Tips to help you rebuild your business/ keep your business afloat.
Every small business is different with its own risks and rewards. The following tips apply to all and can help you with your business if you apply them correctly.
COVID-19 has had an impact on all aspects of businesses, but none have been as severely affected as small business owners. Surviving this disaster will require more than just time: you will need to take note of what has happened and what steps you are willing and able to take in order to bounce back. Here are a few of our suggestions:
Look at the big picture!
People tend to attack the most obvious problems without hesitation, which is understandable and could make good business sense in some situations. However, we would also advise for you to take a step back and have a look at the bigger picture.
Have a look at your business, what do you think might need changing or improvement? This is a better way for you to understand the scope of the issue at hand and tackle it with both hands to ensure that your business thrives.
For example, let us say a business owner has an employee who is constantly making the same mistakes repeatedly, would you fire them immediately or would you look further into it? Maybe the manager who oversaw hiring them did not train them correctly, the next thought would be to fire the manager then right……. well yes while that is an option, did you think that maybe the managers relationship with your current clientele is what is bringing in your revenue? We can not just go with the first resolve based on a quick fix.
Start sweating the small things.
Although it is important to always keep an eye on the big picture, a small business owner should not overlook smaller things that may have an big impact on the business. Considering and analysing the numerous factors that bring your customers in the door can help to identify some problems, ineffective advertising is one example of small problems that can put a big dent in your business success.
Going through your quarterly expenses one line at a time can also help. Owners should not be checking for once off expenses, as those items are most likely necessary charges. Instead, you should look for small items that seem innocent but are draining your accounts.
For example, the cost of office supplies can quickly get out of hand if they are ordered improperly. Similarly, if your supplier increases product prices, you should consider looking around for a cheaper supplier. You do not have to stick to one option here, it is always advisable for you to have at least a couple of alternatives to fall back on.
Do not sacrifice Quality.
Keeping a handle on your costs is crucial in tough times. Owners need to get employees on board with the changes that are being made. However, you must ensure that you do not sacrifice quality when making these product changes.
Business owners looking to improve profit margins should be wary of making dramatic changes to key components. For example, if your favourite pizza shop is going through a dry spell the owner can make the decision to increase their margins by purchasing cheaper ingredients, this could work but it could also leave their customers dissatisfied with the drop in quality. The key is to make cost and other cuts that don’t compromise the quality of your product. Perhaps there is a way to cut the price of takeout boxes or paper napkins instead.
If you are unsure of what to do to transform your business, there is absolutely nothing wrong with looking to your competition for inspiration.
Maybe they have moved their in-store shopping experience to one that is entirely available online, or they are providing a new way to use an old product. Maybe they cannot open but are remaining engaged with customers via live sessions on Facebook or Instagram. Whatever is working for one company, whether in your industry or not, can serve as inspiration for you. All you need to do is investigate it and see if it will benefit your company in the long run.