Wednesday, June 19, 2024

8 Essential Skills all Small Business Owners Should Have

To be a
successful business owner, you need a good idea, a market with a demand, and
know how to execute. You also need to have a set of basic skills if you want to
be able to succeed. This is especially true if you have a few employees working
with you.

However, many business owners have a vague idea of what it means to run a business, and find out that they’re limited much later on, especially when it comes to technology. But with the right set of practical skills, you’ll not only be able to run a tighter ship, but also have a much more hands on approach without having to constantly depend on outside workers. Here are some essential tech skills all small business owners should have.

Basic Computer Literacy

The very
first thing that you will need is basic computer literacy. You might be old
fashioned, but without this, you’ll be lost. No matter what field you’re in,
you will need to have at least a basic understanding of how computers work.

Not only
will you be able to protect your business better, but you’ll also be able to
use the power of the internet to advertise your business more efficiently, and
for less money. You won’t need to spend thousands of dollars working with a
digital marketing agency or IT consultants. Not to mention that you’ll have
little understanding of what they’re doing if you don’t have a formation and
could get taken advantage of.

This is
why you should consider at least completing an ECDL course before you get
started. If you’re already running a business, know that you can get your ECDL course online through services like findcourses.co.uk.
They will connect you with a variety of training providers close to you. If you
prefer to take the class in a traditional setting, they can also help you find
those too.

The ECDL
will give you a formation in things such as spreadsheets, word processing and
online marketing among other things. These are all skills that will allow you
to run a better business, and could give you a serious return on investment
when considering the help you won’t have to hire.

Basic HTML Skills

This is another very important tech skill that all business owners should master. HTML is the language used to build websites, but it has various other applications too. While it can be intimidating at first glance, HTML becomes much simpler once you learn the basics (or learn how to use WYSIWYG Editor like TinyMCE).

When you know
HTML
, you’ll be able to modify aspects of your website, like images,
navigation, and design. You could also learn how to build your website
yourself. It’s easy to start with a CMS like WordPress, for instance, and learn
how to modify themes yourself. Knowing this skill alone could save you
thousands of dollars on a website. And if you decide to have your website built
by a professional, you’ll be able to do some maintenance and troubleshooting
without having to keep them on a retainer.

Google Analytics

If you’re
going to learn HTML and build websites, you also have to be able to monitor
their performance and activity. This is why it’s essential that you understand
Google Analytics and always work on improving your material.

Google
Analytics is very straightforward and allows you to monitor things such as the
number of unique visits, enter and exit pages, and how long visitors are
staying on your website. But one of the most valuable things you’ll learn is
something called the bounce rate.

The
bounce rate is the percentage of visitors that come in and come out of your
website without visiting any other pages. Bounce rates could give you a clear
idea that there’s something wrong with your website. But furthermore, sites
with high bounce rates are viewed unfavourably by search engines, which will
hurt your visibility on them.

Search Engine Optimisation

Speaking
of search engines, search engine optimisation, or SEO for short, is one of the
most valuable skills that you could learn. SEO is the science of increasing
your visibility on search engines. But it’s also about knowing how to avoid
mistakes that could end up hurting your website.

SEO is
not about “tricking” search engines. It’s more about how to apply best
practices in order to organically move up the search results for specific
terms. SEO can be a great way to build tons of organic traffic, and when you
know SEO, you don’t have to constantly pump money into it. And even if you
don’t intend to do your SEO campaigns yourself, it will allow you to better
understand what SEO agencies are doing when you hire them.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is one of the most efficient
and powerful marketing tools that you can use. It’s laser targeted,
cost-effective, scalable, and quantifiable. You could use it to build a loyalty
program and inform clients about special deals. You can also use it to gain a
following online, and inform people about product launches. And, if you have
basic skills, email marketing is pretty simple. This is one of the best skills
that you can have if you don’t want to overspend on advertising and want to get
the most bang for your buck.

Social Media

Social
media is another tool you’ll need to master if you want to be able to build
your brand. It plays a central role in a lot of people’s lives, and is much
more powerful than traditional media in many cases.

When you
understand how social media works, you’ll be able to build a connection between
your brand and large audience. You can also learn how to use viral marketing
techniques and how to use hashtags. Social media is one of the most cost
effective marketing methods that you can find so it’s well worth investing in.

Payment Processing

This is
one of the most important things that you can learn if you want to not only be
able to process online payments, but offline payments as well. There are tons
of apps that allow you to accept mobile payments nowadays without the need for
an expensive merchant account.

Understanding
how payment processing works is also important if you’re trying to add things
like a shopping cart to your website. But more importantly, understanding it
will also allow you to guard yourself against attacks, and make sure that your
clients’ payment information remains secure at all times.

IT Security

This is
another crucial skill that all business owners should have. You can always hire
a consultant, or use a managed solution, but without a basic knowledge of how
IT security works, you’ll always be vulnerable.

With an
in depth knowledge of IT, you’ll be able to identify attacks quickly, find
leaks in your organisation, and be able to implement the right solutions to
prevent malicious attacks from inside or out. Not only that, but you’ll be able
to set up a clear IT security policy in your organisation, and make sure that
everyone follows through.

Conclusion

These are
only some of the tech skills that will help you as a business owner. However,
these could make a big difference on how dependent you’ll be on subcontractors,
and will allow you to have a clearer understanding of the tech aspects of your
business.

Claire James
Claire Jameshttp://www.firedigitaluk.com
Claire is an accounts manager at Fire Digital UK, an online publishing and content marketing company based in the North West.

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