For many buyers, the prospect of buying a business can become daunting when thinking of the handover process. There’s a lot to learn, a great deal of transition and simply not enough time in the day (or at least it seems!). The bottom line is, we live in a modern world fuelled by technology, so whether you’re hoping to sell or not, introducing automation processes within your business could save you both time and money – and who doesn’t want more of those!?
For those who prefer an ‘old-school’ approach to business, where everything is done manually, automating processes and systems can seem a little disconnected and impersonal. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are some ways you can lighten the load in the day-to-day running of your business, and in the same breath appeal more attractive to potential buyers who are no longer daunted at the possibility of jumping on board. Knowing that all the procedures are automated and recorded for when the seller has completed the hand over period will be a big plus.
- Accounting software – If you find yourself without a dedicated accounts person, sending invoices can be a time-consuming task. Nowadays there are several, reputable products available (such as MYOB and XERO) which can streamline these processes for you. As soon as a payment is received, an invoice is sent – and you can download the report at the end of the week! And it doesn’t stop there, some software can even email outstanding accounts with reminders, all automatically! Sounds like a dream you’d prefer to make a reality, right?
- Social media – Although Instagram scheduling is not a mainstream process just yet, third party scheduling tools are already available! The best part, you can you’re your Instagram account to your Facebook page, which means each post shared to Instagram automatically appears on Facebook. Two tasks for the price of one! Just have a Facebook page? Lucky for you, you can schedule posts well in advance on this platform, meaning you can spend a few hours creating engaging content for your followers, schedule it all in for the next couple of months and hey presto! Set and forget!
- Email marketing – Want to send an email to your entire contact list but don’t want to address them all together with a combined “Good afternoon all”? Personalisation is key, and when it comes to email marketing, there are plenty of platforms that allow you to do this with the bonus of beautiful designs! Depending on the size of your client list, some (such as Mailchimp) operate as a free service! Schedule your monthly newsletters for a particular date and time and you can operate as usual without having to manually send a single one!
- SMS automation – If your customers have ‘opted in’ (ticked ‘YES’ for SMS communications on your contact form), then you can contact them on their mobile. Companies such as Brandbot (another email marketing platform) offer an SMS service, which allows you to schedule in SMS’ to particular clients if they perform particular tasks (i.e. if they make a purchase, or if they haven’t visited in 6 months). It’s important to be aware of your customer’s privacy when it comes to SMS’, and not overdo it. Less is more – so we suggest only contacting them for important things such as sales confirmations or special offers.
- Sales funnels – If you run a sales business and have a team operating autonomously under your brand, then using a CRM (customer relationship management) service such as ‘Salesforce’ could be beneficial. Your team can input important client data, such as the enquiry date and details and can follow the funnel process to ensure that customer is managed correctly and efficiently.
We hope this blog helps you on your way if you’re hoping to streamline some or all of your business processes. Whether it’s in preparation for sale, or to simply capitalise on your time, automation can be a handy tool for all business owners. If you are hoping to sell your business in 2020, contact Core Business Brokers on (02) 9413 2977, or email Roy on [email protected]. We’d be happy to discuss your options and any improvements we believe you can make to make your business the most successful it can be.