Whether you run a service-based business, sell products through an online store, or operate a traditional brick and mortar company, there are certain small business challenges that every owner must face at one time or another.
Here are some easy ways to overcome these challenges and make sure your small business stays on the right track.
1. Scaling & Staffing
As your small business grows, there’s nothing more important that finding and hiring a great team. Staffing your company with dedicated talent is one of the swiftest way to make sure you’re growing in the right direction.
Another challenge small business owners face has to do with scaling their businesses. Make sure you have a plan for the next 6-12 months, as well as a 3 and 5-year plan that includes specific growth goals. Successful companies hand pick stellar talent and create strategic growth plans that incorporate the talent of the people they’ve hired.
If your business plan doesn’t include ways to manage growth once it happens, it may be time for a rewrite.
2. Staying Competitive
In order to stay competitive, your small business must create a customer-centric marketing plan that’s continually solidifying your relationships with your target market. One of the best ways to do this is through email and content marketing with companies like VerticalResponse.
VerticalResponse helps you reach out to customers with fresh content, engage them via social media, and stay ahead of the competition.
Being customer-centric means fulfilling your customers wants and needs in ways that exceed their expectations. It means developing products and services based on the customer’s problems first and foremost. It also means developing long-term relationships and cultivating repeat business.
3. Managing Money
One of the most important aspects of running a small business is keeping track of the money you make – how it’s spent, where it’s coming from and where it’s going. As you grow, managing your finances on a manual spreadsheet just doesn’t make sense.
Many small business owners find that they don’t have time to manage their books because they’re too busy with daily operations, but they can’t quite afford an accountant or full-time bookkeeper.
Thankfully, there are cloud-based services like Shoeboxed and FreshBooks, which act as virtual accountants for your small business. Shoeboxed lets you scan and digitize your receipts via your smartphone, desktop scanner, or through their Magic Envelopes. Just toss paper scraps into the envelope and then toss it in the mail. Voila! Your receipts will be digitized and organized in a searchable online account. You can also snap a picture of each receipt with your smartphone using the Shoeboxed Receipt and Mileage Tracker and have your expenses automatically sent to your account.
FreshBooks helps you manage your money by tracking and creating invoices, analyzing your expenses, and letting you create one-click expense reports that can be easily shared with your tax professional.
What are some of the small business challenges your business is facing and how are you solving for them?
This post contributed by Emily Farrar. Farrar is the Director of Community at Shoeboxed, the fastest way to turn a pile of paper receipts into digital data for effortless expense reporting and bookkeeping.
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