A Guide: How to Stop Wasting Money in Business

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article | A Guide: How to Stop Wasting Money in BusinessTurning over a profit isn’t the only important task that you face as a business owner. You also need to consolidate this money that you make, which is why you need to avoiding wasting it at all costs.

It’s going to mean making use of all resources afforded to you, it’s going to mean making smarter investment choices, and it’s going to mean honing in on your mistakes — it’ll all be worth it in the end, though, when you’ve got a heap of cash to invest into the growth of your business.

To unearth all the things you can do to stop wasting so much money in business, be sure to read on.

Minimize your tax bill

Nobody likes the tax man, but unfortunately, he’s never going to go away. There are, however, ways to minimize the bill slapped on your desk every year.

To minimize your tax bill, you should:

  • Keep a track of your business expenses (receipts, invoices, vehicle mileage, etc.) and then seek to claim for them
  • Tap into the Annual Investment Allowance (AIA)
  • Research and make use of tax reliefs (such as the creative industry relief)
  • Pay your tax bill as early as you can

Invest in good website design

Marketing, especially digital marketing, is essential in the world of business. By not running advertising campaigns, quite simply, you won’t spread your company’s message or attract new customers.

As important as marketing campaigns are, however, they need not cost you an awful lot. More to the point, they need not cost you as much as you are no doubt currently shelling out on them. When you choose to invest your money on good website design instead of advertising, you’ll be sure to find yourself saving thousands in the long run. This is because you’ll have a platform that can act as a constant source of important information; your website can spread your message at all times, meaning you won’t have to constantly spend your money on spreading it yourself.

To ensure that your website does everything a marketing campaign can do and more, you have to align yourself with a web design company like Plego Technologies. They will make sure that your website works well in both a practical and aesthetic sense.

Turn off and unplug your devices

Even when they’re not being used, if they’re still plugged in and turned on, the various devices that you use in your office could be costing you an arm and a leg. They will be using up what is known as ‘vampire energy,’ which means they will be draining your electricity bill for no reason whatsoever.

Before you leave your office of an evening, you and your employees have to go around and make sure everything is turned off and unplugged. Other important forms of action you should be taking in this instance include:

  • Tweaking your power settings so as to ensure your devices shut themselves down or go into hibernation mode whenever they’re not being used
  • Resolving to never leave your desktop computers and laptops on their screen savers — believe it or not, doing this is worse than leaving your monitors and screens to go black
  • Never forgetting the peripherals (your printer and speakers, for instance), as they can suck up a lot of ‘vampire energy’ too

Take the above advice, stop wasting so much money, and put the cash you save to good use!

Improving Your Business With Technology

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article |Technology |Improving Your Business With TechnologyTech has a significant impact on everything we do. From how we wake up in the morning – via that digital alarm clock or your mobile phone. Smart homes where we can turn lights on, set our thermostat, and even make coffee. So it makes sense that technology is going to be good for business. There are more applications for it.

Let’s take a look at a few ways that you can improve your business with technology.

Flexibility

Where once upon a time you’d need to be in the office for each meeting, and communications was a long and arduous process now Slack is commonplace. Big corporations have their in-house versions of instant messaging software too. So you can work from anywhere, anytime and still have access to the people that you need. This gives your team and your the flexibility that wasn’t possible 10 or so years ago.

Hiring

With so many people using the internet to find new jobs and create networks, of course, it makes sense that tech is improving how we now build teams and talent pools. In fact, you can now implement AI in HR and have the process even more streamlined than ever before.

It also means that you can also build a global freelance team. Using various sources, casting a wider net you have access to talent that you haven’t really had until recent years.

Marketing

Marketing is now fast, and anyone can do it. Yes, not everyone can do it well, but there are so many only resources now that it can be easy for almost everyone. Technology has given us tools that can do everything from automating months of content to collating precisely the information we need to take actionable steps.

Email marketing has taken center stage and means you can reach out to your customers in a way that wasn’t possible before. You can utilize all of the social media platforms and reach millions of people, which is substantially more than more traditional marketing in a magazine or a newspaper.

Tools like Buffer, Sprout, MissingLettr and Planoly give us a lot of freedom.

Productivity

You can do everything better and faster. Which is excellent news, because the less time you have to spend on busywork, the more time you have to spend on growing your business, building your network and putting all of that analytics and numbers to work. Tracking your time, creating Pomodoro focus times, Trello boards with a list of tasks you need to do – and share with your team. Task management software gives us so much extra time.

Of course, as with everything, you have to find what works for you personally and for your business too. Not every piece of tech will make sense for you and your company. So when you are trialing new technology take your time and see what is a match. Improving your business with technology is essential if you intend to grow and move with the times.

Relocating Your Business Internationally: A Guide

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article | Relocating Your Business Internationally: A GuideDeciding to relocate your business can come down to a number of factors. Perhaps your service or goods would find more success in a different country. Maybe you’re ready for a new challenge, or a family reason has prompted the move. No matter why you want to move to a new location, there are several considerations you need to keep in mind to ensure it runs smoothly.

The Location

If you’re moving due to a family reason, you will no doubt already have a location in mind. Perhaps your partner or spouse would like to return to their home country. However, if you are relocating to find a new challenge, determining the best place can be tricky. Would your products work better in a hotter climate? Or are they ideal for a country which experiences harsh winters?

Once you’ve chosen the location, you should begin to look for the best place not only for your business to be located but for you and your family also. It’s a challenge to view new homes online, so if you can, try to plan a visit where you can visit a number of properties before choosing one. If you have decided to move to Egypt, for example, Capital Egypt specializes in real estate Egypt and will help you find the ideal property.

Create a New Business Plan

When you began your business, you will have created a business plan. This critical plan will have detailed your idea, the funding you required, the profit you expected to hit in the first year and beyond, and more. However, it’s likely that in a new country, this business plan will not be applicable. That’s because the market will be different, you’ll face different challenges, and you may even require extra funding to get the business off the ground quickly. For that reason alone, it’s time to create a new plan, one which takes into account the new market.

Research the Market Thoroughly

Following on from the above point, when you are relocating your business to a new country, it’s crucial you research the market you’ll be entering. Who will your target audience be? It may be very different from your current audience, depending on the see economic climate, lifestyles, and more. Your market will also be able to show you if you require further funding once you arrive in the new location, or whether you will be getting more bang for your buck once you move.

The Legalities

The legal structure which you used in your home country may be completely different from your new location. In the UK, should you employ workers, you will need to adhere to the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and the Equal Pay Act 1970, to name a few. In contrast, to carry out any business in Egypt, a foreign investor must either establish an Egyptian subsidiary or a brand, which will typically be a joint stock company or a limited liability company. Ensure you are aware of your legal status before making the move.

 

How To Overcome These 3 Common Business Obstacles

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article |Business Obstacles|How To Overcome These 3 Common Business ObstaclesNew businesses face several challenges, from financial difficulties to issues affecting brand reputation. As a business owner, it is vital that you have procedures in place to help you overcome these obstacles, to ensure that your business continues to grow and be a success. With this in mind, here are three common business obstacles and how you can overcome them.

1. Brand reputation

Brand reputation plays a vital role in the growth and success of any business. In this digital age, customer feedback travels fast, and many people rely heavily on the reviews of other consumers when making purchasing decisions. Often, new businesses lack the experience of more established companies, and this can lead to issues such as slow order fulfillment or delays in response times. If you find that your business has received some negative feedback or reviews, then it’s crucial that you take action straight away to resolve any issues. Here are some top tips to help you restore your brand reputation:

  • Respond to any written complaints on your social media sites straight away and publically. Doing so will allow potential customers to see that you are dealing with any customer issues quickly and providing a good level of service.
  • Focus on providing the best customer experience possible. Be honest with your customers and never promise more than you can deliver.
  • Consider installing customer support technology like life chat software. It can be used to provide your customers with instant 24/7 support with any queries.
  • Offer customer loyalty schemes to demonstrate that you value their business. This should also encourage valuable repeat business and referrals.

2. Debt

Most businesses require some form of funding in order to get up and running. Unfortunately, some businesses find themselves in debt and unable to make repayments. This can be due to a number of issues, such as unexpected financial emergencies or poor cash flow management. Try to avoid this by only ever borrowing as much money as you can afford to pay back and having a clear plan in place to make the repayments. If you find yourself having issues with debt collectors, then make sure that you seek legal advice to help you fight lawsuits over debt. It is important that you understand what options you have available to you in this situation and take the best course of action to help protect your business in the long-run.

3. Cash flow

The Telegraph mentions the importance of cash flow, with a large percentage of small businesses failing because of cash flow issues. It is vital that you manage your cash flow effectively and monitor your finances regularly, to ensure that you are sticking to your cash flow budget. Always keep in mind that if your business expenses are more than your income, then you have a cash flow problem. You, therefore, need to manage your spending carefully and look for ways to cut expenses to give your cash flow budget more flexibility. Make sure that you take advantage of accounting and management software that can help you manage your cash flow and finances more efficiently. Finally, you should always store important documents like cash flow spreadsheets in the cloud, so that you can access them remotely from anywhere.

Small Business Inventory Management 101

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article |Small Business Management|Small Business Inventory Management 101It is important to evaluate your small business on a pretty regular basis, to ensure that you are on track to business success and keeping things within your budget. And one of the most integral parts of your small business will be your inventory management. If this isn’t done well, then it can impact the whole of the business. So think about how your small business’s inventory management has panned out? Do you have the right products that are available when you need them? When things are out of stock, have you been losing a lot of money? Likewise, have you lost money because of excess stock?

With all of this in mind, here are some things to think about and what to look for when it comes to making the whole thing easier. So here are some of the best practices that can help you to keep track of your stock. Some good inventory management software should:

  • Help to reduce costs, improve your cash flow, and do what it can to boost the bottom line
  • You can track your inventory in real time
  • You should be able to help you to forecast demand of stock
  • You can prevent product and even production shortages, which can help to save money
  • You can prevent having excess stock and having too many raw materials in stock
  • The software should be accessible right from your POS (point of sale) system
  • You could optimise warehouse organisation, as well as employee time which can be so precious and does impact costs

Storage and Inventory Management

One of the things that you need to plan and think about is how you are storing all of your inventory. You need to think about the practical level of storage, and what will be put where. For example, the popular items are going to be better if they are more accessible, and the special items that need to be kept from damage, should be in a place that isn’t a high-traffic area. You could also think about looking into steel building kits if you need extra space, or are going to be working from home and need some extra inventory stored close to where you are.

Audit Your Stock

Even with a good inventory management software, then from time to time, you will need to count your inventory to make sure that you have different stock in and what you have in matches what your records think you have in. Small businesses do use different techniques, as there could be an annual check, as well as monthly, and perhaps single item checks and spot-checking on things.

Remember Your ABCs

There are many businesses that find it helpful to have some tighter inventory management, particularly over any higher-value items. This can be done by grouping items into either A, B and C. Items classified as A are your big ticket items that make up the smallest percentage of your inventory, but they have the largest consumption value. The items grouped into C, are the things that are the least expensive, but they make up a larger percentage of inventory, and as a result, have the lowest consumption value each year. Any items in the B category are the items that are in-between.