift hamper. There are a lot of ways to say thanks.
c. Give them what they want
Employers need to be on top of everything, they should understand employees’ requirements like what project they would like to work on? If he requires any specific training to enhance his career etc. A feasibility study needs to do done. An employer should try to meet their requirements, this way your employee will be happier, and you will be a happier boss.
2. Money Tips
For all businesses, money plays a significant role, many entrepreneurs also find that success comes easier when there is money. Without money business operations will be difficult like securing the required supplies/equipment and tackling unexpected expenses can be difficult. Few points to consider regarding finances
a. Not All Debt is Bad Debt
There is a difference between good debts and bad debts. For the business to move forward, good debts are manageable, but if the debts bother your business, like debts with higher interest rates or debts incurred for items you may not need or are debts that you cannot pay back, it will be termed as a bad debt.
Bad debt is harmful to a business. Entrepreneurs need to make a good decision on their debts, distinguish the type of debt and avoid bringing bad debts to the business.
b. Keep the Business Credit profile up
To succeed in your small business and have it gone boom; you must have good business credit. It gives you a chance to get loans /investors easily with fewer procedures at a reasonable rate.
Here are a few tips to follow:
- For any business loan, always ensure that the businesses pay them off timely.
- Keep your business debt and personal debts separate.
- Always keep your vendors happy by making prompt payments to their invoices.
- To receive a loan or an investor, always have a well-structured Business Plan ready.
c. Reduce Rental Cost
Small businesses should do detailed research on what vacancy rates are there in your area and use that data to negotiate a better deal for office rent. Especially after post-pandemic, finding cheaper digs is smart. You may also weigh running the business from home
3. Marketing Tips
Most businesses believe that if they build a good and efficient product or service, the customer will come in automatically. But this is a wrong concept, businesses not only require a good product or service but also need an efficient way to market these products and services.
We live in the era of abundance; every single product category has thousands of brands for the customers to choose from. Cutting through the clutter is hard, and expensive, and it’s only getting harder. You cannot rely on customers simply “discovering” you, you need to go to them and that’s done via Marketing.
To succeed in putting your product or service in front of potential customers, every business needs to invest in marketing.
Using some or all of the ways listed below is smart as people consume information in different ways. Here are many ways you can market your business:
- Build a website.
- Master social media
- SEO, PPC
- Create videos
- Start a blog
- Rock email marketing
- Have a Podcast
- Try out mobile marketing.
The list goes on, each one of these offers even more choices like SEO for your website, drilling down into different social handles for brand awareness. So, for a business to succeed an entrepreneur needs to cast as wide of a net as possible and use them all.
The best part of all the above-mentioned digital marketing is that it does not cost much, yet it lets you market to your target audience. Small businesses have very few options as traditional marketing avenues are expensive. However, digital marketing is vastly less expensive and gives a better ROI. Yet what takes time is building content and being consistent.
Small businesses can go big and try out as many of these affordable ideas and see what works, create a few templates, target their customer base and blast off.
To conclude a successful small business must have four things intact Product, Market, Money, and People. So, every business needs to
- Make a key decision: The decisions made by an entrepreneur can affect many areas of the business including the licenses, tax and volume of paperwork required.
- Plan Your Business: Every business needs to analyze the business idea and then develop its business plan, risk management plan and marketing plan.
- Help Your Business: Every business should have the right resource in the right place to help the business run smoothly and grow. So, find your resource to help you with your business from general business advice to financial assistance and support for your mental health and wellbeing.
- Register your Business: The business should be legal and needs to register. Need to ensure that your business gets taxed at the right rate, avoid penalties and protect your brand and ideas. Get the business legally protected and if required consult a legal professional for help.
- Prepare your finances: It is essential to take charge of your finances and manage the business cash flow efficiently. A bad decision in finance will break your business so if required take a financial advisor’s help.
- Set up operations: Process-driven operations to be set to your business and this will save you trouble in a long run and give you more time to focus on running your business.
- Market your Business: Promote your business and brand to your target audience to grow your customer base.