It is shocking and it can be scary – the amount of change that will follow the release of Bill 148 in Ontario. Starting January 2018, minimum wage jumps up to $14/hour and will be at $15/hour by January 2019. This sounds like great news to the average Ontarian making minimum wage, but making $15/hour is only good if you can actually get a job. Most people are unaware of all the side effects that will accompany Bill 148. It is predicted that inflation rates will go up approximately 50% and almost 200 000 jobs will disappear. More information on the impact of Bill 148 can be found at http://keepontarioworking.ca/
As a Small Business owner there are many risks to consider. Expenses will increase, wages will increase, CPP and EI will increase. The first 2 years will be the hardest. If you can rise above the struggle you will have the opportunity to prosper. You can avoid the biggest mistakes that most businesses make when going through an economic downturn.
This is Your Chance to Stand Out
Now more than ever, you need to demonstrate value to your clients. Show your clients why you deserve their business. You have the ability to make every single customer happy. Not all businesses will survive this economic challenge but with the right attitude you can. Connect with you clients on an emotional level.
Be genuinely interested in them and give them what they wat. When you make your customers happy, two awesome things happen:
- They come back to you. You can create loyal customers who love your work and customer service so much they wouldn’t even consider going somewhere else.
- They refer you to other people. Everyone loves to share their opinion, good or bad, it doesn’t matter. When your customers share their opinion of you and your company, make sure it’s a great one.
The biggest mistake most businesses make during rough times is cutting their marketing budget. While all your competitors are taking this approach, you need to be different and keep marketing. Whether it is online, offline, or a combination of both, get creative to keep that budget.
Customers buy from brands that they trust. They trust brands they are familiar with. How do you get people to trust your brand? Meeting with and talking with people is great, but there are only so many hours in a day to do that. Market your brand while you build and run your business. Even if you have a smaller budget there are always different custom option to work for you. To market online you can directly target your audience based on all the data that Google is able to collect. Not every strategy works for every industry. Find out how you can Maximize Your Business Marketing Efforts.
Manage Your Expenses
Look for options to minimize expenses and keep cash flowing. It may make more sense for you to take advantage of monthly payment options rather than larger one-time payments to better predict your monthly expenses and revenue. If you don’t enjoy bookkeeping, hire a bookkeeper. Even if you aren’t happy with your finances, if you ignore your accounting side of your business it can get even scarier down the road.
Expand Your Resources
- Expand regions you service geologically
- Be open and creative with other opportunities
- Expand your client base
- Hire staff strategically
- With less jobs available, there will be more qualified people looking for work
- Hire staff with values that match your mission and vision
We Can Help You
We understand that this is going to be a difficult time for many small businesses therefore we have put in place a couple of strategies to assist you. We always try to work with our clients in regards to their budget and timelines. No matter how small your budget is we strive to provide you with value. We always take time to research your business and industry – determining the best way to bring you increased leads. We also provide easy payment plans for an affordable monthly cost so you can get the publicity you need immediately. This might be a difficult couple of years for small business owners but if we use all the resources available we just might come out on top.