As a small business owner, the beginning of a new year is as good a time as any to assess the state of your operations and determine what you can do to make your company even stronger moving forward.
5 New Year’s Resolutions for Your Small Business
1. Invest in video marketing
For many small businesses, video marketing is an afterthought or a “someday” item. If you want to get ahead of your competitors this year to attract new customers to your business, you should move video marketing up to the top of your to-do list.
Creating engaging video is becoming an important way for small businesses to attract new customers. For example, in 2016, 62% of B2B marketers rated video an effective content marketing tactic, according to the Content Marketing Institute. Video might seem expensive or hard to produce, but it can more than pay for itself in improved ROI. Incorporating video into a company’s landing page could increase conversions by 80% or more.
2. Apply for business credit
Speaking of growing, you’ll need to prepare your finances in order to grow, too. Whether you plan to hire new employees, open your next (or your first!) physical location, or win new business with a big marketing push, you’ll definitely need access to capital.
Even if you don’t necessarily need a lot of funds today, you could still benefit from having a line of credit available. A line of credit can help you get prepared for all the expenses this year will undoubtedly bring (like some of the other items on this list).
If you don’t need business funds right away because your finances are in good shape, great news: it could be the best possible time to apply. If you have a healthy business, you’re in a strong position to get approved for a line of credit at the best possible terms.
Fundbox makes it possible for more small business owners than ever to get access to credit up to $100,000. There’s no personal credit score required, so no harm in seeing if you qualify. Sign up in seconds here.
3. Upgrade your technology and workflows
You can’t expect your team to reach its full potential if you’re relying on legacy technology. Nav has a convenient list of free resources to help upgrade your business.
Embracing new technologies—like mobile devices, cloud computing, and collaboration platforms—allows you to streamline many business processes. Productivity should also increase too, as employees are able to access their critical communications and documents and get their work done from any connected device.
The best workers won’t settle for using decades-old tools. Not only will your team’s productivity (and morale for that matter) increase when you invest in new technologies, you’ll also be able to attract and retain top talent too.
4. Make professional development a top priority
Many of today’s workers care about having opportunities to develop new talents and grow as professionals. According to a recent Gallup survey, only 39% of millennial workers agree that they learned something new at work in the past 30 days. No matter what their age, the same quick-to-learn attitude that makes your best employees flexible and adaptable can also make them quick to move on if they aren’t learning enough.
By investing in professional development, not only will your employees become better, more knowledgeable workers, they’ll also be more likely to stick around. After all, many employees report that the ability to learn and grow at work is a top job consideration.
If you have room in your budget, allow your employees to visit trade shows or conferences that teach industry-specific skills or discuss relevant trends. If you don’t have room in your budget, encourage skill-sharing among employees. Or, take time out of your own schedule to teach your employees yourself.
5. Plan team-building activities regularly
Along with the chance to learn and grow, most employees want to feel appreciated and socially engaged at work. According to a recent study, 66% of employees say they would likely leave their jobs if they felt unappreciated.
To help employees feel engaged and appreciated, small business owners should consider creating team-building activities on a regular basis.
Not sure what to do? Try something simple. Organize a happy hour at a neighborhood bar. Volunteer to cook a meal as a team for the less fortunate. Take your employees out for lunch at the end of a hard week. Have fun together outside of a traditional office setting and good things will happen, like stronger relationships between colleagues, and greater productivity.
It’s not enough to simply make resolutions and hope they come true. In fact, only about 8% of people actually keep their New Year’s resolutions.
The good news is that you have the ability to follow through on them because you are in control of your actions. Stick to your resolutions, and your company will be in an even stronger position when next year rolls around.
Need extra funds to achieve your goals this year? We hear you. Sign up for Fundbox in seconds. Just connect your accounting software to find out if you qualify for business credit.
This article was originally posted January 4, 2017, and was updated on January 8, 2018.