Business development · 19 January 2018

Four re-booted business resolutions to keep for the rest 2018

Now might be the time to tighten your SEO strategy and digital marketing
Now might be the time to tighten your SEO strategy and digital marketing
If you’ve already failed with your new gym regime or with your attempt to complete dry January, could there be some changes you could be making for your business instead? Emily Coltman offers some realistic business resolutions to stick to in 2018.?

With the New Year festivities already a distant memory, you may be looking at your list of resolutions to see which ones you’re likely to keep for the year ahead and which have already fallen by the wayside.

Here are four business resolutions that could help you business succeed throughout the year ahead.

  1. Track your time at work

Even if you think you’re working as efficiently as possible, you may be surprised to discover just where your time is actually being spent once you take a closer look.

By tracking all of your working time (and yes, that includes all your phone calls and coffee breaks) youll see where the main interruptions are in your business and be better equipped to deal with them so you can work at full strength. Youll also see how long you spend doing non-work-related tasks and which parts of your routine are least productive.

Tracking your time can also uncover how profitable each project you work on is, as youll be able to see how much unbillable? time goes into each one, compared to the amount of time you can charge for. That means you see which projects are costing you money and what kind of work you should be focusing on in the future to maximise your profits.

  1. Love your bookkeeping

Doing the books may not be one of the most exciting part of running a business, but it is one of the most important. You need up-to-date accounts to see how much money you’re making and how much tax you need to pay, and your business could suffer if you don’t do it properly.

If you’re not already doing so, try to make bookkeeping an integral but manageable part of your work in 2018. Spend an hour a week to review your bank transactions, log your expenses and manage your invoicing and youll find it easier to see at a glance how your business is performing.

While you’re at it, you may want to think about whether you could ditch your spreadsheets and upgrade to dedicated accounting software instead. Not only could this save you hours of tedious admin in the short term, but youll also make sure you’re prepared in advance for the introduction of digital tax reporting legislation in the coming years.

  1. Freshen up your marketing

The start of the year is a great time to take a look at your marketing strategy, review what has been working and see what you can be doing better in the year ahead. For example, could you start thinking about advertising in local media, or signing up to attend a few trade shows full of potential new customers?

Or, do you need to tweak your SEO and online presence in order to more effectively target a specific customer base?

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ABOUT THE EXPERT

Emily Coltman is chief accountant to FreeAgent, provider of cloud accounting software for freelancers, micro businesses and accountants. She is passionate about helping the owners of small and growing businesses to escape their ?fear of the numbers? and she translates small business finance and tax into practical common sense speak.

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