The Australian Small Business Blog

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

To Outsource or Not Outsource, that is the question

by Dr Greg Chapman

As a business grows, so does the need for additional support. The question businesses then ask is how to source that support. There is a natural temptation to jump to the obvious solution of hiring another employee, but other options should also be considered, depending on the circumstances and the role.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

The Third Profit Driver - Increasing Average Value Per Sale

by Dr Greg Chapman

In earlier articles I described The Five Profit Drivers marketing system as well as the first two Profit Divers.The third of the Five Profit Drivers is Increasing the Average Value per Sale.

When they ask: “Do you want fries with that?” McDonalds knows that about a third of their customers say yes. The marginal cost of the fries is small. Their overhead costs, which are quite considerable, the restaurant, staff and equipment have not changed because of this additional sale. The cost of the fries, the potatoes and packaging, is a small fraction of the selling price of the fries, so almost the whole price of the fries goes straight to the bottom line, all achieved by asking a simple question at the time they were making a sale.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Are Timewasters wasting your time and costing you money?

by Dr Greg Chapman

In too many small businesses, owners work longer hours, often taking home less pay than their employees. They are in fact the last to be paid.

In any business we see them, the timewasters. Of course you can never be sure which enquiry is a waste of your time, and which could be a buried gold nugget. And of course, you don’t want to be rude, because even timewasters may seek to damage your reputation if not handled the right way.

I recently had such a situation, with a surprising result.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Ad of the Month- Made You Look

by Dr Greg Chapman

In the modern media world, advertising is usually sold by “Impressions”. That’s not the number of people who have read your ad, or even seen your ad, just the number of people who had the opportunity to see your ad.

I think we have all evolved the ability to narrow our focus to the content we want so we can ignore the ads in the side panels. Even most direct mail ends up in the bin unopened, so getting people not only to see your ad, but also read it is becoming an ever greater challenge.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Buying an existing small business : smart or not?

by Dr Greg Chapman

You have just decided that you don’t want to work for someone else anymore and build their dream, you want to build your own. You know the kind of business you want and are not afraid of the hard work it’s going to take. The question you are now asking is whether to buy an existing business to avoid early growing pains. Here are threekey issues to consider before you buy.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

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.


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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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Friday, August 12, 2016

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.

Thursday, August 04, 2016

Managing Your time requires Small Business Brain Surgery

by Dr Greg Chapman

What do you have in common with Bill Gates and Richard Branson? You have the same 24 hours in a day. It’s what you do with those hours that produces the difference. Often business owners are working longer hours and taking home less than their staff. If this is you, maybe it’s time you learnt what Brain Surgeons do.

Most business owners are micro-managers. They have learnt from experience if they give work to someone else, they mess it up, and then they spend twice as long fixing things. But this is not what Brain Surgeons do. When they operate on a patient, they are not in charge of the theatre- the theatre nurse is. They don’t open up the patient, or close. They leave that to a junior surgeon. Everything is prepared for them, and someone else mops up the blood later. All they do is the brain surgery. With a little bit of marketing beforehand (client needs), and a little bit more marketing afterwards (client satisfaction).

How is this possible?


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