Trying to stay positive throughout this whole process is tough, but at the very least, you can keep busy! If your business is anything like mine (or all of the other small businesses I know!) then you’re scrambling to find creative ways to continue to make an income. While that’s obviously essential, there are also a lot of things you can be doing to work ON your business now, in order to be up and running as soon as we have the green light to get back out there!
Here are 6 things that you should be working on now
1. Give your Social Media presence a refresh.
Everyone and their mother is spending more time on social media right now, and not just dancing on TikTok. Facebook is definitely seeing an increase in usage as people are stuck inside and looking for an outlet. But is that the right platform for YOUR business? Another thing to think about is whether your brand aesthetics are coming across consistently across your social media platforms. Keep colors, graphics and fonts consistent where possible, so people recognize your look. And if you haven’t updated your bio, now’s a great time to do it.
- Facebook is more conversational, and an older demographic - we use FB’s native scheduling to schedule our posts
- Instagram is all about the aesthetics made up of a younger demographic. Your content layout needs to be on point - we use Planoly to schedule our posts.
- Pinterest is a search engine, not a social media platform. So, not only should your creatives capture someone’s attention, but it also needs to be SEO friendly
2. Get your finances in check
Ouch. Where to start on this one? Q2 is definitely not going to be what any of us projected when we made plans for 2020, but there is some basic financial housekeeping that you can do now to save yourself the headache later. Get your documents prepared for taxes- just because the deadline has been moved, that doesn’t mean you have to kick the can down the road to June! Trim the fat where you can, we may have months of lean times ahead and the sooner you can eliminate waste and nonessential spending, the better.
- I unsubscribed to things I forgot I had subscriptions to. This includes softwares, mobile apps, editorial subscriptions, etc. They added up to over $100/month. I can use that money to (1) reinvest back into my business by using them for paid campaigns or (2) paying down credit card bills
- Have you developed your financial goals. In my first year of WW, I had unrealistic goals, for both my revenue and expenses. In year two, I was able to determine my needs and my wants more clearly when I broke them down, which made for a better 2nd year.
- Are you tracking your P&L monthly. I use a googlesheet so I can access from anywhere in the world
3. Track your stats
Have you determined what your Key Performance Indicators are (KPI)? If not, here are some basic things you should be watching and tracking.
- Daily website visits: How many of these are new versus returning customers?
- What is your conversion rate? This is the ratio of visitors that turn into buyers. The range of an online retailer is 1.5%-3.5%
- What is your AOV (Average Order Value). This is an ecommerce metric that measures the average total of every order placed with a merchant over a defined period of time. The higher this number, the higher your ROI.
Getting a good handle on what indicators you need to look for will help you prioritize where you’re spending your advertising dollars, and ensure you’re marketing well.
4. Consider going digital
Are you running a brick and mortar that’s not considered essential? Now might be the time to set up an online shop. Don’t have a website? There are several user friendly options you can try. My favorite is Shopify- it’s an easy and inexpensive online portal that makes it quick and easy to get set up, keep track of inventory, process payments, and create shipping labels all in one store.
If you don’t have a website, how can you still sell online and ship? Facebook actually has a solution for that. If you go LIVE on facebook, you can sell your item by having a customer make a comment, like, "I want to purchase", then the business can PayPal invoice that customer. It keeps getting easier to make sales online.
5. Create Content… then create more.
Depending on your niche, your life and lifestyle should result in content, even if you’re limited by scenery. As a travel inspired brand, my living room isn’t the most interesting or inspirational place to take photos, but I’m raiding my albums from previous trips using and editing those to improve the images I have available. Personally, I use A Color Story app. It’s the easiest photo editor app in my opinion and because I use it so much, I unsubscribed to Lightroom Editor, which used to be my go-to.
Besides visual content, now is a good time to focus on your copy. Update your email funnels, improve your product descriptions, get a few months ahead on your blogs and social media posts, and save yourself some time down the road.
6. Keep your Brand consistent
You want your business to have consistency- in theme, tone, colors, fonts, as much as possible. If you look at a layout view of your social media posts, they should have commonality and look like they all belong to the same company. In order to do so, you need to know your brand voice. How do you want your customers to remember you? What do you want them to think of when your posts appear on their feeds? What makes you recognizable? The biggest part of this is choosing a look that speaks to your target customer and sticking with it!