Set your business up for success
There are several platforms that offer free business advice for startup businesses. A major part of this advice consists of training and educating entrepreneurs on different business aspects including budgeting, organization handling, getting online tax IDs, marketing, and growth planning.
A number of public and private sector based agencies offer free quality business advice or free. Some of these have been detailed below:
Small Business Administration (SBA)- Government based
The primary source of information for small scale business startups comes from SBA. SBA offers detailed business assistance programs and offer online tips on how to budget your business and what costs can be estimated during the startup phase. The best advice according to your requirements on which business company to choose from Limited Liability Companies, C Corporation and S Corporation to partnership and/or sole proprietorship is also given by SBA.
Furthermore, Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) has been set up by SBA throughout US to help small business owners with the sort of complications they face or if owners want to have a meeting face to face. SBDC has partnered with various public and private sector organizations.
A confidential and free counseling service for startup business owners, SCORE offers in person as well online advice to entrepreneurs. SCORE operates in 364 offices across the country and has 12,400 working as well as retired business executives and owners. SCORE remains to be one of the largest nonprofit private sector organizations to offer free business startup help and advice. Their network is huge and their volunteers are reliable as it also serves as resource partner with SBA.
Low technology grants and interest loans
When starting up a business, business owners are always in the need of loans at a low interest rate. Even though organizations like SBA back the idea of low interest based loans but they do not provide any.
The provision of such loans is made possible by the federal government through programs such as the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program or Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR). These organizations provide loans for specified areas of interest or usually technology based, innovative ideas that a business owner wants to incorporate in his or her business.
Private help can also be sought through various internet sites where people have offered individualized help for different types of business. Businessownersideacafe.com is one such site that gives a lot of information on different issues linked with startup businesses. Occasional information is also uploaded on funding opportunities. Read More
Minimize Paperwork And Maximize Customer Interaction
Let us admit that nobody loves paperwork when it comes to doing it themselves. Especially asking for every bit of information like the maiden name of their mother – is beyond a doubt something that would annoy the heck out of you. You do not want to lose customers by indulging them into activities like extensive form filling and other documentation.
Design easier-to-use experiences for your customers and build better relationships with them by directly interacting with them. This is mostly in the hands of your customer services team. Given underneath are some of the ways through that you can optimize the quality of the information you gather, permanently making it a hassle-free experience for your customers.
Test a button copy of your form
Call to action such as ‘click here’ and ‘go’ are some of the favorites that actually have a huge psychological impact on the customers. This means that they are just about to finish the hectic process of lengthy form filling. Give a more descriptive element, such as a possible scenario, that the customer can read and click on a smaller option as yes or no instead of asking them to provide entire stories on their own.
Reduce form length
You want to set your business up right, from getting a tax ID for your LLC to your one-millionth customer. And with those customers, form length does matter in causing an impression. Try to eliminate the things that are not that significant. This will hugely impact the image your customers hold about your organization. They know that you already know a lot of information that is quite evident already or maybe you do not deem it necessary to bother your customers with it. Either way, you win!
Don’t call your customers
Not many people like to receive a call unless it accounts for their personal benefit in some way. Make sure to not bother your customers with calls for pieces of information that are unnecessary.
Ask less, observe more
A customer journey mapping exercise is highly necessary in order to track how your customers do business with you and what are their basic expectations. This will help you understand segments that directly have an effect on customers. Asking more questions bother people and sometimes they are reluctant to talk on a particular topic therefore take every action of theirs into account and then conduct a subtle verification exercise for confirmation.
Extract verbal answers instead of written
If observation alone does not suffice, make sure that your customers are interacting with you verbally. Take a step forward and be a little proactive by asking for feedback. Become more personal with them.
If feedback is what you are looking for, make sure you are also keeping a constant check on support requests and customer satisfaction surveys in which people have already answered major queries.
This can give you direction for further form development and reduce the need for a comprehensive Q and A session online. Remember, a mistake repeated is a decision, so take in to consideration the information already provided to you from your previous customers and use it to design better strategies to help retain the new ones. Read More