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Smart Business Essentials

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Practical Business Skills

Measuring Success

Regardless of the size of your business, there are always opportunities to be more productive, successful and profitable. Perfection doesn’t happen overnight — it’s a process. With careful planning and decision making, you can start achieving your goals. Here are some ways to take your business in the direction you want it to go.

Set financial goals
Outlining clear financial goals for your business, along with reasons to save, can be a real motivator when it comes to streamlining costs and utilizing profits wisely. Once they’re set, you can reevaluate them periodically to make sure they’re still relevant and attainable. Find out how.

Track your performance
When it comes to planning and decision-making, a clear record of business performance is extremely valuable. Your budget, accounting records and planning documents can be housed here as well. Although proper tracking takes some practice and dedication, the results can help you build on successes and address areas where performance could be better. Learn more.

Analyze your budget
Tracking your income and expenses is crucial to the success of your business. By creating a budget and sticking to it, you can track your sales, expenses and savings in order to reach your short- and long-term business goals. Get started here.

Get additional funding
If your business is up and running but needs more money, there are multiple routes you can explore. After determining how much you need to borrow and what you can pay back, decide which lending option is right for you, whether it’s applying for a loan, seeking out additional investors, crowdfunding or obtaining credit. Find out how.

Increase sales
One of the most effective ways to increase the revenue of your business is by selling more of your product or service. Explore strategies for increasing sales depending on your industry, market and business goals. These strategies may include building interest in your product, creating a marketing plan, repricing your product, offering discounts or reducing overhead costs. Choose a strategy, stick to it and gauge your success. These tips will help.

Make a profit
The vast majority of small business owners start their business with an important goal: making a profit. Making money is a crucial part of owning a business, although it can sometimes take years to become profitable. Learn ways to make it happen.

Track Online Analytics
For online businesses, setting up analytics should be one of the first things you do when launching a website. Google Analytics remains the easiest way to monitor every action taken on your website and leverage digital marketing to reach your KPI goals, plus it integrates with many other online tools you may be using and works seamlessly with host providers so it will never slow down your website.

For example, you can track which customers reach your checkout page and do not complete a purchase, then serve targeted ads across other channels (social, web display, etc) to remind them to purchase.

Disclaimer: No Legal Advice Intended
This site provides general information related to creating and running a business. The content of this site is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal or tax advice or opinions. The contents of this site, and the viewing of the information on this site, should not be construed as, and should not be relied upon for, legal, financial or tax advice in any particular circumstance or fact situation. No action should be taken in reliance on the information contained on this site, and Visa Inc. disclaims all liability in respect to actions taken or not taken based on any or all of the contents of this site to the fullest extent permitted by law. You should contact an attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular legal or tax issue or problem, including those relating to your current or potential business.

The contents of this site have been developed for a U.S. audience.