Latest Articles

What is Corporation Tax? Guide for small companies

If you set up a business via a limited company, your annual profits will be subject to Corporation Tax.

Dealing with your corporation tax issues is one of your accountant’s key tasks. However, it is ultimately the directors of a limited who are responsible for ensuring that a company’s tax affairs are in order. (more…)

How are business rates calculated for small firms?

business rates

Just as you have to pay council tax on your home, so your business must cough up business rates for its premises. They can be a pain and an easily overlooked cost when you are starting your business.

This guide will help you understand what business rates you might have to pay in England, how to challenge the rates set, and even if you can claim any relief.

What is SWOT analysis?

Used to identify the key strengths and weaknesses of your company as well as any threats and opportunities, a SWOT analysis can help to work out what your business strategy should be.

5 ways to instantly improve your cash flow

Cash flow is the most important thing in your business – more important even than profit. If you imagine cash to be the blood cells of a business, then cash flow is the flow of blood, keeping the business alive. A healthy person will quickly die without blood. And a healthy profitable business will quickly […]

Sole trader insurance – what cover should you have in place?

While nobody likes to think about it, things can and do go wrong when you’re in business, no matter how cautious you are. An employee could get hurt on the job. An unhappy customer could sue you. Or a burst water pipe could flood your premises and damage expensive equipment.

15 things you should know about being a sole trader

You’ll be in good company. The vast majority of the UK’s 5.8 million self-employed — 59% — are registered as sole traders. This stands to reason. Registering as a sole trader is easy and inexpensive to do, so it’s the ideal way to test the waters of self-employment.

How to apply data science practically in your business

Data Science, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning – all 21st Century “buzzwords” which you now see referenced often in news articles, at virtual conferences, on company social media posts and blogs. But what do they really mean, and how can you practically apply them in business?

How to choose the best sole trader bank account

There’s no rule that says you must open a separate business bank account when you start working as a sole trader. In theory, you could use your personal bank account to receive client payments, pay your suppliers, and handle other business-related transactions.

The different ways you can hire staff for your small business

If you’re considering taking on a new member of staff, that’s usually a positive sign that your business is growing. The next decision you face is whether or not to take on a full-time employee. Adding someone else to the payroll on a permanent contract is a serious commitment, especially for a small business and […]

Is 2021 the year to start a property development business?

Could 2021 be the year of the small independent property developer? The last 10 months have seen more changes to the planning rules in England than the previous 10 years combined, as the government looks for a way to reach its target of creating 300,000 new homes a year, and simultaneously stimulate the economy as […]

How to prevent your business from running out of money

There are several different measurements that will provide you with insights into the health of your business. Profit is certainly one of them. However, even the world’s most profitable enterprises can experience financial difficulty if they ignore their cash flow.

Straightforward E-Commerce Tips for Small Business Owners

Were you aware that there are currently well over 7.1 million online retailers across the world (1)? Although this figure is staggering in and of itself, there is no doubt that the digital domain will only continue to gain momentum in the coming years. This is why so many freelancers are now choosing to take […]

The Democratisation of Professional Services & How to Use it to Your Advantage

With lockdown largely forcing the country into remote working, digital adoption has been accelerated exponentially. Of course, this isn’t without its challenges, as businesses struggle to ensure their staff have access to the right tools and technology, are communicating effectively, and continue to offer the same high level of service to clients.

Fulfilling Your Obligations to Customers when Selling Online

We are all fully aware what the last year has represented. Living through the unprecedented circumstances of 2020 has meant that we have had to adapt. Luckily, because of the nature of who we are, we are adaptable beings. So, if your business wasn’t online at the start of 2020, then you most certainly will […]

How to Successfully Launch Your Drinks Brand in Time for Summer

As you may expect, soft drink sales tend to skyrocket in summer. In fact, the start of the primary sales season starts as soon as Easter and lasts through to the end of September. With the global pandemic leading to most high street shops temporarily shutting, supermarkets, along with food and beverage retailers, have seen […]

How to Help Your Team Beat the January Blues

The widespread optimism surrounding the start of the New Year has swiftly subsided. Is it any surprise, when the headlines are dominated by rising death tolls, tougher restrictions and ever-growing Government debt? ‘Normal’ life feels more out of reach than ever, and 2021 looks set to be just as disruptive and unpredictable as 2020.

IP guide for small businesses – trademarks, patents, copyright and design rights

As a small business owner, you’ve probably heard of the phrase “Intellectual Property”, or IP as it’s commonly referred to. But studies show that despite knowing what Intellectual Property is, many small businesses assume that protecting their Intellectual Property is only something that larger, well-known businesses need to worry about.

How work-life balance has changed & what employers need to do

It is important for employees to have a work-life balance. Work-life balance is basically how much time employees spend working and how much they spend with family or doing things that they enjoy. At times it is hard for employees to get the right work life balance, however having a good work life balance is […]

Private health insurance options for small business owners

If you’re setting up your own business, you’ll no longer have to answer to an employer or put up with many of the annoyances of being a permanent employee. But, what about the ‘perks’ you might have enjoyed in your previous life as a member of staff? For people who have been lucky enough to […]

Do you need an in-house accountant or bookkeeper?

At some point in your journey as a small business, you’ll probably come across a common dilemma – you need an accountant. But what’s the best solution for your business? Should you hire an in-house resource, outsource the work to a third party, or try and manage it all yourself?

How to write an eye-catching press release

At Bytestart, we receive hundreds of press releases every week. Although around 40% are usually relevant to UK small businesses, out of these we probably only end up using 4 or 5 a week in our news articles. Many are not relevant to our business, some are poorly written, and the majority are not newsworthy.

What to do when a client refuses to pay or can’t pay

If you’ve got a business headache right now, there’s a pretty good chance it’s to do with clients owing you money. It’s almost as if the current economic shutdown (late 2020) has become a prime opportunity for anyone who fancies improving their own cash flow to help themselves to better credit terms from their suppliers… […]

How to use stories to become a better negotiator

My new book, The Book of Real-World Negotiations: Successful Strategies from Government, Business and Daily Life not only focuses on real world negotiation examples, but a subplot that clearly comes through in the book is the power that stories possess when it comes to negotiating.