Preparing for the unknown
There is no doubt that 2020 has been a crazy year. So many business owners have had to adapt (if even possible) to a new normal and whilst some have thrived, many have experienced loss.
It feels like the worst is over, restrictions are starting to ease and things are feeling slightly more normal, but we can’t be complacent. The only strategy going forward is to be prepared for the future as much as possible.
So how can you prepare your business for an uncertain future?
The best practice – if you can – for running a business during a pandemic is to digitize. Many businesses are offering online shopping through ecommerce sites like shopify or conducting appointments and meetings through zoom. This is a great way to continue selling your product or service at a social distance.
By now, you have probably already adapted to online selling if it’s possible, but what about industries that can’t operate from a distance like the trade and construction industry? Making even small changes such as getting a cashless payment system like Stripe or Square can go a long way in making your customers feel safe.
Another way to go digital can be taking time to update your online presence and marketing strategy. This can be a productive use of time when physical work is slow or not possible. Think about your current marketing messages and if they are still appropriate for this time, and take the time to create a stockpile of content you can use later on when you are too busy.
A good marketing strategy will make customers think of you when the time comes that they feel safe going to your business. For example, a building company providing content about home renovations that a customer might take on in the future will be more likely to get that customer’s business when the time comes because you have shown your depth of knowledge and commitment.
It is important to show customers that you do things safely and are abiding by current guidelines. If your business involves going into customers’ homes, they might be wary of breaching COVID-19 rules and showing them that you are aware of this and doing everything you can to operate safely.
If you are in a state where you can operate your business but are having trouble affording the cost of operating, the federal government is offering financial assistance in a few ways. They have introduced a new apprentice hiring scheme and a JobMaker hiring scheme to help businesses to afford new staff and get people into jobs. Businesses hiring a new apprentice will be able to have 50% of the apprentice’s wage paid for by the government until September 2021.
The new JobMaker hiring credit will see new employees who were receiving an income support payment like youth allowance or jobseeker and are under 35 have their wages subsidised by the government as well. For new employees 16-29, the government will pay $200 per week of their wage and for 30-35 year-olds, $100 per week.
This, on top of other tax schemes such as full asset write offs will help businesses to employ more people and expand their enterprise.
Hopefully this has helped you think about how your business can operate going forward. For more specified advice, please contact us at Bottrell Business Consultants for business advice from our experienced team of financial planners, accountants and business coaches.
Please call 02 4027 5782 to make an appointment today.
We look forward to hearing from you soon to help in any way we can.