Small Business Owners – Back to School – Part #1

Back to School text displayed in writing on a white board

Many small business owners will tell you, starting your own business is both an exhilarating and frightening experience!

Equally daunting is the task of ensuring growth and constant revenue for an already established small business. More recently, as a result of increased competition, the focus on small business growth has shifted and the need for strategic planning to encompass the demands of technology, customer satisfaction and retention has reignited the need for a revised and updated marketing plan.

If you’re frightened – don’t be – I’m going to show you how to stay on top of your competition and increase business revenue like never before!

Why the need for change?

Minister for Small Business Kelly O’Dwyer has said that Australia’s economic growth has been driven by the hard work and entrepreneurship of Australian business owners and their staff. She’s talking about you of course, and all your hard work!

The sector represents approximately 95.9%[1] of all businesses in Australia and according to O’Dwyer, has not been receiving the focus it deserves to ensure constant growth and sustainability.

In June 2016, the sector represented approximately 2,171,607 small businesses across Australia[2]. If one considers those numbers, combined with the fact that 33% of small business owners say they are “very concerned” about how the Australian economy will impact their revenue, it is no surprise that more small business owners are going back to the drawing board[3].

So…let’s go back to that drawing board and let me show you how we can ensure constant growth of your business!

The Power of Technology

The first step we should address is technology. We all know that in the last 20 years, businesses have been severely impacted by the way technology is shaping commercial interactions. So, with this, it’s time we revisit your marketing plan.

Revised marketing plans should be about reinventing products and services – not the wheel.

The majority of small business owners have already adapted marketing plans to accommodate the growth and demands of the e-commerce consumer. However having a strategy that purely depends on only the static content of your website to maximise customer revenue and lead generation is no longer enough. You need to think outside the box.

So, ask yourself, what makes your business different to its competitors?

Technology has not only given consumers access to a wider range of products and services but also to competitive information on product selection, pricing, availability and customer feedback. In order to stand out, you have to think ‘customer service’[4].

Your website is a storefront to the e-commerce consumer. The one-on-one sales experience has to extend to include the value of this consumer. Research shows that an increase in the number of businesses using Live Chat software to maximise the potential of their website and availability of their business outside of commercial hours indicates that business owners understand the need to reinvent their products and services[5].

So, why not think about integrating a live chat service for your website and see how this influences your sales? There are many free live chat services that you can operate yourself such as which can be easily integrated onto your site in a matter of minutes.

Outsourcing – Maximise Potential whilst Reducing Operating Costs

Firstly, it is impossible to improve your products and services if you are unable to measure their performance. Live Chat offers small businesses a tailored, combined solution to track the performance of your e-commerce market.

Most Live Chat platforms provide detailed reports on interactions with your clients after each chat. Using this information will allow you to better plan for the needs of your clients and thus gives you a greater degree in influencing future sales.

With this solution you will also be able to measure performance of promotions and marketing efforts in real time. It will give you access to listen and interact with your consumer while measuring the effectiveness of your marketing plan, sales efforts and KPI’s. However, to provide 24/7 support to your e-commerce consumer whilst not increasing your operating costs is where outsourcing comes into play.

For a minimal fee you can extend the one-on-one sales experience to your e-commerce consumers by third party lead generators and customer service experts[6]. This means that someone will always be available to speak to the visitors on your website 24/7 and provide customer service about your Company to each visitor.

Now that’s thinking outside the box !

Business Automation and Technology

In today’s day and age, it is about technology and automation.

Small business owners have to think smart in order to increase revenue and reduce operating costs. Resource and business automation that accommodate your budget is the way to go and thinking outside the box will ensure that your business continues to grow!

You can use services offered by companies such as Blue Sky Chat where you have access to a 24/7 virtual assistant who operates the Live Chat platform on your website. This allows you to focus on other marketing efforts of your business whilst ensuring that the customer has someone to speak to 24/7.