Tag Archives: Small

Suggestions To Help Small Freight Carriers Manage Freight Quotes

– Brad Hollister, Freight Access

Although all carriers operate differently, the negotiation of freight rates has many similarities and differences between large commercial freight carriers and smaller indepdent trucking companies. Many small carriers operate under the assumption that a large carrier has more negotiating leverage than a small carrier, and to a degree that’s true if you consider the following:

Typically, large freight carriers have a good number of resources available to make informed decisions. Most significant carriers have a pricing department, long standing shipper and freight broker relationships, market data, capability to turn down freight along with can provide volume pricing discounts. These big freight carriers (over ten trucks) have tremendous advantages when negotiating freight yet only make up 75% of the marketplace . Utilizing the tips below small freight carriers will be able to compete with larger freight carriers during the next request for pricing proposal made by your shippers and supply chain managers.

– Better understand your operation expenditures. There are many operating costs to be considered when establishing your price. Trucker pay, Fuel Costs, Taxes, Insurance Costs, Maintenance allowances, office expenses, default or factoring fees and also significantly much more. In order to obtain a healthy profit, these operation costs are to be kept in mind. Fuel is the great fluctuator, so ensure that you understand in impact that freight diesel has on your company. Know your operating cost per mile (annual expenses divided by annual miles driven) and your fuel costs per mile so that you are to have clear idea of your expenditures.

– Establish relationship with clients. Make sure that you search for accounts which will aid to deliver profitable freight. An account which constantly tries to take advantage of you or pays late is not worth having. It is important that a healthy relationship is built which benefits both parties. If an logistics broker, manufacturer, or supply chain manager is challenging to work with or pays freight bills slowly, do not be afraid to quit conducting business with that shipper. Cutting accounts lose when they are not performing will make sure that you are spending your time working for only profitable customers. This starts by letting shippers know exactly just what you expect from them along with understanding your pricing policies as well as minimum profit expectations.

– Build a rock solid reputation. In everything that you do make sure that you are attaining 100% customer satisfaction. By making positive that you can easily exceed expectations, you can soon develop a solid recognition which should help to grow your business and provide a service that shippers are comfident in. Frequently customers determine to hire smaller carriers because of the freight shippers or third party logistics firms may have customized shipping objectives. As a tiny freight provider you are able to provide customized services which may aid you to win business which is not able to be attained by larger carriers. If a small carrier provides features or services which go beyond typical carrier responsiblities, make sure that the driver and trucking company is being paid for these services.

– Turn down freight shipments which cause you to lose money. It starts with understanding your costs, but make sure that you are able to refuse freight shipments which cause you to lose money. All successful freight carriers know when to pass on freight shipments which would cause them to lose money.

– Identify top lanes and freight lanes which pay more money. Making use of numerous tools inside the marketplace such as the Lane Pricing Tools of Freight Access.com, may make certain that you might be not under-charging clients in specific lanes as well as are protecting your minimum profit margins. Freight Access has utilized tens of thousands of freight bills to develop its market rate base for accurate pricing in almost any lane.

The North American Trucking Marketplace has encountered a number of hardships throughout the last year. The future suggests that more difficulties are a head for freight carriers. It is important to adhere to these types of fundamental enterprise principles of prosperous trucking companies to ensure that your freight operations are effective as well as able to produce an income, instead of lose money.

Brad Hollister is an Seasoned Logistics Executive with Freight Access (Brad Hollister). along with Director of Enterprise Development for Freight Access, Inc. Hollister has a interest for Enterprise Development by way of innovation, process improvement, as well as implementation of the most current technology. Feel totally free to contact him with virtually any inquiries, opportunities, or suggestions or (312) 450-3020.

Freight Access

Interpreting Reported Earnings Quoted By Small Business Seller

If it’s true, as commonly believed, that small business owners tend to be creative individuals, one of the expressions of this talent can be found in the way they calculate the adjusted net earnings they receive from their businesses.

Seasoned business brokers often have difficulty coming up with an accurate earnings figure when analyzing the records of a company going on the market. Their challenge is to determine how much a new owner is likely to earn, based on the current level of gross revenues and the expenses actually needed to generate that income.

If accurately calculating the “bottom line” is hard for someone skilled in this field, imagine the difficulties faced by a real estate licensee with a background in home sales, who is called on to list a small California business opportunity for sale. It’s easy to understand how real estate professionals lacking experience in analyzing businesses records, can be misled by a seller into advertising an exaggerated earnings figure for a business offering.

But the agent or broker will soon get an education–the hard way–about the importance of determining and stating the correct figures. That education will begin when the broker goes back to the seller for more information, after a buyer–relying on initial profit statements–discovers in due diligence that there is no way to substantiate the profits claimed.

EBTIDA

The first thing for a new business broker to understand about an earnings statement is the calculation of Earnings Before Taxes, Interest, Depreciation and Amortization. The seller’s books will probably show each of these T-I-D-A items as expenses, deducted from the gross profit figure along with other fixed costs, before conducting the final calculation of earnings.

An accepted accounting protocol is to assume that these TIDA expenses will vary, depending on the way each buyer wants to manage the financial side of his or her business. And because these “variable” expenses do not represent costs absolutely necessary to conduct business, the common practice is to add the TIDA expenses to the “bottom line” figure to arrive at the seller’s earnings. And this figure should be properly explained as EBTIDA.

ONE-TIME EXPENSES

The cost of a legal settlement with a disgruntled former employee or with an unhappy customer who has some kind of claim, is an example of a non-recurring, or one-time expense. So is the cost of an expensive capital equipment item that was purchased from the business’s ready cash in a single year. As these expenses are not going to be incurred by the new owner, it is fair, when analyzing the seller’s Profit and Loss Statement, to add the amount of these non-recurring costs to the bottom line.

The buyer may have other one-time costs once the business has changed hands, and will treat them however he or she sees fit for bookkeeping purposes. But any non-recurring costs listed by the seller can legitimately be considered as if the dollar values associated with them are part of the seller’s earnings.

PERSONAL EXPENSES

It is common for the owner to have his company pay personal vehicle costs because he uses the car while conducting business, and for an owner to consider it the responsibility of the business to provide her with health insurance, and for an owner to carry a family member on the payroll, even though that person only does occasional, part-time work for the company. These represent business expenses which incidentally, also provide benefit to the owner. And as these are items charged to the business at the discretion of the owner, it is an accepted practice to assume a new owner will not incur the same expenses, and to add these costs to the seller’s earnings figure.

Memberships in social/business organizations, such as country clubs and fraternal societies, subscriptions to periodicals and internet services, and other discretionary “business” costs might also be considered “add backs” when determining seller’s earnings.

An inexperienced broker listing a business and wanting to enter an owner earnings figure that is correct, and can be logically explained, will benefit by carefully questioning the seller on each item “added back.”

But there is no substitute for having worked with these expense entries in the past and knowing from experience, how to calculate seller’s actual earnings.

Peter Siegel, Founder & President of BizBen.com and BizBen Network of business buyers, sellers, business brokers, advisors. A nationally recognized author (3 books and syndicated small business blog) and expert consultant. If you’re selling a business, need professional assistance with high performance advertising, marketing, highly effective strategies, or individual customization with BizBen Power Search options, contact him at 866-270-6278.

Small Business Sales and Marketing Ideas to Keep Repeat Customers and Take Sales From Competitors

Small business sales can be increased with these marketing tips on building trust and credibility through regular contact with your customers. Use these small business marketing ideas to build repeat sales relationships, and take customers away from your competitors. This sales and marketing strategy works for any type of business in any type of market. The actions to achieve success can be started today and be working for you in just a few days.

Imagine the effect on your small business sales if you became a source of regular information to potential and repeat customers. You are the expert on what you sell and the services you provide. Use your knowledge to become the person people go to when they want information about your industry, market, or product. Think what you could recommend to people that were considering making a purchase and wanted more information. Customers want to make informed decisions, and they’re frightened of making mistakes. When you help them make informed decisions it’s a win – win situation. The customer gets good information and you get the chance of a sale.

Do not underestimate the value of your product, market, and industry, knowledge, or the experience you have gained. It doesn’t matter what type of small business sales you are involved in, there will be potential customers looking for advice and information. Once they see you as a provider of that information they will trust you as someone they can buy from. Giving free expert information makes the receiver of that information feel they should reciprocate, and they will at least look at your products and services when looking to make a purchase. Think about it, who would you rather buy from; the person that bombards you with marketing literature, advertisements, and sales calls, or the one that you turn to when you want free expert information? Which one would you trust more? If the information you are providing is also seen as impartial then prospects will have even more trust and confidence in you. Small business sales will follow as prospects come to you for advice, and repeat business and referrals will multiply as trust in you grows and people spread the word.
 
These small business marketing tips will work for any type of sales and in any market place. Whether you are selling low value goods on a market stall or making large value B2B sales building relationships will grow your sales. In direct sales to the public it is often difficult to build a trusting relationship and bring in sales leads. By offering information on your industry and products you can build this trust and buying from you becomes a much smaller next step. Whatever service you offer; accountant, builder, plumber, car repair, or insurance sales, give away free information and build your reputation. Take a fashion clothing store for example. You could collect contact information from everyone that enters your store and send a regular newsletter by post or email. Your newsletter could have information on how to look great, the latest fashion tips, or how to choose contrasting colors.
 
Now think about your services or products, and what information could you pass on to people. Try this test; write down 5 tips now that you could give to people on what to look for when buying your products. See how easy it is, and that’s without much thinking, research, or preparation. You will be amazed at what you know about your market. You will have information that is valuable to your customers. Often this information is only shared with a customer when they approach you and are considering making a purchase. Let’s turn that on its head and use it to attract customers rather than just to sell to them. Use these small business sales tips and you will take business from your competitors because you are offering something they aren’t. How would you feel if you saw one of your customers with an information leaflet or email from one of your competitors? Imagine a regular customer quoting you information from a competitor’s newsletter.

I’m Stephen Craine and I use these small business marketing ideas to grow my sales training business. Take a look at how you can build credibility, relationships, and grow you small business sales by opening http://www.sales-training-sales-tips.com/marketing-ideas.html

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Sales and Marketing for Small Businesses

Sales strategies
by CPXi

An efficient way of improving your small business marketing can start by breaking down the term into ‘sales and marketing’. This makes the words understandable and manageable. By doing this, you can come up with a checklist that you can focus on and will serve as the basis for your marketing strategy. First, try to look at your target market. Ask yourself if you have all the information that you need about your current and future markets. Think of ways on how you can lure more customers to buy your product. Consider if you need to add more features and services that will pique the interests of the audience.

The key here is coming up with a creative plan that will help you leapfrog the competition. Identify your competitors and determine their weaknesses and strengths. If you think that they are more profitable than you, then you should start coming up with innovative ways on how you can make it in the industry. Another thing to focus on is the distribution of your products and services. Are they evenly distributed in all the profitable outlets? Do you think you can bundle them with another company’s product? Your supply chain is another area that you should look at. Make sure that you are getting high quality supplies for a reasonable cost. You should not be ruled over by your suppliers, it should be the other way around. Also, try to consider if you can cut down on the cost of your supplies.

Ask yourself if your business is in the position that you want. Are you selling a profitable product in the market? Identify the strengths and weaknesses of your services. Take the time to evaluate where your business is right now. Do you think you should sell something that will move your business towards the high-end position or a low-cost position? High-end products and services usually require you to charge a premium price while low-cost ones allow you to cut down on this area but make your products highly efficient. Weigh the possibilities that each area offers and decide which one will work best for your company.

 

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Advertising Strategies For Small Scale Businesses

If you are the owner of a small business, it is necessary for you to allocate your advertising budgets in a canny way. You are expected to know who is the target of your messege and how to do it with the most chances of success.

 

One of the best ways to do this is to get in the mind of your customers. Where do they go during a normal day? what do they read? what activities are they involved in? The more information you can learn about your customers better you can target advertising to them.

 

Once you have a good idea of who you’re targeting your message to, you’ll want to make sure you’re spending your money in the right places. Here are a few ideas on places that you can advertise that won’t cost you a lot of money can get great results.

 

Community events / sponsorship – Many local community events have sponsorship opportunities which allow you to support the event while advertising your brand. These can range from very inexpensive to expensive but this is a nice option because you’re supporting the community while advertising your brand.

 

Cable TV – Local cable TV can also be a cost effective resource to reach new customers. Some of the benefits of this are you get to choose your demographic that your advertising to get a pretty good idea of how many people you’re reaching. Also with TV this gives you a bit of a larger-than-life look which can differentiate you from the competition. And when you do the research you’ll realize it costs a lot less than you’d expect.

 

School events – For some businesses advertising at school events at local private and public schools can be a good option. This is especially good if you are networking within that school community and you want them to know your name. This is a great way to build relationships with the local community, and like sponsoring community events this is a nice option because you’re also supporting the local community.

 

Local radio – Local radio stations can also be a nice place to advertise. Some radio stations set up deals where they will not only advertise your business but they will also have an on air personality talk about your business. This gives you access to their loyal listeners.

 

Web – Most of the big websites and search engines offer pay per click and pay per impression advertising. This can also be a great option especially for businesses that sell digital products or services they can sell online.

 

Every business is different when it comes to advertising but it’s important to find out what’s right you you. What do you think? What advertising has worked for your small business? Radio, Print, Web? Or something else? Let us know in the comments!

 

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Small Business Marketing Strategies for Keeps

Are you having problems with your small business marketing plan? Is it no longer working for your company? Are you no longer experiencing an increase in profit and sales? Then maybe it’s time for you to have a small business marketing makeover. Stop wasting your time and money on ineffective strategies. Learn how to pick out and implement effective ones instead just by following these few simple tips. First of all, stop worrying about the expense of having a marketing plan. What you have to think of is how effective will it be and what good will it bring to your company. And more importantly, will it help you hit your target market.

To illustrate, your company is selling products that are focused on mothers and pregnant women. Since you’re new in the business, you are on a tight budget. To promote your goods you chose to distribute flyers because it is an inexpensive and very easy to do. However, your flyers were distributed to a group of sports enthusiasts, teenagers and entrepreneurs. Because of this you weren’t able to reach your desired customers. Although printing and distributing ads fitted your budget, your time and money were put to waste because the group did not take any interest in the products that you were advertising. If this is the case, then you need to consider changing your goal. Focus on customer directed marketing and stop thinking about the cost.

To focus on your target market, get rid of the thought that everyone is interested in your product. Not everyone wants to buy feeding bottles and breast pumps. Face the reality that only a few people who need your products and services will buy them. So you have to keep your eye on that group because they are your potential customers. Your marketing strategy should be able to reach that target market to make your business profitable. To sum it up, you have to know who these people are and come up with effective ways on how to find them. The last step is to evaluate your marketing efforts. Identify where you are right now with your business. Are your efforts working for the better or otherwise? Keep in mind that your goal here is to find the small business marketing strategy that works best with your company.

 

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Small Business Survival Guide – Known Marketing Strategies To Mark Up Your Business Sales

Doesn’t matter what category of business you are presently in, be it big or small everyone should do something to boost up sales especially in these difficult times. No one is spared from being the next victim of liquidation or closure because of the economic down-turn of the last three years. But not everything is on the negative side. There are so many things that we can consider as a great benefit that resulted from the economic crisis. As a matter of fact, many costumers are still benefiting from this consequence in spite of the price hike and the changeable interest rates are still evident.

First, due to the deflation of the value of money, people are now more deliberate when buying stuff. All things should be considered before finally giving a go to swipe that card or sign a check. Because of this buying attitude, companies as well became aware of their goods. They are now offering added value, freebies, bigger portion and others just to maintain or get new customer dedication. Second, competition is harsher now than ever. Companies are providing special perks like low interest rates and other eye-catching promotional discounts.

It is precisely for these reasons small companies should also be combative in terms of marketing strategies to increase sales. Virtually everything now can be made online. That is why even small businesses should have a presence on the wide world of web. This is the trend today, so might as well use it to your business advantage. The tide’s flow is expeditious and going to the general direction of fiber optics. Consumers are finding all means to save especially on requirements like food, gas and electricity. That is why online pre shopping and online actual shopping is the “in” thing today. If your haven’t uploaded your business website yet or it is not search-able on the web, you might as well consider other means of generating your revenues.

Below are some of the most important things one must be concerned about to produce leads and pickup sales in this enormously competitive world that we are living in at present:

Understand your business and classify your target marketplace

This is the very first thing in the list of every business owners if they want to increase their sales. Bring to mind that you have to ascertain your target market: Young, old, teens, women, men, mom’s etc. If your business is for generalized consumption, yes it is ideal to make everyone your target market. If you can categorize yourself with one or two specific targets or demographics you’ll be able to measure the results clearly. The great thing about this is that you’ll be able to address one specific approach before making it wider for everyone. More often than not, it can be overwhelming to start with an extensive target. You tend to lose track of your brand and business resolution. Be specific first then go further.

Be Personal

Consumers today are extremely sensitive and picky. They are more wiser and are more deliberate when it comes to making their purchases. Gone are the days where customers will procure everything they see on tv. They now explore and see what’s in it for them when they patronize your product or service. This is exactly the reason why getting personal is how you make things happen. With Autoresponder today and other email marketing services, being individualistic can already be achieved. No matter how big your clientele is, these marketing approaches can do it for you. All you need to do is find a specific one that is customized to the one that you need on a very reasonable price. There are even trial versions so you don’t have to commit immediately in-case you are indecisive. Personalize your approach. When replying to queries, ensure that you show understanding and try to reach out to their needs. This will make them feel treasured; it’ll make them want to be part of your business.

Conformity

Just like everything else, being consistent produces constructive outcome. In marketing and in generating sales, consistently communicating with your patrons and consumers will help a great deal. Customized emails every time they have inquiries, follow-up emails and call after they’ve purchased something and most significantly emails and other means of communication every time you’ll have a sale or discounts that are about to come out. Again, this will make them feel treasured. It will make them appreciate that you remembered them. With this approach, you continuously remind your patrons that you are still in the business and that you need to be ready to assist them and make their lives simpler. As previously mentioned, patrons are looking for their money’s worth. Surely, these simple strategies will make consumers feel that they are valuable and that you are doing an extra mile to reach out to your clients.

Put wisdom not rubbish

In marketing your products, check that you put an effort that your patrons will be glad about. Yes, people spend much time checking emails but it is already a part of their jobs and lives. That is why an email from your company should have indispensable information that will make their while to examine it. This will also avoid them from just hitting the delete tab every time they will catch sight of your business label on their messages box.

Commit to memory that in this world of competitions and competitors the only way to endure is to go with the tide. The tide’s direction is towards the web. Make a presence with the online community. Work it through and give value to your target audience as well. Make them feel they are important and put extra effort to give them not only quality products and services but good customer relationship as well.

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Selling And Sales In Small Business – How To Sell By Not Selling

When it comes to making successful sales, many people who own small businesses believe that you have to be a pushy salesman. In fact, there is a little known secret that goes against logic in this department. Instead of pushing products on people, the successful small business owner recognizes that he has something of value to offer his customers and that he can be most effective if he focuses on not selling rather than forcing his products down someone’s throat. After all, why would you need to do that when you know your products are worthwhile and valuable?

The first step in understanding how to sell by not selling is to figure out what your customers want. When you know that, you can offer it to them in a low pressure way. After all, if you were going into a store and someone was hounding over your shoulder trying to convince you to buy something, you’d be a lot less receptive, wouldn’t you? The trick is to trust that your customers know what they want and that they will come to you when they are ready to buy it.

Secondly, you must realize there is a difference between sales and marketing. Marketing is spreading the word about your products to people who are potentially interested because they fit your customer criteria. Selling is actually clenching the deal by being available and ready to help your customers when they want to buy from you. Selling comes naturally; it isn’t something you have to push on people. If your products are of good quality and fit the needs of your target audience, and if you have a good marketing plan, you will naturally see sales.

Finally you must understand that the key premise behind all successful companies, small business and otherwise, is that they really connect with their customers. They work to build trust, which is far more valuable than money, because it means people will come back to you and buy time and time again. By building trust with your customers through email newsletters, helpful tips, and free samples of your products, you will hook them and have long term customers who will continue to buy from you because they trust you. This is the key to selling and sales in small business that separates the successful owners from those who end up losing money because they did not get this concept.

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