By Lina Martinez
Amongst small businesses, one of the biggest complaints you’ll find is the difficulty in getting clients to pay their invoices. When you’ve worked hard on a project, and have completed all of the work that comes with it, it will feel bad when people are taking a long time to pay you. Over time, this can often reach the point that work is given away for free, simply because it is too troubling to chase it up. Of course, regardless of what is making your money take time, it’s important to make sure you have the tools in place to make it better. A big part of this is understanding what might make your invoices go ignored.
Work Is Already Done: Unlike a normal transaction, invoicing usually occurs after work has been done and the client has said that they are happy with it. Of course, at this point, it will feel to you like a lot of time has gone into the work. For the client, though, it will have seemed as though the work simply appeared, and this can make it hard to get them to pay. This is a particular shame, especially when jobs are being built on trust.
Large Amounts Of Money: Forgetting or not understanding why they owe you money is very common, and this makes sense. What doesn’t make sense, though, is that a lot of businesses are reluctant to pay invoices simply because they cost too much. To avoid this sort of issue, it’s always worth being conservative with quotes, only ever offering to do work which you will have time to do, while always making sure that you will be paid enough to do it.
Poorly Managed: Managing a project like this comes completely down to you. Your clients won’t ask for invoices, and you will need to be prepared to chase them up when they go wrong. Companies like factoringcompany.net can make this much easier for you, giving you the chance to send and track invoices without putting in the leg work. Along with this, though, it also helps to work with people that you trust.
Unhappy With Work: Finally, as the last area to consider, it can be very hard for your client to speak up when the work you’ve done doesn’t meet their standards or aims. Often, this will result in things being unpaid, and both parties will be feeling unhappy. To avoid this issue, it’s important to keep in contact with your client at all times, asking them on a regular basis if there’s anything you can do for them.
Hopefully, with all of this in mind, you will start to find it a lot easier to manage the money your owed in business. A lot of people struggle with this sort of work, finding it easier to not get paid than to chase things up. When you’ve done work, though, there are loads of reasons to get your money, and most businesses will fight very hard for this.
By Lina Martinez
These days, delivery is a big deal for small businesses that operate online. After all, you do need to have some way to get your products to the people who order them from you. This is what matters most in terms of the customer experience in the 21st century, and that’s why you can’t ignore it or allow it to get out of your control.
It’s time to look at all the things you need to know and do to get your delivery process right. If you don’t, you’ll leave customers unhappy, so don’t leave it to chance. Scroll down and start learning if you’re currently unsure of which direction to take your delivery process in. If you implement what you learn here, your business will improve massively going forward.
Give the Customer Options
First of all, you’re going to have to remember that the customer is the person that matters most in this situation. There are so many ways in which customers might want to receive products from you. Maybe one customer wants to pay more money to get their product the very next day, while another person wants to pay less and wait longer. Some people might even want to pick up the product from your location, so put them in control.
Keep Items Safe to Save Money Later
Keeping your items safe is one of the most important things of all for any business that wants to sell and deliver products. If your product gets to your customer broken into numerous pieces, it’s obviously going to be of no use to them or anyone else either. It only ends up costing you money later on if something does happen to damage your product during the delivery process, so don’t let it happen.
Choose the Right Kinds of Vehicles
Next, you should think about the kind of vehicles that you are going to have your products delivered in. There are few options here. And if you’re going to use your own fleet to deliver in a local area, places like The Vomela Companies can help you with designing the fleet. Most companies will have vehicles hired from another company or outsource this part of the process to a delivery company, so talk to them about the options and which is best for you.
Limit Any Room for Error
There is plenty of room for error when you’re packing and sending products to your customers who’ve ordered them. That’s why you need to take steps to ensure you limit any room for error so that damage or products going to the wrong destination becomes less likely to happen. Having strict rules for each stage of the delivery process will help you to do that. If you’re working with other people, ensure they all follow the same code and rules.
Insurance is something that’s certainly worth looking into if you haven’t done so already. As we’ve already established, there are plenty of things that can go wrong when you’re delivering products to customers, so it makes sense to start looking at insurance options. That would mean that you’re financially backed up if the worst was to happen, and you wouldn’t have to lose money.
Add the Little Touches That Customers Notice
It’s often the little things that matter most of all when you’re sending products to customer. People remember when you go the extra mile and do something that most other companies people buy from don’t. It could be something like a short handwritten message thanking the customer for their purchase or something like that. That’s entirely up to you but it’s worth considering if you want people to remember you and feel that human touch from your company.
Let the Customer Track Their Order
It’s a really good idea to put processes in place that allow the customer to see what’s happening with their order and where it is. It’s pretty easy to put a basic package tracking system in place, or you could simply use the ones offered by the big delivery companies if you decide to outsource most aspects of this task. This puts control in the hands of the customer, and it’s something they’ll really appreciate.
These days, many small businesses operate in an online-only basis, but even the ones that don’t also have to get their products to customers. No business that sells products can get by without some kind of online store. So make sure you make the most of the tips discussed here.
By Sharon Jones
It’s easy to take your money for granted, especially if you’ve never had it tough. While you might have a good job and a regular income now, you never know what struggles you might face in the future. Sickness, job loss or a change in circumstances can all disrupt the life you’ve grown comfortable living. While it might seem negative to prepare for the worst, there’s no harm in future-proofing your finances. Take a look at the following advice on how to go about it.
As a responsible adult, you should already have a savings scheme in place. Putting aside a portion of your salary that isn’t for anything specific (like a deposit for a property) can help you prepare for your future, giving you something to fall back on if you were to lose your job for some reason. There are a lot of ways for you to save money that can all contribute to your rainy-day fund, so start thinking about making those additional savings now.
Plan big purchases carefully
Any large purchase is going to require some consideration. Whether you’re looking to buy a new car, a new house or other significant purchase – think about what will happen if suddenly you could no longer afford payments. Provided you can be sensible with your finances; there’s no reason you can’t buy the things that you want – just make sure you’ve given them some careful thought before signing on the dotted line.
There are different insurance options available to help you protect your income should something unexpected happen. While long term disability insurance can be confusing, your provider can explain the ins and outs to help you decide on a policy. You could also consider life insurance to help ensure your family are looked-after if something were to happen to you.
Invest your money in property
Property remains a popular form of investment, and if you’re serious about securing your future finances, you should look to invest. Whether you choose to buy a property to rent out (a great source of income should you need it) or invest in a property abroad, there are many reasons to consider investing in property. Making improvements to your own home can also increase its value, helping you to add to your assets that you may need to rely on in later life.
Pay into your pension pot
You should begin paying into a pension pot as soon as you get your first real job. A pension is a good way to save for your future, helping to fund your retirement or ease financial pressures caused by medical conditions and other expenses you may have to cover as you get older. Make an appointment with a financial advisor who can help recommend the best pension products for your circumstances.
Future-proofing your finances requires little effort once you’ve put plans in place. From savings to insurance, there are plenty of financial products on offer that can protect your future income. Start thinking about securing your income today and getting your finances to a healthy state should you be faced with one of life’s unexpected events. As the saying goes, it’s better to be safe than sorry – something that is especially true when it comes to your financial future.
By Nigel Hilton
Whether you have a small business or a large corporation, you’re going to need to think about how you hire people. When you start advertising for jobs, you need to consider the perks that you want to offer to the top talent who are going to click on your job adverts. By considering the perks that you want to give, you are considering what you feel that the top talent out there is worth. Deciding on those perks is not, however, easy!
Perks that companies like Google and Starbucks offer: tuition programmes, free food etc, are well known because they are valuable and only the companies with the big bucks are able to offer them to a large portion of people. Firstly, to offer good perks you have to understand them. Looking at websites like https://www.gomedigap.com/what-is-medigap/ will help you to understand what type of health you could possibly offer people in your organisation with the best value. The not-so-flush employers out there could still offer fantastic perks without breaking through their entire business budget, it’s just about looking for what you think people would be interested in. There are some things that you need to think about before you decide on the perks you want to offer people, and here they are:
Understand The Value
There are perks out there that are majorly fun. Flexible schedules, fun rooms packed with games and even a company gym on offer are all brilliant things to offer people, but those you hire may not find much value in them. Instead, personal development and promotion promises could be a perk that is appreciated over a room full of treadmills. You don’t have to offer a lot of extra bonuses to get the attention of good employees, so look harder at what could attract the right talent while being unique.
The one way that you are going to learn what your employees want is to ask. The importance of communication here is vital, and if you are bringing people onto the team, ask your existing employees which perks they found the most valuable. This way, you can adapt and adjust as you need to so that you can bring in the best talent.
Perks of a job should be offered from day one, not just on the passing of a probation period. By having regular days in the month where set perks happen, you are keeping people motivated. Allowing a ‘free lunch Friday’ where you pay for your employees to get lunch as a group at a local restaurant is a great way to bond, get to know them personally and give back.
Consider perks to be an add on rather than something of a headache. You need good staff who are performing well and getting to know your employees, paying attention to what they like and what they are interested in and being the type of business owner who shows that they care is the way to achieve that.
By Brian McKay
It costs to live, that’s for sure. But as sad as the fact that this is the truth is, there are ways to keep these costs down. Yes, there are ways to beat the system that makes living so damn expensive. To see just a few of these ways, make sure to read on.
Time can and should be bought
The costs placed upon us to live often come with deadlines to be paid back by. For instance, bills are a massive factor in the cost of living and they, more often than not, have deadlines placed upon them to be paid back by, don’t they? But, there are ways to buy yourself the time needed to pay these bills back by when you don’t have the finances to pay them off, ultimately saving them from growing even bigger in the long run.
To do this, if your costs of living have been bumped up drastically by the financial flight that is debt, you should be taking as much action as you can in the field of debt consolidation. What consolidating your debts would entail you doing is placing all of the debts that you owe into one payable package, meaning they would all be allowed to be paid together and at the same time. Yes, even if your debts are for different companies or different purposes, as long as they are legally bonded debts and not just debts you have rung up with individuals, you will be able to put them altogether in one package and pay them off in one. And, if you are struggling with debt you should most certainly be doing this as it will stop you from having to pay out at multiple and, quite frankly, inconvenient times of the month, ultimately meaning you will be buying the time you need to pay off your debts safely and securely.
Stay on top of your taxes
Taxes are a massive factor when it comes to the cost of living, that much always has been and always will be for sure. Yes, as much as seemingly everybody on our planet seems to hate paying taxes, they will always be a part of life. So, moaning about them is futile and truthfully a waste of time, as that isn’t going to change them or anything at all in regards to the cost of living. But, what can change your tax charges for you, and then subsequently bring your cost of living down drastically, is staying on top of them at all times.
The first thing that you should do when seeking to stay on top your taxes is to get in touch with a professional in the field of doing so, such as a tax attorney like Travis Watkins, found here: https://www.traviswatkins.com/offices/dallas-tax-attorney.cfm. What such an attorney would offer you is expert knowledge in the sometimes very complex field that is tax law, and having such knowledge on your side would help you to be able to spot when and where you are paying far too much tax — a fact that those without the eye to spot it would struggle to do. And then, once you have spotted where and why your taxes are seemingly too high, you will then be able to campaign or work towards bringing them down. So, get the assistance you need when it comes to tax to be able to know how the tax system works and how it can be beaten.
Something else that you should be doing when it comes to staying on top of your taxes and bringing your tax payments down — if you are dead set on not enlisting the help of a professional in the field, that is — is keeping all evidence of your taxes, both those that you pay out and those that you receive back. You see, when you keep evidence and a track of your taxes you will make it far easier to query and question a particularly high tax payment and this will ultimately give you a better chance of bringing it and the cost of living down.
Finally, when it comes to tax payments, just make sure you avoid these common tax mistakes.
Be smart when it comes to insurance
The insurances you take out in life are also a massive factor when it comes to the cost of living, so bringing their price down as much as you can is vital if you want to lower yours.
When it comes to doing this, first of all you should be tapping into as many multi-deal discounts as you possibly can. This means only ever opting for insurances offered by insurance brokers when they promise to bring their premium prices down if you combine said premium with another type of insurance premium. Basically, if an insurer offers to bring your home insurance cost down if you also take out car insurance with them, make sure you do it!
The cost of living is high, but it can be lowered if your just make sure you follow the advice above. And, another piece of advice that it would be useful to take heed of is the advice given here regarding the decluttering of your home. Yes, decluttering your home can help you bring down your cost of living and even make you some money, too!
By Nigel Hilton
If you sell physical products of any kind, it’s likely you need to keep some kind of inventory. Whether you have a small storage space or a sprawling warehouse, you need to know what’s in your inventory at all times. If you don’t, you could end up delaying orders, letting down customers and wasting money. Good inventory management is the key to ensuring you have what you need, whenever you need it. Making improvements to your inventory management could save you time and money, and increase customer satisfaction too. If you think it’s time to do that, you can use a variety of strategies.
Find the Right Inventory Software
These days, it’s easy to find software that will help you do almost any task. Inventory software helps you to keep track of the stock you currently have, and could even help with placing orders and other tasks. Many inventory software choices can link up to other software too, such as whatever you use for your accounting. You can use your software to keep track of what’s selling so you know what’s flying off the shelves and what’s not doing so well. Plus, you should be able to reduce the amount of data entry you need to do with automated tasks and bulk inputs.
Work Out Optimal Order/Production Frequency
You can’t just guess what you need to have in your inventory and when. If you do, you could end up having too much of one thing while your customers have to wait while you get another item back in stock. You need to know the best way to calculate when you should be making or ordering new products, and in what volumes. You need key information to work these things out, like sales forecasts and production lead times. Using these statistics, you can use formulas to work out when you need more stock and how long before that you should be ordering it.
Improve Picking and Sorting Equipment
Part of managing an inventory is picking the items and packaging them, ready to be sent out. This needs to be done accurately and efficiently so that the right items are picked in the right numbers. Equipment and technology can help to make this easier. You can even get specialist equipment for different industries. Pharmacy dispensing robots not only help you manage your inventory more easily, but they also make sure dispensing medications is carried out safely. They can reduce potential liability issues due to mistakes made.
Keep Doing Physical Counts
Even if you use various types of technology to manage your inventory, it’s still worth physically counting now and then. It doesn’t have to be too often, but it’s useful to do it perhaps once a year, every six months, or after major sales events or changes. When using tech to improve things, it’s always helpful to have a human check things that a computer could miss.
Stay on top of your inventory with effective management tactics. It could make a huge difference to how well you run your business.