While the recession is over, the business climate remains stormy, and small companies which survived may still be struggling. From Donald Todrin on Entrepreneur.com, here are some tips for SMBs struggling to make the bottom line.
Stop Being a Bank for Your Customers
Cash flow is important. Establish short-term or no-term payment rules for customers. Otherwise, you're loaning customers money, interest-free for 30, 60 or 75 days.
Have a consistent collection strategy and process with an employee dedicated to it. Base your policies on the principle of clients keeping their word.
Prioritize Your Paying
Pay your most important vendors first, not the ones that complain the most.
Get Rid of Inventory
Businesses often tie up too much cash in inventory. Missing the occasional sale due to a lack of inventory is preferable to missing a rent payment due to lack of cash.
Adding value to your products and services will allow you to mark up prices and be more profitable. Define a niche and exploit it.
Make the Web a Money-Generator
Dedicate time to create an online community of customers and potential customers using Facebook, Twitter, video, blogging and other social networks.
Think Outside Your History
If the business isn't performing well, you need to ignore what you were and reconsider what you want to be. Experiment with changing things and see what works. Reinvent and focus on profitability, not gross revenues.
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