Five ways to boost your business in 2014

It pays to have a sound growth strategy and a solid plan of action for 2014. Our business aficionados at 1st Contact Accounting share five ways to capitalise on current global trends and take your business to the next level.

Running a small business means  planning ahead and capitalising on the latest trends. photo credit: vvvracer via photopin cc

Running a small business means planning ahead and capitalising on the latest trends. photo credit: vvvracer via photopin cc

  1. Pop up in all the right places.
    Pop-up shops have become a global phenomenon and present the perfect opportunity to test consumer responses to your products, gather data, meet your consumers face-to-face, and take your online presence offline.
  2. Set up shop online.
    Why not look into ways you might be able to make a passive income by selling your product or service online? If you provide a specialist service and have a wealth of experience in your industry, could you sell your expertise in the form of e-books? If you sell home made-goods at a few local stores, could you set up a distribution channel and make additional income through online sales?
  3. Investigate your export opportunities.
    The UK Government’s aim is to double UK exports to £1 trillion by the year 2020. Last year alone, they provided £9m in funding to allow more SMEs to expand into the global marketplace, with a survey by Barclays showing that almost a third of SMEs experienced a positive impact on their bottom line within just six months. But it also highlighted the difficulties they faced; finding contacts for potential customers (30%), language and culture differences (20%), and customs procedure (21%) were all seen as significant issues when looking to export.Nora Senior of the British Chambers of Commerce says we must embrace overseas trade and do more to encourage, nurture and promote those who want to “think globally”. The government seems to be on board – are you?

    The rewards are innumerable for business that stay ahead of the curve. photo credit: h.koppdelaney via photopin cc

    The rewards are innumerable for businesses that stay ahead of the curve. photo credit: h.koppdelaney via photopin cc

  4. Get to know your customers intimately.
    Understanding your customers is key to providing them with services and products that they’ll fall in love with. Whether you’re an IT specialist or a plumber, if you provide your customers with what they want and need, they will use you again and again, even recommending you to their friends. How can insight into your customers help you drive your business forward in 2014? What are the best ways you can think of to understand your customers better? You could, for instance, look at your business from their point of view; you could collect and analyse data; or simply ask them what they think.
  5. Engage with relevant, high quality content.
    A recent study by the Internet Advertising Bureau UK found that around 80% of all consumers would be more inclined to buy from a brand more often in the future simply because of the brand’s presence on social media. Is 2014 the year you will embrace the power of the digital space? How can you use your website and various social media platforms to engage with your consumers, drive sales and ultimately grow your business? For instance, if you have a vast amount of experience in your field, you could share your knowledge through quality content and become an “authority” on the topic, which tends to lead to more customers.

For any limited company advice or assistance, visit 1st Contact Accounting.