What should you be doing in the new year to take your business to the next level?

As tradespeople, time certainly is of the essence and we know promoting ourselves is often way down the list – despite new business being a key, and constant, goal.

So, we spoke to our friends at Checkatrade who provided five simple tips which you can start to implement in the new year.

1. New year, new website?

When was the last time your website had a bit of TLC? Often, when we’re busy working, we forget to work on ourselves. Checkatrade added, “Our membership advisors work with new members to ensure they set themselves up to benefit from their membership – and this often covers the conversation of improving the businesses’ own website.”

“Whether you have new testimonials to include or a series of recent images, consider an hours’ update to your site as applying a new lick of paint.”

2. Add some personality.

Customers expect to see you on various platforms. It’s no wonder that social media is becoming so influential when consumers are making buying decisions directly on the channels! Whether you tackle Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram, (or even a combination of a few), it provides a great opportunity to share some of your personality and become more than just your business’ name.

Checkatrade continued, “Use the sites to give regular updates on your availability and what you’re working on at any one time.”

“Make sure you have your contact details in your bio and banner image if possible.”

“There’s nothing worse than a consumer who gives up because they couldn’t contact you!”

3. Invest in systems.

You’re good at what you do – so spend more time doing it! Being a small business, or a sole trader, your time is precious. So have a look at software which could give you more time; automatic invoices, booking in appointments and managing staff rotas, etc. If the cost to you means you could spend more time with a client, and ultimately earn more money, then it’s worth it.

4. A picture says a thousand words.

Remember, images are key! Consumers love a before and after picture – they can relate and easily see how you could help them. Along with your social profile, images help to put a face behind the brand, it allows you to showcase all that you have to offer and how you go above and beyond for a client. We’re not talking big budget photoshoots, but with practice and a little bit of help from free online tools, your iPhone can do wonders.

5. Build your credibility.

Now your online presence is improved, where can potential customers go to, to ensure you’re reliable, trusted and qualified? Checkatrade of course! They received over 1.4 million consumer searches last month, so they know consumers are keen to ensure the tradesperson they’re hiring is the best one for the job. There’re a few places you could consider:

Sign up to a trade association.
Consider the Government endorsed TrustMark scheme.
Register with an online trade directory.

Checkatrade continued, “Why do over 32,000 tradespeople associate their brand with us?”

“We’re proud of our significant vetting process which means consumers know and are confident, that the tradesperson they are hiring is trusted, reliable and qualified to complete the job.”

“As well as connecting tradespeople to consumers, we offer a range of benefits and advice service to help businesses like yours move to the next stage.”

“To join our list of registered tradespeople, visit, www.checkatrade.com/Join or call 01243 952425 and quote ‘OTT’.”

So what do you think? Could this be what you need to get ahead of the competition this year? Let us know in the comments below!

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