Exhibiting Your Small Business – Why Exhibition Stands Make Sense

Why should a small business invest in an exhibition stand? The costs can seem prohibitive. However, those businesses that present themselves to the public not only earn back everything they put into the exhibition stand, but they generate tremendous amounts of potential revenue. In any business, retaining customers is essential, but creating new ones is equally vital.

In many ways, an exhibition stand functions as one of the most cost-effective methods of advertising and promotion. By securing a physical locale at a trade show or venue, a business can literally attract people who are interested in a particular product or service. By exchanging information with them at the stand, these businesses quickly build a base of people with which they can send product announcements or service launches. This highly targeted approach enables a company to create new customers at a much faster rate than with more blind avenues of advertising.

Meeting people in person is also highly underrated in an age where many transactions occur virtually. Small businesses may or may not have a large number of walk-in customers. In some cases, small businesses do not even have the facilities for a traditional reception area. An exhibition stand functions as a temporary reception area in a region swarming with likely customers. By being able to physically shake hands, hold a conversation, and generally communicate about interests, ideas, and requests, a small business can grow its sales. This is partially because people enjoy the human aspect of communication, and are more likely to buy a product from someone they feel they “know” than a company which has no human representation.

In this way, exhibition stands offer a competitive advantage against businesses that do not exhibit. This can be especially useful in “virtual” industries such as computer software or gaming. A product display, even if it is as simple as being able to view a function on a computer screen, is far more effective in person than in isolation. Generally speaking, exhibition stands should be staffed by highly genial, friendly members of the small business. If the small business owner does not choose to work the stand, he should send his most affable sales representative to do so.

By creating a positive impression in people’s minds, positive word of mouth invariably follows. Exhibition stands excel in this regard, especially if people feel welcome and informed. If a visitor to the stand meets a friendly representative of the company and is given a short but informative tour of the product or service, that visitor will ultimately describe her experience in positive terms to anyone else she meets. This kind of personal recommendation is invaluable, and will only aid in the acquisition of more new customers.

Small businesses should research local events, gatherings and other business oriented locales to determine the best time and place for their exhibition stand. The question is not whether or not to invest in a stand, but rather whether to do so now, or a few weeks from now.

Resource:

Find out more about exhibition stands at the the Nimlok website.

Small Business Project Management Software

Small business owners frequently believe that their particular industry or field is far too specialised to benefit from project management software. However, project management software can be enormously beneficial for small business, despite its perceived high cost. This is because the software, once properly configured, enables small business owners to quickly manage large quantities of data that would otherwise take significantly longer not only to process, but to frame in context.

As an example, any small business must invariably generate revenue statements detailing the progress in a particular quarter or year. By having project management software already in place, a slew of potentially difficult to find information is contained in one place. For a small manufacturing firm, the number of hours spent on a particular project or process is readily accessible, and often broken down by employee. Those employees who thrive at a particular task or process can be quickly identified; likewise, those who are not thriving in one area can be moved to another project where they can potentially contribute far more.

Departments that are chronically behind or understaffed also are much easier to evaluate with project management software than by using a traditional survey. This is because numbers convey factual data in a far more unsparing manner. Project managers frequently are consumed with the details of day to day operations, and are unable to provide more than a hastily arranged version of the overall progress of their department. Project management software provides answers when they are needed, in a form that is easily understood.

Although some forms of project management software can seem somewhat expensive, especially on the lean budget of a small business, they ultimately generate far more in profit and efficiency than the initial expenditure. This is because they can help a small business owner understand precisely what he is spending his money on. Overhead costs, profits, losses, and other forms of cash flow become immediately obvious when analyzed with the aid of software.

Additionally, project management software enables the automation of certain time-consuming tasks, such as the arrangement of meetings, the cataloguing of ideas, and other essential but occasionally tedious duties. Project managers are freed from having to micro-manage the progress of their particular task, and can instead focus on incorporating new procedures or innovative methods of motivating the workforce. Frequently, the difference between a successful, on-deadline project and a meandering, financially disastrous one is how effectively the project manager is able to guide his team. Shepherding a large project in a time-efficient manner requires a streamlined and clearly actionable process, which project management software can easily provide.

Additionally, project management software enables different levels of permission and access controls, which correspondingly allow employees to involve themselves in the project without compromising any levels of information privilege. This engenders a greater sense of participation, and correspondingly boosts enthusiasm across the board. In this way, project management software is a great aid to small business by forming a more integrated community and regulated exchange of information.

Resource:

IRIS Project Solutions has more info about project management software.

Small Business And Accounting Software: The Benefits

Managing a small business is fraught with issues. There’s the going concern of financing growth, managing payroll, paying vendors and creditors, proper invoicing and bill payments, as well as the constant issues of managing cash flow. All of these can become a source of great frustration and a continuous drain on the company’s resources. Thus, small businesses must be proactive in managing their operations. To this extent, purchasing the right accounting software is more than just another business expense. It’s an investment that allows small businesses to better manage all aspects of their finances, and an essential tool that empowers them to become more proactive in managing their day-to-day operating expenses. Whilst a number of small businesses view such a purchase as a huge financial outlay, they must temper these concerns with an understanding of the benefits of having a piece of accounting software. So what are some of the immediate benefits for small businesses looking to invest in such a purchase?

1. Financing Growth

Every company purchase must be managed in such a way as to retain enough capital to support the company’s daily operations. The right accounting software can make these decisions easier by providing small businesses with the ability to decide between leasing or buying. Ultimately, it’s about being able to make a “go/no-go” decision on capital expenditures without concern about how such purchases will affect the company’s daily expenses.

2. Managing Payroll

All small businesses are required to correctly file their P35, P34 and P11D forms. These pay-as-you-earn employer forms, or more commonly referred to by the acronym PAYE, must be properly filled out in order to avoid any delays or fines. Manual payroll processes are a thing of the past. The right accounting software can make managing payroll a much easier, and far less expensive, process.

3. Better Cash Flow Management

Properly managing cash flow is an essential aspect of small business success. A strong cash position allows small businesses to pursue prompt payment incentives and discounts with vendors and creditors. In addition, those aforementioned decisions on leasing or buying are easier to make when the company has greater visibility on incoming and outgoing payments. In essence, it’s about allowing the small business to take advantage of those times when it has a strong cash position, and protecting its interests when its cash position is weakened.

4. Proper Invoicing and Bill Management

Every small business owner understands the importance of proper invoicing practices. Whilst a number of small businesses still rely upon manual processes, most comprehend the importance of having an accounting software that can manage receivables in real-time. Do away with manual invoicing. Instead, rely upon a system that manages the customer’s invoices and provides advance warning when those invoices are approaching terms.

Whether it’s purchasing new computers, cell phones, fax machines or simply upgrading the company’s website or blog, making the right decision means having a handle on the company’s finances. An accounting software empowers small businesses to keep abreast of incoming customer payments and provides them with the ability to make decisions that maximize returns.

Resource:

Find out how accounting software can make your life easier at the IRIS Accounting Software website.

Translation Services For Small Business

In today’s global economy, you may be missing out on multiple market segments by not using a professional translation service. You might think targeting an international audience is only essential to big businesses. In fact, it’s even more important for smaller companies to break into the global marketplace.

If you wish to expand your business, you’ll need to ensure that your branding efforts reach beyond local and national boundaries. Spreading your message to the rest of the world requires clear communication in a multitude of languages.

This is where a professional translation service comes in. Don’t be tempted to rely on translation software when crafting important documents or your company’s website. Software only translates word for word in very literal terms.

Only a human well-versed in translation can pick up on the subtle nuances and colloquialisms that are sure to appear. Translation software may also be unable to comprehend and translate industry-specific terms. It’s easy to see how this could be a problem for many companies.

While interpreters are required for person-to-person bilingual conversations, a professional translation service is invaluable in the creation of catalogues, correspondence, contracts and marketing plans. The right translation consultant may even be able to advise your business on whether a contract is culturally suitable for a particular marketplace.

Assistance with business documents is key, but a well-crafted globally-oriented website is of equal importance. What better way to reach an international marketplace than a site that can be viewed in multiple languages? Anyone who leaves your website because it’s unavailable in his or her native tongue is a potential customer lost.

A website available in several languages will impress English speakers as well. Although a business needn’t be large to offer multiple languages, it conveys diversity and the appearance of a multinational company. No one needs to know that your business isn’t a corporate giant…yet.

It’s easy to see why hiring a professional translation service is well worth the investment. Experienced, certified translators are well-equipped to handle complex documents, sometimes even in obscure languages. A team of seasoned professionals should understand not only the words to be translated, but the cultural differences between them.

Myriad examples of poor translation can be found across the Internet. Often, companies buy translation software in a bid to save money. The results are disastrous, with glaring grammatical errors or missed nuances that completely alter the original meaning.

Don’t make the mistake of cutting corners by hiring an inexperienced freelance translator. Being multilingual doesn’t necessarily equate to an adequately thorough understanding of the target language. Such a lapse in hiring judgment can jeopardize your company’s hard-won reputation.

The initial expense of hiring a professional translation service may seem high, but the cost of creating a solid international presence is well worth the investment. Hiring an experienced team of professionals pays off in the form of increased business, maximisation of your marketing budget and a boost to your company’s sterling reputation.

Resource:
You can find out more about how translation services can benefit your business at Codex Global Limited.

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