The Small Business Comeback Guide for 2021

By March 15, 2021March 17th, 2021Marketing, Small Business, Technology, Website
Here at Big Red Jelly, where we help brand, build, and grow your business by combining powerful digital tools with human creativity and customization. We work in a lot of different areas to help businesses do better business online. In this post, we’re going to touch on a big campaign that we’re doing to kick off 2021 to really help small businesses come back. We’re going to dive into easy-to-use tools or platforms that a lot of small businesses can use.
Two of these tools are mentioned in our 2021 Small Business Comeback Guide. This is a free eBook that our team has created to help small businesses come back this year. You can download the free PDF guide here. If something intrigues you, or if you have questions, schedule a free consultation with our team. There really are not any strings attached. We are on a mission to help small and local businesses bounce back this year and we have a really strong feeling that is going to happen.

Use Digital Tools

Let’s jump into one of the steps: use digital tools. Powerful digital tools to help your business grow or scale.

Housecall Pro

The first tool we will discuss is a little bit industry-specific, but there are many tools like this for various industries. This one here is called Housecall Pro. This is a tool that we often recommend for small businesses who are in the home services industry. If you
have a business model where you send technicians or professionals to the houses of your customers Housecall Pro is a tool that would fit your needs. This can include electricians, plumbers, HVAC, garage door installation, cleaners, people who do home cleaning, commercial cleaning, residential cleaning, or any other industry that required you to go to the location of the customer in order to complete your job. House Call Pro is also a tool Big Red Jelly has been partnered with for a long time. We know how to set this tool up. We know how to integrate it with your website and we can also get you a discount on the subscription. Win-win!
Firstly, in order for small businesses to really come back, we have to embrace digital. We have to embrace online. It can be overwhelming and scary. The biggest question or concern that we get from small business owners is they don’t even know where to get started. Concerns such as a platform to invoice, send meaningful reminders, do my bookings, send out review requests, schedule people online, integrate with my website, have a live chat on my website, or interact with my customers. These are at least half a dozen different digital platforms to learn how to use and sign up for. And sounds expensive. But that’s not always the case. There is great software like Housecall Pro platform that brings it all together and makes it very easy to use for small businesses. They even have a mobile app so you can manage your business on the go.
So what does Housecall Pro actually do? It can do scheduling, dispatching, invoicing, software, and more. Again, if you’re an electrician, plumber, or if you go and do salon work if you’re a hairdresser or babysitter, a tutor, this tool will work for you. You can also integrate a calendar onto your website so visitors can see when you’re available and book an appointment. You can also set up memberships or recurring jobs. In order for small and local businesses to succeed, we have to do a better job of finding that recurring revenue. So you might already be doing a great job of landing sales, selling a certain product, but you have to think outside the box and think, is there a way for me to make this a subscription, a membership, some type of recurring revenue stream for my business? It’s going to help you scale and grow. Let’s say you are a company and someone books one of your technicians for a job. They book your technician for Wednesday at two o’clock p.m. to come to a check-up on the furnace. You can also set reminders. You can set a reminder to go out 24 hours before to Becky who booked your technician that Bob is coming out to check on her furnace at this time. Then it will send out another reminder a couple of hours before. This is going to greatly mitigate no-shows or last-minute cancellations, which is going to save you a lot of money. Then after the appointment or the booking is complete, what happens? You need to collect payment. You can collect payment right there on your phone using Housecall Pro. You can also send an invoice via text or email that they can open up on their phone and pay right there and then with their preferred payment method. One of our favorite little automations is after the job is complete, they’ve paid, they get a review request. They get a text message that says, “Hi, Becky. How was your experience with Bob today? If you enjoyed your experience, please take 20 seconds and leave a review here.” Which would then link through to Google, Yelp, Facebook or whatever preferred site.
We are huge believers in automating these things, getting your invoices sent out, review requests sent, making booking seamless on your website, and can be tracked on your phone. All of this can be done through Housecall Pro for reasonable prices. If you’re a startup, solopreneur, all of those things combined for $49 a month. If you’re interested, Big Red Jelly can help you out. We can actually get you a discount as well as help you integrate these things with your website. There’s no real benefit for us to refer people to Housecall Pro other than we just really enjoy it and know how to use and integrate it with the websites that we build.
Although Housecall Pro is a little bit specific in terms of the business model that they target, there are very similar customer relationship management, or CRM, tools like this. Housecall Pro is kind of a CRM plus. It’s a CRM plus invoicing, plus booking, plus project management, plus review requests, software plus more built into it. There are equivalents of this software for almost every industry out there. If you’re an attorney, if you’re a restaurant, if you are a whitewater rafting guide, if you are a business coach, talk to us and we can walk you through the equivalent of what this is for your business. You can automate so much of what you do. You can save time, money, get more reviews and higher conversion rates. You can make the customer experience so much more enjoyable because they can book online, pay online and do everything that they really want to online. And that’s just going to make them happier and coming back for more.

Google My Business

This platform is free, at least for now to use. This is your Google listing. So when you type in “best Chinese restaurant near me,” what pops up on your maps are different Google listings. Or you might see it on Google search. That is Google my business. If you have not gained access to your Google My Business account, or you have not verified your Google my business account, that should be a top priority. If you don’t know how to do that, shoot us an email. We can help you do that for free. Google My Business is probably the most important digital tool for a small or local business, especially if you are a brick-and-mortar store. Google My Business has been making some changes recently where if you’re in these service industries where you go to locations and service your customers at their location, Google My Business is also effective for you too. When you set up your Google My Business profile, you can actually dictate what your service area is. If you serve the entire state of Utah or serve your customers within a 25-mile radius of your zip code, that is a setting in Google My Business. They really are trying to create this social platform between customers and local businesses.

It is so intuitive and easy to use. If you go to Google and type in Big Red Jelly, luckily, we’ve been doing a good job on our Google My Business, you can see that this listing has our Google card on the right. In our Google card, you’ll see people also searched for social media profiles, posts we’ve done from Big Red Jelly, our latest reviews, questions and answers, products and services, then, of course, our information. You’ll also see 153 five-star reviews. Not bad where we’re located. After a Google search, your eyes are naturally going to go toward those visuals on the right. That is Google My Business. That is your Google listing. And guess what? You can dictate what shows up here. Once you’ve logged into your account and you’ve verified your account. On your homepage, it gives you a really cool dashboard where you can see your performance locally and how many people have viewed you Google listing. You can also see your reviews here. Also what we really like, you can share your business profile right here so you can send people to your Google My Business listing. In fact, that’s our invitation right now, find your Google my business, get it verified, copy your Google My Business link and send it to your closest colleagues, your team members, family, friends, anyone you’ve done business with or met with in the last
week.
Go get yourself 20 reviews right now. After all, why not? You can post as if it’s a social media profile. The insights are super helpful. The reviews you can go respond to your views, manage reviews from there.
Google My Business also has a free mobile app. You can go download it onto your phone so you can log into your listing and respond to reviews, post on the go, update your info, such as hours of operation, phone number if you are a local business owner. Get on Google, search for your business, try to find your business listing. If that doesn’t pull up your business, try to put in some extra information to really get it to appear. If it doesn’t appear, contact us and we’ll help you find it and get it verified so you can log in
and start growing your business using this free online platform.
Don’t forget to go to bigredjelly.com/comeback and download the free guide to see some of these other realistic, practical steps, tricks, and tips to help your business come back in 2021 and then schedule a consultation so we can chat. It’s all free, no strings attached.
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