April 18, 2017

How to Improve Your Business the Easy Way

As a small business owner, you probably don’t have the time or the budget to make big changes to improve your business. However, even minor changes can make a noticeable difference to your bottom line. Here are some of our best tips to help your business stay on track.

  1. Use the right tools.

You wouldn’t use a hammer on a screw and it’s just as important to use the right tools to help run your business. At a minimum, you’ll need cloud-based accounting software such as Xero, Quickbooks Online or MYOB Live. Other tools to consider include:

  • Office 365 to keep on top of your paperwork,
  • LastPass to securely manage your passwords,
  • Trello for managing projects,
  • Receipt Bank to keep track of receipts and expense claims,
  • Slack for communicating with your team,
  • Zoom for meetings and
  • Calendly for scheduling appointments.

If you have staff working remotely, you need to be able to manage your teams and ensure everyone has the information they need when they need it. There are many software tools available to help you manage virtual teams. You can find a handy summary of the best ones here.

Many of these tools can be connected using an app such as Zapier to make life even easier by automating many tasks.

  1. Streamline operations.

Small business owners need to run a tight ship as you don’t have the luxury of additional resources that big business has. Some tips to streamline your operations and save both time and money include:

  • Cut back on meetings and only schedule these if absolutely necessary and if they can contribute directly to your business goals.
  • Cut back on emails and allocate certain times of the day to respond to any messages (no more than 3 times per day) and switch off your email at other times. Consider using a messaging service such as Slack to communicate internally instead.
  • Outsource tasks to external professionals such as bookkeepers, accountants and marketing consultants; it’s cheaper than you think and will save you time and money.
  1. Boost staff morale.

A happy workforce is a productive one and there are a number of ways to boost employee engagement without spending a lot of money. Ideas include celebrating staff birthdays with cake, staff picnics, “free dress” and “bring your pet to work” days can all do wonders to boost morale while costing your business very little.

  1. Tweak your marketing.

When was the last time you took a good, hard look at your business’ image? Is your marketing starting to look a bit tired and dated? Maybe it’s time for a refresh. Again, some minor changes can make a big difference:

  • Update your website with new images and content
  • Make regular posts to your social media accounts
  • Start a blog and/or newsletter to keep your customers up-to-date
  • Consider using video to market your business; these days quality videos can be produced using a mobile phone then be easily shared to your target audience via social media

Sometimes, even small changes can make a big difference to your bottom line. Just a 1% cut to costs or a 1% increase in sales can result in an improvement to your cash flow. For more tips on how to improve your business, why not get in touch.

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