Three tips to protect your business finances during a crisis
Darren Upson, VP for Small Business at?Soldooffers suggestions for protecting your business? finances during a crisis.
We began lockdown in 2020, but well emerge with the widespread adoption of technology that we would otherwise have expected of 2025.
This is an unalloyed positive, as the right software provides greater flexibility, efficiency, control and productivity than the frankly, antiquated alternatives.
Despite the positive impact on technological adoption, it would be remiss to ignore the devastating impact that the coronavirus and ensuing lockdown have had on businesses of every size and across most industries and it isnt over yet.
Businesses, many of which are already in a tough predicament, are staring down an impending recession. Defending cashflow is perhaps the most fundamental part of maintaining a successful business, but at a time like this, it is even more challenging than normal. What can businesses do to ensure that they can survive the hardships that are still to come and set themselves up to thrive in the long-term?
1. Maintain focus on company spending
Now more than ever, it’s vital to understand the money that is coming and going from your business. This means making the most of the powerful tools that are available, removing friction points for incoming payments, and keeping an eagle-eyed view on money leaving the business.
Businesses have always lived and died by cashflow, but as we teeter on the precipice of a potential recession, the margin for error is particularly thin. Companies need the right financial processes to eliminate waste, control finances, and stay in the black as they begin the slow march toward recovery.
This renewed focus on spending should extend to money spent on customer acquisition. Unsurprisingly, customers are acting differently in this strange new world, and your customer strategy should address that. Reconsider whether expensive acquisition channels are the right choice for your business and double down on the low-cost ones that you have found to be effective.
2. Retention is the new growth for most businesses
Considering both the money you have already spent to attract existing customers and the challenges inherent in attracting new customers at this point, retaining them should become a top tier priority for businesses. If you can afford it, offering discounts can help customers with tight budgets to stick with you. If not, it’s still possible to generate value for them, it just requires a little extra creativity.
This bind will be temporary, but customers will long remember the businesses that went above and beyond to support them. Customers that you acquire now, while still important, are likely to be of less value than pre-Covid customers, which businesses must consider when tracking the churn rate of customers.
Businesses must be wary of offering their products for free especially to non-customers since this can set a dangerous precedent. it’s always better to offer services at a discounted price to avoid attracting low-value customers who will disappear as soon as the bill arrives. At every step, consider the payback you hope to see in the future and if you do choose to give products away, ensure you have a plan for monetising these customers in the future.
Darren Upson is the Vice President of Small Business Europe for fintech company, Soldo. Holding a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Marketing, Upson has significant experience in high growth SaaS businesses. In his previous role as both Marketing Director and Small Business Director at Xero, Upson was instrumental in growing the UK subscriber base from 83,000 to over 250,000 in under three years.