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How to Minimize Your Work When Managing Your Business

Managing a business and being the person who’s expected to make all the big decisions can be a difficult task sometimes. You should try to remember that just because you’re running the business, that doesn’t mean you have to do everything yourself.

No business can operate as a one-man band, even if you want to retain control of it. You need to branch out and find ways to take some of the work off your shoulders. Here’s how.

1. Trust People

Trusting people to work well for your business and to offer you the best possible outcomes is something that you really need to do when you want your business to succeed.

This is something that can’t really be taken for granted, but you do need to offer trust because most people want to do their best for your company and they want it to succeed when they’re working for you.

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2. Get Professional Help With Managing Your Website

Many people who are great at running businesses are not necessarily so great at managing websites. And that’s perfectly fine because these are two completely different tasks requiring different skills.

It’s up to you to ensure you get the help you need. Using a managed server and a good hosting service is a good start. Then you can look for regular help with maintenance if you need it.

3. Expand the Skills and Capabilities of Your Team

The skills and capabilities of your team really are a priority. When they’re better equipped to work well for your business, it will help you in the long-term because it will give you the chance to offer them more to do and offer the tougher briefs.

You should offer employee training so that they will always be ready to help you turn your business into a force to be reckoned with.

4. Outsource Mundane Tasks

Outsourcing is one of those things that pretty much all companies can benefit from in one way or another. So try to outsource the mundane tasks that you don’t want to be wasting your time on each day.

It will only make your life harder than it needs to be if you don’t try this. There are lots of good companies to outsource to, so give it a try if you haven’t already.

5. Try to Automate Too

Finally, you should also try to automate more of what you do because there are people out there who are already doing this and reaping the rewards. There are so many little tasks that can be taken care of by computers, freeing up more of your time and leaving you with less on your plate. That’s got to be a good thing.

Running a business is never easy, and no one ever said that it would be. But it also doesn’t have to be a massive weight around your neck every moment of the day; that’s not how it’s supposed to be for you. So try to take things easy and ease the load a little by making the most of these tips.

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Getting The Best Deal On Transport For Your Business

When it comes to shipping items to and from your warehouse, freight trucks are the most commonly used vehicle and they can carry huge loads in one go which can save you time and money on fuel.

For a small business the idea of using a freight company might be fairly new, and the temptation to agree to any price can be huge. However, if you want to be successful as a business you need to be able to negotiate.

1. Look around

Before anything else, always make sure you approach more than one transport company and get a few different quotes for the prices you would be able to achieve. You will find that every transport company prices their trips differently and this is why you could end up with a really varied choice of prices.

However, once you have the initial quotes here is where the work begins.

2. Ask for help

Get your team to work on the job and call around each of the companies you have spoken to. The idea here is to talk about them taking a shipment from you and asking them how much once more. When they give you a price you can counter that with:

‘Well, company name quoted me this price which is cheaper, is there any way you can match or beat this price for us?’

Freight companies are tough cookies and they won’t always crumble at the first sight of a challenge, but it can always be worth that initial price probe for later.

3. Meet in person

If you are going to be trusting someone to handle your goods which will be either brought to you or your customers, you need to get to know them.

We all need to have mutual trust and meeting in person at their place of work is a good way to see whether they would be a good business partner.

Take a look at the grounds, the people and the state of the vehicles. If you both get on well and you think you can trust them, it could be a winner.

4. Build a rapport

Building a friendly relationship with a company can allow you to be a little more brash with your ideas and it can allow you to be a big cheeky when negotiating a price.

If you have been paying them for a while and they know they can trust you, they will likely give you a reduced rate to make sure you stay with them don’t move to someone else.

5. Don’t settle for more

Sometimes you need a truck rapidly for whatever reason and this can mean you are tempted to just grab the first available slot you can, but don’t.

Maintain your principles when it comes to any order because if you give in one price once, the company will be more likely to try and charge you more in the future.

Stick with your guns and you will still be able to get a good deal even if it is for something very last minute.

6 Simple Steps For Managing Personal Work Projects Successfully

Personal project management is not a difficult task if you are following the right steps. First, you must understand the need and importance of the project that you are handling so that it gives you a right sense of belonging. It is very important to keep a realistic timeline for the completion of your project as it helps to avoid the last minute stress and confusions.

  • Create a calendar –

It is very important to plan your goals and act accordingly. You must have your calendar in place to execute your plan and complete your targeted goal well in time. Either you can make use of your table calendar or the software tools in order to mark all your important dates, along with the set target.

 

  • Completing the task before the deadline –

It is always a wise idea to complete the task in advance so that you have enough time to review the project and make necessary alterations if required.

  • Use software to speed things up –

The best professionals today have spent time researching software options so they can find the best choice for them. With the right software in place, you can automate time-consuming tasks and make more intelligent decisions.

  • Avoid last-minute work –

This is a very important step and you must take all the necessary efforts to avoid keeping anything for the last moment. Imagine if all of the team did this – it would be chaos!

You must finish everything about the project well in advance or within the set time limit so that there is nothing left, at the end.

Even if you have to review your project and make alterations, that too, must be completed before the set time limit, to avoid last minute confusions and unnecessary pressure.

Last minute work can never give you quality projects and satisfactory results and it may even lead to loss of clients.

  • Frequent reminders to complete the task –

You must set frequent reminders and alarms so that you are on the right track and well organized to accomplish the given targets. This will remind you about your future goals and keep you focused on your targets.

  • Finish the toughest one first –

You must first attempt to the toughest job and then proceed towards something that is easy. This way, you will have enough time to dedicate towards the tough tasks and thus, finish your overall project in an effective manner.

This step will surely make you finish your project well in time and will avoid unnecessary confusions and stress at the last moment.

 

The above tips are the simple and basic steps that you must work upon in order to complete your project effectively. It is very important to set deadlines to achieve your goals and remain organized throughout the process.

These two major factors will work wonders for you in achieving your goals within the set deadline.You must remember one thing that it is not only about completing the project effectively in time but it is also about keeping your clients happy!

 

These 4 Things Are Crucial If You Want To Sell Your Product Online

If you want your business to be as successful as possible, you will need to sell online. However, doing so is more than just posting pictures of products and hoping they reach the right person. In fact, optimizing your website, your marketing, and the services you can provide are all vital as well. You can even read more on how to perfect these areas in the post below.

  • Amazing Picture and Descriptions

First of all, when selling online, you have to put yourself in the position of the customer and remember that they may have never seen your product in real life, let alone got a chance to handle it. What this means is the photos, and description you include are vital in helping them to decide to make a purchase.

 

To that end, the images you display of your product need to not only show it in the best light but also be as accurate as possible.

Similarly, the product description needs to be engaging and convincing, but also contain all of the information necessary for a customer to make the right decision.

Such info may include size, weight, the system it is compatible with, and even whether batteries are included, and if not what size the items take, for some products.

  • Getting you Marketing Right

To sell online, it is also crucial that you advertise your product and ensure that people know what you are offering. Of course, the primary way to do this is with marketing, something that there are many opportunities to do online.

In particular, don’t be shy about utilizing social media for your marketing purposes, whether that includes product placement with influencers on YouTube, entertaining clips and pictures on Instagram, and even customer interaction through platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.

Just remember that the more humanized and interactive your company is, the more customers will trust you. Something that can go along way to help you convert sales further down the line.

  • Getting your Website Right

Of course, apart from your images and marketing, it is also vital that your website is up to scratch. What this means is that you need to select the right payment options for your customers, as well as pick the correct eCommerce platform that will allow you to host and sell product on your sites.

Luckily, for the latter, you can get some valuable advice from sites like The Complete Guide to Finding the Best Ecommerce Platforms online. After all, knowledge truly is power when it comes to selling online, as it allows you to pick just the right features to suit your customers.

  • Outstanding Customer Service

Lastly, if you want to make a go of selling online, it’s essential that you offer outstanding customer service. We’re talking both after and before a purchase is made here, as well.

In fact, many customers will need some additional assistance and reassurance before buying online because they don’t get to interact with products or salespeople in the real world.

Therefore ensuring you have a crack customer service team that is easily contactable is crucial, if you want to sell as much as possible online.

 

Customize Your Company to Stand Out From The Competition!

 

 

Regardless of what you do or what you sell, chances are there will be a thousand and one others out there doing something similar.

But as an entrepreneur, you know the key is finding the differences.

It’s your unique selling point that will make your business stand out from the crowd, which means doing something slightly different from your competitors. For this reason, even similar businesses won’t be exactly alike if they’re going to be successful.

Which is the reason you need to customize your company, make your systems fit to your needs instead of bending what you do to fit around things like software and equipment. Not only will you stand out from the competition, but you’ll be far more efficient too. Read on to find out more.

Have your own equipment custom designed

If you’re manufacturing your own products, having machinery custom designed will allow you to be much more efficient. While more generic equipment might do the job, when machines are created with your business and product in mind, they will do exactly what you want them to do.

There are companies who can create highly specialized non- standard machines and systems with your exact product and outcome in mind. Custom machinery manufacturing is created from your functional specifications, perhaps you need a simplex strainer incorporated to remove debris from liquid- or maybe you need a specific kind of laser to make precise cuts?

Whatever it is, instead of making do with standard machinery, it would be well worth the investment of having something made for you.

Invest in bespoke software

These days, you can get software for just about every element of your business. From legal software to HR, rota planning, presentation making, customer relationship management and so much more.

While these are great, you might find yourself having to make workarounds to make them fit your business. What makes a great investment is bespoke software- programs written specifically for what you do.

Software for different areas that all link up seamlessly. You’ll boost your productivity and make life easier, you might be able to completely automate some areas of your business.

Hire the right staff

Finally, you could have the best machines and software ever, but as of now it’s impossible to completely automate a business. You still need human staff, and so it’s important to hire well.

Offer proper training so each employee knows their role inside out. If you have customer facing roles, the right staff will provide people with a personal experience and can help set you apart from your competition.

Spend time in the recruitment process finding people with potential. Train them well, and treat them well so they want to stay. Offering fair wages based on experience and good employee benefits are a great way to go about this.

 

How have you gone about customising your company, so that it runs efficiently and helps you to stand out from the crowd?

5 Tips on How to Protect Your Garden Office

If you are lucky enough to have found the perfect balance between working from home and staying out of the house, and have a garden office, it is important that you pay attention to security features.

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Image via Flickr

 

It will not be long until people with bad intention discover that you have valuable equipment and computers in the building, and disaster strikes. Below you will find a few tips on how to protect your garden office from intruders.

 

1. Separate CCTV

You might want to set up a CCTV that is linked to a monitor in your home. It is not hard to find a computer system that will run all the cameras. You can even check on your office when you are out and about, even if you are spending your well deserved vacation. A CCTV that is visible has a deterrent effect, and you can keep out people from your property who have no business to hang around.

2. Access Control

It might also be a good idea to install an access control system, especially if you have employees. You can issue cards that are unique for the individuals, so you don’t need to have mechanical locks. This will also help you track and trace who visited your office last, and check whether or not the doors and windows are locked. Just because you are running your business in a residential area, you can’t feel completely safe.

3. Flood Lights

Flood lights are a good investment for your home and your office as well. The light itself will make criminals think twice whether or not to proceed with their plans. If you have a clear view over your home office from the upstairs window, you will be able to keep your business safe and deter people who are turning up in the middle of the night with not the best of intentions.  

4. Home Alarm System

You might even add your garden office to the home security system, depending on how far it is from the main building. This means that you can keep an eye on what’s going on inside and outside, and get notified of electrical faults or other issues that can threaten your office and your valuables. The further the building is from other houses the more advanced your security should be.

5. Separate Entrance

If you have dedicated a part of your backyard to running your business, you might want to create a separate entrance gate. You might also prevent people from parking in your allocated lot if you install steel bridges and control access through a dedicated gate.

Check out the available constructions at https://northernmat.ca/products/portable-all-steel/ and find out how much easier it is to receive deliveries and control access.

Running your business from your backyard can pose security risks. You need to find ways of monitoring and controlling access, keeping your valuables safe, and deterring criminals, so you can carry on with your operations without distractions and make the most out of your garden office.

 

5 Easy Ways To Boost Social Media Engagement

All good business owners know that social media marketing is one of the best tools you have at your disposal. Getting a lot of followers online and posting regular marketing material is a good way to promote yourself but there’s more to it than that. If you really want to get the most out of your social media marketing campaign, you need people to engage with your posts. 

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That means commenting on them and sharing them with their friends. It’s difficult to get people to follow you in the first place but it’s even harder to get them to engage with your posts. If you’re having trouble getting people to comment on and share your social media posts, here are some great ways to increase engagement.

Build Your Own App

If you’ve got your own app for your business, you can include a social media share button. It makes it quick and easy for customers to share with their friends when they’ve just bought something, increasing your reach without too much extra work on your part. Building an app and getting people to use it is no easy feat.

The first thing you need to do is work out what features to include on the app aside from the social media share button. Then you need to find a great app developer to build it for you. The final step, and the most important, is testing.

Head over to www.globalapptesting.com to find more information about professional app testing. It’s not enough to just get a couple of friends to test it out. If you don’t get it tested properly then you’ll end up releasing an app with a load of bugs and a poor user interface and you won’t get anybody using it to share your posts on social media.

Use More Images

People are never going to share your posts if they don’t notice them in the first place. When they’re scrolling through their social media feed, they’re going to see thousands of posts and yours can easily get lost in the noise.

That’s why you need to do something to grab their attention so they’ll stop and look at your posts, then hopefully share them or comment on them. Pictures are proven to be a lot more effective at catching people’s attention than text alone so you need to be using them on everything that you post.

Research also shows that the engagement rates on posts with images are far higher than ones without. In fact, you’ll get an engagement rate of 35 percent on text posts compared with 85 percent on posts with pictures on.

Start A Blog

Another easy way to get people to share your posts is give them something worth sharing. That means creating helpful and informative posts that people will want to share with friends. Creating a blog is the best way to do this.

People will be able to read your posts and send them around online, boosting your online presence no end. The first challenge you’ll have to overcome when you’re starting a blog is getting traffic. Once you’ve got some readers, make sure that the social media share button is front and centre and encourage them to click on it.

Have A Sense Of Humour

When people are sending things to their friends online, they’re going to want to share things that are entertaining. If you’re constantly posting promotional material and nothing else, you aren’t going to get that much engagement online.

That’s why you need a sense of humour in your posts. Some of the most successful online campaigns managed to get so many people engaged because they’re funny. Injecting a bit of personality into your social media posts will really help with engagement, but you shouldn’t force it. People will see right through it and it won’t do you any favours.

Ask For Feedback

If you want people to comment on posts and give you reviews, you only need to ask. If you post marketing materials that don’t invite any engagement then you aren’t likely to get any. That’s why you need to start writing your posts differently to encourage people to engage with them more.

For example, write things like, ‘what do you think of our latest product?’ etc. Ending with a question always increases engagement. You can also use things like surveys or competitions to boost engagement as well.

 

If you use these simple tips and tricks you can easily increase engagement on your social media pages.

4 Genuine Ways To Generate a Side Income

One of the best ways to make money is to earn money in your sleep. If you can set something up to keep a steady flow of income, then it really can make a difference to your cash flow. business-idea

Plus, it can allow you to carry on with your normal job or business if there is a simple and enjoyable side-hustle that is allowing you to earn on the side. But what are some legitimate ways to do that, and legitimate ways that will work from home? Here are some ideas to be thinking about.

1. Trading

Much like matched betting, the thought of trading online can feel quite daunting to many, especially if you have not dabbled in this before; it can feel like a whole new world.

But if you look up some of the free advice online that can be found on blogs and websites, as well as perhaps using a trading technology tool like CMC Markets, then it could make it all more manageable. Take your time with trading online; the money can be great, but to some degree, so can the risks. So plan out what you want to do before doing it.

2. Matched Betting

If you are yet to hear about the world of matched betting, then you have been missing out. You can add hundreds to your income every month by participating in matched betting.

Many can be put off by the name, though, when it is in fact a form of ‘safe’ online betting. And by using the word ‘safe’, it means that it isn’t even gambling at all. Signing up to a reputable website is the way to go, and then managing your finances carefully.

From there it is definitely possible to make money through it, and it is all done online and from the comfort of your own home.

3. Use What You’ve Got

If you are looking for a simple way to generate a passive income, then use what you already have. It could be anything from a garage space, driveway, to your car or yard.

There are plenty of sites and advertisers that want to use the space that you have got for ads. So as long as you don’t mind a sticker on your car or a sign in your front yard, then it can be some easy money. You could even offer a spare room on sites like Airbnb.

4. Better Banking

When was the last time you switched banks or moved your money into a savings account? This can take some time to organize, (although a lot of banks will help you through the process as they want your custom).

Make sure that you are banking with the banks that offer the best rates, particularly if you have a lot of money in savings that could be earning more for you, just by sitting there.

 

Have you ever tried any of these ways to earn an extra income before? It would be great to hear what has worked for you.

Top Ideas for Starting an Online Business

Starting a business is always a challenge, and that’s true even if you’re simply starting an online business. You can’t expect this process to be a walk in the park, but there are some online business ideas that are a little easier to start than others.

We’ve decided to look at the business ideas that are both feasible for you and most likely to lead you to success. Those are the two main matters that should be focused on when you’re deciding which online business to start.

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Some of these online business ideas are not going to be right for you, but there’s sure to be at least one or two of them that do interest you in one way or another. You should consider all of the ideas mentioned because it could be the idea that you would never have thought of by yourself that actually turns out to be the one that’s right for you. Read on now and learn about each of these ideas and why they’re worth considering.

Manage Social Media Accounts

Managing accounts on social media is a great business to run if you’re someone who loves the ins and outs of social media. It’s not necessary an easy job because the demands of one social media account on one platform will be entirely different to a business’s account on a different platform.

You have to fully understand the business or person you’re representing when you run their accounts and think about who the audience is for this kind of online content coming from them. But if you can do all that, give it a try.

Offer Telemarketing Services

Telemarketing is something that can be done online if you use your internet connection to make VoIP calls to people, so it technically counts as an online business. Of course, this niche is not necessarily for everyone, and it can be very difficult to get good at it if you’re just starting out.

If you don’t want to be making calls yourself, you can hire people who have experience in that field, and you can just take care of the other sides of the business instead.

Website Design

If you love building websites and everything that’s involved in that complicated process, you should consider selling this service to other people. Pretty much every business and plenty of individuals need to have websites designed for them, and that’s something you can make the most out of it.

Your business will grow fast because being able to build websites at an affordable rate will also mean that you’re in demand and able to find a steady stream of good work. As long as you’ve got the skills for this, it’s a good idea to consider.

Buy and Sell Domains

Buying and selling is a great way to make money online, whether you’re buying and selling antiques or doing the same for website domains. If you can buy these cheaply, build them up a little and then sell them on, you’ll be able to make a considerable sum of money in a short space of time.

Many people make a lot of money by doing this, and as long as you understand how domains work and what makes them valuable and appealing to buyers, you should make a success of it.

Remote Tech Support

Some people are naturally gifted when it comes to offering tech support. If you want to show the world how to get things fixed when something goes wrong with their phone, computer or other electronic device, starting a business is the best way to do it.

People pay considerable money for remote tech support help. They’re in a hurry and want support from someone who knows what they’re doing. Are you in a position to fit that description. Tech support is always going to be in demand too, so it’s an idea worth considering.

Teach Others and Share Your Knowledge

Teaching other people is one thing that’s now done online by many people. You can make money sharing your knowledge and teaching people about things they don’t yet understand. It’s something that can be really fun because it allows you to indulge your passion and share it.

As This elearning course development resource is definitely worth reading if you want to get started in this area. You won’t regret it and you might just end up making a lot of money with this unique  business idea.

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SEO Services

The world of SEO can seem like a really big and complicated one, and that’s because it is in many ways. There are so many things you need to do and understand before you can fully appreciate SEO and what’s all about.

Of course, in its most basic form, it’s about making your website easy to find on search engine results pages. The rules are set by Google, and if you want to reach people via search engines, you have to play by those rules.

Ebook Publishing

Publishing ebooks is not just for people who write novels and stuff like that. You can offer advice to people on how to run a business, how to do advertising or how to increase profits.

If you’ve got experience of doing these things, you will be an authority who can teach people exactly what they need to know about any given topic. Ebooks are so cheap and easy to publish as well, so once you’ve got the content sorted, there’s not much left that you can even spend your money on.

Niche Retail

Retail is obviously still a big deal online, so if you want nothing more than to sell stuff online, you really should go for it. A niche area of retail could be exactly what you need to follow your passion and to develop a core of dedicated customers who keep coming back for more and more.

It is important to know your niche and stick to it though because if you don’t, you will find it difficult to compete with other companies operating in the same area as yours.

Social Media Consulting

We’ve already mentioned managing social media accounts, but if that’s too much hard work for you, you could always try offering consulting services to companies instead.

The beauty of doing this is that it’s a more hands-off kind of online business, but you still get to help people out. In fact, you’re helping them to improve themselves and that’s got to be a good thing for everyone involved. The consulting process should be one that you work hard on because there’s lots of competition out there.

Blogging

Finally, you should think about the prospect of blogging as a business. You don’t need to feel like blogging is nothing more than a hobby because many people do manage to make a lot of money from their blog by running it as a business.

If you build a following and you use things like Adsense and affiliate marketing tactics, you can create a blog that’s more than capable of earning you a steady income. It’s hard work to reach that point, but that’s the same for any profitable business.

Starting an online business is more possible and more viable than many people imagine. Don’t listen to anyone who tells you that you can’t take this big step forwards because it’s all about how you approach it and how creative you allow yourself to be. That entrepreneurial spirit is in you; you just need to find it.

How To Keep Your Company Safe and Compliant

A lot of people work hard to build their business, they put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into the process of starting out, yet it doesn’t take much for all that hard work to fall apart if you were to take your eye off the ball and not keep your business safe and compliant.  

When you have worked so hard to build a business the last thing you want is for it to go down the pan due to a safety, security or compliance issue as these risks can easily be foreseen and avoided.teamwork

Unfortunately, hindsight is a great yet somewhat redundant tool when it comes to these matters and it’s only usually in hindsight that business owners look back and wish they had done something differently.

When it comes to issues around data loss – you’ll often hear about entrepreneurs kicking themselves due to not backing up their data, for instance, as this one thing could save so much heartache, money, time, and hard work.

This article therefore looks at a number of ways to proactively keep your business safe and compliant.

  1. Employees

From a security perspective, your employees should be taking care of your business rather than be viewed as a potential threat to the safety and security of your business, but unfortunately, a lot of times within retail, for instance, it is the staff that account for a large proportion of theft.

It’s therefore important to have measures in place to protect yourself from your staff, which sounds like a very grim reality, but it’s better to be safe than sorry – and it’s better you are alert so that you can take action, rather than blindly keep your head in the sand, as a corrupt employee is as damaging to your organisation as cancer within your body.

  1. Keep Your Taxes In Order

This might seem like an obvious point, but if you’re not keeping up to date with your taxes or there are accuracy issues, this could land you in serious trouble.

Whether you’re intentionally cooking the books or are just being careless, or inaccurate due to a genuine mistake, taxes are a big deal as tax departments in most countries have extensive powers to investigate into your affairs.  

Interestingly, a popular search term within Google is “where to find my company tax number?” suggesting many people aren’t up to speed with basic company administration. They are so busy running their business and they feel they don’t have time for such trivial matters. Failure to file your taxes in time can negatively affect your business due to high fines that comes with non-compliance.

  1. Get Good Insurance

A decent business insurance policy is worth the cost as in the case of an emergency having this safety net has an incredible amount of value; particularly if you are running a small business.  

Just make sure your insurance policy actually covers you, as the last thing you want after a disaster is to be debating with the insurance company as they try to wriggle out of paying.