5 ways to stop discounting your services

So today I want to talk to you about five ways to avoid discounting when talking to a client. 

Picture the scenario, you send a proposal to a client and the client says they can't afford that. And the And you immediately offer to discount with no reason to do so.  Instead, take a deep breath and do one of the following 5 things:

  1. Ask the client what the most critical thing that they need doing is.  If they are a new client, it might be that they haven't seen what you can do yet, they might be worried that they're spending money they won't get back. And so ask them what their most critical items are, and which ones you can start with. You could also start with what the budget is, and this would guide you as to what to start with and how they can get a result with a smaller budget.
  2. Packaging your services.  I believe this gives people more options, plus makes it clearer.  It avoids awkward pricing conversations before they even start, so having conversations...
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Do you have good boundaries?

Growing your business into a six or seven-figure business is something that takes discipline, focus and boundaries. The problem is COVID came along and changed our working habits, our routines and our focus! So do you still have good boundaries in place, or is it something you need to work on a little more?

Those good boundaries have become a little blurred!

COVID has really blurred the boundaries between work and home for many of us. It’s something that many initially saw as a short-term problem, but the reality has been quite different. For parents, in particular, childcare plans have changed or been interrupted, as you are now seen as being ‘at home’. This means you’re often seen as available and able to juggle work and home life.

Working from home often means it’s tempting to be always in work mode. The boundary between your working hours and downtime has also blurred, further compounded by the changing environment and working patterns of others.

...

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Should you run Black Friday discounts?

Black Friday sales have been around since the 1960s. But it wasn’t until Amazon bought it to the UK in 2010, that it really took off. Although Black Friday (and Cyber Monday) sales do lead to an upsurge in sales, many online business owners are asking if they should run Black Friday discounts too.

Because a lot of smaller businesses tend to only take part in Black Friday, through a fear of missing out.

And personally, I don’t think you should run Black Friday discounts.

As a business owner, you’re not going to lose out on anything, by not having a Black Friday discount. And let’s face it, there’s no need to discount for the sake of it. 

Know when Black Friday discounts work for your business

Black Friday discounts can work if you have something specific to promote. Your customers are primed to go shopping during Black Friday, and many will hold off until this day, to ensure they get the best deal.

And this is good news for you if you want to...

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Do you want to earn more in 2021?

What are your financial goals for 2021? Do you want to earn more money? I know, for many that seems a bit of a silly question - after all, who doesn’t want to earn more! 

No matter what type of business you have, the easiest way for you to earn more money is to put up your prices. But for that to happen successfully, you need to have a plan. And that’s something that will take time.

Your prices are only part of the equation

It’s relatively easy to take what you already have and simply increase the price. But what if you haven’t set up your package correctly in the first place? What if you realise clients want something that isn’t in that package? And what if you were already underpricing or overpricing - what then?

If you want to earn more in 2021, you need to ensure that your foundations are correct first. You need to understand how to price in a way that includes your financial goals, your business costs and your desired profit margins. You need...

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Do you plan in advance?

Do you have a plan for 2021 yet? Of course not, it’s too early! But with just a month left of this year, when is it a good time to start planning 2021? And are you someone who will usually plan in advance, or are you more of a spontaneous, in the moment kind of person? 

I think, as a business owner, it’s incredibly important that you get into the habit of planning ahead. Not only does it reduce stress, but it also helps increase your chances of success - and this is especially important if you’re looking to increase your prices in the year ahead.

Plan in advance to give yourself time to plan out your strategy

Because if you’re looking to hit a revenue goal, you need to know how you’re going to get there. It could mean you need to increase your prices, but it’s also about getting clear on what you have available and how many services you need to sell, to reach your revenue target.

Putting prices up takes time and care. You need to look at the...

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Pricing for VAT registration

accounting finances tax Oct 28, 2020

It’s safe to say that most businesses want to be financially successful. I’m sure there are many who want to be earning more than £85k per year, right? Well, not necessarily. There are an awful lot of businesses that want to avoid getting near that figure - simply because it’s the threshold for VAT registration!

Don’t want to pay VAT? That’s understandable, but having that artificial ceiling in place is stopping you growing your business further.

So it’s time to stop letting that artificial ceiling stop you. It’s time to realise that paying more tax is a good thing - and here’s how you can pave the way for that transition into VAT registration.

Start increasing your prices before you hit the VAT registration threshold

Look ahead and start increasing your prices. This is especially relevant if you are a B2C (consumer) business or are a business that sells to people who are not VAT registered. Most B2B (selling to businesses)...

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Moving your business beyond the kitchen table

How did your business start? Did you have kids and create something to fit around them?  Maybe it was something that you started, to get in a little bit of pocket money, or a hobby that turned into your main business? But now it’s up and running - are you still treating your business like a hobby? Because if you are, you’re not doing it (or you) any favours.

It’s not just about the kitchen table

The problem with working from the kitchen table is it doesn’t feel especially business-like. Often, it’s the place you need to keep clearing away so others can eat, work or study. Your family will often congregate around it and it never actually feels like anything other than the workhorse of the kitchen. 

It’s also in the busiest room in the house! So if you’re looking for space to focus, think and get serious about your business, it’s not really conducive to that.

Because when you work from a kitchen table, it isn’t just about...

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Know your business numbers

business cashflow finances Oct 14, 2020

Do you know your business numbers? It’s one of those areas of business that many shy away from, but it’s a crucial element you need to understand, if you want your business to grow and be profitable. 

So why is it so important and what numbers do you need to know? 

Make informed financial decisions

Knowing your business numbers helps you make informed decisions for your business. For starters, how will you know if your business is making money or losing it? If you know your numbers you can decide if you can afford to make investments or hire a mentor.

But knowing your numbers will also help you know if you’re on track with your business and general financial goals. You can see if you need to increase your prices to cover VAT or to better reflect the value you bring to your customers. 

And if you’re at the stage where you are considering getting someone to invest in your business, you’ll have the numbers to back up why they should consider...

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What is cash flow and why do you need it?

Cash flow is one of the most important things to monitor in your business. Without cash, you don’t have a business - and a lack of cash is one of the biggest reasons why businesses fail.

If you want your business to be successful, it pays to know what is happening financially within it!

Cash flow - the flow of money in your business

Simply put, that is what cash flow is. It’s the money in and money out of your business. That flow of money is the lifeblood of your business. You want a healthy flow of money because, if you have too much money leaving your business or not enough coming in, your business is in trouble.

And if you don’t know what’s happening with your cash flow, you can’t hope to know if your business is profitable or not either.

Why cash flow is important

Knowing and tracking your cash flow is more important in uncertain times. You need to know how long your money would last if you were ill or something happened and you lost key clients...

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Pricing with confidence - everyone wants a deal!

When it comes to pricing, everyone wants a deal. But that doesn’t mean you should discount your prices. Pricing is as much about confidence as it is about finances. If you’re confident about your pricing, you’re more likely to appreciate the value you give to your clients and less likely to be hasty over discounts. 

If you’re looking to increase your confidence around pricing, here’s a few things to bear in mind.

Pricing is about confidence

You have to be comfortable with the prices you set. If you’re not, it’ll show in your sales pitch and reflect on how visible you are. A lot of this is down to confidence - confidence in your pricing and your abilities. If you don’t think you can deliver what you’re promising, it doesn’t matter how low or expensive your prices are. 

But it’s also how others perceive your pricing too. Price too low and your ideal clients may worry about the value of service they’ll...

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