Running a Business Effectively

Running a business can feel a lot like juggling, much like parenting does. At any given moment you could have a lot of balls up in the air, and you can’t afford to drop a single one. However, some areas of your business are going to be more important than others and should be considered a top priority. It’s crucial that you know what these areas are and how to handle them effectively. This is something I learnt very quickly!

running a business

 

Security Matters

It’s safe to say that security has become a major issue for every business owner and indeed, every customer. In the next few years, cybertheft will become the main problem for companies with a hack on a company expected to occur every twenty seconds. When a cyber hack does occur then, it’s not your business that is targeted but rather your customers. It’s their data that’s being stolen. It’s them who is actually at risk.

Recently business owners in Europe were put through the ringer with the new GDPR, a set of data regulations and a hefty threat of fines for not remaining compliant. You may have noticed that a number of high profile websites are now no longer accessible in Europe, suggesting their security was simply not up to code.

Increased security can start at a basic level simply by running your site on Https, a higher level of encryption compared with Http. Make sure you are up to date with what your business needs to do in order to be GDPR compliant and of course as secure as possible.

Data and Running a Business Effectively

While data is certainly linked to security, this is not the only reason for focusing on this area of business. You should also be thinking in terms of what data can do for your company. Ultimately, using data correctly you can chart not just where your business is but where it is going and what it can be. Every major company invests in data analytics or uses a service like Cloudstream Partners, and you should consider doing the same. With this type of setup, you can unlock the true potential of data from discovering what your customers want from your business to finding out what your next step should be.  

Legal

Are you worried about the legal aspects of your company? The answer is probably no, but you should be. It’s very easy to fall on the wrong side of the legal line when running a business. Regulations and laws change every day, and if you don’t keep up with these new evolutions, then you could find yourself with legal fees and claims against your company. Do make sure that you consider investing in the services of a legal advisor who can keep you on the right path here and have insurance in place. 

Logistics

Lastly, do make sure that the logistics area of your business model runs like clockwork. It’s vital that deliveries and orders are handled fast with turnaround time kept low. A failure to do this will result in poor customer reviews that could cripple your business bottom line. Whether you are a freelancer such as myself or run a bricks and mortar business or even a big company, having effective management of these things is a must.

What would you say is essential to running a business effectively?

 

Make Your Small Business Stand Out From The Crowd

small businessI started my first small business over twelve years ago and have been self-employed ever since. Everyone who starts a small business will want to make sure their brand stands out from the crowd. That is especially the case in crowded marketplaces and industries where you might struggle to steal the lion’s share of the market from competitors. With that in mind, there are some tips and tricks listed in this post that tend to work well across the board. Maybe you could use some of them to create your strategy for the next few months and see if these concepts help to bring about improvements? I’m pretty sure that you will see a boost in results if you add some of these suggestions to your plan.

Get a Decent Website

The first thing you need to do to stand out from the crowd involves paying for the design and construction of a secure and stunning website that blows your competitors out of the water. Spend a reasonable amount of time looking at and assessing rival sites for the best results. Write a list of changes that could make those domains better for the customer, and then get in touch with a reputable web development team with an excellent track record. Explain what you want to achieve and make sure everyone is on the same page.

Find Unusual Small Business Marketing Techniques

Sometimes you have to think outside of the box when it comes to marketing and promoting your brand in a crowded marketplace. Sure, you’ll open a Google Adwords account and drive as much traffic to your website as possible using banner ads. You will also invest in a social media advertising campaign using sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. However, you might also think about something a little unusual. Perhaps you could arrange some publicity stunts (nothing crass!) or something similar? You can find lists of successful stunts performed by other companies in the past online. So, take the time to research them and see if you can come up with something similar.

Get a Desirable Address

If you’re based in England, Wales, or Scotland; and you sell products or services to other businesses; the businessaddress you use is going to become a factor in your success. Do not make the mistake of renting an office in London or something similar for your small business because that will cost a fortune and prevent you from making a killing each year. However, thankfully, there is another option on the table that tends to work well. There are companies out there that specialise in giving brands like yours a desirable UK mail forwarding address.

Outsource Customer Service

Unless you have experience in customer service; it is always sensible to outsource that job to professionals. There are specialist call centres all around the world that will answer the phones on your behalf and read from a script you provide. So, your customers won’t realise they’re not dealing with someone directly employed by your company. Also, that means you are free to focus on the growth and success of your venture rather than responding to less than happy people on the telephone all day long. Make sure you choose a customer service team that make customer service a priority and who understand your brand values.

Work on your Branding

Branding is very important in the business world, and you need to work hard to ensure you remain consistent across all platforms. Choose some branding essentials for your company like a logo, fonts, and colour schemes. You then need to make sure you use the same approach across everything you do. If you decide to open social media accounts; the pages should contain the same logos and branding as you use everywhere else. The same goes for people who might decide to open a retail store or something similar. Consistency is the key, and you need to work towards it as much as possible. Also, take the time to research different colours and what they mean or denote before pushing ahead.

Get Involved With Worthy Causes

road trip

Lots of business owners manage to achieve success and get lots of publicity when they support charities or worthy causes. So, the next time someone walks into your office and asks if you’d be willing to hear their pitch; try to avoid throwing that person out of your premises straight away. Listen to their request because you never know how it might benefit your company. Perhaps the person wants to run a charity night for a sick local child or something similar? Maybe they want you to sponsor a music event for underprivileged children? Agreeing to something like that will mean you need to make an investment. However, the spending could pay for itself following all the free publicity you will receive, not to mention the good karma.

Be Honest and Reliable

Lastly, if you want your company to stand out from the crowd and get lots of repeat custom’ you need to make sure you are honest and reliable. If customers feel like they were ripped off; they are unlikely to buy from your brand again. If you take forever to deliver their orders; they will inevitably begin to look elsewhere to make their purchases. Always remember that honesty and transparency is the best policy.

After reading the information in this post; you should now have a reasonable idea of what it will take to ensure your small business doesn’t disappear into obscurity. Make sure you use all these suggestions and attempt to mix things up as much as possible for the best outcomes. When all’s said and done, there are probably many competitors in your industry, but you have the advantage of being smaller than them. That means you can apply changes and improvements much faster than established companies that employ a lot of people. Use that fact to your advantage, and you can’t go wrong.

Over the past twelve years I’ve tried all sorts of strategies to boost my business and these are some of those which have offered real results to my small business.

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