Five Ways to Improve Collaboration with Your Suppliers

Your supply chain is always going to be your biggest cost challenge. There are a lot of variables, after all, and you cannot simply reduce your budget with your supply chain or else risk not obtaining the materials and products you have ordered. It is up to you to make it more efficient, from processing times down to the exact number of items that you need. Order too many, you have a surplus that you had to pay extra for. Order too few, however, then you need to pay for processing times, production, and transportation all over again just to keep up with demand.

Making your supply chain more efficient is difficult, yes, but it is not impossible. A great way to start is to work out ways to improve the collaboration between your suppliers. To improve that collaboration, all you need to do is follow these steps:

Improve the Quality of Communication

When it comes to working with others in business, you need to focus on communication. When people respect and like you as a company, they will work well with you. This doesn’t mean you want to be a pushover, but being fair will go a long way towards creating lasting relationships that can even result in long-term discounts and prioritized service.

Don’t Be Quick to Lay Blame

When something goes wrong, it often costs money. This can be a very frustrating experience for everyone involved but before you start pointing fingers remember how other people tend to react to being laid with the blame. Instead, try to take a step back and use these strategies so that you can increase accountability without laying blame unfairly.

Use the Right Software to Improve Transparency

Suppliers need to know what is going on in your supply chain in order to provide the best service that they can. Transparency, then, is key to improving collaboration and communication. Thankfully you don’t need to give them a call and update them on your current business status in order to provide this transparency, just the right supplier portal.

Automate Processes for Faster Management

This software will also need to be able to automate processes using the data you have inputted. It should be able to do things like send out invoices, make notifications, and allow for updates to be made.

Keep The UX Interface Simple

User experience is critical when it comes to working with other people, even if it cannot necessarily always be measured. By choosing software that is simple to use, you will encourage all of your suppliers to use the system you have put in place.

You can generally improve all five of these steps in one fell swoop just by using the right SAP Supplier Portal. The right system can do so much for your company and for your suppliers. It is easy to use, versatile in its use and is smart. Automated reports and tasks can reduce the admin times and processing periods for everyone involved, allowing you, your suppliers, and your customers alike to enjoy a more convenient and cost-effective service.  

All businesses need to collaborate in order to succeed. You do not exist as an island, and by not addressing both the issues in data and in the human element of your supply chain you will never find a solution to the inefficiency you are facing. The right software, however, can solve all your woes, so choose carefully and ensure it suits your industry or can be customized accordingly.

Why Wellbeing Should Come First at Work

Wellbeing is about making sure that you’re mentally, physically and emotionally at your best. This isn’t always an easy thing to achieve, but it is possible if you continuously work at it. One of the greatest challenges can be trying to remember to put yourself first. Often when you have to choose between looking after yourself or meeting work objectives, the latter likely wins the battle. However, you may be in the process of trying to make a transition to the healthier side of life and looking after yourself more. If so, find out why wellbeing should come first at work below.

To Increase Productivity

It is probably no surprise that you’re likely to be the most productive when you’re holistically doing well. In order to ensure maximum output, you need to be in a good place both mentally and physically. In light of this, starting the day by meditating and reflecting is a good way to put yourself before work. If you aren’t familiar with meditating, it’s relatively easy to do. You’ve simply got to get comfortable, sit tall, close your eyes and listen to the sounds around you while freeing your mind from deep thoughts. If you’re able to do this in the morning or before bed, you may find you feel better and can perform better at work as a result.

To Reduce Risk of Falling ill

When you aren’t looking after your wellbeing, the chances of falling sick could increase. This is because as mentioned above, you probably aren’t eating the right foods or getting enough sleep. In addition to this, you’re more likely to suffer from things like stress, exhaustion, and fatigue. In a worst-case scenario, this could lead to work-related accidents due to over exhaustion. In the instance that this happens, you should contact The Compensation Experts to see if you’re entitled to compensation, especially if the accident isn’t your fault. To avoid this altogether, putting yourself first and knowing when you’re doing more than your body and mind can take is critical.

For Your Mental Health

Work can be extremely stressful and affect your mental health if not managed properly. In light of this, if you don’t want to find that your mental health is declining, you should put your wellbeing first. One tip for doing this is to learn to manage your time better. To help you manage your time efficiently when at work, you should create a time audit to see where your time actually goes through using an app like RescueTime. Writing your to-do-list in the morning and setting a time limit for each task may also go a long way. By doing this, you’re less likely to feel so pressured, and also reduce the chances of making major mistakes.

Wellbeing isn’t something that can be achieved with a persistent effort from you. There will always be something that demands your attention, but it’s left to you to put yourself first. By doing so, you can increase the chances of living a full life.

Advice For Rewarding Staff At Christmas

Christmas is an important part of the year for small business owners, and it is essential that you use this time to celebrate the hard work of your employees. Having a team of hard-working employees that get on well alongside one another is crucial to success when you have a small team, but this is not something that can be developed overnight. It is important to use team bonding activities and exercises throughout the year, but you can also use the holidays as a time to unite and celebrate. Read on for a few tips as to how you can go about doing this.

  • Christmas Party

Most businesses will have a Christmas party which can be a brilliant way to celebrate a year’s hard work and allow staff to relax and enjoy one another’s company. This could be a party in the office, at a hired venue or a meal and drinks out on the town. No matter where the arty is held, it should be focused on having fun and enjoying one another’s company and not related to work.

  • Team Days Out

Before finishing for the holidays, you could organize a team day out for bonding and relaxing. This could be to a nearby city, to the coast or for a fun-filled activity day as these are designed to be enjoyable but also with the goal of bringing staff closer together.

  • Christmas Bonus

There are few better ways to thank your employees for their work and to put them in a good mood heading into the holidays than a Christmas bonus. Money is the main driving factor in most cases so adding a little extra to their paycheck during this expensive period of the year is sure to be highly appreciated.

  • Live Entertainment

Tickets to any form of live entertainment can be a nice way for a small business owner to spend quality time with employees before the break and show appreciation.

What you choose will depend on your team, but a few options include a theatre production, sporting fixture or a concert. There are often many high-profile live entertainment options at this time of the year, and you should be able to find tickets for affordable places through ticket sale opportunities.

  • Gifts

Christmas is a time for buying gifts for those close to you and doing this for employees will show that you value them not only as an employee but as a person. This is particularly true if you purchase individual gifts that are well-suited to their tastes and interests. Many offices organize a Secret Santa which is a nice idea, but you can take this one step further by providing your employees with individual gifts.

It is important that every small business owner considers the Christmas period and how they can use the holidays to show appreciation for their employees. This is vital for keeping morale high and creating an enjoyable working atmosphere going into the break so that everyone returns in the near year feeling energized and motivated for a productive start to the year.

How To Improve Your Small Business Marketing Approach

Marketing for your small business isn’t an easy task when you likely already have limited time and money. Being short on staff and resources also doesn’t make your life any easier. Stay hopeful, because there are a few tips in particular that will help you improve your small business marketing approach so you can achieve better results.

What you don’t want to do is take no action and assume consumers are going to simply find you on their own. There’s a lot of noise in the marketplace and online, and you have to be able to creatively cut through it, so you get noticed.

Set Goals & Track Progress

Quickly improve your small business marketing approach by taking the time to set goals for what you want to accomplish going forward. It can be that you want to grow your following on social media or launch more online advertising campaigns in the following year. Not only come up with new objectives, but also define the metrics you want to monitor and track your progress, so you know what’s working and what’s not.

Consult with the Experts

Your marketing strategy will be a lot stronger when you don’t try to tackle all of the moving pieces yourself. As a small business, it’s important to know when to outsource different projects and reach out and consult with the experts on what you’re thinking and wanting to do. For instance, review this online resource that covers various gadgets and tech and you can read for yourself why hiring a website designer is always better than doing it yourself.

Engage on Social Media

Not only should you be spending more of your time on social media, but you want to make sure you’re engaging on these platforms on a regular basis too. Improve your small business marketing approach by sharing relevant and valuable content, asking questions and addressing any customer service issues that pop up. If you’re not interacting on social media, then you’re missing out on getting in touch with a large segment of your target audience.  

Work on Gathering Testimonials

Ultimately, consumers want to hear from other consumers like themselves about how their experience was with a brand or company. You can improve your small business marketing approach by being proactive and collecting numerous client testimonials for your business. Post and share them on your website and social media and let it be known why consumers enjoy working with you. You can advertise all you want, but what’s truly going to cause people to take action and want to learn more is if they hear positive remarks from other shoppers.

Conclusion

Marketing products and services for a small business is challenging, but it’s possible to be successful with the right strategy in place. Use these tips to help you enhance your approach and not only build trust with consumers but drive in more business and sales. Remain patient because it may take some time before your efforts begin to pay off.

What website owners need to know regarding Facebook’s Pixel Update

If you have received the Pixel update notification from Facebook and have questions, we’re here to help!

Our advice regarding Facebook’s Pixel Update Announcement

Definitions

The Facebook Pixel – a Code snippet you have or should have on your website to track customer interactions on your website related to boosted posts or Facebook ads. If we have managed FB ads for you, we certainly added this for you.
First-party Cookie – A cookie your website puts on a visitors browser to register their device. If you have a shopping cart, you definitely use them. These cookies are read by your own website to personalize the experience for your visitors based on the prior interactions.
Third-party cookie – A cookie on your website that comes from a 3rd party. These are now being effectively blocked by Apple’s Safari browser, Mozilla Firefox, and many ad-blocking tools. Right now, if you use the FB pixel, it is adding a 3rd party cookie to the users browsing activity.

Why is Facebook Making this change?

The purpose of this is to get advertisers to allow Facebook (Opt-In) to establish a first-party relationship with their website visitors. Once advertisers opt-in to first-party cookie data sharing, you are enabling Facebook to create cookies in your visitor’s browsers that pass data back to Facebook in compliance with how privacy-oriented browsers are requiring data to be shared.
You need to option to this if you have previously used the Pixel. After October 24th, new pixels will automatically opt-in unless advertisers opt out.

Should I Opt-In?

If you are using Facebook ads, you definitely want to opt-in to this. If you are not using Facebook ads, or if you are in a heavily regulated industry, then you are probably already aware that you can’t use some of the more interesting features of retargeting and digital ads and you probably want to opt-out. To do so, take the steps below to make sure you are opted out.

How to I Opt-in or Opt-out?

  • Login into your Facebook account [link, new window]
  • Go to Facebook’s “Events Manager”
  • Under “Pixel and Cookie Settings,” you can choose to turn off first-party cookies.

If you have questions, feel free to call or contact us!

Six Ways To Protect Your Emails

In today’s day and age, everyone relies on their email account heavily whether this is for work, study or simply for their personal life. While emails are a superb way to communicate and stay updated on important information, they can also be dangerous as many hackers and cybercriminals will use emails to either gain access to your private information or to install damaging software on your computer. There are many advanced scams and constantly new ones being developed which means that everyone with an email account needs to consider a few ways that they can protect their email account and stop cybercriminals in their tracks.

Strong Password Protection

Every email account will be password protected, and it is important that you are using a random password which nobody could guess. It much easier to think of something personal like your favorite sports team or film, but this can make it incredibly easy for hackers to gain access to your account.

Two-Factor Authentication

In addition to password protection, most email suppliers also provide two-factor authentication (2FA) feature which adds another layer of protection. In addition to a password, you will also need to have something else to gain access to the account, such as a phone number.

Be Wary of Suspicious Emails

Any emails that you receive are from an unknown sender or seem suspicious in any way should be deleted. You should never open an attachment from an unknown sender, or if it is from someone that you know, but the message sounds suspicious. Additionally, be wary of phishing which will involve a hacker attempting to obtain sensitive data by disguising as a trustworthy entity – these can be difficult to spot so always be careful and check with the trustworthy entity before entering any information.

Anti-Virus

You can also protect your emails by having high-quality anti-virus software like Sonic Wall installed. This will keep you protected against the various email and internet threats and remove anything dangerous that makes it onto your system. Be sure to keep this up to date to stay protected against the latest threats.

Public Wi-Fi & Shared Computers

If possible, avoid using public Wi-Fi to check your emails as it could be unsecured which could allow a hacker to gain access to your account – you can avoid this by using a virtual private network (VPN). Additionally, avoid logging into your account on a shared computer as it could store your password and/or be infected with spyware.

Multiple Accounts

Another way to protect your emails is to use multiple accounts. Many people have a personal and professional email account so that they are easier to manage, but this is also a good way to spread the risk so that if one is compromised then the data contained in the other account is kept safe (provided that you use different passwords).

Email accounts are seen as the gateway into somebody’s computer by cyber criminals which means that everyone needs to be vigilant when it comes to email. The above are all effective ways to protect your emails and your sensitive data.

Follow These 4 Tips to Boost Your Company Brand Awareness

Whether you have recently launched a product or service or are established on the market, building brand awareness is important for business success. A company can only operate effectively if consumers know and use what they have to offer. This is what causes them to make a profit. In order to grow your business, here are four brand building tips you should always consider. First, it is important to hire the right staff for the job, who are solely dedicated to this task. You will also always have to perfect your products or services in order to provide customers with the quality you promise. Next, it is important to build strong relations with various individuals, including customers, media, and investors, and boost your online searchability.

Hire the right staff

Everyone has an important role to play in the functioning of a business, and you must thus have people hired specifically for brand awareness purposes. The individual must believe in the company and its purpose if they are going to help it achieve those goals. The positions will include various marketing experts who understand social media, digital marketing, and public relations, among other initiatives. Successful company operations are never a one-person show, and so everyone must work together when creating the strategy.

Perfect your products or services

When you promote your products or services, you are promising your audience that they will receive something that is unparalleled in its quality and innovation. You must thus ensure that you constantly improve what you have to offer, and therefore keep the promises that you are making. Failing to do so will affect your reputation, and people talk. The last situation you want is for widespread social media complaints from your customers, as your business financial wellbeing depends on these individuals.

Build strong relations

It is furthermore important to build strong relations with certain individuals when promoting your business brand. These three groups include customers, influencers and media, as well as investors. Naturally, the customer is necessary for the sake of profit, but you also cannot do anything without the money from investors. Every business campaign operates with money, and this often does not come from the entrepreneur’s own personal pockets. Build the relationship with investors in order to grow your business funding. When it comes to media and influencer relations, you are building credibility with experts who can vouch for your brand and who do so with your target demographic.

Grow your online searchability

How easy is it for the general public to find your company’s products or services? Regardless if you already appear on general search engines, it is important to work on your search engine optimization. The higher you appear in Google’s algorithm, the greater the chance that people will click on your website. In order to have a robust strategy on this front, you should consider hiring experts whose purpose it is to drive traffic and leads, such as the Philadelphia SEO Agency.

Given that brand awareness is what grows your business, the strategy behind it must always be well-thought out and prioritized. Ensure that you have goals in mind for what you hope to achieve, and work towards them with the tips already mentioned. While these ideas are not all encompassing for what brand awareness tactics should include, you are on your way to spreading your company message.

How to Create a Professional Image for your Business

Marketing your business is one of the most important aspects of running a successful enterprise. Without an effective marketing strategy, you won’t bring in the customers, and you won’t reach your sales targets. There are many aspects to being successful in marketing, and getting each one right will contribute to the overall effectiveness of your campaigns. One of these aspects is creating the right image for your business; one that will attract the kind of people who are likely to need your product or service, and want to be reassured that your company has the abilities to fulfil those needs.

Authority

The importance of authority varies according to the industry you’re in. For instance, YMYL businesses need to have the highest levels of authority if they want to gain the trust of people who are potentially putting their health and wealth in your hands. For this reason, it’s important to publicize the credentials of the people involved in your business to demonstrate you have the required level of authority. This is especially important as a new business, as you’ll have no track record, presence, or customer feedback to rely on, yet you’ll be competing with other established businesses that do have those advantages. You’ll also find that search engines increasingly look for evidence of authority when ranking results lists, so the more and better evidence there is, the more you will improve your SEO. Accuracy and presentation are also important in creating the right impression. Poor grammar, typos, websites that don’t function very well or are hard to use, the over-use of gimmicks or advertising, and not having valuable, accurate information in articles and posts will all have a negative effect on your image too.

Creating the right impression

For most businesses, professionalism is key. The higher the quality of your marketing materials, the better an impression you will make. Take your website for instance. If you have any kind of business that deals with technology, you should be demonstrating that you are knowledgeable about the industry and that your business uses the most efficient, up-to-date systems if you want to create a good impression. For example, if you design PCBs, then customers are likely to be more impressed to know you are using state-of-the-art design software from Altium rather than an old or outdated method. If you haven’t added information about the qualifications and experience of the staff involved in a service industry, you don’t stand much chance of engaging people who want to be assured of your expertise. Likewise, if your business sells a particular product such as cheese for example, then the awards you’ve won, and the experience of the cheesemakers who work for you will add authority and trust to your offering.

Authority and presentation are important, but won’t be enough on their own to bring in business. Remember that the way to draw customers in is to answer a need they have, and authority and presentation are part of showing them why your offer is superior to anyone else’s.

Four Ways to Streamline Your Law Firm

As with any business, the less time that is wasted doing menial tasks between clients, the more profits can be made. Of course, that isn’t to say that you should take your time when dealing with clients, either. Very few lawyers will be able to charge their clients on an hourly basis, with most working on a no-win-no-fee basis. Due to this, it is critical that you streamline your law firm, starting today, and to make that happen, you should follow these steps.

Improve Office Layout and Function

The office environment plays a critical role in the overall function and performance of your employees. If it is not well designed, it could hurt their productivity. If it is not easy to find the items they need, it could hurt time management, and so on. By improving the office layout and making it easier to locate files, forms, and other important items, you can help your associates work better and faster. Add in a few decorative elements and plant life and you can further boost their performance by catering to their health.

Migrate Your Data to a Secured Cloud System

Your employees should be able to access the information that they need when they need it. In a digital world, this information should be backed up and accessible online. By migrating your data to the cloud – and taking care to ensure that the cloud system is exceptionally protected – you can improve the overall efficiency of your associates. Cut down on time it takes to find information and allow them to access it wherever they may be, with a client or at home for example, and they will do more for your firm than they could before.

Use Law Firm Management Systems

Just as you need to be able to find all of the files, forms, and stationery in the office with ease, so too do you need to be able to find information with ease. Management systems allow you to do this and so much more. Choose the right system for your business from redbricksolutions.co.uk, and you will be able to manage accounts better, get forms signed, stay on task, and so on. The right management system should make your job easier and more effective. The faster and better a job you can do, the more clients will be satisfied with your services and even recommend you to their friends and family in the future. The more positive reviews, the more customers you can get. If you operate on a no-win-no-fee basis, it means that you can settle a case faster and bring in more money.

Train Your Employees for Standardization

To ensure that both the management systems and the cloud system work optimally, you should train your employees on a set of standards. This will help everyone when it comes to finding information in the future. As they know how the information should have been inputted, their search queries should come up with the information they need in an instant.

 

Streamlining your law firm will help you lower costs and boost your profitability. It will also help your associates to provide a better service to your clients, who will then be more likely to hire you again or refer you to their friends or family.

Making Your Company Appealing: A Guide

If you want to attract multiple clients and the best employees, you must promote your company in the best possible light. This means streamlining your daily operations and creating an attractive brand, which will make consumers want to buy from your business and will encourage talented professionals to work for you.

To make sure your brand offers many unique selling points, find out how to make your company more appealing.

Use Colloquial Language When Talking to Customers

Business jargon is a conversion rate killer and will promote a corporate culture that could deter candidates from applying for a position. People don’t want to read or hear the business language, especially if they are not involved in an industry. Rather than fluffing sentences with industry-specific wording, focus on using colloquial language that will speak to a target market like a friend.

Humanize Your Online Interactions

As more companies are turning to automation to power their businesses, many people might believe they are talking to a robot and not a human being. Prove you care about the consumer by humanizing all online interactions.

For example, encourage staff to sign their names when posting a social media interaction, and ensure your staff members feature an author bio on a blog post. Doing so will make a customer realize there are many people behind the business, so they might be more likely to buy from your brand.

Streamline Your Daily Operations

Complex processes and complicated invoices will make clients want to run for the hills. What’s more, it will slow down your efficiency and productivity, which can affect your profit margin. Instead, you must aim to streamline your operations with a single-source management solution.

For example, SellerCloud provides multi-channel e-commerce software, which allows you to build a product catalog, track listings, manage shipping, track inventory and review customer feedback all in one place.

Start Accepting Credit or Debit Cards to Attract Customers

With more people choosing plastic over physical cash, you might rule yourself out a market if you don’t accept various forms of credit or debit cards. Unfortunately, high-risk industries can struggle to secure card processing services, which can impact a company’s bottom-line.

If this is a problem currently blighting your business, consider applying for a high-risk merchant account, which will be approved by either a bank or financial institution. It could make your company a more appealing, trusted option for your customers.

Provide Free Samples to Your Customers

To prove your business is worth both a customer’s time and money, give them free samples to encourage them to buy from your brand. For example, you could send them a free item in the mail, and the product should reflect the quality of your products. If your company provides a specific service, allow potential customers to take advantage of a free trial period, which could convince them to sign up after it has come to an end. The more a potential customer learns about your brand, the easier it can be to convince them to buy from your business.