Helping small businesses thrive in today’s economy

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Small businesses are the backbone of the Canadian economy and the Peace region. Small business owners can take a number of steps to deal with inflation, rising interest rates and staffing shortages.

Revamp your business plan

Interest rate increases can significantly affect business growth and profitability. Consult an advisor to discuss your financial situation, identify your business objectives and help you refine your business plan. It will help you achieve your financial goals with wealth management solutions that include overall budgeting, cash flow needs, as well as tax planning.

Financial planning includes:

  • To prepare possible future increases in interest rates.
  • To access capital for innovation and reinvestment activities to support growth.
  • Invest surplus operating funds and reserves.
  • To reimburse debt. Assess debt levels to help make good borrowing decisions and develop a repayment plan.

If you’re like many other small businesses and incurred debt during the COVID-19 shutdowns, you may still be dealing with the repercussions. If your business participated in the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) loan program in 2020, repayment is due December 31, 2023. Developing a repayment plan is an essential step in your financial planning .

Staff retention strategies

Post-pandemic, small businesses face staffing issues. With continued high demand for workers, especially in service industries, layoffs are not advisable, even with high interest rates and inflation.

What’s the best way to retain staff and recruit new workers in the midst of inflation and rising interest rates? Here are some recruiting and retention ideas:

  • Some small businesses are introducing workplace benefits to help maintain staff loyalty, including insurance for mental health and physical services.
  • Some companies may consider increasing wages or introducing benefits, such as matching RRSP contributions. The Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association offers workplace plans for small businesses as part of a retention strategy.

Grow your business with social media

A significant portion of marketing today is done through social media, allowing you to connect on a human level with your customer base. You can chat with followers and respond to questions, comments, and suggestions. These interactions build brand perception and word-of-mouth recommendations while driving brand loyalty and recognition. It also provides insight into target market data to help you plan your future marketing efforts.

Social media platforms include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, Pinterest, and Snapchat.

Guidelines for promoting your business via social media:

  • Deliver value to your customers and audience by offering promotions and providing information they value, benefit from, or find useful. This increases customer traffic.
  • Content is still king. Content type and length should match business objectives. If you want to increase online sales, promoting offers is one way to cultivate new customers. Post engaging content that users can only see more fully on your website.
  • Monitor the effectiveness of your social media initiatives. Metrics include increasing sales, traffic, or followers to your website from social media platforms.

North Peace Savings & Credit Union has the right tools and advice to support and help grow your business.

Speak to one of our North Peace Savings & Credit Union advisors today! 1-877-787-0361

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