Small Business Tips – Make your company appear much larger

Without a doubt, bigger businesses have a lot of advantages of their smaller rivals: Larger marketing budgets, lower operating economics, etc. One of the biggest advantages bigger businesses have is an established online reputation. People inherently trust institutions that have grown to a certain size and been around for a while. It gives consumers a feeling of stability and confidence. Here are some small business tips that will make your brand and company look bigger and more prepared to compete with the big dogs. One component to a great online presence is online review growth & management. Sign up for a Free Trial today and get started.

Technology

Technology can improve your company’s efficiency and decrease human error by developing automated processes. With software applications like Quickbooks and contact management sites like SalesForce, company bookkeeping and sales tracking can be automated. In turn, small business owners can focus on their overall business strategy and their employees are free to work on other things while the computer runs their reports, creates queries, and tracks projects. This leads to one of the biggest benefits of automation & technology in businesses: productivity.

How to choose company technology

In order to pick the right technology for your company, you must first review your company’s current technology in relation to your current and future business requirements. Ask yourself:

    • Who is using your existing IT systems, and what are they doing?
    •  How efficient are your current operations?
    • Are there any bottlenecks which cause problems?
    • Are staff getting stuck on less important projects, like manual data entry or other repetitive tasks?
    • Are you duplicating effort between different departments?
    • Are there ways of working faster or tasks that could be automated?
    • Is your current technology going out of date or causing compatibility issues?
  • Are your business needs or processes likely to change in the near future?

Sites like Capterra and Software Advice are great resources to find business software that is right for you. We hope they will provide you with additional small business advice.

Operating in more than one time zone

Time zones provide tremendous benefits to companies that operate across them but not without its share of challenges that must first be overcome. It takes certain levels of communication and organization to operate in multiple time zones but when done correctly, companies can operate at astonishing levels of productivity.

In addition to increased productivity, having teams that distributed across multiple time zones gives the perception that your company is established and achieved a level of growth. This gives potential customers a feeling of stability and inspires confidence in your company.

How is this relevant to a plumber in Pennsylvania, or an accountant in Alaska? Easy, if you have someone doing manual entry, or replying to emails that came in once you closed shop for the day. You literally have extended your working day, while are responding faster to customers. When you come to work the next morning, you are already ahead of the day and more efficient than ever. There are many options to hire talent of all kinds even virtual assistants outside your region via sites like Upwork. Your time is too valuable to spend it doing something that you could train someone else to do for less money. Get more done, cheaper and faster without compromising quality. Just another one of our small business tips 😉

Website and Phone Service

Build a great looking website

Today, almost all big businesses have an online footprint and this is for a good reason. Studies show that 81% of shoppers do research before shopping. Very often a customer’s first point of contact with your business is through your website. Having a website is a great way to showcase your work and display customer testimonials or online reviews.

Your website is a reflection of your company. Ensure it has a modern and professional look. You could do so by having professional photos taken, engaging content with big headlines and lots of subheaders. You want everything about your design to lead to a strong call to action that converts users and gets them interested in what you have to offer.

Businesses also need to give serious thought to how your website and any other digital services work on mobile. Studies show since 2015, there has been a 68% increase in smartphone web traffic driving all growth as computer web access has declined. You need to optimize for mobile and make design decisions that work on those platforms. This is not a suggestion, this is a fact in the small business advice space.

Websites are inexpensive and have never been easier to build. Companies like Weebly, Wix, Shopify, and Squarespace offer excellent web builders.

Phone Services

Toll-free number. Toll-free numbers not only let your customers connect to you free of cost, but also helps create your brand image. Displaying a toll-free number on your website and advertisements gives your business a brand recognition, and makes it look professional.

As an added benefit it also helps increase call leads. Customers prefer to call on a toll-free number rather than a non-toll-free number. Thus, in case someone is inquiring for the service/product you sell, they’re more likely to call you first rather than your competitors.

Answering services. Answering services give your business additional legitimacy and the illusion of size. They represent a huge saving in comparison to handling your calls in-house. Not only do you avoid having to pay a salary, but you also save on the costs associated with having someone in the office.

Develop a Presence on Social Media

In addition to having a great website, most big businesses are active on social media. This is for a good reason. Social media usage has grown tremendously. There are 1.55 billion monthly active users on Facebook. LinkedIn has more than 400 million registered users across 200 countries, and Twitter boasts 320 million active users worldwide each month. Big businesses use social media as a platform to reach out to current and potential customers. You should too.

How to decide what social review or business platform is right for you? The advice of many business owners is to start with a few, then focus on the ones that produce the best results. Simply put, creating, a Facebook page, a Google reviews account, possibly a TripAdvisor page, etc. then deciding, based on your efforts and the return on those efforts double down on the ones that produce results.

Testimonial volume and Online reputation management

Testimonials are a powerful tool that big businesses use. Good testimonials help potential customers make a purchasing decision. Customers who are still on the fence can often be swayed by information in a testimonial or online review that indicates how much of a benefit your product or service was to someone else. A high number of testimonials builds trust with customers and helps affirms that they are making the right purchasing decision. Online reviews matter, we dedicated an entire post to this topic.

Increasing your testimonial volume and managing your online reputation could be expensive. Fortunately, you can get better results than big businesses, at a fraction of the cost. 5starRocket online review management platform allows you to not only collect feedback and reviews but gives reviewers who are happy with your product or service the opportunity to share their experience on popular review platforms. We also allow you the ability to work with unhappy customers before posting online. Sign up for a Free Trial today and get started. We hope you enjoyed these small business tips and advice.