No matter how strong your small business is, it will have its ups and downs. This article goes over several survival tips that can help your business push past its rough patches.
Keep Customers in Mind
Entrepreneur Andrew Griffiths, writing for Inc.com, points out that many businesses lose sight of their customers during a downturn. That is a mistake: You need those customers—and the money they provide—to get your business humming again, so continue prioritizing excellent customer service, no matter how the rest of your business is doing.
Keep Your Forecasts Realistic
During a downturn, it can be tempting to fall into wishful thinking, leading to financial forecasts that are more optimistic than realistic. In the long run, this will only hurt your small business. Before projecting higher earnings or more sales down the road, ask yourself if your company has a concrete plan to get there. If not, it is time to either make such a plan or adjust your forecast. Accurate forecasts can help you figure out whether your business will need financial help, such as a line of credit, ahead of time.
Keep Up with Credit Control
It is always important to make sure your customers settle their invoices, but it can become especially critical during a downturn. Though it might feel awkward to pressure a customer to pay up—especially after you’ve spent time building a relationship with them—it is only fair that they honor the terms of your agreement.
To help your employees in this area, try splitting the responsibilities of making sales and collecting payments between two different roles. If that is not feasible, it is still helpful to make your payment terms crystal clear to customers.
Expect the Unexpected
During months when your business is thriving, be sure to set aside money so that your company has a cushion for tougher times. It can be helpful to write this into your budget so that it is prioritized like any other business expense.
For more tips on making your company thrive, take a look at Mossberg Strategic Capital’s other blog posts.