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An efficient business is usually a more profitable business, and taking steps to improve your company’s efficiency can make a huge difference in your revenue. These improvements can also save your employees and customers a lot of time and stress and will help make everyone happier.

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When operating on a self-employed basis as a sole trader, you are your own boss, which means that you’re legally responsible for the financial affairs of your business, including the maintenance of financial records, daily bookkeeping and retaining the likes of invoices and receipts. As you keep close watch of your income and expenditure to ensure that the business is running smoothly, there are reporting obligations you are required to meet, writes Mark Halstead of Red Flag Alert.

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In addition to great product quality and superb customer service, there’s one more factor that is making quite an impact on eCommerce business these days. Online reviews. Apparently, online shoppers increasingly rely on them to make purchasing decisions, so disregarding the importance of managing the online reputation has become a sure-fire way to fail as a business. Well, it hardly comes as a surprise (just remember the last time you searched for reviews) because online testimonials help shoppers to make better decisions.

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If you run your own business, you are bound to have a lot on your plate all the time. The list of things to do never ends. To keep up you need to always be on your game. That is why everyone is looking for ways to be more productive to achieve their goals. Unfortunately, a lot of information we take as gospel is misleading and affects our productivity instead of helping us.

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People can only buy your goods and services if they actually know about them in the first place.  This means that it’s important to get the word out about who you are and what you do.  Search engine optimisation is all very well and it certainly has its uses, but brand awareness is even better.

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Finding the right candidate for the job is crucial for an array of reasons. For one, recruitment is a timely and costly process that businesses do not want to have to repeat over and over after shaking hands with the wrong candidate. When the true cost of a bad hire can be in excess of thousands of pounds, businesses need candidates that are committed to a long-term career with the company and are driven to succeed.

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There’s no doubt about it: moving out of the home is a bit of a leap in the dark for any business. There may be unintended consequences and hidden expenses just around the corner, but there may also be limitless opportunities for growth and lucrative success.

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What stories do you remember? Perhaps ones told to you long ago. The reason that stories such as Aesop’s Fables remain popular is that they confirm that stories and the messages they contain have a power that cannot be ignored. They help an audience by packaging the message in a highly memorable form.

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Established retailers have a habit of keeping their cards close to their chest, claiming that their success is down to simply having a “good eye” for products that will sell. But business can’t be all about guesswork, because you’re inevitably going to get it wrong at some point.

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If you’re an introvert, delivering talks may not be your first choice of how to apply your skills. However, as a business owner, you’ll need to present to your teams, clients or investors whether you like it or not.

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Readers question: I want to give my shares from my limited company to my partner, so my question is how do I transfer shares to a partner of my limited company?

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Whether they want to enjoy the great weather or spend more time with their families, many of your staff would enjoy working somewhere other than the office in the summer.

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In the latest research carried out by PolicyBee, it was found that small businesses are quite perplexed with Professional Indemnity Insurance and it causes quite the confusion. This confusion and lack of understanding resulted in around 40% of respondents not getting a professional indemnity cover, leaving them exposed.

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GDPR has now been in place for a year and, while the ICO has previously claimed it doesn’t intend to come down too hard on businesses still getting their privacy plans straight, the heavy fines are about to hit.

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Readers question: I bought some goods which I intended to sell via my company before I actually incorporated. These goods were not bought under the company name but instead under my name. Can I still add this to my accounting tool as the cost of goods?
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If you want your business to succeed, it needs to develop constantly. However, if you only operate within one area with limited resources, finding avenues for this development will be impossible. That’s why going global is a necessity for the businesses of today. Most importantly, even small companies now have a chance to do this as technological progress created a variety of solutions that make it both cheaper and easier to start doing business overseas.

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A shareholder has the right to receive dividends. When the company has retained profit available, they may declare a dividend. A dividend is a share of profit paid out of the company which is proportionate to the number of shares held.

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On-demand services are taking the world by storm. You can now get almost any service you want with a few simple clicks, including getting whatever you need delivered straight to your door.

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Owners of small businesses know that overcoming obstacles is part of the job. You simply don’t have the resources that your long-established large competitors have or their market dominance.

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Starting a business has never been easier; the Internet in particular and the march of technology means researching a market is within reach for start-ups (even at a global scale), and much of this can be achieved with relatively little money.

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