Spring is a time for growth. As a business owner, it’s also an ideal time to make sure your business is in a position for growth by ensuring you are maintaining a good cash flow and staying profitable.
So how do you head into spring ready to grow your business? Here are a few handy tips to help you get started.
Take a fresh look at your books
Review your accounts and do some research into the latest business improvements and practices. Taking a closer look at the way you do business and identifying areas you can make improvements can help you cut cost or identify efficiencies. For example, can you lower your energy or water costs or change to a new phone plan? Can you cut back on consumables such as paper and move to a paperless office?
Using new software tools and online apps can help you run your business more smoothly, efficiently and even give your business that competitive edge. There are various tools available to help improve efficiencies in your business from document storage, finance tools and email management.
Cash flow forecasts can help you identify when you may have extra cash available or experience short falls, so you can make the right decisions for your business. It also provides warning signs that may help you avoid future financial problems. Download our free cash flow forecast template to help you get started.
Get your pricing right
By keeping your pricing in check you can maintain your profitability. Make sure you assess your pricing by comparing your offerings to your competitors.
By offering discounts you can attract new customers and possibly free-up unsold stock. Whilst discounting could turn over stock, be sure to check your numbers to make sure the cut in profits are compensated.
Check your inventory
Sort through your inventory and get rid of any damaged, aged or expired goods. Your product or service is your bread and butter, so take the time to check your inventory which can make a huge difference in sales.
It is also a perfect time to review current suppliers and products and provides you with an opportunity to see what else is available to complement your existing offering.
Review your suppliers and contracts
As a small business owner you may have a number of suppliers and contracts, covering areas such as equipment leases, professional service contracts and business loans. Check your payments and contracts regularly – you may be able to request a lower interest rate which will help you save money.
You could also save money by negotiating a discount on the basis of bulk purchases, shorter payment terms, or as a long-standing customer. Or perhaps it’s time to consider other suppliers who can give you a comparable product at a cheaper price or faster service. Shop around for suppliers with a good reputation. It’s a good idea to get at least three quotes from different suppliers so you can compare their pricing, expertise and experience - be careful not to compromise on quality.
Get on top of your email inbox
One of the purposes of a business spring clean is getting rid of clutter. This can be difficult because your business will naturally accumulate more information the longer it operates. What better way to clear up clutter than your emails? Arrange some time in your diary and clean out your inbox by going through outstanding emails, filing the ones that matter, and set some new email management rules to avoid another build-up in future.
Dedicate time to learning new business skills
Being a business owner involves wearing many hats, even those that may feel unfamiliar. If you’re a numbers person, taking on social media might seem a huge challenge, but no matter what your strengths or weaknesses, we offer a range of free and low cost practical business skills workshops to help support your journey as a business owner.
If you’re in Western Australia, find out more about the small business workshops we have in the Perth, regional WA and online.
Looking for more tips to boost your business?
Our business information section has some great tips and information to help you improve your business, including links to handy resources to help you take the next step towards achieving each goal.
You can also contact our free business advisory service for guidance on a range of topics, including financial management, business planning and leasing premises.