How to set up and run a small business

Leaderboard – Homepage

You are here: Home

10 ways to maximise your productivity when running your own business

January 30, 2017

Successful business owners know how to make the most of every minute of every day. Wasted time costs money and clients, but when you’re slowed down by administrative tasks, an over-spilling inbox and endless meetings it can be hard to keep up with the pace. Here, Richard Walton highlights ten ways to maximise your productivity […]

Is my business data safer in the cloud? A guide for small businesses

January 26, 2017

IT security has never been a bigger issue for startups and SMEs, with 3 in 5 digital firms likely to experience service failures by 2020 due to improper mitigation of risk. It comes at a time when small businesses are increasingly being targeted by hackers keen to exploit network vulnerabilities, and access their data. Ensuring the security […]

Build a Brand, Build a Business

January 24, 2017

If you’re starting a new business you’ll, no doubt, want to establish and build a strong brand. Doing so will bring huge benefits over the long-term, helping you to stand out from the crowd, generate more customers and ultimately build a more valuable business. But how do you build a brand, and where do you […]

Build a brand, build a business – Part 2

January 24, 2017

…continued from Part 1 of Build a Brand, Build a Business

5 Tips for small businesses setting up an auto enrolment pension scheme in 2017

January 23, 2017

Figures from The Pensions Regulator (TPR) reveal that more than 95 per cent of the small employers required to put their staff into a workplace pension by June 2016 had complied with the law. To the end of September, almost 257,000 employers had completed their automatic enrolment duties and enrolled over 6.7 million workers on […]

8 Common mistakes new business owners make

January 20, 2017

Building a successful new business is a roller-coaster. There will be days you know you couldn’t do anything else, and days you wish you did. Sometimes you’ll be on top of the world, but at other times it will be a struggle to drag yourself out of bed. In the high-stakes world of starting a […]

Why YOU need to understand the numbers of YOUR business

January 20, 2017

Understanding the numbers of your business is crucial to your success. If you have a grasp of key figures, and have an understanding of your business’ accounts you are more likely to make good business decisions. Knowing your way around business accounts isn’t something that comes naturally to everyone, but if you are serious about […]

How to defend your small business from ‘Insider Threats’

January 19, 2017

As a small business, one of the biggest threats to your information assets resides within your operatin. The insider threat, intentional or otherwise, is now one of the major concerns in cybersecurity, and with good cause. So what exactly are the insider threats to small businesses, and how can you mitigate the dangers? We asked […]

Statutory & Contractual Notice Periods: Advice for small businesses

January 17, 2017

Once a contract of employment is in place, notice has to be given by either party to the contract to end it. There are two types of notice periods; statutory notice and contractual notice. As an employer, if you fail to give the correct notice when terminating an employment contract, you are in breach of […]

Why financial forecasting is important for startups, and how to do it painlessly

January 16, 2017

When you are launching a new business, it’s fair to say that planning your finances isn’t the most exciting aspect of of being a startup. However, it is a crucial part of understanding whether your business has a chance of succeeding And the good news is that there are now dedicated software, tools and apps […]

7 cybersecurity issues small businesses need to understand in 2017

January 16, 2017

Security breaches and cybercrime incidents hit the headlines in 2016, as high-profile news of data breaches, malware, DDoS attacks and compromised systems became mainstream news. The news reports inevitably focused on cyber-attacks on major corporations, such as the data thefts from TalkTalk, Three and Tesco Bank, as well as the extraordinary autumn story of the […]

Scaling a craft business – How to grow without compromise

January 13, 2017

The craft business boom of the last decade has brought plentiful opportunities for businesses and customers alike. For entrepreneurs involved, however, managing growth and expansion while retaining the original values and quality that initially propels a business to success can sometimes be easier said than done. Growing and scaling a craft business presents unique challenges […]

What are the compulsory fire safety regulations for UK businesses?

January 12, 2017

It is vitally important for business owners and managers to understand their duty to comply with UK fire safety regulations, as the consequences are potentially very serious. All legislation regarding fire safety in business (non-domestic) premises in England and Wales are incorporated in The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order, 2005. It provides clear guidance for […]

What creativity can do for your bottom line

January 10, 2017

If you’re running your own small business, or thinking about starting one, then chances are that you’re already creative and putting your ideas into practice. But as any business owner knows that your initial idea is often just the start. Ongoing creativity is also not an optional extra for companies. It is a crucial component […]

Why you must build on your strengths, NOT focus on trying to fix weaknesses

January 9, 2017

Business owners and leaders looking to get the best out of themselves and their team will frequently spend a lot of time and effort searching for, and trying to improve on their weaknesses. However, this is a completely counter-productive approach that can lower employee engagement and ultimately damage a business’ chance of success. Here Jan […]

Benefits in Kind: What you need to know about the new salary sacrifice rules

January 9, 2017

Changes are coming to the way benefits in kind are taxed – employers and employees should prepare themselves for the future. Millions of British employees receive ‘perks’ from their employers: ‘benefits in kind’ (BiK) which include anything from childcare vouchers and mobile phones, to medical insurance and company cars. Whether administered in addition to an […]

A guide to setting up your first business website

January 6, 2017

Having an online presence is crucial for any modern business so that potential customers are able to find you online. However, many small businesses are missing out on the opportunities that being online bring. So if you’re yet launch your business online, or are thinking of starting a new business and want to make the […]

10 common Self-Assessment Tax Return mistakes and how to avoid them

January 5, 2017

If you need to submit a Self-Assessment Tax Return (SATR) it’s imperative you get it in on time and free of any mistakes. There are penalties for not submitting your tax return on time and you may have to pay a fine if HMRC deem you have not taken enough care in completing it. With […]

Auto enrolment – What should be at the top of your 2017 ‘to do’ list?

January 5, 2017

As smaller businesses prepare to put their plans for 2017 into practice, there’s one thing that should be on almost every small employer’s radar. I’d say auto enrolment is one of the most important things that employers right around the UK must deal with in 2017, it’s both a legal duty and an important staff […]

5 things you must do when you go self employed

January 3, 2017

One of the main benefits of becoming self employed is the ease with which you can start up and run your new business. You can even become a sole trader (another term for self-employed) whilst working as an employee for someone else, so you can test the water and see if you’re suited to working […]

The power of the ‘pilot’ – 3 reasons why you should test your new business before launch

December 27, 2016

Setting up a new business is an exciting, thrilling and all encompassing challenge! Personally, I think it is the best and most stretching form of personal and professional development that a person can do. Creating and selling your own products and services, building a network of happy customers and managing your own time are just […]

What is the purpose of your business?

December 22, 2016

When you are starting a business, you will need to answer many questions. However, one of the most fundamental questions any business owner will be asked is, what is the purpose of your business? So what would your answer be? How you answer the question, has a significant bearing on whether your business is likely […]

What is the Bank Referral Scheme and why does it matter?

December 20, 2016

Many small business owners don’t know about the Bank Referral Scheme, but it represents a significant milestone for business funding in the UK. But what exactly is The Bank Referral Scheme, how does it work, and how will it help businesses? We asked Conrad Ford, Chief Executive of Funding Options, to explain;

Leased or serviced office space – which is the best fit for your business?

December 16, 2016

Your new venture might have first spread its wings in the comfort of your own home, but most start-ups need to fly the nest at some point. Whilst sending emails from your sofa in your onesie undeniably has its charms, there comes a time when moving your business forward requires giving it its own four […]

A small business guide to employee handbooks

December 15, 2016

Nearly all employers are aware of the legal requirement to give new employees a statement of their main terms once they start working for you. For some small businesses this may be the only documentation they give staff, after all this meets their legal requirements. However, many employers can find that well-drafted and implemented employee […]

When to get SEO for your website, and when not to

December 13, 2016

SEO has become an integral part of online marketing. If you want your business to be seen online, the general consensus is that SEO is absolutely essential. Committing to a high quality SEO campaign can take up a lot of time and make demands on a startup’s budget that not everyone can meet. But seeking […]

6 Things you need to know before launching a crowdfunding campaign for your business

December 12, 2016

You have a great business idea and you’re finally ready to make it a reality. However, the next obstacle you need to overcome is to find the funding you need to get your business off the ground. In recent years, the advent of alternative finance has brought startups new funding options, and driven an explosion […]

Why small businesses must stay on top of web application security

December 9, 2016

Nearly 6,000 retail sites were recently compromised by credit-card theft, after attackers injected malicious JavaScript code into their e-commerce websites to steal payment card data. While compared to the 500 million user details breached at Yahoo it may seem but a small number, however this hack has highlighted the significant risk that cybercrime poses to […]

5 Questions to ask before you stand up and deliver a presentation

December 8, 2016

As a business owner you are your own best marketing tool. Presenting in public not only highlights your business, it also establishes your credibility, makes your listeners trust you (and people prefer to do business with those they trust) and generates leads. But, even if you have a stunning presentation with fabulous visuals, you can […]

Checking to see if a VAT registration number is valid – Why it’s important, and the best way to do it

December 7, 2016

If you are dealing with a new customer or supplier and want to check whether the VAT registration number (VRN) they have supplied is valid, there are two ways you can do so. One method is to call the HMRC VAT Helpline, the other is to use the online VAT Information Exchange System (VIES) run […]

How to plan and implement a successful email marketing campaign

December 5, 2016

For a small business, email marketing offers an inexpensive but effective and efficient way to engage with your customers, and attract new ones – so long as the right planning has been put in place first. It creates and maintains communication, helping to keep your brand front of mind and build customer loyalty. Campaigns can […]

Becoming an employer – Your responsibilities when you hire staff

December 2, 2016

No matter how successful your business has been with just you working in it, if you want to grow you will need to take on employees. There are innumerable benefits of having employees. The right people will ease the workload on you and allow you take holidays. Good staff keep your business running day to […]

Rules you must follow when naming your limited company

December 1, 2016

If you are setting up a limited company, you should think carefully when choosing your company name. Alongside the business reasons for choosing an appropriate name, there are also a number of company naming rules you should be aware of. If you breach certain naming rules, Companies House will simply reject your company formation application.

Set up a limited company or stay self-employed?

November 30, 2016

One of the first, and most important decisions you make when you set up a new business is to decide what type of legal structure you should work under.