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As a business owner, it’s understandable that you want to think about the bigger picture. Who cares about the little things if the bottom line of your business is too low? Why should you worry about what customers think of your company when you don’t have the money to expand? But, as the old saying goes, the devil is in the details. It’s the little parts of your business that ensure you can keep a strong profit margin. It’s customer reviews that guarantee the reach of your business continues to increase. As such, you need to think about the smaller parts of your company. Little things that you don’t notice have a huge impact on your company’s performance.
What type of things are we talking about? Well, we’ve already mentioned one part, and that’s customer opinion.
The Impact Of Reviews
Lately, we’ve noticed a trend online. Very few businesses bother to respond to negative reviews on rating sites. Reviews on Yelp and other similar resources are ignored. Instead, the reviews stick, and there’s no way for new customers to know whether they’re accurate. All they see is no response. Your company has stayed silent on the matter. There are two ways to look at this. On the positive side, you could suggest, you don’t need to respond. You’re confident that your business will continue to perform regardless of the minority opinion. Be careful of dismissing single opinions though because they have more impact than you realize. You might think negative reviews don’t matter. Particularly, if you have a large number of positive reviews that support your business. Unfortunately, people are more likely to pay attention to negative opinions. In fact, research studies have shown that people remember negative ideas more clearly than positive ones. This should tell you how damaging a bad review could be for your business.
To fix this issue, you just need to respond. If you respond to the review, you are showing that your business does care. You do take note of customer opinion, and you have tried to resolve any issues that they might have had. You may not win back the disgruntled customer. But you’ll reduce the impact their opinion of your business has on other buyers.
Health And Safety Issues
New business owners are most guilty of this. They don’t take health and safety issues seriously. They then wonder where all the money that they once had in their accounts has gone. We can tell you; it will have been used to pay accident injury claims or damages in settlements. Health and safety is a serious issue in your business that not enough people pay attention to. You need to think about the safety of your employees, suppliers, and your customers. If you don’t, safety issues will affect the reputation of your company and reduce the power that you have on the market.
For instance, if an employee is injured in your business, it will cost you money. Even if you have insurance the more claims you get, the higher your premium rises. As well as this, your business begins to gain a reputation for being unsafe. Once this happens, you’ll struggle to get the best employees to sign on.
Or what about an injury to a customer. That could be one hundred times worse and could be due to something as simple as packaging. If you are selling hazardous materials like bleach, it’s your responsibility, to make sure it is safely and securely packaged. If bleach spills on someone’s hand due to poor packaging, they have every right to sue you. However, that’s not the source of the greatest damage. They may also tell people what happened through social media. At that point, you have a serious issue, and you’ll need to implement damage control. This is why you should make sure the packaging is taken care of by a trusted bottling company.
These are just two examples of how serious health and safety issues can be. Health and safety issues are easy to fix. You just need to make sure that standard is kept high in the business environment and through production processing. By doing this, you can guarantee there are no issues that will cost your business money or damage your reputation.
Technology And Upgrades
photo credit: #WOCinTechChat
In 2015, only thirty percent of businesses were using the latest computer software. We imagine that number has risen due to Microsoft making Windows 10 free. However, there will no doubt be some companies that are still not using the latest software in the office. There are a few reasons for this. First, they don’t want to waste time and money training employees to use the new software. Second, they don’t want to risk downtime that they might experience while completing the upgrade. But mainly, many simply don’t see the possibilities that new tech and software bring.
Upgrading your tech or software automatically makes your business more efficient. You can deliver a faster service to your customers, guaranteeing that you beat the competition. Business clients are always looking for a faster turnaround and if you can deliver, you’ll win the sale. Particularly, if you can keep quality levels high.
It could also help you save a lot of money. New technology offers increased efficiency in more ways than one. You can almost guarantee that you’ll be using less power and therefore saving a lot on energy bills.
There are too many companies that do not see tech as an integral part of their business. Look at your company model and we think you’ll be surprised at just how important technology has become.
One of the biggest mistakes that you can make with your business is allowing it to remain stagnant. It isn’t moving; it isn’t changing. It’s just staying still, offering nothing new to customers and clients. Ideally, you should always be moving your business forward, in the direction of expansion. To do this, you have to ensure the longevity of your business, and that means investments. You need to think about what areas to invest in that will help your business grow and profit. For instance, you can think about expanding your trade boundaries to include countries away from your home continent. Or, you could consider investing in innovation. Innovative tech will help separate your business from the competition. You will be offering something fresh to customers. Consumers are fickle and will always look for what is new and exciting to them.
Alternatively, you may just want to invest your business funds wisely in accounts to generate interest. As your business grows and expands, you will be answering to other people such as shareholders. You need to protect the assets of these individuals by keeping your business financially secure.
Security is something that is primarily overlooked by smaller businesses. You might think that if your business is a smaller fish in the pond, you don’t need to worry about security threats. Obviously, criminals will want to target companies with greater assets. Don’t be too sure. Thieves and hackers will look for businesses that are easy targets. This includes businesses that have not bothered to invest in security. Instead, the business has been left wide open. There’s no tech support, no physical security and no measures of deterrence. Business owners are then shocked when they have to deal with a security threat. Again, you might think that insurance keeps you covered in this situation. We wouldn’t count on it. Most insurance companies state that businesses need a certain level of security. Otherwise, it’s the equivalent of leaving your home door unlocked and not expecting to be burgled. You’re just tempting fate.
Security is something that you should consider as soon as you open up shop. If you’re running a store on the high street, you should be purchasing roller shutters for the windows. If you’re running an office business, primarily, you need to think about tech security. Remember, just having antivirus software could stop a dangerous hack. Ideally, though, you should be investing in an IT support team. They’ll monitor your networks and guarantee that your business servers remain secure.
Photo Credit: #WOCinTech Chat
A happy worker is a hardworking worker, might sound cliche or ridiculous. It’s not too far from the truth. If you make sure your employees are happy, they’ll deliver a better service to your customers. As such, this is an area of your business that you certainly need to consider. Unfortunately, it’s clear that many business owners don’t. They don’t think the happiness of their employees is important. Instead, they work them to the bone and expect a brilliant service. It’s easy to keep a check on employee happiness levels. You just need to think about using a human resources service. They will complete regular assessments on your employees. It’s a quick and easy way to check how they’re handling your work environment. Are they thriving or is there an issue that you need to take care of? This is another area of your company that you shouldn’t just overlook.These seemingly insignificant business areas could have a huge impact on your company. You must take them seriously.
Main Image: #WOCinTech Chat