With the holiday season upon us, it’s wise to set aside some time to tie up loose ends so you can start the new year fresh, organized, and ready to roll.
As you prioritize “must-do’s” and plan your well-earned time off, consider adding these end-of-year business activities to your list.
The holidays are a time of shared goodwill—a natural time to reach out to your customers to check in on how they’re doing, how well your products or services are working for them, and to show your appreciation for their ongoing patronage. Many of you have already done this, but some small businesses send their clients a holiday card or email with a new year’s special offer; others make sure each of their customers receives a personal phone call. Whatever you decide, remember it’s not how you do it or how much you spend—it’s the personal touch your clients will remember.
Ideally, your business always keeps up to date with bookkeeping—but if you’re still using an outdated spreadsheet system, now is a great time to consider upgrading to cloud based accounting for the new year. There are many cost-effective solutions out there designed for small business owners that will help you save time and money, allowing you to make better decisions based on accurate, real time figures. We can strongly recommend Xero – a superb finance solution that will revolutionise how your business works. In the meantime, organize any receipts that need to be entered into your financial database, make sure your invoicing is up to date, and be sure you haven’t fallen behind with your AR or AP.
Once you know your numbers, you may want to give some thought to raising your rates in the new year. Take an honest look at your expenses, annual profits, as well as your personal and business financial goals. It’s generally recommended that freelancers increase rates on an annual basis as the value you bring to your work increases with experience. But really, every small business should consider doing the same. Costs go up and it’s reasonable for your pricing to reflect your expenses. Increasing rates at the beginning of a new year will make sense to your clients—and they’ll appreciate getting the heads up now so they aren’t surprised when new pricing goes into effect.
Touching base with us is a smart move to start the new year for your small business. That way, we can go over your goals, do some business planning, looking at how much capital you may need to meet your goals, and whether a change to your business structure would be worthwhile. We can also offer helpful tax planning advice; for instance, we can provide an estimate of your tax payments for the current year, and point out tax-saving opportunities.
If you’re ready to plan the year ahead, please contact us for assistance with goal-setting. We know exactly how to prepare you for another successful year in business.
With these planning tips in mind, you can take action and enjoy a great start to the year ahead. Cheers!