What is the best advice?

It is nearly the end of May and for many small business owners there is still an air of uncertainty surrounding their lives and business.

With many unanswered questions and information overload, what is the best advice? How can you ensure that your business survives and grows during this difficult time?

Here are some points to think about.

New staff

It may seem odd to be thinking about taking on new staff when you are not even sure about your financial position. However, the adage of speculating to accumulating may apply. As a sole trader or small firm that employs very few staff, I am sure that you are already looking into what Government help is available to boost your business.  If you are eligible, you would have to check whether your grant or loan can be used to employ some help.  If you can, then Businessadvice.co.uk give a number of reasons why  hiring a millennial could help to move your business forward.

Loans and grants

The best place to check for regular updates on what financial provision and support is on hand for small businesses and the self-employed is the www.gov.uk website.

If you have employees, your business advisor would have told you about claiming wages through the Job Retention scheme.

By now most self-employed business owners should have received a text or an email from HMRC advising them of their eligibility for assistance and when to make the claim. This claim would be for their entitlement to a grant through the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS). This grant does not have to be paid back but is taxable so must be included in your self-assessment for 2020/2021.

Smallbusiness.co.uk give you details of how to apply for a business interruption loan here.

Remember if you are at all concerned about what help is available and how to apply, HMRC regularly hosts webinars that cover a whole range of subjects.

The good thing about the webinars is that you, like your fellow attendees, can ask questions. You will find that some of the questions asked by others are quite good, so you may get your answer without having to ask.

Keep connected to you customers

Whether you are trading in a limited capacity or considering doing so, your customers need to be kept up to date with what is happening. You can stay connected with engaging, informative, and relevant content. Influencer Marketing Hub make some great suggestions. Number 2 of their top 10 says,

“They will take particular notice of useful, engaging content you may share, and are likely to remember your name, even if they have never used your services previously.”

This goes hand in hand with number 4 which tells you to improve your online presence.

keeping connected with other business owners

During these challenging times, people have pulled together, and the business community is no different. You should never feel that you are alone in this as many businesses are in the same position. There are groups on platforms like Facebook where everyone is encouraged to raise their concerns.  If groups are not for you then you could try reaching out to others in business, offering support or a listening ear. In return you may see your own business from a different perspective, helping you in the long term.

As we all navigate forward, I would love to hear from you if you need advice about what to do regarding your marketing. A friendly ear is also available upon request.

Thanks for reading.

Take care

Tricia

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