17 Apr How to Work Smarter, Not Harder, as a Sole Proprietor
For U.S. entrepreneurs, business is booming. According to the Global Entrepreneurship and Development Index, the United States is actually the best place to start your own business. Many individuals cite freedom as the number one reason they started their own businesses—freedom to be their own boss, to work the hours they want, and manage operations how they see fit.
There’s no doubt that running your own business can be incredibly rewarding, both personally and financially. However, when you’re handling everything yourself, it can also be incredibly taxing. The majority of small business owners report working more than 50 hours per week, with 25% saying they work more than 60 hours a week.
So, how can you make the most of your time while still growing your business? Here are our top 4 tips to work smarter, not harder, as a sole proprietor.
Set up a business bank account
It might be tempting to use your personal account for business expenditures and income, but a business account is required when applying for a business loan, accepting credit cards, and more. A business account will also prevent confusion at tax time and ease the burden of record-keeping.
To open a business bank account, you’ll need to register a DBA (doing business as) name. This is the name your customers know your business by. For example, if your name is Jane Doe, but you start a graphic design firm called “Inspired Imagery,” that name would be the registered DBA name. Here’s how to get started with registration.
Once you’ve registered your DBA name, you can contact your bank to set up a business bank account.
Create a marketing strategy
As a sole proprietor, time is your most valuable commodity. Without the luxury of a marketing or advertising team, it’s vital that you have strategies in place so you’re not constantly working to generate new business.
Visibility is important here. Make sure your customers can find you online. That could mean setting up social media profiles or a website. Don’t get intimidated here—you don’t have to be on every network. Pick one or two that you’re most comfortable with and start connecting with prospective clients!
A web presence is important, yes, but as an entrepreneur, what’s the most beneficial marketing tool you have at your disposal? Stumped? It’s word-of-mouth. Customers will spread the word about the experience they had with your business, and it’s in your best interest to make sure what they’re saying is positive. Encourage satisfied clients to write reviews, include testimonials on your website, and treat every customer as if the future of your business depends on them. In a way, it does.
Know when to outsource
No one can truly run a business, even a small business, completely alone. There will always be tasks that aren’t your strong suit—graphic design, marketing—or menial but vital tasks that eat up valuable time—checking emails, responding to customer reviews.
Thankfully, in the modern age, it’s easy to find help as you need it. Sites like Fiverr, 99designs, and Upwork are all filled with talent eager to help your business. Find a designer to create a logo or business cards, hire a virtual assistant to answer calls and sort through emails, and access nearly any other assistance your business could possibly need, all just a few mouse clicks away.
Whether you’re just starting out, or already managing a successful business, the right point of sale (POS) system can help manage day-to-day operations, freeing you up for more important tasks.
Modern POS solutions can interface with various devices and programs, so you can easily keep track of every facet of your business. Increase sales with comprehensive reporting, rewards programs, and more. The best point of sale systems can also integrate with popular 3rd party apps, like Yelp, Insights, and MailChimp.
In addition, make sure your point of sale system can accept payment in the ways most convenient for your customers. If doing business with you is easy, your customers are more likely to tell all their friends about you.
Planning for success means making the most of your time. You’ll need to utilize your resources, or you may find you’re focused on keeping your head above water, rather than planning for the future.
If you’re ready to start working smarter and growing your business, BASYS would love to hear from you! We’ll listen carefully to your plans for the future, then recommend point of sale and payment processing solutions to help you meet your goals.
BASYS Processing as a business partner
Does your current processor understand the unique struggles of your industry? Do they provide great rates and personal customer service? Are they offering solutions to grow your business and being proactive about helping you reduce risk and increase your savings?
BASYS Processing features:
• A friendly, live voice will answer the phone when you call; no automated phone systems
• In-house PCI Compliance team to walk you through the process step-by-step, improving security and reducing costs
• Accept payments in person, over the phone or online
• Next-day funding options
About BASYS Processing
BASYS Processing provides credit card and debit card processing services, plus solutions that include terminals, virtual terminals, e-commerce, mobile, and point-of-sale, customized to fit any need. Banks, associations, and software partners depend on us to strengthen their reputations and relationships with their customers by providing remarkable service paired with ultimate flexibility and pricing. Merchants depend on us to make accepting credit cards and debit cards convenient, safe & affordable. BASYS was founded in 2002 on one philosophy: to take care of our merchants, partners, and employees so they never want to leave. We are dedicated to working one-on-one with our customers to design the perfect solution. BASYS is Personal Payment Processing.
Learn more at basyspro.com, and connect with us online at: