Ideas to Expand, Protect and Improve Your Small Business
- Consider a merger or acquisition. Sometimes when two firms with low or average profits merge, or consolidate, the larger combined firm becomes highly profitable. Often duplicate expenses can be eliminated and others can be reduced, adding to the bottom line. Multiple locations can open new markets while creating diversification.
- Evaluate whether your business can be franchised. See: Reasons to Franchise Your Business.
- Hire a secret shopper to shop in your store or call on your sales staff. Given the right questions, you will quickly learn who is knowledgeable, honest, loyal diligent, and has the best sales skills.
- Barter for needed goods and services in order to conserve cash and to expand your share of the market. Consider both direct barter and joining a barter exchange.
- Hire a commercial collection company on a contingency basis to collect any money owed to you. Make certain the contracts you use include every legal advantage, especially when it comes to collecting money owed to you.
- Protect your business and employees with surveillance cameras and a burglar alarm system. Warn burglars with appropriate signs.
- Consider a multi-level marketing program for your sales staff. If it is structured properly, both the company and its sales staff will earn more money.
- Maximize co-op advertising whenever possible. This is advertising where the cost is shared among the retailer, distributor, and manufacturer.
- Use high quality advertising specialty products to keep your name in front of your existing and prospective clients at all times. The list of available items is endless and they can be highly cost effective. This type of advertising can work 24/7 and has a long life.
- Consider the use of mini-billboard advertising that incorporates a business card dispenser. These types of display ads are generally located in car washes, waiting rooms, and other high traffic locations.
- If you are involved in construction or provide direct services to property owners at their location, consider monogrammed shirts and jackets. Your firm's name will be reinforced and you will enhance your professional image.
- Consider offering matching funds when a client/customer makes a contribution to a select list of charitable or non-profit organizations. The offer can be made on your website and brochures. You will make new friends a clients/customers, enhance the image of your company, and help a worthwhile cause. An example would be to match up to $100 in contributions from any individual client/customer in any calendar year.
- Consider offering discounts on your website and in your brochures to active duty military, law enforcement, fire fighters, and other emergency response people. They deserve a discount for what they do and it builds good will for your business.
- Consider using your Self-Directed IRA-401K Account to purchase stock in an acquisition target.