The Australian Small Business Blog

The Australian Small Business Blog

This Blog has been providing a Forum where Australian Small Business Owners can exchange Ideas old & new and get Advice from experts in Australia on how to Improve their Businesses through better Business Management, Planning & Strategy, Business Systems and Marketing Strategy and Systems for over 10 years. They will also learn about the Small Business Best Practice Benchmarks that are critical for their success. Our Ultimate Objective is to help Australian Small Business Owners take their Business to the Next Level and achieve their Goals whatever they may be.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Business Owners – It’s Always Your Fault

by Dr. Greg Chapman

Wouldn’t it be great if everything always went smoothly in your business and nothing ever went wrong? But there always is something. A supplier sends you the wrong item. A member of staff orders the wrong item. Your team are fighting amongst themselves. A staff member never turns up on time. Customers walk away without buying anything. The computer system breaks down in your busiest period. Your warehouse gets struck by lightning and burns down.

I’m sure you can think of one hundred other things that can go wrong in your business, and while it is tempting to blame someone else for all the problems (in the last case, God!), in fact it’s always your fault.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Predicting Your Business' Future


by Dr Greg Chapman

Wouldn’t it be great to have a crystal ball so you can see what’s going to happen in your business in the next few quarters? If you did, you would know if you should hire that new employee you have been thinking about for some time. Perhaps you could finally decide on that expansion interstate or whether to invest in that expensive system that could increase your productivity by 50%.



But you don’t take these decisions because you don’t have a crystal ball, or your old one is just filled with smoke. More...




May You Business Be - As You Plan It!

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Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and is Australia's Leading Advisor on Emerging Businesses and provides Coaching and Consulting advice to Australian Small Business Owners in Marketing & Business Strategies Planning & Systems. He is also the author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success and Price: How You Can Charge More Without Losing Sales.



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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Do penalty rates kill profitability?

by Dr. Greg Chapman

There was recently some controversy when a restaurant posted on their menu board that they couldn’t open on public holidays because of the mandatory 2.75 times penalty rates in South Australia, claiming that they would have to increase their menu prices by the same amount. Another article a few days later revealed the same situation in Canberra, and now it is being raised in the Australian Industrial Relations Commission by the Government. There has been a lot of ill-informed and abusive commentary by some patrons in social media (how unusual!), so what is the reality?

First let’s deal with the claim that their prices would have to increase by 2.75 times to cover their costs. As many rightly pointed out, labour is not their only cost.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Price Comparison Websites


by Dr Greg Chapman


To list, or not to list, that is the question, as Hamlet probably never asked.

There are numerous websites now offering customers the ability to get multiple quotes for a service. This is great for the customer because they are able to find the best service at the lowest cost in a side-by-side comparison- but is it the right thing for your business?

The attraction for businesses listing on such sites, if they have been properly promoted, is that it will be another channel for referrals of business that you may not have otherwise received. Unfortunately, this business will likely be won on price.

While such comparison websites offer a convenience to customers, there is limited capability to interact with the businesses. This is necessary as these websites don’t want to be cut out by either customer or the business with them dealing directly, and so losing their commission. This means that it’s difficult for businesses to demonstrate their point of difference and speak with the customer directly. Usually, they just have a text box to describe their offer with limited ability to link to their own website, if at all.



Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Because You're the Expert


by Dr Greg Chapman

Unless you are selling a commodity product or service, such as petrol where all prices displayed on roadside boards where you can compare 3 or 4 stations’ offers before you have to stop to refill, you need to give your buyers clues on the value of your services. Even brands may be treated as a commodity in this respect. You have decided on a particular brand and model of plasma screen TV and now you browse the internet for the cheapest price.



More...





May You Business Be - As You Plan It!

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Over to You. What do You Think? Post Your Comments Below. [Note to those seeking a free ride on our google ranking, blog spam will be deleted,but genuine contributions will be happily published.]

Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and is Australia's Leading Advisor on Emerging Businesses and provides Coaching and Consulting advice to Australian Small Business Owners in Marketing & Business Strategies Planning & Systems. He is also the author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success and Price: How You Can Charge More Without Losing Sales.



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Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Benchmarking Franchisee Performance: Comparing Apples and Oranges


by Dr Greg Chapman


Even though comparing the performance of your franchisees can be a minefield, it is still best practice to do so. How else do you know which franchisees are leading the way, and which need further support? What better way to discover the new ideas that have proved to work and should be spread across the whole franchise?

However, comparisons between franchisees can be like comparing apples with oranges.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Ad of the Month – Selling the Sizzle

by Dr Greg Chapman


There is an old saying in advertising: Sell the Sizzle, not the steak. This refers to the anticipation we all feel about buying an appealing product, which of course may not always live up to expectations.

An almost literal example of selling the sizzle is this month’s ad. McDonalds have released a series of ads doing exactly that for it’s burgers with actors, in this case John Goodman, describing the sensations that a customer is experiencing as they eat their burger.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

The 5 Ways Business Systems Fail


by Dr Greg Chapman


The importance of systems in business is well known, but even in great businesses, they can fail. While the outcomes can range from minor inconvenience to catastrophic, the causes of failure come down to one or a combination of 5 fundamental reasons.

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Are all Your eggs in one basket?


by Dr Greg Chapman

Where are all your enquiries coming from? If it’s just from one or even just two sources, this may become a major issue for your business. One colleague I know was getting 90% of his business from a single department of a telco, then they got a new CEO who sacked the whole department. This person didn’t really have a business, he had a job with overheads and wasn’t in control of his destiny.




Supermarkets often source their home brands from small business for whom the supermarket provides most theirbusiness and to whom they are hostages. Other businesses I know depend on one or two referral sources. What happens if a competitor comes and forms a better relationship with the referrer?


More...




May You Business Be - As You Plan It!

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Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and is Australia's Leading Advisor on Emerging Businesses and provides Coaching and Consulting advice to Australian Small Business Owners in Marketing & Business Strategies Planning & Systems. He is also the author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success and Price: How You Can Charge More Without Losing Sales.



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Tuesday, May 08, 2018

Small Businesses: The Social Influencers


by Dr Greg Chapman


This is the full interview with the Sydney Morning Herald. Using the Yes campaign for example – a number of SMEs threw their weight behind the campaign. Federal and State elections and coming out about the importance of International Women’s Day are also great examples of SMEs getting involved in big social issues. What are the implications for small businesses who do this?

Monday, May 07, 2018

Why most businesses Stay small and What YOU can do about YOURS



A truth that is not well known is that 98% of businesses are Micro Stayers and never leave the micro bubble. To understand why this is so, we need to examine the lifecycle of businesses. In this podcast I discuss the key stages in the life of any business and what the most important actions are at each and how to get to the next.

Friday, May 04, 2018

Good, Better, Best: Which would You choose?


by Dr Greg Chapman

Unless you are selling a commodity product or service, such as petrol where all prices displayed on roadside boards where you can compare 3 or 4 stations’ offers before you have to stop to refill, you need to give your buyers clues on the value of your services. Even brands may be treated as a commodity in this respect. You have decided on a particular brand and model of plasma screen TV and now you browse the internet for the cheapest price.


The fuel example is a commodity product and the TV screen example is a commodity service (a retail distribution service of a non-commodity product).



So even if you aren’t selling a commodity product, the first question many people ask is: “How much will it cost?” and if you tell them, it could be a very brief conversation, unless you are the cheapest. More...



May You Business Be - As You Plan It!

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Share this article: Good, Better, Best: Which would You choose?



Over to You. What do You Think? Post Your Comments Below. [Note to those seeking a free ride on our google ranking, blog spam will be deleted,but genuine contributions will be happily published.]

Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and is Australia's Leading Advisor on Emerging Businesses and provides Coaching and Consulting advice to Australian Small Business Owners in Marketing & Business Strategies Planning & Systems. He is also the author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success and Price: How You Can Charge More Without Losing Sales.



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Thursday, May 03, 2018

How to build million dollar business relationships


by Dr Greg Chapman


The world’s best known marketing secret is Word-of-Mouth. To make this work for your business, you must build strong relationships with others so they will trust you and refer to you. Not just once, but over and over again. However, too many business owners treat this as a passive strategy.

In this expert interview, learn how to develop million dollar relationships for your business.

Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Marketing Moments – Be Easy to do Business With


by Dr Greg Chapman


Ever get frustrated contacting a business, being put on hold, leaving messages that are never returned and never getting an answer to your questions? I am sure your business isn’t like this, but how easy is it to do business with you?

In this podcast I discuss how these questions can create an advantage for you over your competitors.

Tuesday, May 01, 2018

Marketing Moments - Making a Buying Decision on Price


by Dr Greg Chapman


Recently there was a test with top concert violinists comparing Stradivarius violins with the best modern ones. The violinists were required to wear welder’s goggles, so it was literally a blind test. They were to decide on the basis of sound and playability, and ultimately, which violin they would prefer to take on a tour.

Surprisingly the cheap modern violins won out. (OK, not that cheap, at $30,000, but about 100 times cheaper than the average Stradivarius.) Do you think that this news will cause a crash in the price of the Stradivarius?

Friday, April 27, 2018

The wrong time to Increase Sales


by Dr Greg Chapman

Whenever you read an article about business growth, it almost always comes down to a push to increase sales, but there are times when this may have totally the opposite effect that was intended.



The big mistake businesses make is using Sales as a proxy for growth. When economists speak about growth, they look at profit, which is not the same Sales. In certain circumstances, increases in Sales can reduce profitability, but people continue to use Sales as an indicator of growth because it’s easy to measure.


More...




May You Business Be - As You Plan It!

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Over to You. What do You Think? Post Your Comments Below. [Note to those seeking a free ride on our google ranking, blog spam will be deleted,but genuine contributions will be happily published.]

Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and is Australia's Leading Advisor on Emerging Businesses and provides Coaching and Consulting advice to Australian Small Business Owners in Marketing & Business Strategies Planning & Systems. He is also the author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success and Price: How You Can Charge More Without Losing Sales.



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Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Removing the Biggest Bottleneck in Your Business


by Dr Greg Chapman


A bottleneck is where a logjam occurs, allowing only a trickle to pass through the neck to the other side. Bottlenecks result in missed opportunities and impose costs due to underutilised capacity. While this is well known, little is done about the biggest bottleneck of them all.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Are Your Customers having a Nice Day?

by Dr Greg Chapman


Some years ago, I worked in the corporate world in the US, and after 3 years I, my wife and two kids were to be transferred to the UK. My employer had engaged an international moving company which would handle the packing and transport of all our possessions. The same company would handle the unpacking in the UK.

As we had accumulated a lot in the US (they make it really easy to spend your money there) it was to take 3 days to pack and remove everything. Each day, the packing team arrived promptly on our doorstep at 8am lined up behind their leader. They were neatly dressing in crisp uniforms. The team leader explained each day what they would be doing and they proceeded to work.





The packers, if they had a query about an item, asked politely about how we wanted them to be packaged, even our children’s precious items which to the uninitiated looked like junk. They were always polite and courteous. Each night they cleaned away any mess, and explained what would happen the next day. While moving is always stressful, they did everything they could to make the move as painless as possible.

After we flew to London we organised the UK removalists to deliver and unpack everything. The difference with the US team couldn’t be more stark. More...



May You Business Be - As You Plan It!

Subscribe to this Blog for more Small Business news and tips.


Share this article:Are Your Customers having a Nice Day?


Over to You. What do You Think? Post Your Comments Below. [Note to those seeking a free ride on our google ranking, blog spam will be deleted,but genuine contributions will be happily published.]

Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and is Australia's Leading Advisor on Emerging Businesses and provides Coaching and Consulting advice to Australian Small Business Owners in Marketing & Business Strategies Planning & Systems. He is also the author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success and Price: How You Can Charge More Without Losing Sales.



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The Australian Small Business Blog

To send this article to a friend, click on the envelope below.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Circle of Price

by Dr. Greg Chapman


The Circle of Price:

1. The more you charge, the more you are respected

2. The more you are respected, the more your clients comply with your recommendations

3. The more they comply, the better the results they get

4. The more results they get, the more clients you get

5. The more clients you get, the more you charge


Thursday, April 19, 2018

Marketing Moments – Maintain Your List


by Dr Greg Chapman


Possibly the most valuable asset for most businesses is their list, a database of people who have bought from them, or have shown interest in their products and services.

In this podcast I discuss the importance of a customer database to any business.

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Dr. Greg Chapman is also the author of
The 5 Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success

The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success

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