Encouraging word of mouth

If you have any doubt that word of mouth referrals are important, consider these recent stats: According to Neilson, 92% of shoppers trust recommendations from friends and family more than traditional advertising 20% to 50% of consumer purchases are made because of a word of mouth recommendation 81% of buyers are influenced by their friends’ social media posts. So how can you encourage positive word of mouth for your small…  Read more

Insights from your Profit and Loss account

Most small business people would agree that their Profit and Loss account (now more correctly called a Statement of Financial Performance) is among the easier – if not the easiest – financial document to understand. It’s typically presented in two parts. The top half of the statement reveals the various sources of income the business has received for the period covered, such as a quarter, half year or full financial…  Read more

Tips for keeping your business data secure

It’s no secret that data loss can be a costly nightmare for a small business, with recent estimates citing the total cost of data breaches exceeding $2.1 trillion by 2019. Unfortunately, cyber attackers increasingly target small businesses because they are less likely to have security protection in place. Accidental loss or loss due to a natural disaster can be just as harmful to a business, with recovery efforts and delays…  Read more

4 ways to make your business easier to sell

Perhaps you’d always planned to build a thriving business to eventually sell for a tidy sum – or maybe for unexpected personal reasons it’s best to let your company go sooner rather than later. No matter what the reason for selling your business, experts agree: it’s best to be prepared well in advance as it can take years to complete a successful sale. These four tips will help you get…  Read more

Preparing an exit strategy

Research has repeatedly shown that businesses that have been prepared for the owner’s exit are significantly more likely to endure than unprepared businesses. These guidelines around an exit strategy can help your business legacy live on – and get you a satisfactory result. Preparation delivers the best results The key message to take away is this: start your exit strategy now – don’t wait until that ‘later time’. Life is…  Read more

Growth hacks for your small business

Deciding on an online marketing plan can be overwhelming for small business owners looking for affordable ways to nurture steady, sustainable growth. With time in short supply, the key is to find one or two growth strategies that will get results at minimal cost. These proven growth hacks offer business owners a few simple, cost-effective ideas for attracting new customers, increasing brand awareness, and ultimately, getting more sales. Build your…  Read more

Three Ways an Accountant Can Save You Money

Many small business owners think they’re saving money by handling their financials themselves. While it’s a real asset to learn bookkeeping basics, cash flow management and your tax obligations, hiring an accountant to oversee your finances has many benefits. Leaving your books to a pro will free up time so you can focus on serving your clients and implementing plans for growth. Here are a few ways an accounting professional…  Read more

Why banks won’t lend to a business

How to obtain financing is a common concern for new businesses and those preparing to scale. Getting approved for a business loan or line of credit is more difficult than qualifying for a personal loan. It’s crucial that small business owners are adequately prepared to meet with a lender to present their business in the best possible light and qualify for the money they need. Here’s what you can do…  Read more

Why Bookkeeping is Crucial to Your Success

Keeping track of sales, earnings, expenses, and purchases is fundamental to the overall health and sustainability of your business. Effective bookkeeping produces the data you need to evaluate your current practices, anticipate challenges, and set attainable future goals. But despite their proven importance, many business owners dread and avoid accounting tasks. In fact, 40% of surveyed entrepreneurs claim that bookkeeping is one the worst parts of running a business! Wondering…  Read more

Use your Accounting Software to Boost Sales

If you think accounting software is just for tracking expenses and generating financial reports, you’re losing out on an opportunity to improve your bottom line. By taking advantage of insights provided by your software solution, you’ll benefit from a more informed approach to marketing and customer service – and by making the most of all the ways your software can improve productivity you can take meaningful action to increase profits.…  Read more

Tips for updating your business plan

Think of your business plan as a roadmap designed to point the way to your current destination, knowing that where you land may not be your ultimate end point. After all, things are constantly changing in a healthy, thriving business. Market fluctuations, new competitors, changes in staffing or your sales figures may nudge you in a direction you wouldn’t have previously dreamed of, requiring new goals and strategies to achieve…  Read more

Tax tips for new business owners

Want to avoid paying more than you should come tax time? Or a frantic last minute search for missing financial records? New business owners have a lot on their plate, and can easily lose track of an approaching tax deadline or financial data needed to submit their return. Organization is key when preparing for tax time. As is taking advantage of the many tools and resources out there to support…  Read more

Finding money within your business

Most small businesses experience cash flow problems from time to time and urgently need working capital. Many business owners immediately think of the bank or loans when they’re short of money. But there are other resources you can tap before you ask for that expensive overdraft or overdraft extension. The money you need might already be there—locked up in inventory, assets or your debtors’ book. You can often free up…  Read more

How to turn your hobby into a business

Thinking about turning your passion into a paying gig? These steps will help you avoid some common mistakes as you set out to earn an income from your favorite pastime. Do you have what it takes? Unless you’ve run a business before, it’s easy to get carried away with the idea of how perfect it will be to get paid for doing what you love. Reality check: the stress of…  Read more

So you’ve launched your business – now what?

Good news for small business owners: according to the US Small Business Administration, nearly 80% of small businesses survive their first year. However, that number begins to drop as time rolls on. Only half of small businesses pass the five year mark, and a mere third celebrate their tenth anniversary. Taking steps to create a good foundation in the early days of your business is essential for a sustainable and…  Read more

10 Money-Saving Tips for Freelancers

While working at home as a freelancer sounds like the ultimate dream for anyone who tires of the rat race, freelancers still have more than their fair share of financial matters to worry about. In fact, perhaps the most important trait that any freelancer should have is the ability to be fully responsible and accountable to themselves, and saving money is something that you will be wholly responsible for. 1.…  Read more

Polite ways to sack a client

Ask anyone who’s been self-employed for a few years. By and large, the vast majority of clients are great. The less than ideal ones, however, can become a serious liability. Problem clients come in all shapes and sizes. There are the late payers and scheduled “no shows”. The ones who are demanding and don’t respect your time. Remember, just because you need to earn a profit doesn’t mean it’s in…  Read more

How to sell more to existing customers

If growth is your primary goal, take note of these two essential sales strategies: cross-selling and upselling. Why? Because it’s much easier to sell to existing customers than to acquire new ones. According to Marketing Metrics, the probability of selling to an existing customer is 60 to 70 percent, while the likelihood you’ll sell to a new prospect is just 5 to 20 percent. Some entrepreneurs use the terms “upselling”…  Read more

Reasons to consider hiring a financial planner

For business owners who want financial security now and freedom in retirement, having a financial planner on the team is a must. A financial planner will create a customized, strategic action plan to help you achieve your personal financial goals. Getting to know you and your business inside out is the first step a financial planner will take to understand where you are now, where you want to go, and…  Read more

10 tips to reduce debtor days for small business owners

Steady, reliable cash flow is crucial for the survival of any small business – so taking steps to ensure your customers pay promptly should be a key priority. When your clients consistently pay on time, you’ll avoid the dreaded “feast or famine” cycle. You’ll be able to pay your vendors, suppliers, and employees on time – and not least of all, yourself. Implement these ten tips now to start getting…  Read more

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