The butterfly effect of a shutdown

This past weekend, my wife & I shared a cold one at a local brewery while discussing the shutdown. Pundits and others wave off the shutdown’s impact as “a small percentage of the Federal workforce”, as if it’s trivial. Trouble is, the headcount of furloughed Federal employees creates a butterfly effect that ripples outward to […]

Why so many privacy policy updates? Part 2 of 2

This week, we’ll continue discussing why you’ve received so many privacy policy updates lately. Over the last decade, the trifecta of poor security controls, poor user-behavior controls (ie: can you bring a USB drive to work and plug it into a cash register?), and criminals crossed paths to produce repeated data breaches. You’ve heard of […]

Bounce rate too high? Set the stage

What are you doing to keep your website’s bounce rate down? Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors that visit your site and leave without looking at another page, or taking any action (opt-ins, etc). A high bounce rate would be a bad thing in most cases. There are sites where higher than normal bounce […]

Merchandising means “Don’t forget the ice”

If you have a retail storefront, do you have a solid idea what business you lose to big online retailers vs. the business you can depend on? What sales do you lose to big box retail? Perhaps the bigger question is this: Are you selling what your clients want and need? Does your merchandising support those […]

And after Small Business Saturday?

Besides being a particularly busy Christmas shopping day, this coming Saturday is “Small Business Saturday”. Once a year, American Express (organizer of Small Business Saturday) encourages shoppers to shop at a small local business and offers marketing materials to help small businesses take part in the event by encouraging locals to shop their store. While […]

I love companies with slow computers

How much money do you waste by making your staff wait for computers? For slow networks? For slow internet? For slow computers? How hard do you make it for them to get their work done? How many times has a hotel desk clerk apologized to you at check in time because their computer was not […]

Your systems should focus on your clients

Do your systems serve your internal customers or all of them? By internal customers, I mean your accounting department, the staff on the shipping dock, customer service representatives, sales people and so on. Systems that serve your internal customers do things such as accept, validate and record orders, track commissions, automate shipment notifications, manage inventory and […]

Earning Return Business, Part Four: Confidence

In our last three conversations about earning return business, we tap danced around something that is at the core of getting people to repeatedly come back to your business without a second thought of going somewhere else – Confidence. Confidence is personal As their confidence rises, people have this interesting way of insisting that others […]

Doing ahead, not just thinking ahead

Quite often, I talk with business owners about thinking ahead. Something that happened yesterday tells me that I need to change my terminology to “Doing ahead.” Why the change? Primarily, I’m concerned that small businesses are thinking ahead, but stopping there. Thinking ahead discussions often include strategic thoughts of putting yourself out of business by […]