I’ve read the reporting by the BBC on ten UK small businesses and their travails in the current credit crunch conditions. The problem with the Beeb on matters like this, is that they’re pitifully poor when it comes to high quality analysis as they are as an organisation culturally straight-jacketed to never proffer an opinion. Whilst laudable in terms of political unbias, it suffocates any meaningful portrayal of things such as this. Still, reading over the gloss they’ve produced this installment, a few similar points grabbed me.
- Purchase decision-making is getting delayed
- Clients are putting back existing delivery schedules
- Forward orders are being reduced in size
These all form part of the same theme. What can you do to encourage commitments to be made earlier?
There’s a tightrope to travel here. Whatever you decide must avoid taking from margin elsewhere across your portfolio.
- Can you create smaller packages that keep a client’s spend continuing, so that you maximise ‘run-rate’ business whilst still leaving the door open for more ‘long-term’ investments?
- Can what you provide be ‘spread’ out over time?
- Is it possible to offer a level below the proposed wares which are being stalled, to easier enable take-up with a built in upgrade path should conditions improve?