5 Ways to Get Your Business in Shape in 2019

LINSEY KNERL | January 7, 2019

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If you’re using the start of the New Year to craft some clever goals for your company, you’re not alone. From the CMO to the front office worker, everyone likes to use this period of renewal to create milestones that will propel them in their career. So, how can you use the eagerness and willingness of your workforce to do more in 2019? Start with these essential tasks for any business owners hoping to increase the fitness of their business. They’re vital year-round but are especially effective in Q1 of the fiscal year. No one likes them, but they are incredibly important to get right. If you haven’t started the dreaded task of assembling all your tax and financial info to give to your tax pro, do so now. There are several tax changes under Trump’s new tax plan that may change the amount you owe, so be sure to inquire about how this will affect your info gathering.

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Ethervision is a Chicago based enterprise mobile application development company specializing in iPhone, iPad and Android apps. We have developed over 185 mobile applications and have been featured by Apple 27 times both on the front page of the iTunes app store and in Apple Retail Stores all over the world.

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Top 8 Small Business Marketing Ideas to Propel Your Business

Article | July 1, 2021

We have more upcoming business challenges for 2021 now that the year 2020 has passed. Therefore, we ought to be prepared with some power-packed small business marketing ideas for the upcoming year. Starting a business, no matter how big or small, is easy; the real challenge is keeping it running smoothly and efficiently. Marketing is critical to the smooth operation of a business. Marketing is an essential component of any business for it to thrive. Marketing allows you to establish and promote your brand, generate sales, generate leads, and so on. It isn’t easy to implement the right marketing strategies for a business. Furthermore, due to limited resources, implementing the right marketing ideas for small businesses is more difficult. Whether you are starting a new business or already have one, it is critical to have an online presence for marketing and brand awareness. Before we get into the meat of this blog, let me clarify a few concepts for a better understanding of business marketing. Importance of marketing for small businesses Marketing is critical for the success of small businesses. Without proper marketing, your reach is extremely limited. Marketing has a long-term impact on your company. It increases sales, helps businesses grow and engages customers. All this necessitates careful planning. Planning entails deciding on the best platform and tools for marketing your company. Develop a marketing plan A marketing plan is a detailed plan that outlines the advertising strategy used to generate leads and reach the target customer and market. It collects various marketing strategies used to promote a company, its products, or services. Thus, preparing a marketing plan is very important to set small business marketing ideas. Knowing your audience, spelling out marketing and promotional strategies, creating buyer personas, generating leads and demands, generating web traffic, , and converting leads to sales, are all part of a marketing plan. It is of utmost importance to keep marketing trends in mind and carry out a marketing plan. Benefits of a marketing plan A marketing plan brings everyone on the same page. Makes marketing strategy documented and easy to consult. It makes it easy to evaluate new opportunities. It gives a better understanding of your marketing strategy. Helps in making the right decision for your business or marketing. Having a plan implies that your objectives are measurable. It enables your business to be proactive and aligned with its vision and goals. There are plenty of small business marketing strategies available for your business. I will assist you in selecting the best ones for your business's success by providing you with a few small business marketing ideas. Top 8 small business marketing ideas Know your audience How would you identify your business's target audience? Any marketing technique aims to attract customers to their brands, but not everyone can be a buyer. For your product or service, you must concentrate on a specific target audience. However, this necessitates some market research, which will assist you in identifying your business's niche. Market research entails gathering information from customers, such as what motivates them to make a purchase decision? What are their requirements? What do they expect from a service provider or a product vendor? Emphasize search engine optimization (SEO) Search Engine Optimization (SEO) optimizes the content on your website. . It is popular and preferred by business owners because organic content is a free source of high-quality traffic and internet searchability. You can bring in more traffic to your content and more leads only through SEO. Top ranking achieved through SEO promotes your website 24 hours a day, seven days a week, where Google searches occur 60,000 times per second. However, reaching the top ranking necessitates a significant amount of effort. SEO is a long-term marketing strategy with remarkable long-term returns. Here are few tips to be kept in mind for the success of optimizing your content via SEO: Produce high-quality content on hot topics in your niche. Create content that focuses on relevant and valuable keywords. Optimize your header tags so that search engines capture your pages. Include your primary keywords in all your website's landing pages, titles, meta descriptions, and so on. Use internal linking that helps search engines crawl and index your pages. Optimize meta descriptions. Reduce page load time by optimizing your website's images. Concentrate on generating backlinks. Use engaging videos to connect Customers are getting video savvy on the social media platform. Videos develop a personal connection with the viewers or clients, and in this age of social distancing, it has proved to be a blessing for business marketers. Videos play a key role in brand awareness of the business. People with short attention spans are drawn to videos (everybody). Video marketing is also done with a limited budget; therefore, it is one of the best small business marketing ideas. Marketing teams use video marketing as a strategy to create, curate, and use videos for marketing their products or services to their target audience. However, the goal is to keep audience members engaged with the brand in a simple and easy-to-digest manner. YouTube receives five billion video views per day. Besides, the average viewing session is 40 minutes per day, a 50 percent increase year over year. Other platforms for live videos, such as Facebook and Instagram, are also very popular. Facebook live videos have a 4.3 percent engagement rate, while non-live videos have a 2.2 percent engagement rate. People watch 16 hours of online video per week on average, a 52% increase over the last two years. Viewers retain 95 percent of a message when they watch it in a video versus 10% when they read it in text. Social video generates 1200 times the number of shares as text and image content combined. Optimize your marketing technology stack The marketing technology stack is a collection of technologies used by marketers to optimize their marketing processes throughout the customer lifecycle. Implementing a marketing technology (Martech) stack allows you to leverage and improve your marketing activities. Benefits of optimizing Martech Marketing teams can streamline workflows. Martech tools reduce internal friction. Allows all departments to work together towards common goals. Marketing technologies help simplify complex processes, measure the impact of marketing activities, and drive more efficient spending. Make social media significant for the promotion Social media networks have transformed the face of marketing and are one of the powerful marketing business tools. According to Global WebIndex research, approximately 53.6 percent of the world's population uses social media. The average daily usage is two hours and twenty-five minutes. The social media platform is the cheapest and most effective for small business advertising. Social media helps you increase your domain authority, brand awareness, improves search engine ranking, and offers higher inbound traffic, among many more. As a small business owner, you just need to invest your time and effort into it. Use relevant hashtags in the post. Visual content (high-quality and eye-catching) along with text. Encourage comments on your posts. Find your brand voice. Make use of influencer marketing. Social media proved to be encouraging small business marketing ideas. Automate your important marketing channels When it comes to simple marketing ideas, automation is the best solution because it streamlines marketing processes. Thus, businesses need to leverage the automation of marketing channels to reduce manual tasks and save time. Marketing automation is done by: Repetitive tasks such as email and website actions can be automated. Marketing process effectiveness measurement. This results in increased operational efficiency. Also helps to increase your revenue. Creating a schedule for social media posts. Marketing automation integrates all business channels and outreach into a single customer database. Automation turned up as one of the key trends in B2C business. Marketing automation makes small businesses competitive. AI is also a part of marketing automation and is often used in marketing efforts where speed is essential. Marketing automation is feasible for small business ideas. Looking at all the above advantages, there is a growing need for automation as a small business marketing idea. Optimize your content for voice search Voice search uses voice technology that allows users to perform searches on a device simply by speaking into it; the device could be a smartphone, a computer, or a smart home assistant (like Amazon Alexa, Siri, Cortana, and Google home). Voice search has grown in popularity in recent years. For instance, voice input now accounts for 50% of all searches. As a result, now is the time to optimize your web pages for the same. The year 2020 predicted the widespread use of voice search, but 2021 is when consumers are using this technique via voice-enabled devices during the pandemic. Small businesses have a real opportunity to capitalize on a local search through voice. Companies that want to stay ahead of the curve in digital marketing are already implementing a voice search strategy. Small business owners can take advantage of such popular marketing technology trends. Send and respond to review the request and perform referral marketing Customers trust and rely on the reviews and customer’s feedback. Thus, encourage customers to share their experience with the products or services that the company is offering. Customer feedback acts as social proof that your customers trust. The reviews or testimonials could be positive or negative, but it surely helps businesses to improve their business or marketing strategies. Send review requests via text or email that will make the process easy for customers. However, it is equally important that you also respond to the reviews. Responding to reviews can help your business rank higher in search engines. Small businesses often think referral marketing is not their cup of tea and is meant for large businesses. However, small businesses have a lot more to gain from it as it is one of the best ways for lead generation. A referral is nothing but someone you know recommending the product or service to their known or friends. This marketing idea acts as a promotional channel for small businesses. Everything is going online, and digital marketing is booming. Since you are now aware of marketing ideas for small businesses, you are only one step away from putting them into action and reaping the benefits of the above marketing ideas. FAQ’s What are the best marketing ideas for a small-scale business? The best marketing ideas for a small business include social media, search engine optimization, referral marketing, market automation, etc. Why is marketing strategy important for small businesses? How you communicate your value to others is defined by your marketing strategy. Small businesses must improve their positioning. A marketing strategy will help you make sound decisions. How to calculate the online growth of small business? Companies should have year-over-year growth of between 15% and 45 percent as a general benchmark. According to a SaaS survey, companies with less than $2 million in annual revenue grow faster. When you have a diverse audience base, you have all necessary processes in place that show the online growth of the small business. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What are the best marketing ideas for a small-scale business?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "The best marketing ideas for a small business include social media, search engine optimization, referral marketing, market automation, etc." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Why is marketing strategy important for small businesses?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "How you communicate your value to others is defined by your marketing strategy. Small businesses must improve their positioning. A marketing strategy will help you make sound decisions." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How to calculate the online growth of small business?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Companies should have year-over-year growth of between 15% and 45 percent as a general benchmark. According to a SaaS survey, companies with less than $2 million in annual revenue grow faster. When you have a diverse audience base, you have all necessary processes in place that show the online growth of the small business." } }] }

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Simple Security for Every Small Business

Article | February 10, 2020

If you’re a business owner you really have your hands full, every day, with the minutiae of running your business, balancing your books, orders, employees, scheduling, inventory, servicing customers, payroll, taxes well, you get the idea as you’re living it every day. You might read that and think that I’m crazy, and that you do take security into account, and your office and systems are secure. Frequently, it’s not in the day to day operation of your business which is why we have statistics like this: In the first 6 months of 2019 alone, over 3,800 data breaches were reported, with over 4 billion records being exposed as a result. If you broke it down evenly, that would be over 20 million records stolen every single day this year.

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What's Involved in Starting a Partnership?

Article | May 19, 2021

Entrepreneurs who plan to go into business with one or more other individuals may not realize there are several variations of partnerships to consider. In this article, I’ll describe the different types of partnerships and what needs to be done to start and maintain them. Business owners should keep in mind that there are legal and tax-related issues to consider when choosing a business entity type. So before deciding, it's wise to consult an attorney and accountant or tax advisor for guidance.

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Top 8 Options of Startup Financing for Small Businesses

Article | July 23, 2021

Are you set with the business idea? So now is the real mammoth-sized challenge that is how to get startup finance? As the adage goes, "never put all your eggs in one basket," and this is especially true when it comes to startup financing options for your business. Entrepreneurs ought to understand the importance of diversifying financial sources and the available options. It is crucial to select the appropriate startup financing for small businesses. According to a 2020 Federal Reserve report, new company small businesses are the primary source of job growth in the United States. Still, they are much more likely than larger firms to face financial difficulties in accessing borrowed capital. Millions of Americans start their businesses each year. According to the Census Bureau, there would be over 4.3 million new business applications in 2020 alone. It is vital to choose the suitable funding options as per your business requirements. Because every business's needs and circumstances are unique, no financial solution is one-size-fits-all. Some choose to finance their startups with their years saved capital or get “love money” from family, spouse or friends, or any other funding options. How you choose to fund your business determines the structure and operation of your business. Hence, finding appropriate funding for startups is a bit tricky. In this blog, explore few options of startup financing for small businesses and grow your business. What is startup financing for small businesses? Startup capital is a large sum of money raised to help with the financial needs of new businesses. Small business startup loan covers all the major company’s initial costs, such as purchasing equipment, working capital, machinery inventory, supplies, licenses, office space, furniture, product development, purchase of construction equipment or real estate. Funding for startups can be provided by venture capitalists, angel investors, banks, or other financial institutions. It is pretty common that a new business might require more than one round of startup capital investment. In addition, many investors ask for a solid business plan in exchange for their money due to the risk involved in investing in the young company. Advantages and disadvantages of startup financing for small businesses Advantages: • You will have enough money to start your own business. • Personal wealth can be safeguarded. • You have the option to retain ownership. • You can establish business credit. Disadvantages: • It isn't easy to get startup business loans approved. • High-interest rates. • These loans may limit cash flow. • Your personal credit may be jeopardized. • You might not get all the money you asked for. Where can I get a small business startup loan? Small Business Credit Cards Business credit cards are the most preferred option of startup financing for small businesses. As a result, small businesses are highly targeted by business credit card issuers providing them multiple offers, unique benefits, and applications. Small business credit cards give small business owners easy access to a changing line of credit and a set of credit limits for making purchases and withdrawing cash. Business credit cards are safe, convenient, and a great alternative to startup business loans. Applying for small business credit cards can be quickly done online or through banks. The criteria to qualify for a small business credit card depends on the business owner’s credit score and combined income (personal and business). Small business credit cards are convenient startup financing options. Choose a credit card with a 0% APR to save money on interest. You will be able to pay off your debts in full each month once you start generating revenue. According to a recent Federal Reserve Small Business Credit Survey, 53% of small businesses use credit cards to help fund their operations. The most significant advantage of a small business credit card is that you can access the funds immediately for short-term needs, potentially increasing your company's purchasing power. Venture capital Venture capital funding is a good choice of startup financing for small businesses. Venture capital is a type of equity and financing provided by investors to start-ups and small businesses with the potential for long-term growth. Venture capitalists are a type of investor who typically invests in a business against equity and holds a small portion of the company's ownership in exchange for capital. When investing, venture capitalists consider a few criteria, such as specific industry sectors, company stage, and geography. In addition, venture capitalists frequently seek entrepreneurs with a robust business model that has the potential for higher returns. Venture capital financing is difficult to obtain because, as a business owner, you must ensure that their focus matches your company's and its stage of development. Venture capital is a time-consuming process that looks for more considerable opportunities that are stable, have a strong team, and have good traction. However, because venture capitalists provide a lot of mentorship and ownership, this may not be the best option for you if mentorship and compromising do not fit in your books. Crowdfunding Crowdfunding is a new trending option of startup financing for small businesses and has increased over the past few years due to its low risk for business owners. Crowdfunding is a way to raise startup capital through small contributions or investments from many individuals via crowdfunding websites or crowdfunding platforms. To raise funds for startups through crowdfunding is not very difficult; it just requires setting up your company profile on the popular crowdfunding websites or crowdfunding platforms available. The profile needs to describe your company, its business, the products or services you deal in, and the amount of money you wish to raise. Interested people can contribute to your campaign in exchange for a reward for their contribution. In addition, setting up a crowdfunding campaign gives exposure to your young company seeking money for the startup. Crowdfunding for startups is accomplished by gathering donations from diverse people in exchange for a special reward. This incentive could take the form of free products, exclusive discounts, first access to new products, premium merchandise, the opportunity to join the team, or even becoming a significant capital investor. Some of the popular crowdfunding platforms in the US include Kickstarter, Indiegogo, RocketHub, Onevest, SeedInvest, and many more. Each crowdfunding platform charges a fee to list your campaign, a flat fee or a percentage of the funds raised. Because each crowdfunding platform is unique, make sure to read the fine print and fully understand your financial and legal obligations. Love money from family and friends Love money is nothing more than approaching your spouse, friends, and family for a loan to start your business. This is the most common type of financing option used by many companies, and it is one of the most essential sources of startup financing for small businesses at early-stage businesses. Regardless of whether you have a personal and healthy relationship with your family and friends, never approach them solely for financial assistance. The mature move is to present them with a well-prepared business plan, financials, and other necessary documents. Then, request their valuable feedback on your business plan, as well as their advice based on their business experience, if any. This approach demonstrates your regard for their knowledge and expertise. Despite all the benefits listed above, a business relationship with family or friends should not be taken lightly. Never assume that your close family or friends will lend you money. Do not take their financial assistance for granted. Angel Investors Angel investors are another excellent source of startup financing for small businesses. Unfortunately, many people believe that venture capital and angel investors are the same things, but this is not the case. Venture capital is the companies that invest in your business. In contrast, angel investors are wealthy individuals or successful retired business executives who invest directly in small firms and take an equity stake in the new venture. Angel investors are one of the few startup financing options sought out during the early stages of a new business's growth. Along with funds, angel investors offer advice based on their experience, technical and management knowledge, and network of contacts. As a result, Angel investors frequently have a low profile and invest less than venture capitalists. Personal loans for business A personal loan for business may be worth considering for entrepreneurs with excellent personal credit and a new business idea worth putting your own money on the line for. The benefit of this option is that there are no hidden fees; it is simply a personal loan. Personal loans have lower interest rates and easier repayment terms than business loans. This is an effective startup funding option because it can be used for almost any purpose. The most significant disadvantage of a personal loan is that you are the sole accountable if your business fails and is responsible for the repayment of the outstanding balance. However, this can be a viable option as a startup financing for small businesses if you need a relatively small startup capital. Small business administration (SBA) loans The SBA does not lend directly to small businesses; instead, it offers various loan guarantee programs to qualifying banks, non-profit lenders, and credit unions. For example, some banks offer low-interest loans to small businesses that are backed and guaranteed by the Small Business Administration (SBA). They target underserved companies and make loans to start-ups. The loan application process is time-consuming, with stringent requirements for qualified small businesses. As a result, the Small Business Administration (SBA) offers a few startup programs such as micro-loans and Community Advantage. Equipment financing Equipment financing is the top option if you need startup financing to purchase equipment and machinery. Because the equipment you will buy will serve as collateral for the loan, lending standards for equipment financing may be less stringent. However, if you do not return the money, the bank may seize your equipment to cover the cost of their lost money. Dealerships, banks, and online equipment finance providers all offer equipment financing. The main advantage of equipment financing is that you gain ownership of an asset, the payments for which are spread out over time, which is generally one to five years. Frequently Asked Question: What do you mean by startup funding? Startup funding is money raised to help a new business meet its initial costs. To raise startup capital, entrepreneurs must create a compelling business plan to sell their concept to potential investors. Where can I find startup financing? Angel financing, crowdfunding, small business credit cards, venture capital, equipment financing are few popular options to find startup financing. What are the types of funding? Crowdfunding, venture capital, angel financing, small business administration loan, small business loans are few types of startup financing to businesses. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What do you mean by startup funding?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Startup funding is money raised to help a new business meet its initial costs. To raise startup capital, entrepreneurs must create a compelling business plan to sell their concept to potential investors." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Where can I find startup financing?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Angel financing, crowdfunding, small business credit cards, venture capital, equipment financing are few popular options to find startup financing." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What are the types of funding?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer",

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Spotlight

Ethervision

Ethervision is a Chicago based enterprise mobile application development company specializing in iPhone, iPad and Android apps. We have developed over 185 mobile applications and have been featured by Apple 27 times both on the front page of the iTunes app store and in Apple Retail Stores all over the world.

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