With the Christmas and New Year period over, isn’t it time to start looking at the year ahead, if you haven’t already started to do so? Previously, when SME owners have been asked in small business surveys before Christmas, ‘how are you going to use your time to improve your business?’, many have said that at the end of another challenging year, you are due a well-earned break. However, although according to many general indications and George Osborne, 2014 could be another improving step towards UK solvency and small companies can’t relax their vigilance in seeking business improvement.
So, many of you will make the early New Year an opportunity to prepare for the year ahead, taking a range of different measures to enhance your business. Most popular could be making financial forecasts for the coming months in order to manage cash flow better. Cash flow will remain an issue in 2014 for small businesses – the credit market and the UK economy are not yet out of the woods, and are SMEs yet in the best place to attract investment and support?
Also high on your list of priorities for review and planning should be the way that you market your business. If you are a niche player, a ‘little fish in a big sea’, or a new brand marketeer, it’s important that you are successful in finding and penetrating your target market. This means focusing your efforts in the right direction, doing your research and holding on to the business that you generate.
As a small business, you are likely to be in the unique position of being able to offer a truly personal service to your clients and customers. This can be a real string to your bow, helping to ensure your clients come back to you time and again. So what’s in your planning for 2014 to make you and your products special now and even more special and valued by the end of the year? If you can arrive successfully and in good shape for Christmas 2014, then you will deserve that well-earned break!