Running a new business is hard and takes a lot of (for lack of a better phrase) gumption.
According to data from a recent report looking into the viability of start-ups, around 60% of new businesses are at risk of failing within the first three years of business.
When you think of how many businesses, and employees, that equates to across the country, it’s easier to fail than succeed.
One of the reasons for failure? A lack of foresight, advice and simple guidance on matters that can snowball.
Businesses will often put growth and expansion first, instead of looking at how to get the foundation for their business on sturdy ground.
Here are a few areas anyone running a new business might want to think about now at early doors. It won’t revolutionize how you run a business but it may help improving or ensuring that you get off on the right foot.
1. Better Broadband if You’re Bigger
Does every business need broadband? No!
Does every business which uses broadband need a dedicated connection? Maybe!
Depending on the size of the business, and how active a role the internet plays in operation, you might want to consider getting business broadband.
Now, if you run a small business with only a handful of people, and only some of you use the internet throughout the day, you’re fine with the same type of broadband you have at home.
If you’re in a situation where at least ten people need dedicated connections throughout the day, and you know the internet is essential for things to run smoothly (you never want an outage where staff can sit twiddling their thumbs), you’ll want business broadband installed.
Also, ask any potential business broadband provider if they allow Static IP addresses as standard. A static address is essentially like having an internet “house” which you can use your own server on, or in the age of working from home, allow staff to connect remotely to the office.
2. Dedicated Business Water Services
This tip should be viewed as scripture for any business which is based in manufacturing or processing. One of the hidden costs which can come back to bite you is trade effluent and wastewater disposal.
For most new businesses, wastewater is never really an issue. It is just the bad stuff that gets washed away down the sink or drain – no questions asked.
Adjacent to that exists trade effluent. If you are a small business that is focused on manufacturing or processing, when you’re flushing material that is a by-product of a process down the drain, you are getting rid of effluent.
Therefore, you need to have some trade effluent services in place.
It’s not something that companies using thousands of liters of water a month should be worried about. If you were running something like a small printing company or even a car wash, you need to know what your effluent output is and get someone over to calculate it for you.
If you don’t, you could end up paying a hefty fine as local councils hate finding out that companies are “abusing” the local water network, even if purely by accident.
3. Make Sure You Can Find Yourself
This is one area in which every business makes mistakes or other omissions. Supporting local businesses is important, especially in this day and age where restaurants and the like rely on online orders and delivery.
You’ll often see local businesses post on social media that certain apps and delivery platforms have hefty charges which impact their bottom line.
There is one very simple reason why people use these apps: local and small businesses are terrible in covering the bases to get their information seen.
If you have a business, tell staff or family to get their phones out and see how easy it is to phone/email/message you directly. A business that does it right should see potential customers contact a small business in less than 10 seconds.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to get a website sorted (you should already know that) but you do need to check that your information is correct on Google and Facebook; two places you can claim your business address and manually update information.
It only takes a few minutes and yet so many small businesses ignore it and if you have a business that posts on Instagram a lot, put your address in your page bio.
No one will want to buy from you if they have to spend time figuring out where you are.
There you have it. Just some of the areas any small business should look to improve services that aren’t in most guides.
Follow this advice and you should soon see water bills go down, more customers find you, and better internet connection for staff.