Wisdom & Tips for SMEs

Title Tips & Advice Rating of Tipssort ascending Link
Write a Column Write a Column for a local Newspaper / Magazine or Trade Publication. This will enhance your profile and will help you a great deal in your business.
Average: 4.8 (5 votes)
Sales Presentations by Customer Segment Take the trouble of preparing separate and Specific Sales Presentations for each of the Key Market Segments that you are planning to serve. This will ensure that your sales team will deliver Precisely Targeted Value Propositions to Clients based on their needs and circumstances. Many organizations lose a lot of effectiveness in Sales just because they take this step for granted, or leave it to individual sales persons.
Average: 2.3 (4 votes)
Reinvent In-Tune With Changing Needs What possibilities exist for your business to Evolve / Change in-tune with the changing needs of your customers? What can you do to improve your customer's experience? What can you learn from similar businesses in other parts of the World?
Average: 3.5 (2 votes)
Optimize Your Website for Business Growth? You need help if your website is not making its presence felt on Web. Everday millions of customers are seraching for solutions to their problems. Question is - does your Website appear as a potential Solution Provider? You need to be visible on the Internet, whether you are selling anything Online or not. Your Marketing Process must be designed to significantly improve your Search Engine Rankings. Visitors must discover your business solutions more easily and your website must turn into a powerful source of business development.
Average: 5 (1 vote)
Customer Concentration Is your Business dependent on Few Large Customers? This pose a grave risk to your business because your success becomes dependent on their continued success. Powerful Customers are also known to squeeze the margins of their suppliers. Larger number of smaller customers are always better than few large customers.
Average: 2.7 (3 votes)
Outsourcing Have you considered outsourcing Non-Core areas of your business? A number of SMEs successfully outsource Payroll, Accounting, Security, Housekeeping, Maintenance of computers, IT Services etc. This can potentially unburden you and help you focus your energies on the Core Business.
Average: 3 (2 votes)
Exercise Thought Leadership Conduct Research, Make Presentations to Industry Bodies, and write Articles on specific areas important to the Industry & its future. This will require consistent and diligent efforts. Carefully chosen Ideas and Topics can help you position and occupy the minds of your audiences.
Average: 5 (2 votes)
Enhance Liquidity / Cash Flow A number of Banks including SIDBI are now offering Receivable Finance Schemes which can help you convert your receivables to Cash.
Average: 4.2 (5 votes)
Relationship Selling Deepen your business relationship with your Existing Customers with Relationship Selling. Try and understand what products or services your customers need in addition to your Products or Services. Make your customer's life easier by providing the convenience of dealing with one supplier. What else can you sell, Profitably, to your existing customers?
Average: 3.7 (3 votes)
Create an Annual Award Create an Annual Award in relation to your business and get media interested in covering it.
Average: 3.5 (2 votes)
Inventory Levels How well are you aware of your inventory levels? Do you have a reporting system which measures inventory turns in terms of Cost of Goods Sold ( Cost of Goods / Avg. Inventory)?
Average: 3.6 (5 votes)
Cash Position Do you know how much cash do you have right now?
Average: 3.3 (3 votes)
Tracking Competition Do you have a system of keeping track of competition's activities? Have they launched any new programmes or initiatives? What is their system of acquiring new customers? How are they doing? Any change in their advertising? Anything new to learn from their website?
Average: 4.3 (4 votes)
Staff Training Are you investing Sufficiently in Staff Training to improve your Competitive Position?
Average: 3.3 (3 votes)
Information Technology What are are the Work Reduction / Work Simplification opportunities in your business? How can you utilize information technology to eliminate costs & speed up work processes?
Average: 4 (2 votes)
Mission / Vision Statements Do you have a clearly defined Mission & Vision Statements for your business? Do these statements provide your business a sense of purpose? What are your key Values?
Average: 4.3 (3 votes)
Use Facebook as a brand awareness tool Facebook is a free publicity tool that can be used for brand awareness. Create an account for your firm and keep posting new products, offers, outlets etc. Also encourage your target customers to use this as a review, suggestion, complaint blog.
Average: 2 (2 votes)
Benchmarking Do you Benchmark your Products / Processes / Customer Experiences against your Competitors? How do you stack up against the best in business?
Average: 2 (1 vote)
Website That Generates Business Your website can be one of the most important sources for generating Business. Create a smart website which sells and also enables your customers to send Business Enquiries.You can see www.sidbi.in for details. The website must also be designed for Smart Phones & Tablets. It is estimated that internet access through these devices will surpass the Desktop / Laptop access numbers. Done right, this can become a perennial source of business generation for your organization.
Average: 4 (4 votes)
Employee Inputs Do you value Employee Inputs and reward Innovative Ideas and Contributions?
Average: 1 (1 vote)
Supply Chain Integration Have you tried to integrate your processes with your Supply Chain Partners?
Average: 1.5 (2 votes)
Cross-Selling / Up-Selling Techniques Are you using Cross-Selling / Up-Selling Techniques to enhance Sales? Once you have established a successful relationship with the customer - selling additional Products / more expensive products can be quite effective.
Average: 3.3 (3 votes)
Customer Advisory Programme Engage Key Customers by creating a Customer Advisory Council. This will provide you huge benefits in terms of Insights and feedback on Strategy and Direction for your enterprise. You will also benefit from deeper relationships with these key customers.
Average: 3 (2 votes)
Network Conferences are excellent opportunities for Networking. Get full advantage by reconnecting with the conference attendees by sending a letter to them.
Average: 3 (2 votes)
Customer Complaints Do you have a system of registering Customer Complaints? Is the system Online & easily accessible to customers at all times? Does it record the response and the time lag.
Average: 3.8 (4 votes)
Press Kit Keep a press kit handy for upcoming opportunities
Average: 3 (2 votes)
Experiment, Test & Modify Value Propositions Experiment Test & Modify your Value Propositions till you discover the ones that really work. Internet Marketing can be a great tool for ascertaining the customer response. Your Marketing Strategy can be refined and fine tuned based on customer response to various Value propositions.
No votes yet
Customer Inputs Do you have a process of seeking and recording customer inputs on Products, Services, Customer Experiences etc? Do you have a Formal Process where customer inputs are analyzed for making Business Process Improvements/ Service Delivery Improvements / Product Improvements?
Average: 4.3 (3 votes)
Adequate Working Capital Do you have Adequate Working Capital to Manage Business Growth? Are you actively managing your Cash Flow by Managing inventories & Receivable Efficiently?
Average: 4.5 (2 votes)
Evolving Changes Devote some time to understand what changes are likely to take place in the Market. Plan ahead to drive and benefit from the change instead of being adversely affected by it. Change is an opportunity to move ahead and to break new grounds.
Average: 5 (1 vote)
Submit Customer Education Articles Submit Customer Education related articles to media. Solve user issues / provide Tips on Radio / Magazines.
Average: 5 (2 votes)
Standardise Selling Process Standardise the selling process by working out clear cut Sales Stages for your business. Have a system which can help you know the exact sales stage each of your customer is in. This will help you priortise your efforts and you will be able to focus on higher value opportunities which have the most chances of success.
Average: 5 (1 vote)
Shared Office Space Shared Office spaces can be very cost effective for Early Stage Enterprises or established SMEs expanding in New Areas. This approach provides flexibility to scale and establish business in new geographies. Provides flexibility to grow, downsize or relocate. Upfront capital investment is not required.
No votes yet
Distribute Pamphlets as an advertising tool If your business requires door to door advertising, a good way to do that is to print pamphlets and distribute it to the targeted customers. Once your brand name enters the door, it is easy for it to enter customers mind.
No votes yet
Social Media Make use of Social Media like Facebook / Twitter / Linkedin for presenting interesting information about key activities / developments / user interest stories / major milestones.
Average: 1 (1 vote)
Operating Costs How do operating costs compare with those of competition in terms of Overheads, Variable costs and Profit Margins?
Average: 2 (1 vote)
Consumption of Cash How is Cash being consumed in your business? Are you taking care to avoid Long Term Investments with Short Term Funds?
No votes yet
Brand Extension Consider whether extending your Brand to some other Product Range or Services will make sense for you. You may be able to Leverage your existing infrastructure or Business Strengths for additional business / Profitability.
No votes yet
Energy Efficient Machinery / Processes Energy Saving Investments in Plant and Machinery / Production Processes can save costs and enhance Profitability. Loans on Concessional Rates of Interest are available for such purposes from SIDBI and other Banks.
No votes yet
Train New Staff Using Smartphones Smartphones can be a very powerful tool to record your Value Propositions for the Sales Team. These small videos can be made available to the teams using the cloud storage facilities like - Google Drive, Dropbox, Sugarsync etc. Sales tools like this can be very powerful tools which can come in handy for training New Staff.
No votes yet
Smartphone Apps Essential for Entrepreneurs If you are a smartphone user, you can use these apps to save time and make your company's function more organized. Some of the given below apps are free or offer free trlals, try them.
Average: 1 (1 vote)
Join Key Industry Body ( Bodies) Join key industry bodies to network with important individuals / Prospective Clients
Average: 2 (1 vote)
Part Time Staff Many opportunities of utilizing Highly Skilled Staff on Flexible Time / Part Time basis exist today. Technology makes it possible for people to work from their homes. Organization can benefit from Quality work at a fraction of cost.
Average: 2 (1 vote)
Open Source Operating Systems ( Linux) Linux based Open source operating systems like Ubuntu can help you save substantial money. These operating systems have become very user friendly over time. Most smartphone users are already used to Android, which is again based on Linux kernel. Linux / Ubuntu are also less vulnerable to security threats - another saving for SMEs.
Average: 2 (1 vote)
Value in Customer's Eyes Do you know what exactly your customers Value Most in your Products & Services? How can you build on it?
No votes yet
Share Referrals Share referrals with other non-competing businesses for mutual benefit.
No votes yet
Customer Objection List Provide a document to each Sales Person listing Customer Objections and effective answer for each of the objection. Ensure that each and every sales person is able to handle the customer objection without referring to the document. Spend as much time as necessary to achieve this objective.
Average: 2 (1 vote)
Keep Bankers Informed Are you keeping your Bankers Informed about your Business Growth and the likely need for extra Working Capital? Don't wait till the last moment.
No votes yet
Speed Up Business Processes Speed Up Business Processes using New Technologies. Simplify Flow of information between various teams serving the customers. Today it is possible to provide a unified view of the customer's interaction with the company. Enable your teams to collaborate and respond quickly and knowledgably to Leads and Sales Opportunities.
Average: 2 (2 votes)
Communication Costs VOIP Technologies like Skype, Google Talk - and now VOIP services on Android Phones can help you save communication and travel costs. Group Video calls on these services can be very effective alternative to group meetings involving travel and hotel costs.
Average: 2 (1 vote)

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