How to set up and run a small business

Leaderboard – Homepage

You are here: Home

Step by step guide to building a booming business


Starting your own business from scratch can be a terrifying prospect filled with self-doubt and worries about failure and going broke.

To help you safely negotiate the path of entrepreneurship, we asked business mentor and author Brian Marcel to share his blueprint for business success. Continue…


Design product packaging


“You should never judge a book by its cover”, or so runs the popular advice. But there’s a reason that these words are so often-repeated; we often need to remind ourselves that first impressions aren’t everything. Whether we’re meeting a new person for the first time, or picking up an unfamiliar product, our natural drive to form a snap judgement is often irresistible.

Of course, the fact that so many of us are innate cover-judgers makes proper presentation essential – not only for book publishers, but for anyone looking to sell physical products of any sort. Continue…


 business funding in December


Christmas might be a time for giving, but the common perception is that it’s not a time for investing.

However, as John Auckland of TribeFirst reveals, funding statistics surprisingly show that December can be a great month to find investment for your business.



Christmas apps for business


Christmas is just around the corner; the high streets are flooding with people, the markets are springing up in town and city centres across the country, and the festivities are in full swing.

While it is a time of great celebration and merriment, Christmas can also be incredibly stressful with a stack of work to complete before the calendar makes its way to the 25th of December. So to help you negotiate the festive season, here are six great apps that will make things a little easier at the most wonderful time of the year. Continue…


How not to miss out on business over festive period  

Some businesses will work on Christmas Eve but then close down until Wednesday, 2nd January. It may feel as if everyone is off work and every office is closed (especially with many schools closed until 7th January as well) – but that’s not entirely accurate.

Many people are still working during the festivities. As a small business owner how can you ensure you don’t lose out on business over the Christmas period and still get a break? Here are a few tips: Continue…


Finding business funding fast

When you need to find business funding fast, what are your options and what are the quickest ways for you to secure more finance?

We talk you through the most viable fast funding options for SMEs who need finance in a hurry, and include practical tips on how to ensure your funding application goes as swiftly and smoothly as possible. Continue…


ways to cut your tax bill at christmas


It’s Christmas! Well, nearly – and that means festive gifts and the goodwill. If you’re smart, your generosity can be tax deductible, so we asked Jonathan Amponsah of The Tax Guys to explain how you can claim some Christmas tax reliefs, and reduce your tax bill whilst still keeping the taxman happy.



 Borowing options for Christmas


With the average UK household spending between £500 to £800 on Christmas this year, around 20% will consider some form of borrowing to tide them over the holidays. Continue…


event management technologies


Today’s events offer the best of both worlds when the right technology is applied to the immediacy of the face-to-face experience.

Delegates can enjoy the impact of personal, immediate interactions, networking opportunities and cutting-edge talks – with the added benefits of VR experiences, social sharing, personalised follow-up experiences and automated check-ins. In this way, the beauty of the face-to-face event is only enhanced through smart tech deployment. Continue…


How to create a great pitch deck to raise funding


Most entrepreneurs really struggle to bring in investment without the proper tools to bolster their proposition. An engaging pitch deck is a key part of any successful fundraising strategy, so it’s vital to get it right.

With no clear consensus on what a great pitch deck for raising funds looks like, we asked funding expert, John Auckland to share the insight he has gleaned from a series of successful fundraisings.



Gaining website backlinks with Digital PR

There are a whole range of ways that you can build backlinks to your business’s website, from guest posting to tactical link audits and on-site asset creation. However, the amount of time and effort it takes to get each link can become a barrier, particularly when you have limited resources. Continue…


how to deal with staff errors

In a small business or start-up culture there is often limited time available for formal employee appraisals or structured feedback planning. However, developing a business culture where structured feedback is routinely given, received and acknowledged is essential for long-term growth. Continue…


business expansion - factors to consider when growing overseas


According to a study by Elements Global Services, 69 percent of UK businesses are planning to expand internationally in the next three years.

At the same time, 58 percent of businesses described hiring and onboarding overseas staff as challenging. Problems identified in the research include setting up global payroll, benefits programs and other HR essentials; costs and time involved in recruitment; and overcoming cultural barriers between overseas and domestic staff.

How, then, can businesses face these challenges with confidence? Continue…


create valuable enjoyable business 

When I first discovered entrepreneurship, I was a blind optimist and believed that most entrepreneurs were succeeding, earning big money, enjoying freedom and making an impact.

I knew there was work involved, but I couldn’t understand why people wouldn’t choose to be an entrepreneur – success was a sure thing if you were ambitious, tenacious and focused on adding value. Continue…


Making a contractual job offer to new employeeFollowing a successful recruitment and selection process, employers will be able to identify which candidates they wish to employ.

Making a job offer to the successful candidate appears to be a straightforward area of law, however, there are several factors that employers should consider to put themselves on the best path. Continue…


launching an innovative scientific product


New scientific products are often innovative, forward-thinking and can even be life changing to many. But those seeking to bring them to market must prepare themselves for an uphill struggle. Continue…


Using Visual Merchandising on website


Visuals help people retain information up to 55% more effectively. Therefore, if you want your business’s products to be top-of-mind for consumers, you must have a visual merchandising strategy in place.



Dispute with business insurance claim


New research reveals that companies who take their insurers to court over non-payment of an insurance claim only win in around one in three cases. Continue…


Employee Request for Annual Leave


Under the Working Time Regulations 1998, employees are entitled to take a minimum of 5.6 times their normal working week as paid annual leave each year.

As employees typically place great significance on their holiday entitlement, the act of declining an annual leave request can often be met with annoyance. Continue…


learning at work

The business landscape is constantly changing, and new technology is accelerating the pace of developments. These changing dynamics have redefined the ‘ability to learn’ as an essential skill, whatever your role in the organisation.

‘Learn something new today’ should not be just a lesson for when you are in school or university – it should be a life lesson; personally, and professionally, in or out of the workplace. Continue…


How to Leverage Cloud to Achieve Long-Term Business Goals

November 16, 2018

Whether its public, private or hybrid, cloud is redefining how SMEs use IT. Businesses of any size can now acquire high-quality, IT software and technologies when they need it. According to the latest research, total cloud adoption in the UK now stands at 88 percent and no longer are SMEs trailing behind larger corporates, with […]

Funeral Plan Industry Facing Possible Regulation

November 16, 2018

Pre-paid funeral plans are set to be met with much stricter regulation, it has emerged. The funeral plan industry has been brought to the attention of the UK Government which plans to deal with bad practice in the sector.

10 Advantages of Running Your Business as a Limited Company Instead of Being Self-Employed

November 15, 2018

Although the sole trader route, which is commonly referred to as being self employed, is the most popular way of running a business in the UK, there are significant advantages of operating as a limited company. Here, we highlight 10 of the biggest benefits a limited company gives you over working as self-employed.

Betting Companies to Lose Jobs Over Cut on Maximum Stakes

November 15, 2018

    High street betting stores are expected to ‘lose jobs’ over the recent crackdown in fixed odds betting machines (FOBTs). New rules coming into place in April 2019 will see the maximum stake changed from £100 to just £2, something that is expected to impact the profits and business of high street bookmakers such […]

10 Tax-Saving Ideas for Small Business Owners

November 14, 2018

The area of tax for small businesses is not straightforward, in fact it can be a real minefield for the unwary. However, if you take a little time, and work with your accountant, it’s usually possible to find ways to save some tax. To help you think about ways you and your business could pay […]

5 Ways to Help Employees Return to Work After Mental Ill Health

November 14, 2018

We’re all faced with obstacles at work and sometimes just coming back after a holiday can feel challenging. However, when an employee is returning to work after mental ill health, the experience can be even more daunting. We asked Liz Walker, HR Director at Unum, to share advice on how employers can support returning staff […]

A Small Business Guide to Digital Signage

November 12, 2018

Imagine your smartphone or tablet scaled up and delivering information in the high street, restaurant or hospital. That’s what a digital signage system looks like and it’s an engaging way to transmit information to your audience, whatever the focus of your small business. To help you take advantage of the opportunity it offers, here’s our […]

How to Set Up a Limited Company

November 9, 2018

Aside from the sole trader route, the limited liability company is the most popular business structure in the UK. With a limited company, the liability of company directors is ‘limited’ in that the company’s finances are separate from the personal finances of the business owner. This is not the case for those who run their […]

How to Turn Around Your Presentation When Something Has Gone Wrong

November 9, 2018

As a small business owner, you may be giving a presentation to customers, at a networking event, to potential investors or for staff training. What will you do if your presentation is turning out to be a nightmare: projector’s not working, presentation not displaying as you want or you have the audience from hell? How […]

Why Self Employed Small Business Owners May Be Entitled To PPI Compensation

November 9, 2018

With the PPI deadline looming on the horizon, a number of eligible claimants may still be wondering whether or not they are truly entitled to compensation.

How to Hire Graduates for Your Small Business

November 8, 2018

A recent study found that 48% of millenial graduates believe a small to medium-sized enterprise (SME) to be the ideal sized business to work for as opposed to a larger organisation. Even with this encouraging statistic, graduate recruitment can be difficult for small businesses. If you are to succeed you need to take a multi-faceted […]

Everything You Need to Know About Unfair Dismissal

November 5, 2018

Unfair dismissal can cause big issues for any type of small business. Even business owners with the best intentions and excellent hiring abilities might be faced with dismissing an employee one day. Here, we look at what classifies as unfair dismissal and explain how to prevent legal action in the face of a dismissal within […]

How to do Link Building the White Hat Way

November 1, 2018

Google regards links as a principal ranking signal and there is no evidence to suggest that this is set to change in the future. It therefore goes without saying that building the right links to your website will help you to rank well in search engine results pages (SERPs).

Budget 2018 – Summary for Small Businesses & Self Employed

October 30, 2018

On Monday 29 October, Philip Hammond delivered his second Autumn Budget. With stronger tax receipts driving better than expected Government borrowing figures, the Autumn 2018 Budget was more generous than most observers expected. So much so, that the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) calculates these spending promises to be the biggest Budget giveaway since the […]

How to measure your social media performance

October 29, 2018

Continuous testing, benchmarking and learning is a cornerstone of all social media activity. It will help you identify areas of relative under-performance, potential risks and opportunities to generate better results.

Getting started with Google AdWords – A Step by Step guide for small businesses

October 25, 2018

A lot of small businesses start using AdWords in the hope that it will help them increase sales with small investment. This isn’t true. Yes, AdWords can help you increase sales but only with the right investment. To get the return on investment you’re hoping for, you will need to set up your account properly […]