| 3 Crucial Business Decisions for Long-Term Financial Success

Posted in Finance at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting












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When it comes to making big decisions in our companies it can be difficult to know what is going to work and what isn’t. Making important business decision can be very stressful and this is an area that we all need to get right in order to enjoy future financial success. If you sometimes struggle to know how to go about making big business decisions read on for our top three tips on how to get it just right.


Understanding Your Business

This may sound like common sense however you would be surprised at how many business fail by not knowing all the facts about their company. Therefore it is incredibly important to collate all the important information and key facts that have an impact on your business. This will enable you to avoid missing any crucial information that can change and determine how you operate your business and the direction that your business is heading in.

This can come in many forms from keeping an eye on the movements of your competitors to finding ways to garner feedback from your clients. Gathering customer satisfaction forms, market research and simply talking to employees and clients are areas that need constant attention. It is also important to be up to date with all relevant business reports and media coverage of your business and also within your industry to keep on top of all market movements, trends and fluctuations. Find out more information, on how to do this at verticalresponse.com


Be Result Driven

Being organized and focused on setting goals will mean that you organically become a business owner that is highly driven by results. This is one of the most important things that you can do in order to ensure the financial success of your company. All companies have their peaks and their dips and no company can avoid at least a few moments of financial drought.

Therefore keeping on top your financial results on a regular basis will allow you to know when to tighten the purse string or seek financial assistance from a company such as Workingcapital.co. On the other end of the spectrum when the company is enjoying financial growth, by staying on top of your results, you will be able to know the optimum time to reinvest back into the development and further growth of your company.

Being results driven also refers to keeping on top of your staff, their productivity and their morale within your company. It also consists of constantly looking for ways that you can turn positive results into even more positive results and using any negative results as a solid learning curve.


Evaluate & Re-evaluate

That leads to our final point about the importance of learning from our mistakes. No business is immune from wobbles and failures at some point or another and the mistakes themselves are not what are important, more how we learn from them. Continually evaluating what works for our businesses and what doesn’t is one of the most important ways you can enjoy long-term financial success.


| The Littles Things That Make The Difference Between Cake Shop Hell And Heaven

Posted in Small Business at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting

Let them have cakes, as the French queen Marie-Antoinette once said. Admittedly, things have changed a lot since the French Revolution of 1789, but this doesn’t change the fact that Marie-Antoinette had guessed it right: Everybody loves cakes. And that’s exactly why cake shops continue to be so popular in our lives. In fact, more and more independent businesses open as a way to offer something sweet and rewarding to their clients. From vegan patisseries to traditional or exotic cake recipes, the baking business is booming, and it is equipped to address a variety of client needs. With more and more independent cake shops appearing in town centers, you may be wondering what for you is the best way build a shop that will get noticed from the first day. Let alone picking yummy recipes and mastering the patisserie skills, there are some essential tips that can turn your cake shop into cake heaven for those with a sweet tooth.













Cake display

You can’t build a business with everyday equipment

For a start, it doesn’t matter how small your cake shop is going to be. Even if it’s nothing more than a small room with a few tables and a tiny display window, you still need to take your business seriously and provide it with professional cooking equipment. From heavy duty ovens to keeping a large cooler for your ingredients, there are plenty of kitchen tools and solutions that you need to produce amazing cakes every single time. You can’t cook professionally using the oven you’ve got in your home kitchen. You need to invest in the right equipment, for your business kitchen and the best quality display for your cakes.


Showcase your cakes

Have you heard of the art of visual sales? It’s the ability to manage the surrounding of the products — aka the decor of your cake shop — in a way that can enhance the experience of your customers and encourage them to buy. Visual sales require an eye for details, as you need to place each cake in such a way that every single one of your creations receives the highest possible attention. It’s a matter of ensuring that not everyone comes in to buy the same old chocolate cake and ignores all your other recipes, to put things clearly. In other words, your choice of colors and materials will play a decisive role in guiding your customers inside your shop and make them salivate. For instance, when music shops can use vintage instruments to decorate their walls, you could use pictures of your best creations and pastel colors.












New in town? Get your freebies!

When you’re new in an area, it can be difficult at first to attract customers. So, you may want to launch a freebie campaign to get people to your cake shop. Many customers tend to be hesitant to spend money with a business they don’t know. Consequently, sharing on social media and via flyers that you are offering a free tasting might be a good way to let them try your cakes free of charge. Consider freebies as an investment in a future customer.

Everybody loves cakes, and that’s why cake shops are so trendy. But the best way to make room in a highly competitive market is to go back to traditional values. Take your business seriously, stage your cakes as best you can in a beautiful decor and offer free samples to turn hungry gourmets into customers!


| Wholesale Distribution Made Easy

Posted in Small Business at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting

The wholesale distribution industry is booming right now. Thanks to online shops and stores, lots of companies are now looking for cheaper ways to ship their goods and products, and wholesale distributors are a much more cost-effective solution than the regular postal service. Have you been thinking about setting up your very own distribution business in this area for some time? If so, then all the following tips and ideas can really help you bring your idea to fruition.










Invest In Good Equipment

First of all, you need to make sure that you have all the right equipment and tools in your warehouse to ensure that you can store, sort through, and send off all the various items and products you are required to distribute. This will include the likes of ecommerce sortation conveyor systems and a fleet of modern vans and trucks. Sure, this will be quite a large startup cost, but it will definitely be worth it as you won’t have to replace any top-quality equipment for a few years once it is in place.


Manage Your Credit Well

Wholesalers are the middleman. They are the link between companies and their clients. Because you are the middle link in this chain, you will have to continually juggle your credit situation. It’s important that you have a tight follow-up and reminder process in place if any of your invoices are unpaid. It’s important that you get all money that is owed to you as soon as possible so that you are never late on your own payments to your creditors. This can cause a cash-flow problem, and could make it difficult to run your distribution business effectively.


No More Manual Order Management

Now that we use computers and tablet devices for most day to day activities, it is important that you start to bring these types of technologies into your business. There is no point being stuck in the 20th century and manually managing your orders, you should instead manage everything digitally. This makes managing your orders much easier, and you won’t have to dedicate so much of your time to them as they will be taken care of by a computer.


Hire the Best Sales Reps

There are so many different wholesale distributors out there right now. So, once you set up your very own company, you will need to make sure that you are able to stay one step ahead of all your competitors. One way in which you can do that is to hire some expert sales reps who can help you get more and more customers on your side. Ideally, you should hire new hires who have a solid background and plenty of experience in sales. But don’t worry if you can’t find anyone who has the exact background for the job – it is easy enough to train people on the job for a sales position.


What sort of other tips would you suggest for a new wholesale distribution company? I’m eager to hear your ideas!


| Productivity Problems And How To Improve Them

Posted in Small Business at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting











Every business has its issues. It’s a normal part of working life. But it’s safe to say that some issues are easier to handle than others. When you’re running out of money or you lose all of your staff, it can be a problem. If you’ve forgotten your speech at your business event, it’s not really on the same scale. However, tucked neatly into both scenarios, and something that can often spend its time moving up and down that scale, is the idea of productivity. Because when you have problems with productivity, you may find that it’s hard to keep everything on track. So let’s take a look at what you can do to improve them.


Streamline Your Processes

One of the first things you can look at doing is streamlining your current process because sometimes, you make things harder on yourself. If you’re going around the houses to get things done, you need to regroup! For this, you might like to do it yourself, or you can work with someone such as Quality-One to get it done. Going forwards, you should find that reducing wasted time and increasing efficiency is exactly what you need to boost productivity.


Set New Procedures

Moving on from here, you should then think about setting new procedures. More often than not, you’ll find that if you just have some set systems in place for every area of the business, your productivity levels will increase. Because there’s often a better way of doing things than what you’re doing now. This is commonly the case when your productivity isn’t where it should be to start with.












With streamlined processes and new procedures in place, if you still experience a lack of productivity, you’re going to need to turn to your staff. To do this, you may need to work on a range of different employee incentive ideas. Of course, not everything is going to work for everyone, or even for every department, but you should work on trialing different ideas to see if they can boost the output in each section.



If you find that incentives just aren’t working, maybe you need to shake up your staff. It’s often the case that the people working for you just aren’t right. And although you can’t fire them, you may find that employing new people will help. If you’ve changed your company to increase productivity, you may find that the unsuitable members of staff will leave on their own accord anyway. Then, with the right people in place, you should find that your productivity takes care of itself.


Upgrade Your Equipment

Or maybe your people are perfect, and the problem lies within the equipment you’re using. This is often the case when you’ve got old machinery and technology in the business. There are lots of signs that it’s time to upgrade your tech, including the need to grow or change direction, but notice a problem in the workplace is the third. And it applies to issues with productivity. If your machinery is slow, you should look to upgrade it in order to push your productivity to where it should be.


| Why Starting A Small Business Is Easier Than You Think

Posted in Small Business at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting

It would seem everyone is in business nowadays. Big corporations shine in the spotlight and little businesses are popular on the blocks they were founded on. Yet it doesn’t have to stay this way due to the amount of businesses springing up around the country, in less traditional ways than seen before. Starting a small business is no laughing matter, but that doesn’t mean it has to be difficult as well. Sure you might face some challenges in your new job, but that’s all part of the process. Overcoming them will make you successful, and show yourself you’re in this for the long term. So here’s a few reasons why establishing your own small business is a much easier feat nowadays than ever before.













Because Business Plans Don’t Need To Be Long

There’s an art to writing a business plan. However, it can be done by everyone, and it doesn’t have to be sprawls and pages of writing either. If you have a short business plan, a single page for example, you’re more likely to stay in business for longer.

This is because you’ve kept things as simple as possible, which as a result means your costs will be low and manageable. Ask yourself a few questions before you put pen to paper, or more likely finger to keyboard, and brainstorm a little.


Do you know where you want to go?

Is there a goal for the future you want to hit?

What kind of budget do you need to keep to?


Questions like this mean you have an actual plan for your company, and aren’t just detailing every little thing because you can.


Because You Can Get Specialized Loans

As a small business, whether you be a sole trader, in a partnership or otherwise, there’s a lot more financing options to turn to than you think. Grants such as administration loans and alternative lenders who invest in you mean you don’t have to make a profit off of your own back alone. There’s even government programs open to you if you qualify for them.

To go into some detail, if you’re thinking of starting a small business; once you’re in sales for a little while and can prove you have good credit, you can apply for a small business line of credit. It’s a different type of loan that allows you access to capital whenever you need it, and there’s no interest on the money or need to pay it back when liable.


Because You Can Go Online

The internet has made buying and selling so much easier. Gone are the days when word of mouth advertising and having to make the effort to walk into stores to get what you wanted. With a business online, you’ve dramatically increased the market you can sell to just by creating a website.

After considering these main three reasons, there’s a lot of stock to put into the idea that starting your own business is less of an obstacle than you think.


| The Power Of Starting Strong In Business

Posted in Small Business at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting













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Startups are notoriously tricky business. You can never be quite sure of how likely or not a startup is to succeed in the long run, and this lack of certainty can actually cause some poor management behavior. When you work from this perspective, you are working from a losing stance, when what your business needs is to work from a position of strength. Starting strong in business means staying strong throughout – it means a firmer base on which you can build your enterprise, and much more ability to get through the tough time. So how do you make sure that you start off in the right way?


No Detail Too Small

A particularly useful facet of strength which is always worth exploring is that it relies on a complete analysis of the situation. To be in a truly strong position means that you know exactly your virtues and your flaws, and you are also completely aware of the possible hurdles ahead of you. Paying attention to the smallest of details in your business is therefore an extremely effective way of getting off on the right foot. No matter what it is, remember that there is no such thing as a detail too small. Take that approach, and you will be starting off in a much stronger position. See https://www.thegrocer.co.uk for more on this essential piece of wisdom.


No Such Thing as Too Much Money

Clearly, a business is always going to need a good deal of capital in order to get going in the right way. The more financial freedom you have the ability to practice in your enterprise, the stronger you will feel as you work through building up that organization. There have always been many options for finding decent, reliable finance in business, such as those discussed at startupbusinessloans.co. However you do it, you need to make sure you have the right amount of money – and remember that you simply cannot start off with too much. The more the merrier, as you can then grow your business much more swiftly.













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No Wrong Way to Approach Growth

Whatever decisions you are making, you should get into the habit of thinking in terms of growth. As long as what you are doing is good for the overall growth of the business, you can’t really argue that it is not the right thing to do. As long as you remain legal, moral and above board, whatever methods you can find to approach the issue of how to grow are perfectly legitimate. Don’t worry about how it appears or whether you are doing what a famous entrepreneur did. It is your business, nobody has run another business the same as it before, and it is entirely up to you how to make it successful. Give yourself the freedom to enjoy the process, and you will both get more out of it personally and see better immediate results as well.

Start strong and you can be sure that you will stay strong, so it is worth trying to bear the above in mind. With any luck, your business will remain strong for as long as it exists.


| The Pros & Cons Of Being A Sole Trader

Posted in Small Business at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting

A huge number of entrepreneurs choose to go it alone; as in, they begin their business without the input of anyone else. It’s their idea; their determination; their workload they are going to be burdening.

Being a sole trader can be hugely satisfying, but it’s not without its downsides. Before you launch a business by yourself, it’s worth considering the pros and cons regarding the path you’re choosing to take.


PRO: You Can Make Your Own Decisions

When you’re launching a small business, you’re inevitably going to make a lot of decisions. From logo design to your pricing structure, you will spend your days deciding between two choices. If you’re the only person in the business, then you don’t have to worry about arguing at any point during the complex decision-making period — which can save you a lot of time and stress.


CON: There’s No One to Help Share The Workload

Any good sole trader knows when to outsource work they are not qualified to do, such as hiring out bookkeeping services or using a graphic designer to perfect your logo. For everything else, however, you have to manage it alone. This can mean that your time is always in demand, with no business partner or staff to help bear the load. You can’t outsource everything if you want to generate a profit, so sole traders have to be willing to work very hard to get their business off the ground.


PRO: The Profits Don’t Have To Be Divided

The whole goal of your business is to generate a profit. If you work hard, you can reap the rewards of your effort. However, with a business partner or staff, you’re going to have to divide the money you make with other people. If you choose to be a sole trader, then every penny you earn goes into your pocket. This is particularly important to remember if you’re only aiming to have a small lifestyle business; do you really want to share a small amount with another person?


CON: There’s No One to Bounce Ideas Off

As mentioned, launching a business means you’re going to be making a lot of decisions. Some of those decisions will be easy; some of them will be… less so. If you’re a sole trader, you have to make all those decisions based off your own instincts alone. There’s no one to talk to, no one who can guide you onto the right path. This can be isolating and make decision-making more stressful. If you’re going to go it alone, you’re going to have to be comfortable with relying on just your own instincts and feelings.


PRO: Selling the Business Is Easier

In the future, you might want to sell your business so you can pursue other goals. Without a doubt, this is far easier to do if you’re the sole owner. The process of selling a business is complicated by a business partner or staff. While the idea of selling might seem like a far-off thought, it’s always worth contemplating the future and the options you may wish to explore.

If, for you, the benefits of being a sole trader outweigh the cons, then that’s fine — at least you now know the areas you will need to be aware of to ensure your solo business can shine.











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| Let’s Get Physical

Posted in Small Business at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting

In case you hadn’t noticed, we’re living in the future. The sci-fi films of ten years ago may have seemed far-fetched, but we’re not far off. And, this futuristic vibe hasn’t changed anything quite so much as it has the face of business. With ecommerce ever growing in popularity, finding success is a completely different beast in the current climate.

In many ways, this is good news. Startup costs are lower, and success is easier to reach. But, is our focus on technology making us neglect other, equally important aspects of businesses? While the future does lie in ecommerce, it’s essential we don’t neglect our physical business spaces. Even if we operate entirely online, these will remain crucial to our success.

Do you lift your head from your computer screen and see mayhem all around? If yes, it’s time to turn your attention to the following areas.

Keep Things Clean
Keeping your business space clean is just as important now as ever. But, when you’re focusing on computer screens, it’s easy to let this slide. Sweet wrappers build, dust gathers, and before you know it, you’re at risk of disappearing under the rubbish. And,  this can be a real health hazard for your employees.











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Of course, it’s unlikely you have the time to tackle the issue yourself, and that’s good news. Being busy is, after all, what all business owners want. And, lucky for you, there’s a way to tackle this problem without tearing yourself away from technology. By hiring janitorial services, you can rest easy that the cleaning issue won’t sneak up on you. You’ll be free to get stuck in the web all day this way.


Is Your Face Missing From the Company?

Many companies now interact with customers via social media. It’s quick, easy, and convenient for both parties the majority of the time. But, that doesn’t mean your face should completely disappear from your physical business. As it stands, technology isn’t the best for producing personal connections. You don’t get the eye contact or the general chatter which gets customers returning time and again. So, now and then, you should make a face to face appearance. Depending on your company, this could mean doing a shift in the shop or hitting the streets to let people who you are. Either way, doing this once a week will take you far.









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Are You Offering Employee Support?
Another crucial reason for taking your head out of that web is employee wellbeing. As a boss, you have a responsibility to talk to and care about your staff members. But, if you’re always glued to the computer screen, they may find you unapproachable.

As such, it’s worth having a wander around the office at least every few hours, and chatting with your staff. Don’t do this to check up on them; else they’ll come to dread the walk rounds. Instead, use this as a chance to let them know that you’re there, and willing to talk if they need you.


| Double Take: The Art Of Visual Sales

Posted in Marketing at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting











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Like most animals, how we perceive our surroundings and environment are largely based on the senses we have. A blind mole, for example, will experience the world very differently to a creature which can see, relying on their senses of smell and hearing to help them. As your subject becomes more intelligent, like humans, the impact of senses can be felt on more than just perceptions of the world; but also the way people feel and the decisions they make. To turn this in favor of your business, this post will be going through some of the different ways you can start using visual sales techniques for your products, making the most of people’s eyes.

Before you can begin with something like this, you first need to understand the sort of approach you’ll need to take. To begin, as this area is new to you, you’ll need to do some learning and research to make sure you don’t miss anything out. Along with this, you should also make sure that you address each of your products on their own. The way that you use visuals to sell a product will depend on what the product itself looks like.

With your product in mind, you can begin to think about the colors and materials you will have surrounding it. This sort of decision has to be heavily based on the product and will be used to enhance its existing looks. For example, books and other rustic items look great with wood, and it should be nice and easy to create a style which works with them. More modern items, though, will need more work. Sites like http://www.fireflystoresolutions.com/c-1246-display-hooks.aspx can help you to find display items and other visual sales tools, making it easy to get this job done. Along with this, though, you should also consider creativity when you’re working like this.

Along with the colors and materials surrounding your product, you can also think about other items which might enhance your customer’s experience. For example, if you sell CDs or other music-related items, old instruments or record players could be great accent pieces for your products. Of course, though, you have to be careful. Items which are very detailed or intricate will look bad surrounded by items with similar qualities. But, likewise, plain items will look boring without the right compliments. This part of your visual sales process will be hard, so it’s worth doing some research at this stage.

Finally, and possibly the most important aspect of this effort is the level of uniqueness found in your displays. There’s not much point in copying or using a similar idea to another company. This will make your displays feel boring, and some customers may even recognize that you’ve ripped someone else off. To solve this issue, websites like https://www.strategy-business.com/blog/How-to-Make-a-New-Product-Unique?gko=2428c can help you to make your displays unique to your company. To achieve this goal, you’ll need to set up a strict set of styles which your business will follow for each display.

Hopefully, this post will inspire you to start focusing more on the visual sales techniques you use in your business. A lot of people don’t consider this sort of area. But, with the right work, it should be nice and easy to start selling based on looks alone.


| Read This And More Clients For Your Law Firm Are Guaranteed

Posted in Small Business at 9:00 AM by Loftis Consulting

Marketing in law markets is completely different to marketing in other markets. One of the worst things you could do in the law industry is market as if it’s the same. Chances are, you’ll get mediocre results at best – sometimes nothing to show for your efforts. It doesn’t matter how many areas of expertise you have, or how many years you have been in the industry; if you’re marketing the wrong way, you won’t get the results you want. Plain and simple!

However, if you read on, you’ll be able to get more clients for your law firm. It’s pretty much guaranteed. Find out how…


Realize Nobody Cares About You

This might sound harsh, but really, nobody cares about you. They don’t care about the areas you specialize in, and they don’t care about how long you have been in the industry. Trying to gain clients by marketing yourself like this will usually fail. This is what many law firms currently do, so if you can break away from this then you’re immediately going to have an edge over your competitors.

You need to remember that people are very self-centered; they care about themselves and their problems and they will struggle to see past this. They won’t click on your ad if you say you have 17 areas of expertise and 20 years’ experience. They want to see you specifically talking about their problems.

You can start by picking an area you specialize in – like family law, and then think of all of the problems people can face in this area instead.

Things like adopting, child support, divorce and more. List the problems you can solve. This is what people want to see, and what will make people stop what they’re doing and come to you for help.














Focus Solely On Solving a Problem

When you have a list of the problems you can solve, you need to focus solely on these things. Make sure everyone knows you can solve the problems, and how. Talk about them in depth, so that they see you are an expert at solving issues like this. Don’t simply say you are an expert in family law – talk about the issues and how you will help. This is where the success lies.

You can do this with your ads, blogs, Facebook posts, and so much more. Focusing on the problems you can help people with is the key to getting the amount of clients you want. Bear in mind that once you have the interest of a person, it doesn’t mean you have them as a client. You need to make sure you keep them interested if they are going to hire you.


Find the Perfect Prospects

Once you know what problems you can solve, you need to take the steps to find the perfect prospects. Your landing page is very important, and will either draw people in or send them away. Make sure everything is placed correctly and that you’re using the correct words and techniques here – you can even find techniques online to help you.

You can also find the right people by focusing your Google ads towards the problems people are having. Be as specific as possible here. If somebody sees an ad for an ‘experienced lawyer’ they aren’t likely to click. However, if they see an ad for a lawyer who specialized in getting people child support, helping them get the results they want in a divorce, or something similar, they are going to click. You need to bear in mind all throughout your marketing that people struggle to see past their own issues, so you need to spell it out for them.

Many people think that the best place to be is spot 1. However, this isn’t always the case. You could be in spot 3, and you will likely get same number of clicks but pay a lot less with the right copy and focus.


Write Blogs Focused On Problems

By writing blogs focused on the problems people are having, you can help to get more clients for your law firm. For example, ‘5 things you should know about DUIs’ or something to that effect. This is going to bring people back to your website, solidify your reputation as an expert, and even help your Google listings. Just make sure you are consistent and that your postings are helpful and high quality for the best results.












Managing Your Time

Managing your time properly is key to getting more clients for your law firm, dealing with current clients, and getting everything else you can think of done. Finding those experienced in law firm marketing can cost more but you will save plenty of time and stress trying to figure it all out. If you want more clients but you also want to ensure you’re not snowed under, this could be the way to do it.


Gaining Online Reviews

If studies and stats can tell us anything, it’s that online reviews are one of the most effective ways to get the trust of potential clients. People tend to trust these as much as a personal recommendation from a friend, so it’ll be in your best interests to get as many as you can.

They will be a powerful asset to your business, and may even have a significant influence on Google’s search results. Whatever you do, do not be tempted to pay for reviews that are not genuine. People will see through these. You must work hard to get genuine reviews!

By simply taking a different approach to your law firm marketing you could draw more people to you in a matter of weeks. In a few months, you could have hundreds, if not thousands of leads. All you need to do is focus on helping people to solve their problems, and let them know that you’re the law firm to do it.

What do you think of these pointers? Will you be using any in your future marketing techniques? Leave a comment below!


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