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5 tips when setting up an SME



Starting your very own business is very appealing in the UK, with seven out of 10 of us pondering the idea, according to surveys. Back in 2017 there were over 5.7 million businesses within the private sector

In the UK, the idea of setting up your own business is greatly appealing. Surveys have found the seven out of 10 of us have pondered with the idea, while four out of five 16-21-years-olds would like to be their own boss. In 2017, there was a four per cent increase on the previous year, with over 5.7 million private sector businesses in total.

There are so many businesses starting up, from a side hustle to a full-time project. But as a huge number are ultimately failing, we’re here to look at the laws you must follow and how to give your business the best chance of success through advertising.

Business Registration

Business registration can be a more in-depth task that it sounds due to the various options available to new owners. Mostly business owners will set up as a sole trader, partnership or limited company. It may be easier to set up as a sole trader initially but in the long run it can end up being tougher; this is because you’re deemed responsible for any debts that the business builds up over time.

On the flip side, a limited company helps you to keep your personal finances away from your business assets, but this usually means a lot more reporting and management tasks involved.

If you’re going into business with someone else, it makes sense to go down the route of a partnership. This is the simplest way to set up your new business if there are two a more people involved.


Often overlooked but Licensing is an integral part of the process when setting up an SME. Certain small businesses may not require a licence, but you should always check at the earliest opportunity to avoid fines or being shut down before you’ve really began.

There’s also the issue of a licence to play music, sell food or even trade in the street. Use this tool to find out which licences your concept may require.

Employing staff

Several points need to be considered if you intend on employing staff. First of all you need to make sure you’re paying them the National Minimum wage and must set up National Insurance payments. It is worth noting here that you’ll be able to claim an allowance to reduce your bill. You must also make sure that they are actually legally entitled to work in the UK, so don’t just presume — be sure to do thorough checks, including a possible DBS check if needed.

Then there’s employment insurance, as mentioned previously, and the need to write up a legally binding statement of employment for any members of staff that will be employed for more than one month. HM Revenue and Customs must also be informed via registering as an employer.


Insurance for your business basically covers you and your company against any unexpected costs. It doesn’t matter if you run a large multinational company, a small business, or are self-employed, it’s important to find the right insurance for you. For example, insurance for dog kennels will greatly differ from catering insurance or retail insurance, so be sure to properly research your options.

Business insurance protects you against mistakes, damage and legal costs, known as liability insurance. Certain insurances are required by law, such as employers’ liability insurance. This will cover the cost of any injuries or illnesses any employees may suffer due to work. Elsewhere, if your company will be using vehicles, you must have commercial motor insurance, while some professions must also have professional indemnity insurance that has been provided by their professional bodies or regulators.

Cyber insurance and commercial property insurance are two examples of optional policies, but depending on the nature of your business, could well be worth purchasing. If you are going to be working from home, while it’s not a requirement to have business insurance, you should consider updating your home insurance as you’ll need to have the appropriate commercial property insurance.

Employing staff

Several points need to be considered if you intend on employing staff. First of all you need to make sure you’re paying them the National Minimum wage and must set up National Insurance payments. It is worth noting here that you’ll be able to claim an allowance to reduce your bill. You must also make sure that they are actually legally entitled to work in the UK, so don’t just presume — be sure to do thorough checks, including a possible DBS check if needed.

Then there’s employment insurance, as mentioned previously, and the need to write up a legally binding statement of employment for any members of staff that will be employed for more than one month. HM Revenue and Customs must also be informed via registering as an employer.


Once everything is up and running, it’s essential that you advertise your services or business if you want to succeed. A solid marketing plan is crucial in order to outline where you want your business to go and how you can progress. It will look at how much advertising will cost. A great cost-effective way for any local start-up to take advantage of is leaflet delivery services.

Research has found that nine in 10 people remember receiving door-drop mail, with almost half confirming that they keep ahold of these leaflets, making it an effective method of advertising if you utilise it correctly. It’s recommended that you keep your content simple, include your business name and logo, telephone number, email address and the service(s) you are offering.

Similarly, newspaper advertisements can be a very cost-effective way to promote your business — if they have been properly written. Make sure you don’t neglect your online presence, either. This is a significant area in advertising at present, and social accounts are a great way to promote your business to your intended audience.

If you are opening a new office space, outdoor banners can direct people’s attention towards your business. These relatively cheap and durable displays can be used outside your workspace and research has found that the majority of a local business’s regular customers live within a five-mile radius of where you are based. This means that each potential customer could see your banner up to 60 times each week. Digital printing services can be a strong addition to your companies marketing efforts.

With so much to think about when you decide to set up your own company, it’s crucial to plan meticulously if you want your brand to be remembered and not end up another failed start-up. By fully researching the above points, you will stand yourself in good stead from the offset.


Seven out of 10 of us have thought about starting our own business. However, often we don’t know how to go about getting started. This article will offer advice on the laws you have to abide by and what documents are required. It will look at several business ideas and start-ups, including dog walking.

Hello All! My name is Chris and I am a 32 year old entrepreneur that has always been fascinated with anything that is different from the everyday norm . Lately, it has been hard to keep up with everything, whether it's cool and weird places to visit, or new bands that are creating different sounds.

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Here Are 5 Things Your Business Can Learn from Starbucks



There’s no denying that Starbucks is a business giant. The Seattle coffee chain sprung into being in 1971 and has since gone global, with 29,000 stores across the world today. In under 50 years, Starbucks has achieved what many businesses dream of: instant brand recognition and iconic status. Starbucks has managed to leverage an unmistakable image and identity to propel its business around the globe and to a record $6.3b in revenue in the last quarter of 2018, according to its financial data.

Business owners of all stripes can learn from Starbucks. You don’t have to be working in the coffee industry or even run a retail business to be able to take valuable lessons from the success of Seattle’s finest. Here are five things that your business — in any industry — can learn from Starbucks and put into practice.

1. Brand Identity Is Vital

One of the reasons why Starbucks has been able to storm the globe is its strong sense of brand identity. The green and white two-tailed mermaid is synonymous with Starbucks. While an attractive and unique logo is important for a business, it is not the only thing that matters when crafting a brand identity.

Starbucks says its mission is to provide “the best coffee possible”, and has defined its niche as a café chain committed to premium products. It’s no coincidence that the closer a house is to a Starbucks, the greater its value is. Rightly or wrongly, Starbucks is perceived as luxury by many, and this is because Starbucks has reflected this in its branding.

Along with its luxury image, Starbucks tries to portray itself as friendly and community-based, even calling itself a “neighbourhood-gathering place”. When a barista asks you for your name when you’re taking coffee out, it may be to aid organisation and ensure customers get the right drink, but it’s also a small personal touch that makes customers feel valued and special. This also has great shareability, allowing the chain to benefit from free promotion across social media.

Have a strong mission statement where you state what your business stands for and make sure that every marketing strategy you use and every step you take to push your business forward revolves around it.

2. Make Customer Convenience a Key Part of Your Strategy

In the simplest way, Starbucks offers customer convenience through its takeaway cups. Customers seeking a caffeine fix on the way to work and who don’t have time to stay can easily slip in for their drink and be on their way with it in hand.

When the mobile payment revolution began a few years ago, Starbucks was quick to integrate mobile payments into its apps for iOS and Android. Customers can even order and pay in advance, allowing them to pop in to grab their drink and go — it’s convenience at its finest, and shows that Starbucks not only knows its demographic — busy commuters — but also tailors its growth towards it.

Starbucks increased its delivery service last year and will soon roll it out across stores in Japan, China, and the US, which brings us to the next point…

3. There’s Strength in Numbers — Work with Other Businesses

In a bid to further expand its delivery, Starbucks has partnered with Uber to provide its products through the UberEats service. After trialling it at stores in Miami and Tokyo, Starbucks will spread the service to a further 2,000 locations across the United States this year. When Starbucks first started delivery — in China — it worked with internet retail giant Alibaba and food delivery service

The lesson here is that collaboration is not a dirty word. Not every other business is a rival, and partnering with others to achieve shared goals is a smart move in driving your business forward. All parties involved could financially benefit and your business could gain greater recognition and awareness as a result. The cost of partnership is often significantly less than delivering the service independently while working with other businesses lets you put a specific task in the hands of the experts — rather than risk spreading yourself too thin.

4. Don’t Put Your Business in a Rigid Box

Starbucks has always been known as a coffee company, but that doesn’t mean it can’t branch out. In 2012, it acquired Teavana, a tea company with branches across the US. Soon after, Starbucks closed all of the Teavana stores and began offering some of its products within Starbucks stores.

Just because it began four decades ago as a coffee shop doesn’t mean that it needed to rigidly stick to this and sacrifice diversification. Starbucks also offers food and has continued to add to its roster of drinks available. When it comes to your own business, consider how you can build on what you already do to offer new services to your clients and customers. Think about what your customers want and, as always, make sure you’re in alignment with brand identity — there’s no reason why you should limit your own growth and expansion.

5. Craft the Right Atmosphere

Starbucks states that it wants to promote a “rewarding coffee experience”. Take note of the word “experience” — this is about more than its products. The decor of its branches ensures that wherever in the world you are, Starbucks is unmistakeably Starbucks. Starbucks has successfully created its own coffee culture, and whether you’re in Japan or the UK, you’re instantly reminded of Starbucks’ friendly and luxury vibe in its decor and personal touches.

What sort of atmosphere do you want in your business? What does your decor — if you operate a physical space — and the way you treat your customers or clients say about your business and how it operates? If you run an online business, what’s your website like? Is it welcoming and easy to use? Is your copy friendly and fun or stiff and inflexible? The colours you use and the layout you choose help to create an atmosphere. As the popular saying goes, there is only one chance at a first impression, making it crucial that your business, at a glance, promotes the image and atmosphere that you want to present.

James Fell is Online Business Editor at Aceville Publications, overseeing digital projects for What Franchise and Global Franchise. He’s passionate about writing about business and the future of franchising.

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Tips for Starting off at A New Job



If you are a veteran of the workforce in this era than I am sure this is not the first time you are switching companies. It can be really nerve-racking to start off at a new place. There are so many different office dynamics to learn and names to try and not forget. At this point I am sure you have a good idea of how to make a smooth transition but I am hoping this list will either reinforce your opinions or give you a few new great ideas.

Getting the right Office Furniture

If you are starting off in a new office then I am sure you were given the option to choose which furniture you will get. There are so many different styles out there so picking the right office furniture can sometimes be overwhelming. If you have free reigns on what you get then you should maybe take a stroll around the office to see what the others have picked out. This way you do not get any dirty looks if you choose a style that people thinks look out of place. But then again, it is your office and you get to choose what you get so take advantage of the offer.


There is nothing worse then coming into the breakroom to make a morning coffee to find out that you need to clean up the last person’s mess. If you do not want to get on everyone’s bad side then this is something you definitely need to keep in mind while you are half asleep in the morning. The breakroom is basically everyone’s favorite place to go so keeping it clean is of utmost importance.

Making sure your office is clean is important as well. Studies have shown that having a clean office increases your productivity which is important when you are just starting off. Your employer wants to feel satisfied that you were worth the money that he or she is paying you. It also gives you more of a professional look.

Do not Fake it Til You Make it

This mantra can be useful in some situations, but it is never ok at a new job! If you have important questions then it is better to ask in the beginning. Having someone say “I already explained this to you on your first week” when it is a year later will make you look terrible. Overall just make sure you are always asking questions in the beginning while it is still acceptable.

Do Not Avoid Feedback

This is the best advice that I have gotten so far. You do not have to wait until you are at a company for six months to find out how you are doing.  Feel free to talk to your boss and get feedback whenever you feel the time is right. This will make you look great because improvement is really important if you want promotions. If you look at the employees that have kept the same title for a long time most likely they are the ones that are comfortable with where they are and do not want to change. Change is good at a company that has a lot of room for promotions.

Review On boarding Materials

Adjusting to the office can be made easier by looking at the employee manual. I know it seems kind of boring but their may be a few things in there that will surprise you and bring up a few questions. It is important to ask all of the questions in the beginning, but at the same time, many of them might already get answered in the on boarding materials. For example, they probably have the company logins and a tutorial on how to do it. If you ask a coworker for help you do not want to look bad when they say “O, it should all be in the on boarding materials they gave you”.

Learn the Computer Programs Necessary

If Microsoft Excel is a big part of your job and you are not an expert at it then learning tips and tricks before you start will be a huge plus. Excel has shortcuts that will truly make your job easier. Personally, I used to spend so much extra time doing something manually and a coworker noticed one day and showed me a shortcut. I was so relieved that I was able to save hours on my work, but I also felt a little annoyed that I did not know about it before.

Look Professional

You might have been expected to wear a suit to your interview but that does not necessarily mean that you are supposed to wear one to work every single day. Find out what the workers typically wear and start to build your style off of that. You do not want to go to work in a three piece suit when everyone else is wearing Jeans, and a collared shirt. It will make you look a little snobby. On the other hand, do not show up in jeans if you have a feeling the work attire most people are wearing is a bit more professional. You are already going to feel out of place and uncomfortable during the first few weeks so fitting in is going to help with that.

Being Punctual

There are so many workers that end up showing up late to their first day or they are trying to leave early. This will make you look terrible. There is no other way to say it. The person that hired you is taking the risk, and vouching for you that you are a good employee. It is a true letdown for them if you show up late on the first day, or even during the first month. If you have kids and you know that you may be a few minutes late every now and then you should let them know that in the beginning to offset any frustrations they may get from this.

Overall, just be positive and do not forget to ask questions!

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Benefits of Having a Professional Invoice



Sending an invoice has been a major part of business for centuries no matter what the business is. It used to be a paper sent in the mail or handed to the client but now there are so many great online tools out there for accounting departments to choose from. It can be hard and frustrating to do something like this on your own especially when it comes to graphics and formatting.

Trying to do it on your own

I myself have tried to create my own invoice which ended in a ton of frustration. Besides for invoices it can sometime be hard to have a financial strategy so I use HJS. It is hard enough to try and create the graphics and then whenever I would try to save the document everything would move around. Finally, after hours of trying to get it done I realized there is free invoice templates online that I can use. This literally changed everything and now that is all I use for any business invoice.

Creating the Invoice

It is actually fairly simple to do invoices online and the services out there give step by step instructions for maximum efficiency. They even let you choose which currency the invoice is in. Basically, you write your company name, who you are billing, and the description, as well as the price. Once this is all done there are a few different ways to save it and you are done. When there are over ten invoices to send in a day this is a complete game changer.

Invoice Home

My favorite service to use is Invoice Home. There are a few good ones out there but my personal favorite is invoice home. If you are running a small business and have to multi-task then this is the service you should be using. Literally the first thing you see on there landing page is “Create Invoice Now”. All you have to do is click on in and the rest is just step by step instructions. After it is saved in the right format you can send it to your client strait away. Just make sure you set up an account if you want all of your information saved. This way you don’t have to start over each time for all of your invoices.

Overall, if you are having trouble making your own invoice than you should use the services out there. Even if you are not emailing the invoice, you can always just print it out and give it to the costumer.Also, with HJS you can easily manage all your financial operations. Check out their website and find best business management ideas.

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Tips You Can Use to Make Your Working Day More Productive



Productivity is so important when it comes to your working day because you need to try to get as much done as you possibly can. There are so many things you need to consider when it comes to daily working life, and it is important to try to make sure you are as productive as possible. This is going to go a long way toward helping you be more successful and get more done.

Whether you are running your own company or working for a business, it is important that you assess what is involved in boosting productivity. You might have some of your own tips and strategies to help you over the course of a day. But, these are some of the best things you can do that will allow you to be more productive as much as possible. When you’re at work, trying to be as productive as possible is very important. Looking into different software you can use, could be the perfect way to be more productive. Asset Bank is one of the best digital asset management tools out there.

Block Nuisance Calls

Nuisance calls can be a total pain because they are irritating and distracting. Plus, you also have to account for the fact that they can get in the way of you receiving other work-related calls. Now, sometimes you might be able to block nuisance calls, but it’s also a good idea to find out who is calling. Carry out a phone number lookup online and find out who has called you. Then you can get in touch with them and ask for your number to be removed from their system.

Listen to Music

You also need to make sure you are in the zone and that you can get yourself mentally into the right frame of mind for work. One of the best ways of achieving this is to bring headphones with you and listen to music while you work. This is something that is really important because it blocks out background noise and conversation, and it helps to keep you in the zone at all times as well.


Prioritizing your projects for the working day is really important, and a great way of staying more productive. This is often about the psychological approach to work, and whether it is easier to get the quicker, easier stuff out of the way first, or leave it until afterward. Prioritizing effectively is something your really need to work on, because this is a wonderful way of making sure you are more productive.

Stop Checking Your Emails

Emails are a big distraction for you during the working day, particularly when you’re receiving a lot of them in a short space of time. The best approach to take here is to set yourself a specific time at which to check your emails. Try to limit the amount of time you are checking them on a daily basis, and make sure you turn off email notifications so you aren’t bombarded.

These are just some of the great ways of going about making your working day more productive. This is essential in a business capacity because you want to feel as though you are fulfilling your duties and making the most of the working day. Follow these hints and you’re going to end up being much more productive as a result.

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Are You Thinking of Redeeming Your Frequent Flyer Points for a Luxury Holiday?



It’s always good to know that you have the opportunity to travel around the world with ease and super-convenience. These days, you can bring your frequent flyer points into use by spending them to book so much more than you can imagine. Yes, it’s true. It’s not just flights anymore. Now you have the luxury to book tours, cruises, accommodation, transfers and more with your frequent flyer points or with the combination of flyer points and cash.   

For instance, Qantas has recently partnered with Luxury Escapes. This means that frequent travellers of Qantas will be able to book a luxury holiday using their Qantas frequent flyer points. And not just booking. The frequent travellers will be able to spend their points on upgrading their room choice and their overall travel experience. This makes going on holidays more fun. And with frequent flyer points, it’s incredibly affordable.

Up till now, people used to select a location for their next holidays because they got a bargain flight to that place. But now, it is completely different. Now people decide to go wherever they want to go and see if they can book a flight to get there, using their points. For more information, you can reach out to PointsBank.

Earning Frequent Flyer Points

As it turns out, earning points is very easy. Most of the people believe they would have to spend more in order to earn more points, but that’s not the case. You don’t even have to spend more. You just have to change the way you pay. That’s all!

Here are three tips to earn more frequent flyer points:

  1. The first thing is to get a good credit card that can get you 0.75 or 1 point for $1 spent. If your credit card gets you 0.4 or 0.5 points for $1 spent, then it’s just not worth it and you will have to spend more to earn more points.
  2. Try to use your credit card for all the big and small purchases you make, because each point brings you closer to your next holiday.
  3. You can increase your points by shopping in an airline’s online mall. This way you can earn bonus points as well.

It’s good to know how you can earn points, but it’s really important to know how to spend them. Wasting your points on something senseless is unforgivable. You must use your travel points to book holidays and create memories that will last for a lifetime. Here’s how you must bring your flyer points into good use:

  1. Refrain from spending your points on gift vouchers because you can buy those at cheaper rates elsewhere.
  2. If it’s possible for you, try saving your points for a business class ticket. It’s so much more fun than economy class.
  3. You can save your points to take a close friend of yours on holiday with you.  

Luxury holidays are no longer a dream. It’s possible for you to go on one if you earn and spend your frequent flyer points wisely.

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5 Things to Stop Procrastinating



Procrastination is part of human nature. When we don’t love the idea of a task, or our schedule becomes packed, it’s easy to tuck something away for “later.” Emails stack up. That pile of laundry in our closet just keeps getting bigger. Old condiments wait in the fridge, needing to get thrown out. It’s normal to procrastinate on a lot of things, but we shouldn’t procrastinate on things forever. This week, take a look at some of the things you can start taking action on now. Most people are putting off at least one of these things–and some of us are procrastinating on all of them! See which things you can commit to completing before Monday rolls around again.

Calling Family

If it’s been a while since you called your parents, siblings, or grandparents, you can try to schedule a time slot for that this week. It’s easy to lose touch with family when you have a busy schedule, but a phone call can help you reconnect and share recent news. It might be overwhelming to call everyone on your list, so choose a few names and call them this week or weekend. When you do, make sure that you spend time asking questions, which is an easy and surefire way to enrich your conversation and help you truly connect with your family member.

Having Hard Conversations


We all hate having tough conversations. You may need to ask forgiveness for something, confront a friend or family member about a destructive behavior, or stand up for yourself at work. It’s important to have those tough conversations, however. Although one of the most difficult talks is the one you have about you or your spouse’s burial preferences, a short discussion can make all the difference. You can easily search for location-specific resources like cremation services in Texas so you can be thoroughly prepared–vocalizing your wishes makes things easier on your family in the event of your passing. Every hard conversation makes things better in the long run.

A Weight Loss Routine

Since the majority of American adults are overweight, it makes sense that a weight loss routine is something we all procrastinate. It can be hard to commit to shedding those pounds, and one person’s weight loss solution doesn’t work with another person’s body and metabolism. In other words, it can be hard to find a lasting solution, and sometimes you need to make a change to kickstart new habits. To finally stop procrastinating on your weight loss routine, you could try a diet aid like Fastin, or join an online fitness and weight loss support group so you’ll have others holding you accountable to reaching your goals.

Answering Emails

Do you have a huge pile-up of old emails? While you might have a habit of ignoring certain messages, you should unclog your inbox every once in a while. If you need to go back and read some unread messages, take a chunk of time for those responses. If you’re sure your unopened mail is junk, it will only take about ten minutes to sort through your inbox, checking all unread messages, and then deleting them in bursts. This is a quick and mindless activity that can help take a nagging task off your plate with ease!


Everyone has good intentions. The problem is, we don’t always follow them. If you’ve been meaning to volunteer for a good cause, this Saturday might be the perfect day to give your time. You could sign up to sort food pantry items, serve a meal to the homeless, or work on a mailing drive with a nonprofit you admire. Help is always needed, and you’ll feel good if you finally commit to your plans to volunteer.

Procrastinating will always be a tempting and alluring habit. As long as you stay mindful and recognize when it’s taking control of your life, you’ll be able to keep it at bay and accomplish all the errands you need to get done–so you can move on to what you want to get done!

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