The last few years have been particularly troubling for many small businesses; in many cases, they had to cease business for a while. Recovering from that is tough, and it takes much planning and persistence. However, if there was anything learned from that period, planning for the unexpected is a must.
While not all businesses will make it through the toughest times, there are things you can do that will help.
Many small businesses have countless expenses and subscriptions that they aren’t maximizing, and that becomes wasted money. Go through all of your expenses and break them down into categories – need, want, and waste. Anything in the last two categories can go, and when the profit margin is bigger, ‘want’ items can come back.
Loyal customers are the lifeblood of any successful business – if you aren’t paying attention to good customer care and communication, your existing customers can be tempted to go elsewhere. Customer retention is possible with a few simple methods:
- Customer communication calendars
- Regular offers and discounts
- Unique/personalized offers
- Loyalty programs
- Customer services
Even with a very slim profit margin, there is room to start saving. You should aim to ensure you have a business savings account in a reputable bank (look for one with perks) so that you have some available cash when and if it is needed.
Unfortunately, there may come a time when you will need to consider the role of your employees. Where there is space for it, employees can be switched to different roles or contract types. A change-up of the staff can make some savings that can make the difference between survival or not. Some employees may have the capacity to take on more responsibilities. Discuss the options with the team and see what the conclusion is.
The cash flow created at the launch of your business will need to be reworked. Typically, it is a guide and can help you meet certain goals. However, in times of economic crisis and generally slow business, you can make some adjustments. By going over your cash flow again, you will be able to make some predictions about how the future looks. Be realistic and test it with different scenarios.
Focusing on the core of the business will mean that you can strip back all of the excess things that don’t make an impact and focus on the ones that bring the most cash in. Being able to pivot when needed will mean you are more likely to be able to control future situations.
Marketing costs are some of the biggest a company will experience, but they don’t have to be. Start looking at changes you can make to get the most from your marketing efforts. What is working well? What isn’t? What is costing the most? What can you cut? Look for efficiency and cost-effectiveness. Leveraging new technologies can make a significant difference in what you need to spend on marketing and its effectiveness: Unleashing the Power of AI in B2B Marketing: Strategies for 2023.