There’s no denying that inflation is out of control. If you’re like countless other small business owners, you’re scrambling for ways to keep your operations going and hoping the economy levels out sometime in the near future.
While there isn’t much you can do about the rising costs of everything, you can take steps to keep your company in a strong position. Below, the Marana Chamber of Commerce shares some simple tips for fighting inflation!
Organize Your Finances
First things first: You need a good picture of your company's overall finances. Take time to review your revenue, expenses, and debts to see where you’re at. Then, you can start strategizing and making moves to improve your standing.
It’s also important to use tools to help you organize your finances. For example, tried-and-tested accounting software can help you prevent costly errors and provide a platform for organizing receipts to use on your tax deductions. Some accounting solutions provide in-depth cash flow insights to aid your team’s decision-making and operations, but it’s best to decide what you really need. While one software may claim more features, it’s important to take stock of what you actually need in order to operate your business and how easy to use those features are. Balancing that information, in addition to cost, may change your perspective.
You must know precisely how your company is spending money. Thoroughly evaluate where every dollar is going to determine if it fits your current strategy for sustenance and growth. For instance, you don’t want lots of snacks going stale in the break room, employees wasting office supplies, or remote workers doing jobs that don’t move your organization toward its goals.
Be sure to cancel any services and products you don’t need and identify any business activities that aren’t generating revenue so you can adjust accordingly.
If you find evidence of particularly wasteful or unhelpful practices in your business, gather your supporting information and collect it into a single document or file. You can use a free merge tool in order to merge PDF files to compile this information. It’s as simple as selecting the documents you want to combine, adding them into the drop zone, and selecting PDF as your file type. Now you have all the information you’ll need to make informed decisions about these specific problem areas.
Nail Down Your Marketing Strategy
Paring down your marketing initiatives might be the first thing you think of doing as inflation worsens. But it’s one of the last things you should do. Your small business can’t survive, much less thrive, if you’re not building brand recognition and promoting your products and services on the market.
Instead of purging your marketing department, look for low-cost solutions for keeping your brand top of mind. For example, you could take new product photos for showcasing your products on your website and other online platforms.
The banner image on your business’s social media accounts is a great place to show off your products. You can create personalized banners for any platform quickly and easily with an online tool. Starting from a template, you can add your own images while customizing the color and text. Once you have a design you’re happy with, simply download it to use on your accounts.
Evaluate Your Pricing
Many small businesses are raising their prices to compensate for inflation. While this might be necessary for your company, you must approach this process wisely. If you increase your prices enough to deter customers, you’ll lose a large chunk of your customer base to your rivals.
Only raise prices enough to offset the impacts directly related to inflation. Your business must remain profitable, but you also don’t want to indirectly send customers looking elsewhere.
Also, be transparent. Avoid implementing hidden fees, drip pricing, or other schemes. Be open to your customers before increasing prices and explain why you must do it.
Shop in Bulk
There’s no telling what kind of shortages you’ll face in the coming year. If you know what supplies your small business will need to operate, stock up a year's worth now. Look for bulk discounts, and carve out some extra storage space so you can sidestep future price increases. This will also help you avoid having to pass the increased costs to your customers.
Remember Your Customers
Finally, don’t forget the importance of providing superb customer service. Price hikes are not the only thing that deters customers. Slacking on support and lackluster follow-through will cause serious damage to your brand’s reputation and eventually wear down your customer base. Customers are more likely to choose your business when they have good experiences, regardless of whether or not you have to raise prices.
You may not be able to stop inflation, but you can position your small business to fight it and come out the other side stronger than ever. Remember to keep your finances organized and cut expenses where possible. Find cost-effective marketing tactics, and be mindful of price increases. Lastly, stock up on supplies and double down on your customer service efforts. Implementing these tips will help your company stay strong as you wait for the economy to level out.
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Main Office: 13251 N Lon Adams Rd. Marana, AZ 85653