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10 Things That Kill Trust In Your Business

Posted by on Monday, April 4th, 2022 in Uncategorized

10 things you’re doing wrong, that kill trust in your business. Getting started in business is easy, but being trusted as a business so that we will buy from you is harder. You need to build trust in you and your businesses brand. There’s lots of ways you can enhance the trustworthiness of your brand […]

10 things you’re doing wrong, that kill trust in your business.

Getting started in business is easy, but being trusted as a business so that we will buy from you is harder. You need to build trust in you and your businesses brand.

There’s lots of ways you can enhance the trustworthiness of your brand through your marketing processes, but there some simple fundamentals you can do to make sure that your potential customers and referral partners consider you a business with integrity.

Failing to cover these basics can very quickly undermine your chance of winning business, and can’t be overcome by any slick sales and marketing messages you put out to the universe.

1. Unprofessional Email Addresses

The very first red flag, which damages trust in your business, for any potential customer or someone who you want to do business with, is seeing that a supposedly established business is still using an unprofessional email address. Using emails like john@hotmail.com or Jill.smith@gmail.com, fred@optusnet.com.au etc., instead of a proper ‘companyname.com’ email undermines your credibility.

Buying a domain name for your business isn’t expensive and setting up a proper business email address for that domain is very easy to do and or you can get help from an IT support service. Using a ‘dodgy’ email address that is not a business name tells potential customers and business partners that your either lazy or may not be stable as a business.

2. No Registered Business Name and or ABN

Even if you are a sole trader you should still register your business properly by getting an ABN. This tells potential customers that you are a proper legal business entity.

You can still use your own name as the register business name, if that’s the type of service you provide (Eg Joe Bloggs Consulting). But without an ABN it’s clear that you have not done the basics of setting up a professional business for the purposes of trading, paying for services, paying tax, and governments put out warnings regularly about untrustworthy operators and scams from people who are not registered properly.

3. Licenses and certifications

If you are in an industry where you are required to be licensed to deliver specific type of work, then you need to make sure that you have and display those licenses prominently.

If I have to search for it on a government site, on your website, the invoice or your quote then I’m going to question whether you actually have the license and can be trusted to do the work properly.

Further if you’re not licensed to do certain work and you suggest to your customer that: a “way to get around this is to break contracts into smaller chunks to get away with not having a license or certain work done that you’re not qualified for”, you immediately tell your customer that you’re willing to work outside of the rules, not just for them but for everything you do. Throwing out your integrity to win a deal creates distrust in you and your business.

4. Insurances

Every business needs some form of insurance it might be public liability, or may be professional indemnity. If you’re making a product, it could require product liability. It’s important to know what insurances your type of business needs to carry to give assurance to its customers that you are able to cover yourself if things go wrong.

5. Every business needs a website.

Your website doesn’t have to be 10 pages and cost thousands of dollars. A one page good looking site with straightforward information that describes what your business is, what it does, who is behind it, and how a customer can contact you is enough.

We are operating in the 21st-century if you don’t have a website, even a one page website/ landing page, then I can’t find you and that means you don’t really exist. Most most consumers/clients won’t trust a business that they can’t find quickly on the Internet. The very first thing anyone will do after first meeting you is Google you and your business.

A Social Media account doesn’t replace a website. Even if most of your trading and information is shared through your social media accounts.

6. Active social media accounts

We would encourage you to definitely have at least a Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn account, so that people can see what your business is, and that it’s actively trading.

Recent photos and posts tell people that you are an active business. Buyers are always going to choose a business that’s active and has recent testimonials, reviews, and posts as a more trustworthy business over a service that hasn’t updated any of its social accounts for two years.

7. Detailed Quotes

A one line vague quotation with no company information, terms and conditions or details about what is included in the service, is a big warning sign for anyone who’s intending to spend money with you.

If you’ve taken the time to sell to a client, and explain all the things which they’re going get included as a part of your sales pitch, don’t then present them with a quote that’s just a single line without a list any of those inclusions. It’s going to make them nervous and undermine the trust they have that all of the scope of what you discussed is actually going to be included in the price you are offering them.

8. Contracts

A trusted and professional business has a contract for its services. This doesn’t have to be a 40 page document. It could be literally one page that explains the terms and conditions, what happens if there’s a dispute, and any other really important information about how you work with the client. Your contract should also provide information on any expectations you have of each other (like confidentiality).

It doesn’t cost a lot to get a basic set of terms and additions or contract drafted by a commercial lawyer, but it does cost a lot if you lose a client because you don’t have a contract ready to go, or end up in a dispute because you didn’t have one.

9. Invoicing

Customers need to know what they’re going to be charged for. They need enough information on that invoice so that it’s able to be used for tax purposes by them. And they also need to know when they need to pay it by and how to go about paying you.

Providing a simple and professional invoice to your customers at the time of purchase is essential. If they have to chase you to be invoiced, to find out how to pay, the due date, or to get a tax receipt for payment then your customer experience will be very low.

And that means trust in your ability to manage your own business processes will be damaged, and getting new business from existing customers will be unlikely.

10. Bad Networking Practices

Nobody enjoys being sold to when they we meet someone in a networking environment. Raining business cards on everyone you meet is a turn off. As is emailing and pestering them immediately after your first meeting, when you know nothing about them and they know nothing about you. It’s a big no no and destroys trust immediately.

Networking is about relationship building. Earning the right to offer your services over time. Networking is most effective when the focus is on the genuine development of trust and a real relationship, which allows you to understand the other persons interests and their needs.

Make it priority to get these simple things right, and build the foundations of a trusted business.

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Are You Building A Business Or Building A Sandcastle?

Posted by on Tuesday, March 17th, 2020 in Uncategorized

When it comes to your business; Are You Building A Business Or Building A Sandcastle? Many of us enjoyed going to the beach as children and sitting by the shore building sandcastles. At some point though, no matter how tall or well garrisoned the sandcastle was, the tide would come in and swallow up all […]

When it comes to your business; Are You Building A Business Or Building A Sandcastle?

Many of us enjoyed going to the beach as children and sitting by the shore building sandcastles. At some point though, no matter how tall or well garrisoned the sandcastle was, the tide would come in and swallow up all our days efforts.

Most business owners start out in their business with an idea or design and then start trading on the back of that idea.

We shovel together the basics, like our cool trading name. We give ourselves a title “CEO”. Get an ABN and put together a Do It Yourself website and the all important business card.

Then we start marketing ourselves to friends and family, the local neighbourhood, and maybe if we’re really adventurous we go along to a networking group.

We might use a few stones of wisdom from friends and pieces of driftwood advice from Google. We might even feel confident enough to add a turret or two of licensed software or programs. The shiny ones that promise to increase our business through providing leads and value that differentiates us from those who haven’t bought into the franchise program.

Then we sit back, proud of our work and nervously hope that other people will walk by and admire our creation and want to buy from us.

A calm sea does not make a skilled sailor – African Proverb

But the conditions change, competing sandcastles are erected beside us and as the tide turns and begins to creep in, we feel the pressure. What can we do to stop the challenges and storms from breaching our walls. We haven’t built anything that is truly stable and concrete, to stop erosion of our cash and prevent the walls collapsing.

Maybe you should get job and hope that you can do both effectively and prop up the business with extra cash. Then hopefully that when we come back to the business full time the tide has not swept it all completely away.

There’s a better way. Build your business on a solid foundation of good planning.

A failure to plan, is a plan to fail – Benjamin Franklin

Ideally before you rush off and register that business name, you’ll take some time and advice to ensure you’re Building A Business and planning it out properly.

10 Tips for getting started Building Your Business the right way.

  • Firstly you need to research and understand your market – Too many business owners start businesses because they blindly believe that there is a gap and no one else has discovered it, except them. But they’ve done only cursory searches at best before coming to this conclusion. You can’t rush this process, thorough research is required. In particular when it comes to developing new software and App’s. There’s a lot money and time involved in starting a new business, and succeeding. Making the mistake of investing in reinventing and competing with something that already exists is a certain road to failure.

 

  • Decide on your Niche – Don’t be afraid to be narrow in your focus instead of casting a wide net. Your customers need to be able to connect with you and your service/product – if you’re too broad you connect with no one.

 

  • Plan out your service offerings, packages and customers for each segment of your business. Do your home work on what similar types of services/ products charge.

 

  • Get a good virtual team of advisers around you – As a Business Owner, having a good Business Consultant on your side will challenge you and your business plans to ensure that you’re thinking like a business owner who needs to create a business they love, and is profitable.

 

  • Learn to be great with Money – Finding a good Bookkeeper, Accountant and Financial Adviser is essential. Their advice will help you remain compliant with the law and well informed about how to invest the money you earn, optimise your tax position, as well as challenge you on your business plans.

‘change’ is not a destination, just as ‘hope’ is not a strategy – Rudy Guiliani

  • Harness and manage your distractions – If you run your own business, or you’re thinking of starting up new business, a common problem you will face is having too many ideas and a lack of focus on developing those ideas into detailed business models that create profits.

 

  • Plan to avoid the common mistakes – Plan your cash flow. Keep a tight rein on your invoicing process and debtors. Set 7 day payment terms or COD if you can. If you’re consultation business that is subject to frequent customer no-shows get them to pay when they book in.

 

  • Identify the business roles needed to run the business now and when you’ll need extra help.

 

  • Work out what your time is worth to you, and define your hourly rate, then guard your time carefully if you don’t value it no one else will.

 

  • Trim your Sails – expect problems and market downturns, and be ready to make changes and review your plans quickly. Learn Become comfortable being uncomfortable.

Remember you’re Building A Business not Building A Sandcastle – You’re building something that you hope will last longer than a day at the beach. That means taking business planning seriously right from the start.

Need help bringing your business to life or growing your small business? – Contact Us to talk about how we can help your.

 

Photo by Jeremy McKnight on Unsplash

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