A Framework for Making Profitable Small Business Expense Decisions

Category:Happy

Step One: Assessment: This step requires the most effort as most business owners generally do not make the time or expend the effort to conduct an assessment of their current business – how it is delivering on the goals the owner wants to achieve. This step requires reflection, which requires setting aside time away from the business to review what is working, what is not working, and, ultimately, what needs to change to achieve the next level of performance.

Too many business people are caught up in the daily grind, taking action, without a definitive direction or plan. They have not conducted the appropriate research and find they are working more and more hours but their lifestyle doesn’t seem to be improving. Taking a good look at their current lifestyle- and how it has changed or not over the past few years is a strong indicator of whether or not, their business is actually growing. As part of this step, business owners should ask themselves the following questions, document their answers, and reflect on what they discover.

Are you working the hours you want to work? Are you working more hours for the same revenue? How is your personal and social life? Are you achieving balance between business and personal sides of your daily life?

Is your business wearing you down? What aspects are keeping you awake at night?

Why did you start this business initially? What were your goals? Are you still achieving them? If not, why not?

Being able to visualize their preferred lifestyle will help them to focus more clearly on the direction their business needs to go. Clarity around what they want for themselves, their family and, their employees will go a long way to helping them create the business environment they want.

Step Two: Strategy: There must be clarity about where the owner wants to take their business, what they want it to look like over the next few years. The strategy does not need to be complicated, but it should be clear. Something as simple as “To grow my revenue each year by 10%” provides you with a general target against which they can set annual, quarterly and monthly targets. Running a business is a journey with a destination. The destination may change but the journey has to be planned. Without a strategy, business owners won’t improve or change their lifestyle.

Step Three: Action: Just taking action for action’s sake will not get the owner very far. Actions should be based in the targets set for the month, quarter and year. Actions should be taken in consideration of associated costs, resources required and expended, time periods expected, and market segments to be exploited.

Business owners should think about setting actions that allow them to contribute to the broader community without being monetarily compensated. They may want to offer their expertise as a mentor or a coach for young entrepreneurs, be a speaker to school groups to help them prepare for the workforce of the future, conduct presentations to business groups or not for profit groups seeking expert help. This contribution component should be part of their business plan to enhance their network and influence in the communities or market segments in which they market products and services.

Step Four: Review: Taking a measure of actions taken versus targets will tell owners what works and what doesn’t work. Implementation may not yield desired results but, without detailed review of actions implemented to drive target achievement, one will continue to try the ‘same old thing’ rather than seek out creative solutions. Without review, they also take the risk of not capturing the reasons for success. When success is experienced, it makes sense to figure out why and then create more actions to repeat this success.

Online Business Needs This to Make Money

Category:Health Insurance

Since traffic is so crucial to make money, how to get traffic?

The website is the Internet business’ store front. A feature of Internet business that is different from real life business is this.

In real life business a prerequisite to make money is you set up shop in a prime location of your choice. In the Internet world the search engines decide for you the location of your Internet business web store.

If it feels that an Internet business store contains what customers are looking for it puts the store in the best spot in the city shopping arcades. If not, they place the Internet business store in the woods, the equivalent of page 2,567,876 on the search page!

Search engines look favorably on online business websites that are filled with abundant relevant content and with proper keywords. The best online business websites that make money are those that adhere to this fundamental principle. To rank well is the first requirement to make money online.

The keywords need to be placed in the titles and the Internet business website needs to have different customized pages which show up in response to the specific search phrases. In addition, the content should be such which adds value to the reader. It should not be boring and should have images and videos present to make them visually appealing.

Free SEO products are abundantly available on the Internet. Online business owners can use them to improve text and web page performance and also for finding the proper keywords. To succeed to make money online business owners can aim for their Internet business store front to be placed in the heart of the best shopping districts in the Internet world.

Once an online business has succeeded in attracting traffic to visit the web store, another action is important before an Internet business can succeed to make money.

The visitors must come back again and again.

Visitors to the Internet business must like what they find in the online business store and ideally also buy something. Visitors must buy then the online business can make money. But as quite a large number of purchases are not done at first sight, it is very important that they must come back again to view.

Return visitors is a contributing factor in increasing conversion rate. By conversion one means visitors to an online business who are getting converted to customers by clicking on the various “call to action” links or buttons present on the website. This is how an online business succeeds to make money.

So how to get your online business visitors to return for a second look?

When a visitor leaves an Internet business web store it is small chance that he will on his own come back for another look, simply because there are so many distracting web stores out there. And even if your Internet business store is right on Page 1 of the search engine, he may not remember what word he keyed in that brought him to your site. More visitors don’t come back means lost opportunities to make money.

Small Business Should Do To Be Successful in Today’s Tough Market Conditions

Category:Home Maintenance

How can accounting software help small business?

Business must be lean and financially sustainable to survive through the current business climate. Small businesses with large overheads and complex financing structures should work on re-organising the business to regain control of their long term economic futures. Now is not the time for reckless investment in the pursuit of growth that only adds increased debt and inflexibly that could ultimately lead to the businesses downfall. Now is the time for prudence and tight financial management that allows a business to be financially independent. Accounting software can be central to supporting small businesses become financially independent and below investigates how.

1) Complete focus on cash flow

A business owner should be 100% focussed on the financial health of their business. This means having a thorough understanding of the businesses cash flow position. There is nothing more important in a small business than its cash flow position and as result should be very tightly managed. One of the difficulties for small businesses keeping on top of cash flow is the organisation of receipts and invoices. An accounting software package easily compiles all of the relevant financial information and presents easy to understand dashboards and reports of company performance. Once provided with the required knowledge of the company’s performance appropriate action can be taken to improve the company’s performance.

2) Focus on customer satisfaction

In times of economic hardship competition is notably increased in every sense. As customers are more considered with their buying decisions small businesses need to ensure that every aspect of their proposition is appealing to the customer. Margins are widely squeezed across all industries in the hope of enticing hard-up customers and therefore the only real differentiator to attract business is customer service. An accounting software package does not only improve business productively it also helps structure all customers and suppliers into an easy to manage database. This structured knowledge allows staff to provide a more tailored service to clients.

3) Look for ways to cut costs

In this economic climate any investment that doesn’t directly add value to the top line should be cut. Accounts Payable features with an accounting software package detail every penny that is spent in the business. This allows a thorough review of expenditure to take place to ensure that savings can be made where appropriate. For example costs could be cut down on paper, postage, transitioning to direct debit payroll. These cost cuts would allow the business to reduce its operating cost without cutting expenditure that generates income into the business.

4) Consolidate Suppliers

Businesses can also use accounts payable features within their accounting software package to streamline its supply chain. Many businesses needlessly have similar supplies from a range of suppliers. Buying in bulk is always a more economical way of doing business. Condensing suppliers with larger orders is more commercially viable in reducing supply costs. Generating reports by independent supplier will provide valuable information regarding the profitability of each supplier contract.

5) Negotiate better rates with long standing suppliers

In addition to the consolidation of the supply chain there may also be an opportunity to renegotiate rates with long standing suppliers. The longer the relationship between a business and a supplier the more appropriate it would be that the business qualifies for a rate that reflects the loyalty of the relationship. Reducing the costs of the supply chain can make a significant and welcome difference to a small business P&L during tough recession times.

6) Continuously look for ways to reduce non value adding admin work

In any small business the time of employees is one the company’s biggest assets and therefore spending time on non-value adding activity should be minimised wherever possible. An accounting software package ensures that people are not tied up managing basic bookkeeping tasks and completing quarterly and end year financial reports. Managing a business’s financial affairs can be very admin heavy if not managed in the correct manner. Having efficient software to automate these admin tasks allows staff to focus their attention on growing the business and generating income.

7) Streamline payroll and human resource management

As already discussed people are a huge asset in any small business. An accounting software system can help provide detailed information around staff costs in addition to hours worked and absence information. Having detailed information about staff costs allows a business to more accurately plan for the future and correctly budget for human resources. Also from a financial perspective large fines are imposed on businesses that make mistakes on Tax and National Insurance contributions. Having automated software negates the risk of mistakes occurring at a time when fines cannot be afforded to be taken.

More Deadly Mistakes To Avoid In Your Home Business

Category:International Business

In this part, I carry on in the same vein to reveal the remaining killers that can have a hugely negative effect on the outcome of your online business.

Home business income opportunity killer #1: Distractions From Too Many Business Opportunities.

There is a common misconception in the online world that you need to get involved in many business opportunities in order to make it big. Now this business model has certainly worked for some people, I agree, but for most people it only serves to distraction that breaks your focus.

When there is too much going on, you are not able to concentrate on one business opportunity until it is starts producing the results that you desire, instead you work on one business a little bit here and on the next one a little bit there, thereby dissipating your energy.

Especially when you are just starting out, you will have enough on your hands learning the new skills needed to get your business to succeed that having more than one home business will be counterproductive.

Home business income opportunity killer #2: Choosing The Wrong Business

One of the reasons people take on more than one business opportunity is to enable them generate enough income to live their dream life. So by inference if you are not getting enough income from your business opportunity you have probably chosen the wrong business.

The solution to this is to get involved in a business that has an excellent and great compensation plan such that you will not have any need to get involved with any other business to supplement your online income.

Home business income opportunity killer #3: Lack of Commitment

Every venture you get involved in and the internet home business arena is no different, requires you to make a commitment to yourself. A commitment to do whatever is necessary to get your business off the ground, and a commitment to seeing it grow and succeed.

Lacking commitment to yourself and your business is certainly one the factors that affects your home business success. This is easier said than done sometimes; especially when you consider that most people work on their business on a part time basis, after a full day at work – in the beginning at least.

When you are tired and you just want to go to bed, what will you choose to do – give up or keep going? When you are not seeing the results you desire what will you choose to do – give up or keep going? When your friends are meeting up for a social night out and you are really would like to be there, what will you choose to do – go out or keep going?

The point here is you will need to make sacrifices to get what you want. So the question is what sacrifices you are willing to make to see your dreams come true?

Legitimate Online Home Business is not about getting rich quick, if it was then everyone will be successful. It is about showing up when you feel like and when you do not really feel like, and doing what is required to get the results you desire.

Home Sweet Home Based Business

Category:Sport Run

It is no secret that I believe at least half of all adults, and some teenagers, should start their own home based business. Even if they have a good job. Everyone knows, especially lately, that a good job can be gone in an instant. So, start your home business in your spare time. Build it into a successful sideline as insurance against loss of that good job. Or, build it into a business that could provide you with as much income as you make at your job, or more. Wouldn’t you like to tell your boss someday “Goodbye, I’m quitting this job to concentrate on my home business. I make more with my business than what you pay me”?

But, I’m getting off track. To be honest, a home business is not right for everyone. And, not everyone is right for a home based business.

A home business, or any business for that matter, takes some degree of skill and knowledge, hard work, persistence, dedication, and focus. And a home business is different in many ways compared to a corporate job or a traditional retail or manufacturing business.

Is a home based business right for you?

Almost every home business has tons of distractions; kids, pets, home maintenance, the “honey do” list. Distractions make it hard to focus. Will these distractions make it so hard for you to focus that you can’t get done what needs to get done in your business?

Running a business from your home makes it hard to separate personal time from business time. The two will overlap a lot and you will either find your personal time eating into your business time, or your business time will take over and you will have little if any personal time for yourself or your family.

Many home businesses will result in loss of face-to-face social interaction with people. Nice chats with coworkers over cubicle walls, or at the water cooler, or over shared lunch breaks are replaced with emails, tweets, or phone calls.

If your home or apartment is fairly small, you may not have the space to set up a separate “office” where you can do your “work”. Your kitchen table might become your “office”.

Most home business entrepreneurs have no regular paycheck. Having a uncertain and irregular income creates its own problems and may require a much better job of budgeting, saving money during the good times, and strict control of expenses.

During the initial year or two of your home business efforts you may not have total family support. If that is the case for you, it may be difficult to keep going until you are as successful as you would like to be.