CBNA CNYBJ Article 3

Commonly Applied Strategies of Successful Small Businesses

How does a small business become successful? This question is commonly asked on Main Street across the United States. Common must-have strategies for setting a solid foundation include adequate capitalization, maintaining accurate accounting records, and establishing relationships with professionals (e.g., accountants, attorneys, insurance agents, and bankers).

Even with these essentials in place, there is unfortunately no guaranteed formula for small business success; however, the following recommendations will hopefully position you for a good start.

Have a strategic business plan
A strategic business plan serves as a company’s road map. It should include measurable and quantifiable goals, and a tactical plan to achieve them. A successful business owner understands that a business plan should not be static—it’s organic and grows and changes with the business.

Be customer-centric
In this day and age, excellent customer service can differentiate a small business from a big business. Happy customers equals return business and more profits.

Focus on clear communication
Proactive communication with employees, customers, and vendors will set expectations and help avoid unnecessary confrontation. While email is an important tool, establishing a personal connection through a phone conversation or face-to-face meeting is recommended.

Have an advertising plan
Have you ever heard the phrase “If you build it, they will come”? When it comes to business, this isn’t necessarily the case. Many small businesses fail because they don’t invest in marketing their products or services. In times of hardship resist the urge to cut advertising, as customers are your sole source of revenue and profits.

Ask for help
Work with a mentor who shares your experiences and interests. Take advantage of your local community of small business owners and consider establishing a peer group where you can leverage each other’s skills.

Get involved
Community service can be an inexpensive (even free!) method of marketing. Attending, sponsoring, or volunteering for events is an opportunity for you to advertise your business and build relationships.

CBNA’s small business accounting tool, Autobooks, is a flexible payment and digital invoicing platform that can help keep your business organized. Click here to learn more.


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