In business there are two main things that will help to grow and drive the business and those two things are traffic and conversions. So the process is simple and works for any business the idea is simple when you own a business you need to get leads and convert those leads into sales. But one of the most important things you can do in any business that will help this is to apply automation within your business.
When you first take over a new business, you will be asking the previous owner and current staff exactly how the business runs and what they do each day to keep things going. These are the systems in the business (whether good or bad).
Now it’s most likely they will not be written down, and making sure they are all documented will be one of your important tasks over the coming months, but for now – in the first 30 days – you probably won’t have time to take on this project.
So your most immediate goal is to look for automation opportunities in the business. As you learn each process, jot down ideas for how they could be done faster, more efficiently or with less human involvement.
Do this especially on tasks that you as the owner are required to do – you want to set this business up so it requires as little time and effort from you as possible.
Here are some areas to look for automation opportunities in your business:
- Sourcing and purchasing of stock
- Product manufacture
- Product delivery
- Marketing – automatic ways to build relationships with customers, promote offers and ask for more sales
- Advertising – placing ads, how leads are dealt with, and especially in reporting of conversions and cost
- Making a sale – how a lead is converted, how payments are made or collected,
- Following up customers
- Asking for referrals
- Dealing with problems like returns and faults
- Chasing up debts
- Paying bills
- Training staff
- Monitoring of staff performance
- Financial reporting
- Bookkeeping and accounting
- Administration and reception
- Computers and technology
To automate these areas you could look at introducing new software like aweber.com for follow-ups or Google AdWords for advertising, it could mean using outsourcing services like odesk.com or guru.com, or outsourced accounting and bookkeeping. There are many solutions for automating reporting and administration.
Are there redundant systems in the business that you could get rid of?
Take website businesses for example.
There are advertising platforms online now that allow you to setup and automate your advertising campaigns this will begin to drive leads into your business. Once those leads come to your business they can be put into an auto responder sequence designed to build a relationship and position you as an authority to those leads. This auto responder sequence will also warm sell those leads and turn them into customers. Once those leads have become customers they can then be put into a backend system to continue the relationship building process and upsell them to more of your products and services.
If you’re selling digital products the product delivery can also be automated and sales can also be sent to a fulfillment house to automate physical product delivery. You can even use helpdesk software to automate customer service. All of this works automatically with very little involvement on the owner’s part.
Automation allows you as the business owner to focus more of your time on the more important parts of a business like lead acquisition and conversions instead of the daily tasks, it also allows the business to run around the clock.