Business development during lockdown
All non-essential businesses have been forced to close throughout April and there seems to be no end to this in sight which effects many of our customers including beauty salons, spas, nail bars and non-essential dental and veterinary work.
If you are still unsure about the financial viabilities of your business, we have included some links and information at the bottom of the page.
For those of you who are not furloughed, now is an ideal time to work on your business rather than working in it. It’s the perfect opportunity to get up-to-date with those things that you tend to put to the back of the queue.
So what can you do to work on your business?
Here are some social distancing friendly tips on helping to improve your business whilst in lockdown:
- Accounts/bookkeeping – we all put this one off but it’s a great time to get up-to-date with all paperwork. When things do return, you may be so busy that you won’t have time to do it!
- Your business plan – when was the last time you looked at this? Is there anything you can improve? Any services or products that you can add?
- The structure of your business including processes – is there anything you can do to streamline the way you do things. Is there anything that can help to save you time? Improve customer experience?
- Professional development – there are lots of online courses that you can participate in to improve and maintain your skills. YouTube is also a great place to learn more.
- Marketing – this is more important than ever. You need to stay in the minds of your clients, so when things do return you are their first port of call. Ensure that your social media, website and brand are kept up-to-date which can include giveaways, voucher promotions, previous work photos, interviews, tips and much more.
And lastly, we hope you are all keeping safe. Take time out for yourself and try to exercise safely at least once per day. Remember, it’s great for mental stimulation as well as the physical benefits.
Help for businesses affected by Covid-19
The furlough scheme
If you are an employee or have staff you can choose to furlough members of your team that aren’t working. The scheme, which has been set up by the government, supports firms by temporarily helping to pay the wages of people that can’t do their jobs.
To find out more about furlough, click here to visit the Government’s website
At the time of writing this blog, the scheme for self-employed isn’t yet available but the eligibility information is. Read the criteria and eligibility
You can also apply for Universal Credit if you are self employed.
Have you got business premises?
You can apply for a Small Business Grant from your local Council. More information on the Government website
There are many different types of loans available to businesses. It is worth speaking to your bank and accountant for advice as to whether this option is suitable.
You may also wish to consider 100% state backed loans for small firms