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Resources: Digital Marketing

Business ROI

Do You Know Your Business ROI?  

Business ROI, or return on investment, is a tool used to measure the profitability of your business based on your various costs and the profits generated by these investments. The performance of the business ROI can also have an assortment of implications on the different aspects of your business.  

A positive ROI indicates that an investment has delivered welcome profits. But it’s more than just a metric used to monitor the feasibility of your business investments. By maintaining a solid ROI, you are also creating positive effects on your total cost of ownership, R & D, job security, business continuity, and many more.  

It Provides a Financial Metric 

The primary function of a business ROI is to provide a means to measure the success of your business per investment made. It lets you gauge how well or how poorly you are doing, letting you know which to keep and which to drop. For instance, an investment with a decidedly positive business ROI is worth keeping, while you should avoid an investment that shows a negative ROI at all costs. It also lets you compare different profitable assets to find the best choices.  

What is TCO? 

The total cost of ownership, or TCO, is the sum of the purchase price and the operating costs of an asset over its lifetime. As your ROI grows, your total cost of ownership on your various assets also increases.  

More Access to Resources for Innovation 

The more your business earns, the more accessible resources become. Once you can set up your business plans and strategies to generate a good business ROI, you will have started a dependable cycle of profits that will provide you with funds for research and development.  

Reduce Investment Losses 

Thorough planning is crucial each time you make any kind of investment. Study the feasibility of each business investment to increase the chances of getting a good business ROI. There will always be a risk because you never really know if an investment will give you good returns or not, but with careful thought and planning, you can stick to those investments that are more likely to generate positive results.  

Job Security 

One of the contributing factors to excellent business returns is the performance of its workforce. If your employees are delivering results, there won’t be any reason for you to downsize or shuffle your workforce. Thus, a higher business ROI increases the job security of your employees and may even give them better benefits and perks. 

Competitive Advantage 

In any industry, it is among the primary goals of a business to have a competitive advantage over its rivals. Maintaining a good return on investment gives you an advantage and makes you more attractive to potential clients when compared to your competitors. These days, potential clients and customers don’t just look at the product or service you offer. They also examine the internal components of your business, which is why having a favorable business ROI will be an advantage. 

An MSP Can Help Boost Your Returns 

Exerting considerable focus and effort towards improving your business ROI is very worthwhile because, as you can see, it can affect several areas of your business. Improving your returns does not only mean getting higher revenue. It also has a lot of positive implications for your business, your employees, and your clients.  

One way of ensuring that you get a good business ROI from your investments is by working with a trusted managed service provider. Your MSP can provide multiple tools and strategies to keep you on track to achieving your goals and generating profits. 

For some extra help, we have prepared a comprehensive on-demand webinar that clearly illustrates what could happen to your business if you do not have a managed service provider by your side, as well as the multiple negative impacts this can have on your employees and your clients.  

Conclusion 

If you want to learn more about how an MSP can help improve your business ROI, contact us and we will be happy to discuss how our services can help boost your returns and your overall business performance.  

5 Reasons Why Planning Business Growth Matters

When starting a business, it is only natural for the business owner to dream of success and growth for their new venture. But having a dream is not enough. There also needs to be a strategic business plan to ensure that the business will thrive.

Unfortunately, many small business owners have the mindset that planning is only for large companies. Some of them don’t think that learning business planning skills is necessary. They don’t realize that planning for growth is one of the most important things you should do for your business. Here are five tips to help you build your business plan.

Good Plans Lead to Good Business Decisions


From the moment you start your business, and every day after, there will be decisions to make, both big and small. Often, you will make these decisions on the spur of the moment, without the opportunity to sit down and carefully examine the pros and cons of each one.

If you do not plan for this, it’s easy to make the wrong choices. This mistake is especially true if your business is expanding by adding new locations or hiring more employees. But if you have a solid business plan geared towards growth, it will guide you in making wise decisions every time.

Planning Helps in Setting up the Budget


Having a budget plan is essential to keep your business expenses under control. Along with business growth, there will also be a lot of unexpected costs. An efficient budget helps ensure you have sufficient cash flow to keep the business going with the right balance between income and expenses, despite the adjustments you must make.

You can’t just go into a business without a clear idea of where your funds are going. Therefore, business planning for cost and budget should consider your present situation and several possible future scenarios.

Avoid Software Licensing Liabilities


Running a business involves the use of different software that requires licenses. Failure to comply with the terms and restrictions of the license can have dire consequences. Therefore, it is crucial to have a plan for software licensing before you purchase any.

Most software that businesses use these days is expensive, and that is why you need to budget for it from the beginning and decide which ones you need for your business. This way, you won’t have to purchase unnecessary platforms that you won’t end up using.


Planning Helps with Change Management


Change is not only inevitable in business but is a sign of growth. When you take on new personnel and expand locations, this will lead to significant changes in your business structure.


Without a well-laid-out plan, you can easily get lost amidst all these changes. But if you can implement effective business planning strategies for managing whatever changes might come your way, unexpected events will not catch you off guard. Instead, you will make a seamless transition into the new phase of your business.


Infrastructure Planning Keeps Your Business Updated with Changes


Technology changes quickly. When running a business, you need to be prepared to implement frequent upgrades and updates to your IT infrastructure. Getting left behind by your rivals in the industry will have a negative effect on your business, so you must focus a considerable amount of your business planning on infrastructure changes.


The Role of an MSP in Business Planning for Growth


Nobody knows your business and its objectives better than you do. However, there will be times when you will need expert advice, particularly in areas that are not part of your core competencies. IT, for instance, or financial and legal matters. When you partner with a dependable managed service provider, you will gain an advantage, especially if you have ambitious plans for growing your business.

As a managed service provider, we have all the tools and the knowledge for business planning to facilitate a continuous and organized shift toward whatever new direction you are planning for your business. If you want to learn more, please contact us so we can discuss with you the many ways that we can be of service to your business.

To find out more about why planning business growth matters, watch this on-demand webinar where Crystal demonstrates the various ways of how a professional MSP take your business to a whole new level of success.

Planning Business Growth
Business Budget

The Fastest Way to Lose Track of Your Business Budget

Business budgeting is a very important part of running a business, regardless of whether you are a startup or an established company operating for years. Creating a budget is not a problem for most business owners. The challenge is sticking to the budget as the business grows and the spending expands.

The Problem of Hidden Costs

If you are like many owners of small and medium-sized businesses, you probably focus on the services and products you need when making a projection of your business expenses, which is what you should do. However, do you also consider the hidden costs of all these services and products? Are you even aware that many vendors today charge these hidden costs to unsuspecting business owners?

If you don’t regularly assess your purchases for these hidden costs, there’s a good chance that you are spending far more than you should be. You might go over your allotted budget. This mistake can have implications for your business.

Laying Employees Off

To bring down spending, many companies resort to the solution of laying employees off, believing that a smaller payroll can help the business get back on track financially. Unfortunately, cutting down on your workforce will increase the load of your remaining staff, which can then lead to stress, job dissatisfaction, and reduced performance.

Taking out Loans

Loans are a quick fix for any financial problem, but they can have heavy long-term consequences. If you get a loan with high repayment terms, it might eventually lead to even greater financial problems for your business.

Reduced Productivity

As hidden costs eat away at your business funds, you and your employees will naturally try to curb the spending. In doing so, you will inadvertently take people away from the jobs that you hired them to do. Your employees’ focus will need to be split between their actual duties and trying to solve the problems with business budgeting. The result of this would be much lower productivity.

Where Do Hidden Costs Come From?

Besides the blatant overcharging of some vendors, there are a few other sources of hidden costs that all business owners should know.

Loan Interests

Most business startups run on borrowed funds. If you have taken out a loan to help you establish your business, you need to include the interest on this loan in your business budget. You will also need to be very responsible for repaying such loans on time. Otherwise, the interest cost will increase and might take a heavy toll on your business funds.

Employee Benefits

In business budgeting, many new business owners make the mistake of accounting only for their employees’ salaries. They do not consider the employees’ benefits, which they will also need to grant.

No business owner expects to pay legal fees because no one wants to be involved in a lawsuit. But if these problems happen, you need to allocate funds for this in your budget.

Taxes

If you were an employee in the past, your company automatically deducted taxes from your salary. Now that you are a business owner, you will still need to pay taxes, and you will have to compute these on your own. If you forget to consider this in your business budgeting, you might be short on funds, and could even have problems with the IRS.

An Easy Solution

Staying within your budget can be a tough challenge with all the hidden expenses some vendors charge. To ensure that you do not spend more than you need to, you can use this business hidden expense calculator. This tool will reveal which services or products come with extra charges that you don’t need to pay. Once you are aware of these costs, you can plan your spending more efficiently and start saving valuable funds for your business. If you have any other questions, please contact us any time.

IT Security

The Importance of IT Security for Businesses

Doing business in this digital era comes with many advantages, thanks to the developments brought about by new technology. But this same technology also brings a new breed of threats that could have negative implications, from minor inconveniences to serious security risks.

First Line of Defense

You can install an antivirus program and take safety precautions to protect your business. This precaution is for anyone who wants to stay protected from viruses and other digital threats. However, the online environment is rife with potential threats that easily penetrate basic anti-malware programs.

Just think about it. How many email advertisements have you received in your inbox this month alone? Probably dozens, right? You don’t even need to open these emails, but if you accidentally click on even one of them, it will expose your system to other online threats and compromise the security of your business.

Staying One Step Ahead of the Hackers

Of course, the scenario we mentioned above is just a very mild example. Hackers these days are remarkably creative and aggressive in their strategies. Some hackers will steal your valuable data and destroy your business with just a few clicks, especially if you do not have a proper IT security system.

Potential Problems of Not Having IT Security for Businesses

If you do not defend your business with a reliable security system, you put your entire organization at risk and give cybercriminals an open invitation to infiltrate your network. Here are some potential problems you might face if you don’t invest in proper IT security for businesses.

Constant Risk While Surfing Online

While your employees are online, they can unintentionally pick up malware from the websites they visit or the links they click on. These malicious programs can easily attach themselves to your system and infect it.

Identity Theft

With information stored digitally, it is easy for hackers to steal personal and financial information, either for selling to others or for personal use. If your system is weakly protected, your employees might suddenly find themselves locked out of their workstations or discover that hackers have wiped their bank accounts clean.

System Shutdown

Viruses, worms, Trojans, and other malware can cause damage that causes your website to go down. You might recover with the help of an IT professional, but the hours or even minutes you have lost while you were offline can cause a massive loss of revenue for your business. Some malicious programs can have long-lasting implications that can drastically pull down the performance of your business.

Reduced Productivity

Certain viruses can attack even the most powerful servers. Even if you don’t fall victim to cyberattacks, the gradual deterioration of your computers’ speed and performance will significantly reduce the productivity of your employees. This issue can lead to a decline in their job satisfaction and cause problems for your business.

The Solution

An easy yet effective preventive solution to all these problems is to implement the right strategies for your IT security. Work closely with your IT provider or a managed service provider who specializes in IT security for businesses to get the best results.

The solution will begin with a comprehensive IT security audit where your MSP will thoroughly assess your IT infrastructure and check for vulnerabilities in your network. After this, they will create a custom security solution that fits your business requirements perfectly.

In our on-demand webinar, we discuss how we can help improve the IT security of your business. Click here to register for the webinar, where you will also discover the many ways that a managed service provider can positively impact your business.  Or, if you have any other questions, please contact us any time.

Problems & Implications 3

Do you remember Business Operations before the Cloud?

The cloud network for businesses is a new development. While widely used today, before it came into existence, many businesses had to make do with the limited in-house resources that were available. If you have not yet signed up for a cloud network for businesses, you are probably experiencing these limitations that can hold your business back.

Using a Cloud Network to Help Your Business

Business growth and success are the primary goals of any business owner. If you want your business to grow, you will usually have to hire more people, invest in more advanced IT infrastructure, buy more complex equipment, and allocate more resources for the different operations of your business. But doing this will require massive funding that most small business owners do not have. Fortunately, the cloud network for businesses has come to the rescue. Let’s look at the following scenarios.

Expensive IT Costs

When you rely solely on your own company’s resources, you will have no choice but to buy all the software and hardware that you will need for your business operations. We all know how expensive these products can be, but you will have no choice but to buy them if you want your business to grow and succeed.

Limited Productivity

Whenever IT issues arise within your business, your in-house staff will have to take time off from their regular duties to address the problems. IT might not even be their specialty, so there is no guarantee that they can resolve the situation. It reduces their productivity because they won’t be able to focus on their core responsibilities.

Frequent and Extensive Downtime

Software and hardware both need regular upgrading so your business can keep up with the rest of the industry. But installing these upgrades takes a long time, perhaps a couple of hours or more than a day. During these periods, your business will essentially be on hold. And this creates a hassle for your employees and customers.

Lack of Mobility

Traditional business setups require employees to be tied to their desks for the entire business day because everything they need is on their workstations. If you assign one of your employees to work in the field, for instance, they might have to wait until they get back to the office before being able to access their data.

The Solution

These scenarios present an assortment of issues that can drastically limit the performance of your business. While the cited situations are very different, we can improve them with a single solution: cloud computing. If this is an unfamiliar concept to you, there is no need to worry. Your IT provider can give you a thorough overview and assist you in getting a custom cloud solution for your business.

Cloud Computing Is the Answer

A cloud network for businesses costs very little compared to purchasing all the needed software and hardware. You will enjoy the most advanced IT tools for a modest monthly fee. It can also maximize your employees’ productivity. With the right network in place, you will no longer have to pull your staff from their regular duties to fix IT problems.

Upgrades for software and hardware will still be necessary, but with a cloud network, these upgrades will only take a few minutes. Most of the time, you won’t even notice that an update has taken place because the cloud service provider will handle it all for you.

If you want to find out more about the advantages that you can get from cloud networks for businesses and from working with a managed services provider, tune in to our on-demand webinar. This webinar will enlighten you on the benefits of cloud computing and its positive impacts on your customers and staff. You can contact us anytime!

Business Operations