Five Tips to Help Take Control of Your Business’s Financial Wellness
December 20, 2017
By: Cathie Ericson
If one of your New Year’s resolution is to watch your waistline, you’re probably not alone. But if you’re a small business owner, you should be considering the health of your business — and that includes your financial wellness.
As you set priorities for 2018, add these five elements to your New Year financial wellness checklist.
1. Challenge the status quo
It’s time for a re-evaluation when your “foolproof” business strategies cease to bring in the profits they once did. Maybe your customer demographics have changed, making your product or service less relevant. Or, maybe expectations have risen and you need to level up your service.
If you see results falling off, don’t pine for the “good ol’ days.” Instead, consider taking a hard look at every aspect of your business to determine where you should pivot to ensure you are focusing on your most profitable products and services, as well as your most lucrative customers. Try to create a financial model that boosts profits, not just revenue.
2. Take your turn at being a choosy customer
Ah, sometimes it’s fun to “be” the customer, right? And we don’t mean the impossible-to-please type, but the one who has realistic expectations that should be rightfully met. Your customers probably “shop around,” and you should consider it too.
Pricing structures can change fast so have your customer service rep re-quote you to make sure you’re getting the best deal in everything from your business insurance to your technology services and materials.
3. Turn an eagle eye to the money going out the door
Have you ever done a personal budget check and realized you’re spending way too much on takeout or overlapping streaming services? Sometimes we can forget to do the same with our business given all the competing priorities we have, but every budget can benefit from fine-tuning.
Check your outflow line by line and identify expenses that no longer make sense — then give them the heave-ho.
4. Evaluate the ROI of your social media efforts
Many people recommend to be on Twitter and Facebook, but the expected traffic may not come. Many B2B companies, for example, realize their time and efforts can be better spent posting on LinkedIn or hosting their own blog to provide in-depth information directly to their customers.
If you find your ROI on any marketing activity isn’t paying off, switch it up to see if you can find more targeted vehicles to reach your customers. Back to the “time is money” concept — even if your preferred social media marketing vehicle is technically “free,” you are losing opportunity cost if it’s not bringing in customers.
5. Add quarterly planning and review to your calendar now
It’s can be easier to course correct when you evaluate regularly, but we all know how planning can get pushed aside for more pressing needs. So try and take the time to put quarterly review sessions on your calendar now and treat them like appointments with your most important customer. Because after all, shouldn’t your business be that?
About the Author
Cathie Ericson is a freelance writer covering business and consumer topics. She creates branded content for Fortune 500 companies, and her work has appeared in LearnVest, Costco Magazine, Forbes, TheGlassHammer.com and IDEA Fitness. Follow her @cathieericson.
All content provided herein is for educational purposes only. It is provided “as is” and neither the author nor Office Depot, Inc. warrant the accuracy of the information provided, nor do they assume any responsibility for errors, omissions or contrary interpretation of the subject matter herein.
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