45 Mayfield Grove
BizSpark is dedicated to providing a cost-effective range of business services to SME's including Web Design, Graphic Design, e-Books, e-Courses, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting.
Welcome to my first post of 2009! It's taken me a little while to get back into the swing of things after a very over-indulgent couple of weeks, but I'm sure that I am not the only one. So, 2009... a new year, with a great deal of new opportunities that are hiding just around the corner for you. It's fair to say that 2008 wasn't the best year for the self-employed and small business owners, but it is time to stop looking back and start looking forward.The great news is that despite some of the very high-profile business failures of late, the nation is beginning to recover! The government has injected billions into the economy to help keep things afloat, the VAT rate has temporarily been reduced to encourage spending on the high-street, and the best news for many came today when the Bank of England announced that it was cutting interest rates by a further 0.5% - making the interest rate it's lowest EVER!However, despite all this I've had a few people tell me that more should be done. Well, I have to admit that this riles me a little bit. The government has done a huge amount to help, but they can only do so much! The rest is up to us! If your business fails now it is down to you, and a severe lack of foresight and planning. The businesses that are doing well right now are the ones who's owners and managers have planned for the worst. They have carried out current market analysis, they have re-hashed their business plans (and in many cases this has led to a change in business model), and they have carried out accurate income, expenditure and cash-flow forecasts. Have you ever heard the saying "proper planning prevents poor performance"? Well this is exactly what I am talking about.Really, when you think about it, the recession has done us small business owners a favour. It has been a natural balance of the "business" scales. The large dominant companies have gone to the wall, the medium sized companies have reigned in their spending, and us small business owners now have an immense opportunity to "compete"! Of course when I say that we can now compete, you MUST take into consideration what I said earlier regarding proper planning. We must still ensure that we act in a controlled and professional manor, keeping a close eye on budgets, and ensuring that what money we are spending is having a positive effect.There is however one very essential business tool that MUST be taken advantage of in these extremely hard economic times. A tool that allows you to reach millions of people world wide, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year. It is a tool that opens the doors of your small local business to the world! Yes, you've guessed it... the World Wide Web!The Internet is now a huge part of modern day business. It is a virtual shop window, and it is a business that is open for trade "permanently"!Now, there are several ways in which you and your business can benefit from the Internet. For example, it's a great way of sourcing new contacts, it's a great way to advertise your products and services, it's a great way of raising awareness about your products, services or brands, and it's a great way of making money!There are many websites that will allow you to create profiles and free web pages etc, but having a website of your own is something that every small business should have! A website of your own allows you to present a professional and efficient image. It allows you to have total control over content, design and layout. Having your own website gives you something to point new contacts, clients and prospects towards... including existing clients! And having your own website is an easy way of advertising for little or no cost, given that a large proportion of your site visitors will come from search engines such as Yahoo and Google... you won't pay a penny for the visit, and every visit is a potential new customer!Of course, for many small business owners it is a common myth that a website is an expensive and time consuming resource to have. This couldn't be further from the truth. It is relatively cheap to get your business online, purchase professional domain names and email addresses and if you put a little time and thought into the content of the site there s very little need for it to become time consuming.At BizSpark I offer a huge range of business services aimed at SME's, and I pride myself on being low-cost and highly-effective. If you would like to learn more about getting your business online and benefiting from having your own website you can find out more information by visiting http://www.bizspark.co.uk/.Remember, your future business success is not about the future actions of others, it is about the actions you take right here, right now.
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