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Business

COVID-19 Will Change Business Forever

The COVID-19 Pandemic has forced businesses to change rapidly, across the world. Business owners have been scrambling to stabilise operations, finding effective ways to communicate with customers and protect the workforce. The harsh reality of the situation is that businesses need to plan for the present time of dealing with the virus. Therefore, companies will need to consider the continuing after-effects it will have in the world of business.

In the coming months, we are going to consumer spending sink, as unemployment rises and consumer spending shrinks. Therefore, this will see many businesses disproportionately affected over the coming years and months. Consumers are likely to focus their spending on Groceries and Digital Entertainment services, rather than more luxury purchases of travel and prestigious products. There will be many industries who struggle, including restaurants, sports, real estate and automotive. The adoption of automation and AI technology will also increase at a m0ore rapid pace in our society.

Effect of COVID-10 on business

Ensuring you have an online presence

Your business must have an excellent online presence. Even more of us (young and old) will be using the internet more frequently than usual. Online shopping and browsing for services have been growing trend throughout recent years; however, this pandemic will make the adoption even quicker. Those who have an excellent online presence will come out of the COVID-19 pandemic much more robust than those who dont. A Pay Monthly Website will help you achieve that goal.

Online Business during COVID-19

 

Transform the way we work

For years long commutes, travelling aboard for an hour-long meeting and working in large offices has been the norm. However, travelling to the office and for going to meetings is time-consuming on a personal level. Therefore, it takes more of your time from seeing your friends and family.

The pandemic has shown companies that you dont need to work this way. Even though virtual working is required often throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for safety reasons, this will most probably continue even on a part-time basis after the pandemic. When staff work from home, it can provide the company with many benefits. The company could require less office space, which would assist them in driving down costs. Staff can also achieve a better work/life balance, as the long daily commute could be a thing of the past. There could also be many environmental benefits, with fewer people travelling to their workplace or for meetings.

Improving operational supply chains

Organisations are adopting an agile working model to speed up decision making and drive a digital transformation. Companies are finding this as a ‘decentralisation’ which is driving benefits to companies through improved resilience and flexibility in workplaces.

Over the years, some businesses have relied on too few suppliers or one geography. During COVID-19, companies have been digitalising their supply chains, to improve process speed and transparency. They have also used this as a way of reducing their dependency on individual suppliers.

Conclusion 

Change is always difficult for business, especially when it is needed so quickly. However, if you ensure your business adapts quickly to change, you can be assured this will pay you dividends in the future. We highly recommend that you start planning for the new normal now, as its effect will be long-term and not just short-term.

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Finance

How to Get Help With Your Auto Loan During COVID-19

Auto Loan During Covid-19It seems like just a few weeks ago the world was a very different place. In fact, COVID-19 has been circulating the world now for nearly 10 months. There is little doubt many people’s lives have changed dramatically. Despite efforts by the government the unemployment rate is rising slowly.

But, even those lucky enough to still have jobs may have found their hours and earnings have been reduced.

That means if you have an auto loan or any other type of finance, you’ll be worrying about how to afford the loan repayment during the current pandemic.

Fortunately, there are things that can be done to help!

Check Your Finances

The first thing you should do is to check your finances and eliminate unnecessary expenditures. This may mean cutting the cable bill or looking for cheap car insurance. Every saving can help you to have more funds available for your auto loan.

Do a new budget and you may be surprised, you may be better off than you think.

Contact Your Lender

Whether you’ve got a personal loan or specific car finance, the next thing you need to do is contact your lender and tell them you’re having financial difficulties due to COVID-19.

Your lender may be much more sympathetic than you think. In fact, many auto loan providers are extending the payment periods, effectively reducing monthly payments but extending the term of the loan.

Others are freezing interest, waiving overdue fees, or creating personalized flexible payment arrangements. In some cases, if you’re in the right financial position, they will accept a smaller one-off amount to settle the loan, making the vehicle yours and reducing the stress of having to find the payment every month.

COVID Scheme

Many lenders are signed up to the COVID-19 deferral scheme. This means your payments will be deferred until you can afford them again. It allows you to keep the vehicle without damaging your credit and settle the balance in the future.

Sell The Car

It’s not necessarily a great market to sell a vehicle. But, if you have a personal auto loan that is not secured on the vehicle you will be within your rights to sell the car. You can then use the proceeds to settle your outstanding loan and hopefully purchase a cheap car, eliminating the issue for now.

It is important you verify that you are legally allowed to sell the car first!

The Takeaway

It’s impossible to say what your auto loan provider will do as everyone’s situation is different. However, most lenders are being very supportive during this difficult time and will work with you to find a suitable solution.

In short, your first step needs to be establishing your finances to confirm what you have available. Then, talk to your auto loan provider and prepare to be surprised.

Of course, loan deferrals and reduced payments still mean you have to pay the full amount of the loan. You may even need to pay more interest. It’s important to consider this when making your final decision regarding the best route for you.

Categories
Marketing

4 Digital Marketing Strategies For Small Businesses

Digital marketing encompasses a broad range of digital, innovative solutions to deliver your message to your intended audience. These tactics involve the utilization of digital media, such as social media networks, digital display, and digital devices, in sales and marketing.

You can become a successful entrepreneur by knowing the best marketing strategies and how to implement them so you can attain your business goals. Below are some examples of digital marketing strategies that can help your business.

digital marketing strategies

1. SEO Marketing

Digital marketing, including SEO marketing, is an effective approach to growing your customer base. It uses the power of the online world to increase brand awareness and drive traffic to your website. Whether you have a startup online business or any type of small business, don’t miss the benefits of focusing on your SEO efforts. Digital marketing experts, such as Caffeine Marketing Cardiff, can help you in this regard.

Check out the following reasons why you should include SEO in your digital marketing:

  • Allows you to create valuable web content that can easily be seen by your visitors.
  • Maximizes your website creation efforts by ensuring that it reaches your target audience’s screens.
  • Helps you connect with more potential customers and convert them into actively engaged, paying customers.

2. Video Marketing

According to a 2016 report, 64 percent of digital marketers considered video marketing as a major aspect of business marketing strategy, and video traffic was projected to increase to 80 percent by 2019. Truly enough, when coronavirus was discovered in 2019, the demand for video marketing has been drastically increasing until now.

Regardless if you have a small budget to produce your own custom videos for your business or hire a third-party contractor, it’s smart to invest in video marketing. Videos can be uploaded on your website and shared on your social media networks, as well as used as your sales and marketing presentation.

best marketing strategies

3. Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing is a crucial aspect of any business, helping it thrive because of linkages, connections, and partnerships. Just imagine your business being referred to different businesses and customers because of effective digital marketing exposure. Aside from Facebook, you can utilize rising platforms, like Pinterest, as brand portals, which are also useful for sales and marketing strategies.

Also, LinkedIn is one of the most effective and reliable corporate social networks. It has become the best foundation for professional service businesses’ digital marketing efforts, as well as of business-to-business or B2B businesses. Unlike portfolio sites that favor creative portfolios in some degree, LinkedIn allows business owners from any industry to post company profile and work history. It’s the best place for employees and employers to meet, which is a great opportunity for any business.

4. Graphic Design For Content Marketing And Other Marketing Tools

Well-written content, coupled with a strong visual design, positively impacts how your customers interact with your business. Clearly communicated, functional, and professional design will bring more customers to your business. Also, it will help you create a reputable brand, leading to direct referral and brand loyalty.

A successful retail business has a strong visual language. It’s attained through graphic design, which is essential for businesses to thrive despite the tight competition. Graphic design is considered an indispensable tool that can accurately and beautifully communicate your message.

Hiring a professional graphic design team is a more cost-effective solution than implementing critical graphic design elements on your own.

Here are some graphic design strategies for digital marketing:

  • Digital graphics have display screens that you can use to change images, product videos, and your business logo. Send a strong message, but remember to avoid overwhelming people by having a lot of things going on in the screen.
  • Integrating QR codes with your printed graphics, like flyers and pamphlets, is a good idea. QR codes are barcode-style images that visitors can use and scan using their smartphones.
  • Avoid using a lot of photographs or static images around your booth. Spark the interest of interested buyers by placing the detailed pictures on your product catalog or flyers. It’s good to add specific measurements or dimensions on your flyers. Also, list the features and benefits to educate shoppers and promote smart shopping.
  • Limit using bright colors to avoid confusion and the “busy” feel.
  • Booth design graphics should have 40 percent of empty or blank space so as not to clutter your booth.

Conclusion

Small businesses can greatly benefit from digital marketing strategies, such as social media marketing and video marketing. Also, prioritizing your SEO can help your website rank because it can increase your brand awareness and audience reach. Aside from these digital marketing strategies, good graphic design can make your products and services stand out for your business to thrive and remain competitive.

Categories
Management

Managing a Startup During the Covid-19 Pandemic

Managing a startup is difficult at the best of times, but the coronavirus pandemic has turned the world upside down in 2020 and made life very difficult for businesses of all sizes and in all industries. Startups are having to adapt to survive and it will require careful management and planning, entrepreneurial spirit and support in order to come out the other side.

Here are a few key survival points for startups during the coronavirus pandemic.

managing a startup
Image by pexels

Remote Working

One of the biggest changes that has occurred as a result of the pandemic and lockdown is that millions of people are now working from home. This can bring benefits to both the employer and employee, so you may want to think about continuing with this in the future too. The key to succeeding with remote working is learning how to manage employees remotely and to make sure that you have the best tools available.

Seek Government-Support

The Government has rolled out various support schemes which will be critical to startup survival so this should be looking into immediately if you have not already. This includes a furlough scheme that will help you to keep staff on as well as an interruption loan scheme to provide financial support to small businesses.

Funding

Following this, business funding is changing as a result of the pandemic with newer finance models which could help you to manage during this difficult period. This includes loans such as a business cash advance, which involves making repayments via an agreed percentage of future card transactions as opposed to a fixed amount each month. This is helpful in times like this where sales will drop and fluctuate heavily.

Communication & Transparency

These are clearly troubling times for everyone, so it is important as a business leader that you are communicating and being as transparent as possible with everyone related to the startup, including staff, customers and suppliers. You need to keep them informed on developments relating to the startup, provide reassurances where possible and give support.

Reduce Costs

In times like this, one of the first steps that you need to take is to free up cash where possible by reducing costs which could help you to survive throughout a difficult period. Remote working will already be helping with this, but you could also reduce supply expenses, eliminate unnecessary costs, lower expenditures and various other strategies.

Adapt Business Plans

Of course, the business plan will now need adapting in light of these unforeseen circumstances. It is still hard to predict what the near future looks like, so you need to consider different eventualities and create strategies for the immediate, the next few weeks, the next few months and the next 1-3 years. You should also keep a close eye on the latest news and advice from experts so that you can make the right decisions at the right time.

It is a difficult time for startups in all industries right now, but the above advice will hopefully help you to manage and adapt to the current situation as well as built for the future when things start to return to normal and you will be keen to make up for lost time.

Categories
Business

Four Disruptive Startups That Aim to Change Their Sector for the Better

Four Disruptive Startups That Aim to Change Their Sector for the Better

 

Such is the ubiquity of the word ‘startup’ that nine out of ten startups are likely to be described as “disruptive”, whether they truly are or not. Disruptive businesses are those that aim to change the status quo in a sector, ruffle a few feathers and bring about a new norm. Whether you like the term or not, disruptive businesses startups are the drivers of change.

Over the years, there have been some famous examples of disruptive businesses. Netflix has completely revolutionised the way people consume broadcast media, killing off video and DVD rental stores and prompting people to cancel their TV subscriptions. Skype is another well-known disruptor, allowing those who used to rely on expensive international calls to chat for free.

The thriving startup scene is a hotbed of disruptive businesses. They contribute £196 billion annually to the UK economy alone. In this article, we’re going to look at four ethical startups that are disrupting their sectors and changing them for the better. Some Disruptive Startups are discussed below.

1. Dropless

One of the latest startups business ideas to emerge from London is Dropless, the mobile car wash service that saves over 150 litres of water per wash, reduces harmful runoff and revolutionises the way we wash our cars.

The aim of the business is not just to reduce the environmental impact of vehicle washing; it also wants to do something about the human cost. Car wash slavery is rife in the UK, with estimates suggesting that as many as 24,000 car wash workers are being exploited or working as modern slaves.

Dropless is taking steps to ensure that its workers receive extensive training, have access to suitable clothing and receive fair pay, bringing the commercial car washing sector firmly into the 21st century.

2. WeFarm

London-based WeFarm is an example of a disruptive startup in the agriculture sector, showing that absolutely no industry is safe from disruption. Described as ’agtech’, short for agriculture technology. WeFarm is building a network that connects small-scale farmers. And allows them to easily access quality products. And services and non-agricultural items from trusted brands.

Smallholder farmers lose a lot of time and money due to faulty and fake agricultural products. WeFarm solves this problem by building a network of trust that those farmers can use to buy products and ask for recommendations.

3. Elvie

One area that’s seeing significant disruption in the world of women’s health. Elvie, another London startup, recently rais the large fintech investment ever for its range of products that designers to improve women’s lives.
As CEO Tania Boler explains, “Whether it’s menstruation, pregnancy or menopause, women’s bodies have been shrouded in taboo for centuries. We know so many issues of womanhood can improve by technology. And there is so much potential in this space.”
The startup’s products to date include a silent breast pump and a pelvic floor trainer. However, with the £32 million series B funding Elvie recently raised. We can look forward to seeing many more products in the future.

4. Bulb

In just three years, the green energy supplier Bulb has stolen more than 750,000 customers from established firms such as British Gas and E.ON, as it singlehandedly disrupts the UK’s £54bn energy market.

With a commitment to low prices, good customer service and 100% renewable energy. The bulb is not reinventing the wheel. But it gives customers a fresh alternative in the market. That is known for treating its customers poorly.

The fact that Bulb can compete with such wealthy and establish competition is testament to just how attractive renewable energy is to many customers. But also to how complacent the so-called big six energy suppliers have been.

Four Disruptive Startups That Aim to Change Their Sector for the Better

 

True Disruption is a Gamble

These startup business ideas might give you a distorted view of how successful disruptive businesses really are. The truth is that doing things differently is risky. Even with a good idea in place. There’s no guarantee that the new technology or way of doing things will take hold. However, as these five startups have shown. The rewards are well worth the risk – you just have to hope that you’re one of the lucky ones!
Here are a few tips to help you promote your startup on a budget.

Categories
Finance

Singapore Budget 2020 Payout – What You Need To Know

The Singapore Budget 2020 Payout was delivered by Heng Swee Keat. The country’s Finance Minister, at 3 pm on February 18th. And while it is some ways similar to the previous budget of 2019, there are some key differences that you need to be on the lookout for, especially if they apply to you in these times of global crisis and following uncertainty. The global pandemic regarding the COVID-19 virus is but one of the issues surrounding this budget because this is also under the sign of Singapore’s weakest economic growth from the past 12 years. However, keeping this and more in mind, the budget seems to address these particular challenges while at the same time keeping an eye out for long-term planning and continuous stability.

Singapore Budget 2020 Payout – What You Need To Know

This being said, it is noticeable that the government has prioritized the welfare of its citizens by increasing the Care and Support Package. Compared to previous years, the payout you can expect is considerably larger, which is good news for the people who will unfortunately truly need these extra finances to maintain a decent lifestyle. It is essential to know that this Care and support package comes on top of the money already given to Self-Help Groups, and the Community Development Councils, as announced by https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/singapore-budget-2020-all-adult-singaporeans-to-get-one-off-cash-payout-ranging-from-100.

Different categories of Singapore budget 2020 payout

Read through and find out if you are eligible and what you can expect from this year’s budget, and when.

1. Care and Support

This involves a one-off cash payout to be made for all Singaporeans above 21 years of age.

These will also be made towards families with children and elderly citizens.

The amount will vary depending on income and is based on the following scheme:

  • $300 – those who earn between $0-$28.000
  • $200 – those who earn between $28.001-$100.000
  • $100 – those who earn $100.001 and above or those who have more than 1 property
  • +$100 – those who are parents

If you are eligible, you will be notified in August of 2020 and should expect to receive the money between the end of August and the month of September.

2. GTS Voucher – U Save

This aid is usually given to lower-to-middle income households to offset their utilities and other expenses. This year’s budget implies receiving double the usual amount, and simultaneously, families with five or more members are going to receive and extra U-Save rebate.
The rates will fluctuate between $480 and $1.000 depending on the household’s criteria. The payout is in four quarters (April, July, October, and January 2021). While the rebate will be directly credited in their utility account.

3. PAssion Card Top-Up

For those citizens aged 50years and above, the 2020 budget brings an additional $100 top-up on their PAssion card. Those aged 50-59 who do not have such a card, can apply for a complimentary one either online or through their nearest Community Centre from March 1st, 2020.
The amount will be available to those eligible from May 2020 onwards.

4. Grocery Voucher

Singaporeans who are 21 years of age and above, and live in a 1 or 2 room apartment (without owning an additional property). Will be eligible for Grocery Vouchers. These imply the sum of $100 for the year 2020 and 2021, and these can be spent in participating supermarkets. As of now. There is still no date for when these amounts will roll out, but they will be announced shortly.

5. Workfare Special Payment

The WSP dedicate to those lower-wage workers whose earnings fall in the bottom 20% of salaries; this means that all those citizens that were in the Workers Income Supplement for the year 2019. Will be eligible for WSP in the current year if they are 35years-old and above.
The amounts given out in cash with a minimum of $100 and a maximum of $720. These rates calculated on the bases of both age and income. The money can expect as of November 2020.

6. Service and Conservancy Charges Rebate

This fund aim at covering some of the costs associated with maintaining and upgrading estates. And as such, it varies across town councils. However, households in which a member owns a private property or has rented out. The entire apartment is not eligible for such rebates.