New Year, New Business You

Posted on by Jo Shaw

Estimated read time: 5 mins

Three top tips to help you achieve business success in 2019

After the busy festive period, the start of a new year can feel like an opportunity for a fresh start – a chance to take stock and set out personal and professional goals for the next twelve months.

However, no matter how good our intentions might be, New Year’s resolutions are often broken and forgotten if we feel daunted by the scale of our goals and forget the simple stuff.

This New Year, make sure your business resolutions aren’t cast aside come February by taking a look at our three simple tips for getting the basics right, and achieving business success in 2019.

Refresh your approach to business credit scores

Whether your goals for the year include expansion, securing new contracts or increasing cash flow, getting to grips with business credit scores can be the key to unlocking your business goals in 2019.

If you feel like your understanding of business credit scores could use some improvement, you’re not alone: in a recent Experian survey, 37% of small business owners surveyed[1] admitted that they didn’t know or weren’t sure of their own business credit score.

However, as your business credit score is what creditors see when deciding whether or not to offer you the credit that may be essential for your growth, it certainly pays to be clued up.

Tools such as Experian’s My Business Profile allow you to see how your business’ financial health appears to other businesses, banks and creditors, so you can put plans in place to improve it if need be.

A good credit score can be the foundations upon which a lot of your goals for the next year are built.

Keep an eye on your customers’ finances

A common goal for most businesses is to attract new business, and if you’re making it one of your resolutions for 2019, it’s essential that you don’t rely on good faith alone to ensure you’ll be paid on time by these new customers. A healthy cash flow can give you the freedom to spend the time and money where it’s needed to help grow your business.

By using Experian Business Express, you can access the full picture of any business’ financial position, including their credit history and payment performance, so you can make a well-informed decision about whether to go into business with them.

Also, don’t forget that even if your customers have been with your business for a long time, they might not let you know about financial issues until it’s too late, leaving you to deal with the consequences of late payments, such as an unexpected gap in cash flow.

Rather than being a one-off credit check, Experian Business Express helps to ensure lasting peace of mind by monitoring the credit situation of businesses that you work with, and alerts you if there are any changes in your customers’ financial health.

Plan ahead to ensure success

When you’re a small business owner, the day-to-day demands of running a business can often take priority over long term planning.

However, it pays to be prepared, so make sure you’re aware of important dates and deadlines in the business calendar, such as filing reports to Companies House on time. Although this might not seem like a top priority, failing to do so on time can negatively impact your business credit score.

Also, ensure that if your business has any outstanding invoices to pay, you have plans in place to meet these on time, so it doesn’t impact negatively on your payment performance, and therefore limits your ability to access credit when you need it. You should also set clear payment deadlines for your customers too, or request to be paid in instalments, to help safeguard against disruptions to cash flow.

Whatever your business resolutions this New Year, tools from Experian can help you to make informed decisions, and set a path for success in 2019.

To find out how Experian could help you achieve your goals this coming year, click here.

 

[1]Experian survey was conducted between December 2017 and January 2018. In total, 115 small and medium sized businesses took part in the survey.

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