2017 Resolutions for Small Businesses
Times flies; It feels like just yesterday we were planning for 2016! When you’re busy, it’s easy to get caught up in the action, and before you know it, a whole year has passed and your goals and objectives have fallen through the cracks. Start 2017 off strong with our simple resolutions for getting the most out of your small business.
1. Revamp your online presence
It’s no secret that your potential customers are online. In 2017, not having an online presence is just bad business. Make sure your business is accessible or at the very least, visible to your customers online.
We cannot stress enough the importance of a well-managed company website. The benefits really speak for themselves:
- Your customers will actually be able to find you, anywhere & anytime
- You’ll be able to measure if your site is serving its purpose, be it selling products or providing business information. If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.
- Your website will provide customers with easy access to information such as driving directions or opening hours, further extending the quality of your customer service.
- You’ll have full control of the website and can make changes by yourself without spending a dime on outsourcing the work.
Aside from your website, we highly suggest investing time into your company’s social media feeds. Customers are just as likely to search for you on Facebook or Twitter looking for news, customer reviews and promotions as they are to visit your site. Make sure to post updates at least once a week to get your community engaged. Think of social media as a direct line to your customers; a simple way for you to create and maintain a great customer experience through ongoing conversations. Social media has become so important, it can even affect your business’ eligibility for financing.
2. Rethink your business plan
It’s a good habit to revisit your business plan periodically to make sure it still makes sense for what you want to accomplish; it could be time to set some new goals. Situations change frequently, and it’s possible you’ve already taken your existing goals as far as they can go, or they may simply no longer make sense for your business. It’s possible you’ve neglected to check in on your plan altogether, make a point of doing this periodically. Keeping your business plan up to date will ensure your short term actions are benefiting your long term objectives.
If you’re unsure how to go about this, Entrepreneur’s guide to Updating Your Business Plan is a great place to start. It will show you how to focus your energy on the areas of your plan that need the most attention. It’s very possible you’ve never taken the time to create a business plan. Think of your business plan as the roadmap for reaching your goals. There are resources online that will walk you through the writing of your first business plan, and will help your business to keep moving in the right direction.
3. Renovate your location
Renovations can be daunting. Depending on what you want to accomplish, the costs can be significant and there’s the possibility of downtime to contend with. Don’t let that deter you, it’s very doable to make small but impactful changes and renovate within a budget. Invest in a full deep clean of the space, put in new lighting, or give your space a fresh coat of paint. A little can go a long way. If you want to do a bigger overhaul, the flexibility provided by a Merchant Cash Advance is a great way to get the funds you need quickly and easily. Sprucing up your location can help drive sales:
- Your customers will be more likely to enjoy the atmosphere and stay longer
- Your business will benefit from an Improved reputation and image
- Employee satisfaction will increase, and happy employees are productive employees
4. Time for a Tech Upgrade?
As technology continues to advance, and fewer people are carrying cash; offering the latest payment options is an investment in your customer experience.
Over the past few years, Canadians have adopted new payment methods such as MasterCard PayPass, Visa PayWave and Apple Pay. What all these new payment options have in common is that they’re simple to use, convenient (no wallet required), and they cut transaction time in half. Offering new methods of payment gives your customers the flexibility they value and promotes a better overall customer experience. The faster and smoother your transaction process, the happier your customers (and employees!) will be, increasing the likelihood that they’ll become a repeat customer.
Speak to your current payment processor to see how you can optimize your setup to include these new-wave payment methods.
5. Launch a sponsorship
Increasing ties with your community is a great way to introduce yourself to more prospective clients, or simply say “thanks for the support”. Fully integrating into your community can make all the difference when customers are choosing between you and a big box competitor.
An easy way to get started is by investing in a local sponsorship.
Here’s a few sponsorship ideas:
- Sports teams
Pay for the team’s jerseys in exchange for placing your logo and phone number on them
- Sporting tournaments
Help with the tournament costs in exchange for placing banners are the venue
- Local fairs
Book a booth or supply entertainment for the event
- Community runs & walks
Provide refreshments and snacks to participants
- Charity events
Donate goods or services for giveaways and raffles
Get Started Today!
Implementing yearly resolutions is an easy way to promote business growth all year long. Whether you choose from the resolutions we’ve outlined above, or you create your own, setting and achieving short-term goals will help you to keep propelling your business forward.
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