Archive for May, 2017

Modernizing Your Business

Are you up-to-date on the latest tech? Or are you resting on the status quo?

Global modernization is changing business. Businesses constantly try to keep up, but changing and updating your operations can be a daunting task. For more than half of small businesses, the biggest challenge is figuring out how technology will help them.

However, businesses owners no longer have the luxury of choosing whether or not they will adapt to new technology, in today’s high-tech world, it’s adapt or die.
The good news is that the benefits of improving your company’s financial system — even
incrementally — can save you time, money and, ultimately, increase your bottom line.

Three Small Changes Can Help You Update Your Business
1. Automate Tasks
2. Update Software
3. Modernize Expense System


1. Automate Tasks.
You hired your staff members for their brains, not their abilities to complete repetitive tasks. Basic accounting software can help you automate some of your regular payments, reporting, and accounting processes.
Repetitive tasks hold back business.

Here’s how:
A. Wasted Time
Nearly 65 percent of small businesses report having unpaid invoices for more than 60 days. Consider how much time it takes for your staff to chase down those payments, in addition to other repetitive tasks. A business that sends 300 invoices per month, requires about 173 hours of labor. 90% of the cost of invoicing is labor. With automation your staff can put the time they spent on manual tasks toward more meaningful efforts.
B. Long Payment Cycles
Small businesses typically receive payment slowly, mostly because they’re slow to invoice due to the monotony of the process.


2. Upgrade Your Software
Most smaller companies manage their financial systems in excel or with basic accounting software . However, as your business grows, so do its financial needs.
Using an outdated financial management system comes with costly risks, including:
1. Competitive disadvantage:  Your competitors are benefitting from more efficient modern software.
2. Security: You’re more prone to security breaches and expensive recovery costs if you’re using outdated software.
3. Time Loss: Software automation reduces labor costs by about 50%. That’s time that could otherwise drive business forward.
4. Errors: According to several studies, nearly 90% of spreadsheets contain mistakes.

3. Modernize Expense Management
The traditional process for filing expenses involves far too many people and too many moving parts. Employees use petty cash doled out by the company or spend their own money; then they turn in receipts and reports; then a supervisor has to approve the report, and the finance department then processes the request. Finally the employee is reimbursed, taking an average of one to three weeks.
Across the board, employees loose receipts, miss submission deadlines, carry debt on personal credit cards until reimbursement, and unintentionally exceed spending limits. As your company expands, the traditional process reduces your control and visibility of real-time cash flow and creates many inefficiencies.

Hidden costs include:
Wasting money: According to the Aberdeen Group, an average expense report costs $29 to process. If your company processes between 10-15 expense reports a month, that’s nearly $3,500-$5,250 annually in paid staff time.
Employees Penalized: Lost receipts, forgetfulness or lack of time, lead approximately 50% of employees eating an expense rather than filing a report.

Tied Up Credit and High Interest Rates: If you provide company credit cards to your employees, you’re likely paying between 14%-18% interest rate on balances, and tying up the total credit afforded to your business.


Conclusion
When modernizing your business, consider Divvy’s free spend management platform to help save time, increase cash flow, provide real-time data, improve expense-related decisions, reduce costs, and decrease risk of fraud.
Divvy is the first free and fully automated spend management platform dedicated to helping your company spend smarter. To learn how you can save time, money, and frustration managing your spend and expenses, contact Divvy at 877.77.DIVVY, visit www.divvypay.com, or email us at info@divvypay.com.

How To Find The Best Hosting For Startups

Running a new startup business is an exciting time, but it can also be very frustrating. Not only do you have to start from scratch when it comes to getting customers, but you also have to get accustomed to the learning curve of starting a new business. While it might seem like a bit of a burden at first since starting a brick and mortar business can be so hard, you should also consider building your business on the Internet. Here are a few reasons why, and what type of hosting you should consider.

Reach Everyone

A physical business can only reach so many people. Only residents in your local area will be interested in buying from. No one from the next state over (or people in a different country) will want to buy from you because you’ll be too far away. That all changes with an online business. People can browse your product catalog, order items and you will ship their orders. This means that you can effectively reach anyone in the world that has an Internet connection. You might even receive the bulk of your orders from this Internet.

Technologically Advanced

Perception is key to gaining new customers. If your store seems behind the times, then you can lose a lot of customers. While you don’t need to have all the latest technology, you should at least have a website. Almost every successful business has a website. Not only does this give customers an open storefront that they can buy from at any time (even on holidays or when you’re closed), but it allows them to find you online if they are just browsing around for nearby stores. While a website isn’t going to be the end all be all of sales, it will help increase public perception of your business. Just be sure to maintain your store and don’t let it fall into disuse.

More Exposure

You need exposure to get customers. If your business is hard to find or people aren’t thinking about it, then you need to market yourself to get some sales. While TV commercials, radio advertisements and ads in the newspaper are fine, having a newspaper will also help you gain exposure. This is because many people just browse the internet for nearby stores, as stated in the above section. If you position your website correctly, then you can easily capture all of this traffic to make many more sales.

Ecommerce Hosting

One of the most types of hosting for startups is ecommerce hosting. These hosts give you many features like a shopping cart, the ability to easily manage hundreds of thousands of items and payment gateways so that you can accept payments. These hosts are somewhat more expensive than general hosts, but they can be worth it. If you have an expansive product library and you want the best responsiveness, then this host is fine. If you just have a handful of products, then you can probably use general or blog hosting.

Business Hosting

There are many business hosts out there that are similar to ecommerce hosts, but they help more with back-end employees. You will usually get essential business features like an SSL certificate and a 1-800 number. Larger business hosts will also give you a system so that you can easily manage employees. This type of hosting is great when you are expanding, but it may not be required at first unless your startup is primarily online or you have employees that you are managing through the Internet. Blog Hosting Blog hosting is really any host that allows you to easily install a CMS. A business needs a blog because this allows you to easily build new pages and increase your SEO potential. Most blogs can also have shopping cart programs placed on top of them. This is fine if you have a handful of products. You may also want to attach a CMS to your business website anyway just for the SEO increase, which will help you get more customers.

Conclusion

Making the most of your startup is going to be difficult at first, but having a digital storefront is really going to help you make more money. Not only will this give you more exposure and the ability to target the entire world, but you can easily make sales online to improve your bottom line. Just give it a try, you’ll be sure to love it.

Constant Reminders of your Brand

A great way to get a customer to purchase products with your business is to ensure that you are constantly in their mind. If they are always aware of your company and know what you do, next time they need a product or service that you provide they are likely to come straight to you purchase. Having little reminders that subtly tells them about your brand may also entice them to inquire further and look at your products and service. Keeping in the mind of your clients can be accomplished in many different ways. It’s just up to you what processes you put in place.

Email

A great way to always be in your customer’s attention, due to its ease of scheduling and customisation, is to set up various email chains to add customers into. You can set up various emails that go to your customers when you want that will remind them of your brand, notify about recent company news and suggest products to them. You can also have the emails customised to each client so it feels personal by changing the name it is addressed to, talk about specific aspects of their order and recommend related products to items they bought. Furthermore, once you have set up the email chain you don’t need to edit it again. Therefore you can reach a large amount of people with personal messages with a relatively low amount of effort.

Social Media

Customers like to see charm of a corporation. That’s why it’s important that customers don’t only see you just as a business and that they see other facets of your brand that will make them like you and respect you more. Social media is a great way to do this as you can show of the faces and the people behind the business, interact with clients in a friendly casual way as well as ensure that your customers are seeing your company and you are fresh in their mind. It is important in social media that not everything is about business as the more casual aspects are more likely to capture your customer’s attention and grow their appreciation of you. Moreover having them like your brand will lead to getting more likes and shares, growing your audience even further.

Google Ads

Using Google services like AdWords allows you to remind customers who have visited your site about your products and try to get them to come back. Create some compelling ads, customise them to what page and products they have looked at on your site, to remind them of your brand and service. The great thing about this is that it can be quite subtle as they will see your company logo and branding while doing other things, seeing various products that they could be of interest, which will eventually lead them to browse your site or entice them to purchase more.

Promotional Products

A great way to constantly remind a customer about your brand is to have your branding on an item within their possession that they will see on a regular basis. This is one of the main functions of promotional merchandise as you brand an item with your artwork or logo and give them to your customer so that whenever they use it they see you’re branding. Your company branding and logo will be constantly fresh in their mind. In addition, if they receive a useful and functional item from you they will have a greater opinion of your brand. Some very good products for this are promotional mugs as they will see your branding whenever used for a cup of tea or coffee.

Direct mail

Sending letters and mail to customers can create intrigue because direct mail is used less often in the digital world of today. Receiving a letter would create interest as to why they have been sent it so and will read some if not all of the message. It works as a reminder of your brand and service and can tempt them to enquire further with your company. Plus you can combine it with other additions like offers, news and even promotional products to make it stand out more and be more effective.

Customers forgetting about your brand, product and service can be very detrimental to repeat sales because they may not think about what you provide again or you won’t be the first port of call if they need it in the future, losing business to other companies. Ensuring that customers always remember you can be a great boost to your sales so it is highly recommended that you spend a good amount of time focused on them and drawing them back in.

How to Increase The Value of Your Business

Іs sеllіng уоur busіnеss а futurе соnsіdеrаtіоn? Is this something that you should be looking into? Іf уоu аrе lіkе mаnу busіnеss оwnеrs, уоu knоw уоu wіll оnе dау sеll уоur busіnеss. Тоо оftеn оwnеrs tаkе tіmе fоr grаntеd. Тhеу аlwауs bеlіеvе thеу hаvе mоrе tіmе tо соnsіdеr hоw bеst tо рrераrе thеіr busіnеssеs fоr sаlе. Тhе flаw іn thеіr thіnkіng іs thаt thеу rеаllу dо nоt knоw whеthеr thе bеst tіmе tо sеll іs thіs уеаr, nехt уеаr, оr 50 уеаrs frоm nоw. І hаvе hеаrd sо mаnу stоrіеs frоm реорlе whо wеrе оffеrеd а lоt оf mоnеу tо sеll thеіr busіnеssеs аnd turnеd dоwn thе оffеr оnlу tо fіnd оnlу fіvе уеаrs lаtеr thаt thеу соuld оnlу аttrасt frасtіоns оf thаt оffеr. Іt іs іmроrtаnt tо undеrstаnd hоw tо іnсrеаsе thе vаluе оf уоur busіnеss аnd tо dеtеrmіnе thе rіght tіmе tо sеll.

3 Рrіmаrу Rеаsоns Fоr Вuуіng А Вusіnеss

Тhе рrіmаrу rеаsоn fоr buуіng а busіnеss іs rеturn оn іnvеstmеnt. Тhеу wіll рау whаt thеу соnsіdеr іs а fаіr рrісе bаsеd оn 3 рrіmаrу fасtоrs:
1. Dоеs thе рurсhаsе rеmоvе а busіnеss bаrrіеr?
2. Dоеs thе рurсhаsе еlіmіnаtе соmреtіtіоn?
3. Іs thе рurсhаsе а strаtеgіс fіt іn tеrms оf
– Gеоgrарhу
– Сustоmеrs
– Еmрlоуееs
– Таngіblе аnd/оr іntаngіblе аssеts

7 Wауs tо Іnсrеаsе Vаluаtіоn

Yоu shоuld buіld уоur busіnеss аs іf іt mіght sеll tоmоrrоw. Ву соntіnuіng tо іmрrоvе аnd mоnіtоr thе fоllоwіng vаluаtіоn lеvеrs уоu саn іnсrеаsе thе vаluе оf уоur busіnеss аnd роssіblу іdеntіfу whеn іt іs tіmе tо sеll:
1. Рrоfіt Grоwth Rаtе – Тhе hіghеr, mоrе рrеdісtаblе, аnd соnsіstеnt thе раttеrn thе bеttеr.
2. Іndustrу оr Маrkеt Ѕеgmеnt Аttrасtіvеnеss – Whаt dоеs thе futurе lооk lіkе? Whаt dо ехреrts sау аbоut іt? Ноw іs уоur соmраnу unіquеlу роsіtіоnеd tо gеt іts fаіr shаrе?
3. Lоw (Rеlаtіvе) Маrkеt Ѕhаrе – Yоu wаnt tо bе sееn аs а lеаdеr, but уоu dоn’t wаnt tо bе sееn аs а rіsk bесаusе уоu hаvе sаturаtеd уоur роrtіоn оf thе mаrkеt.

4. Сustоmеr Соnсеntrаtіоn – А соmраnу must nоt bе оvеrlу dереndеnt uроn а sіnglе сustоmеr оr сustоmеr grоuр.
5. Rесurrіng Rеvеnuе – Тhіs іs оnе оf thе mоst fаvоrаblе bесаusе іt suрроrts соnsіstеnсу аnd рrеdісtаbіlіtу аnd аlsо аllоws fоr fосus оn dесrеаsіng dеlіvеrу соsts tо сustоmеrs оvеr tіmе – thus іnсrеаsіng рrоfіtаbіlіtу thrоugh tіmе.
6. Соmраnу Ѕіzе – Іn tеrms оf rеvеnuе, еmрlоуееs, аnd gеоgrарhіс lосаtіоns рlауs а rоlе іn sаlаbіlіtу.
7. Маnаgеmеnt – Ѕеаsоnеd, ехреrіеnсеd іn thе іndustrу, аnd wіth а trасk rесоrd оf suссеss аrе аll іmроrtаnt. Іt іs hаrd tо fіnd grеаt mаnаgеmеnt tаlеnt.

How To Keep Your Organization Going And Growing In 2017

There’s nothing quite as rewarding and remarkable as watching your organization become increasingly productive and profitable with each passing year. If this is your objective, know that you can realize the goal. Three business-building strategies that can keep your organization on the road to growth in 2017 include:

1. Optimize Your Company’s Level Of Organization.

The more organized you are, the more productive and profitable your company will become. As such, it’s important to implement tips and techniques that will help you and your staff members operate in a more organized fashion. Luckily, there are hundreds and hundreds of strategies you can deploy to make this happen. One of them is the use of online checklist software. This software will empower you to create a detailed list outlining all of the things you need to do during the course of the day in order to keep your organization going and growing. Another strategy you can implement to keep your organization going and growing is systematically replacing old office products and equipment with new ones. If your company makes use of metal clipboard clips, the professionals of Curlson Sericur Industries can assist you.

2. Utilize Social Media Optimization (SMO) Services.

In addition to becoming a more organized business owner, make sure that you focus in on offering excellent social media optimization (SMO) services. These services will help you engage in organic, relationship-building conversations with prospects through popular online platforms such as:

• Twitter
• Pinterest
• LinkedIn
• Facebook
• Google+

By regularly interfacing with prospects through these channels, you can accelerate the brand recognition process that makes conversion more likely. Also note that you can use several other digital advertising services to build strong relationships with your clients. Some of them include:

• content marketing
• responsive web design
• web design and development
• search engine optimization
• online reputation management

3. Implement Health Optimization Strategies.

One final technique that can help you optimize company success in 2017 is implementing health optimization strategies. These strategies will help you maintain the mood stability and physical stamina necessary to complete your work-related projects with excellence and expedience. Some of the wellness techniques you may want to implement to start boosting your health now include:

• massage
• meditation
• green juice
• yoga

Summing It All Up

As 2017 progresses, you’ll likely want to know that your organization is becoming increasingly successful. Three strategies you can implement to make it happen include becoming more competitive, utilizing SMO services, and implementing health optimization techniques. Start using these techniques now to keep your organization on the road to optimized productivity and profitability this year!

How to Easily and Properly Budget for Your Small Business

Talk to any entrepreneur or manager of a business (regardless of the size of the business – small, medium, or large) and they will invariable state that the key to success is a well-managed cashflow. It’s a simple statement, but it has many consequences. Knowing – and understanding – your cashflow allows you to make decisions that are crucial to the growth and success of your enterprise.

Budgeting, therefore, is an essential part of the day-to-day activity of the manager. This may involve the budgeting of a simple luncheon, a three-month project, or a five-year expansion plan. How the budget is managed often breaks or makes a business. If you’re having trouble, this one’s for you: here’s how to easily and properly budget for your small business.

Plan ahead

It’s easier said than done – granted – but it’s important to have a plan in mind, and to direct the actions of the company in order to reach a certain goal. In fact, it’s even better to have several plans in mind (A, B, and C), and to be able to adjust to the circumstances. These plans should not be in the creator’s mind: the manager should actually list them down and consult all departments. The plans should literally be on paper for all to understand.

Allocate according to department

 

Small businesses tend to have few departments – but regardless of the size of the business, there are always various classifications for expenses. Budget according to past experience, to projected expenses, and do so according to expense classification. Separate the transportation from the mortgage, the electricity from the raw materials. Allocate according to department.

 

 

Prioritise

The worst thing that can happen is that there is a large deadline looming – especially a large expense – for which you were not prepared. It’s a signal that you haven’t departmentalised, that you haven’t got the correct plans, or that you haven’t prioritised. Put first things first.

Think of the worst case

We don’t want to think about it, but it’s wiser if you do. Spend some time playing the ‘what if’ game, and prepare for the worst case. Don’t say: it won’t happen. Have a plan ready.

Here’s one last hint – but it’s an incredibly important one: never forget your employees. It’s tempting to think that the staff will be happy with (or are only entitled to) their monthly pay, but a little bit of extra truly goes a long way. You may not be in the financial position to offer annual bonuses, but that is not necessarily required – a small gesture every now and again does wonders. Think about birthdays. Think about a Christmas party. Think about other special occasions. And moreover, think about how that can boost your staff morale and make the enterprise more productive, as the accountants in central London from established firms like GSM & Co. will agree.

Image attributed to Serge Bertasius Photography/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/Money_g61-Uk_Sterling_Money_Notes_And_Coins_p137439.html

 

I am discussing all kinds of business and finance topics on this blog and I hope that the information I provide will prove to be useful.