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Budgeting and Forecasting for Small Business Success: Know the Difference

Oct 24, 2023

Good things come in pairs: Simon and Garfunkel. Burger and fries. Stars and Stripes. Surf and Turf.

And Budgeting and Forecasting.

As a small business owner, carefully planning your finances is a must if you want to stay IN business; budgeting and forecasting are two essential tools that can help you achieve this goal. Although they may sound the same, they serve uniquely different purposes and play a crucial role in shaping the financial health of your small business.

In this post, we'll dive into the differences between budgeting and forecasting, why they are both essential, and how they can affect your business's success and financial well-being.


Budgeting vs. Forecasting

Before delving into the importance of budgeting and forecasting, let's clarify the difference between these two financial processes:

Budgeting is like a roadmap that tells you what money is coming in and what you'll spend it on for a year. It helps you set financial goals and use your resources wisely....

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Embracing E-commerce: Transitioning Your Brick-and-Mortar Business Online

Oct 17, 2023

Want to run a successful business?

Change or die.

OK, dramatics aside, there is a lot of truth in these three simple words. In a rapidly evolving world, embracing change is often necessary for businesses to thrive. Failure to acclimate will find you in the graveyard of has-beens alongside MySpace, Blockbuster, and Enron. 

This holds true for any business, but brick-and-mortar operations could benefit the most from a little shake-up. More specifically, transitioning - or adding - E-commerce to their playbooks. 

Obviously, there are undeniable challenges, but the advantages and opportunities are equally compelling. Here, we explore the pros and cons of taking your brick-and-mortar business online and why you might find success in unexpected ways.

The Pros of E-commerce:

  1.  Wider Reach and Market Expansion: One of the greatest benefits of e-commerce is the ability to reach a global audience. This makes your products or services accessible to customers beyond your local...
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The Power of Building Good Habits for Your Small Biz Success

Oct 10, 2023

Quality is not an act, it is a habit.” - Aristotle 

Running a successful small business is not just about having a great product or service. It's about consistently making the right choices and building good habits that lead to long-term growth and prosperity. 

The Habitual Path to Success

As a small biz owner, you've got a lot on your plate when it comes to managing all the moving parts and pieces of your operation. And this can be overwhelming, especially if you don't have a structured approach to handle all the moving parts and pieces. 

That's why developing good habits is key.

Habits are the small, seemingly insignificant choices we make consistently but are the silent architects of our routines, gradually shaping the course of our businesses and our personal lives. For small business owners, recognizing the significance of these habits and harnessing their power can make all the difference between thriving and merely surviving.

Think about this: Do...

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Time Management Struggles for Small Business Owners: Tips for Effective Time Management

Oct 03, 2023

Running a small business can be a fulfilling experience.

BUT (and that's a big but), it's no secret that it can be challenging to manage all the things that need to be done at all hours of the day.

We recently polled readers of our newsletter, The Weekly, and an OVERWHELMING majority (59% to be exact) said their biggest struggle as a small biz owner is Lack of Time / Time Management. 

Now, if someone could figure out the whole time travel thing to give us back hours in our days, they'd be a very wealthy person. But short of any breakthroughs made in the study of quantum mechanics or whatever, we'll have to make do with the 24 hours we're given.


So, what do we do?

Before we get to the solution, let's start with the problem. (Or, problems.) 


Wearing Multiple Hats

Small business owners have to fulfill several roles within their company, which is one of their most significant challenges. They are responsible for marketing and sales, customer service, bookkeeping,...

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The Art of Pricing: Strategies for Small Business Owners

Sep 26, 2023

Figuring out the right prices can be a real headache for small businesses. Charge too much, and you'll scare away your customers. Charge too little, and you'll end up eating more instant noodles than a college dorm room during finals week. It's a make-or-break decision that can impact your profitability. To help you out, we've put together this blog post to help small business owners get a better handle on pricing strategies. Give it a read and see how it can benefit your bottom line.

Understanding Your Costs:

Before diving into pricing strategies, it's essential to understand your costs. Calculate the cost of goods sold (COGS) and consider overhead expenses. This includes production costs, labor, rent, utilities, and more. Knowing your costs provides a baseline for pricing that ensures you cover expenses.


Market Research:

Conduct thorough market research to understand your competitors and target audience. What are similar businesses charging for similar products or services?...

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Life is Like Underwear, Change is Good.

Sep 20, 2023

Let's face it: life can be a lot like underwear – it gets a bit uncomfortable when it stays the same for too long. And just like the undergarments we hope you swap out on a regular basis, change is not only good; it's essential, especially when it comes to your business. 

Whether it's a shift in market trends, new technology, economic fluctuations, or unforeseen challenges like the COVID-19 pandemic, small business owners must be prepared to adapt and evolve to thrive in an ever-changing landscape. 

Navigating change as a small business owner can be challenging, but with the right strategies, it can also be an opportunity for growth and innovation. Below are some key strategies for successfully navigating change as a small business owner.


1. Embrace a Growth Mindset

If you want to handle change like a boss, the first thing you need to do is adopt a growth mindset. Understand that change is a totally normal part of business and can actually be a great...

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The Rule of Thirds: A Blueprint for Success

Sep 12, 2023

Photographers and artists often use something called the Rule of Thirds in their work. They break the image into three sections (vertically and horizontally), and this compositional guideline serves almost like a cheat sheet to guarantee balanced and visually appealing images. 

This same principle can also be applied to the world of business. But rather than framing a perfect shot, it's a strategic approach to achieving balance and success in your entrepreneurial journey. From marketing to decision-making, following the rule of thirds can serve as your own blueprint.


Product Development

One of the primary applications of the Rule of Thirds in business is in product development. Here's how it works:

  1. Customer Needs (1/3): Allocate one-third of your product development efforts to understanding your customers' needs and preferences. Invest in market research, conduct surveys, and gather feedback to ensure your product addresses a genuine demand.
  2. Innovation (1/3):...
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The Four Types of Entrepreneurship: Finding Your Path to Success

Sep 05, 2023

Entrepreneurship is a multifaceted world, with diverse opportunities and avenues for those with the vision, drive, creativity, and determination to bring their ideas to life. It’s commonly broken down into four categories: small business, scalable startup,  large corporation, and social enterprise. Each type of entrepreneurship offers its own rewards, opportunities, and of course - challenges. 

So, how do you know which one is the right one for you? Let's dive deeper into each of these types of entrepreneurship to help you figure out which one might be the best fit for your unique skill set and goals. 


Small Businesses

Unless you’re new here, you already know how we feel about small businesses. (We like ‘em. A lot.) They’re an integral part of our economy, often characterized by their local or niche focus and a commitment to serving the needs of their immediate community. Small business owners typically have more control over their...

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Customer Acquisition: A Guide for Small Business Owners

Aug 29, 2023

As business owners, we’re well aware that getting more customers through our doors or clicking on our website is our lifeblood. Without it, the whole thing falls apart. 

However, it's not just about increasing numbers.

It’s about making sure you have a diverse customer base, avoiding the pitfalls that come with over-reliance on a handful of clients, and approaching customer acquisition strategically,

Failure to overlook this can lead to stagnation and missed opportunities for growth, and relying solely on your existing customer base can create a comfort zone that hinders innovation and adaptation to changing market dynamics. As markets evolve, your offerings may become obsolete, and without a steady influx of new customers, your business could struggle to stay afloat.


First things first: Why you should diversify your customer base.

Your product or service will probably not be for everybody, and that’s OK. But make sure you’re not painting yourself...

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Navigating Environmental Responsibility for Small Businesses

Aug 22, 2023

In today's world, the push for sustainability and environmental consciousness is more than just a trend; it's a responsibility. Not to mention that more and more customers are placing a higher value on eco-friendly practices. 


As a small business owner, you can positively impact the environment and attract customers who value eco-friendly practices…all while enhancing your brand’s reputation and bottom line. (We are business people, after all, and “going green” doesn’t mean going broke.)


This post will explore a few practical steps to reduce your business's environmental footprint. Find one or two that seem doable and start there. Even the smallest of changes can have a significant impact down the road. 

Evaluate Your Energy Efficiency

Energy consumption is a significant contributor to carbon emissions. Consider these steps to improve energy efficiency:

  • Switch to LED Lighting: Replace traditional bulbs with energy-efficient...
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