As the wheels of the economy steadily begin turning and the talk of coronavirus becomes something for the history books it seems there is a new topic of conversation ready to hit – recession.
As business owners, we are well aware that the events of the recent months have had a not so great effect on many businesses and that a recession is very likely. So the question is what can we do?
In a survey undertaken in Autumn 2019, it was estimated that around 85% of small businesses would be negatively impacted by a recession, and that was before the effects of the coronavirus pandemic and less than 50% feel they were ready to weather the storm.
So what can small business owners do?
While the future may be bleak for a few more months yet, it’s not all doom and gloom. Taking some time out to look at a few important areas in your business could make all the difference.
Here are a few ideas to help you remain afloat during the potential storm.
Scale Up Marketing
When things get busy one of the first things to slip is marketing. So my first recommendation is to ensure your marketing is giving out the correct messaging and attracting the right clients.
Taking the time now to conduct a full marketing audit and getting things in place will pay dividends when times get leaner.
Know Your Numbers
If you don’t already, now is the time for you to know your numbers. Create a clear plan for the next 6 months so you can identify where you may need to invest and where you need to cut back.
It may also be worth looking at other revenue streams if you haven’t already. Having a variety of income streams can help your bottom line during a downturn in the economy. You could look areas at such as affiliate marketing, digital products and online courses.
Invest in Your Clients and Customers
Without clients and customers, you have no business. Make sure you don’t overlook your existing ones in your search for new ones. Not only is it easier to get repeat business or referrals through existing contacts, but it’s also cheaper than investing in paid ads.
Build a Saleable Asset
Building your business with the intent of selling doesn’t mean you have to sell it. However, what is does mean is that you will be able to navigate through the peaks and troughs a shift in economy may throw at you.
Look at your Staffing
Recruitment during a recession is a rare occurrence. But what happens if you identify a skill gap in your organisation structure; or someone leaves or goes on long term sick.
Rather than going through a long-winded recruitment process, why not look at working with freelancers.
In a recent study by Upwork, 47% of hiring managers said they were more likely to hire independent professionals since the COVID-19 crisis. With companies looking to explore new avenues and adapt to new ways of working hiring freelancers allows them to grow and scale dynamically and with reduced financial risk.
Do It Now
Whatever you decide to do, do it now so you can position your business for success. Otherwise, you could be left picking up the pieces.
If you are looking to work with a virtual PA; or if you would like to know more about whether a virtual PA could help, then please get in touch. You can also find me on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.