Krishna Solanki Designs

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The Pros & Cons Of Listing Your Prices On Your Website

BusinessKrishna SolankiComment

Listing your prices on your website is a hot topic for many small business owners.  I’ve seen this topic being raised in so many Facebook groups, time and time again. I totally get it, you want to give your potential clients enough information to make an informed choice, but you don’t want to give ALL the information away, especially when it comes to pricing.

“But hang on, if I list my prices, I won’t have to have that awkward conversation with them” - I hear you say!!

Well, I’ve created a list of pros and cons for listing your prices on your website….

Starting your own business? Check out these unmissable tips

Side Hustle, Startup, My Business, DesignKrishna Solanki3 Comments

Last week I attended my first ever Twitter chat - #startyourbusiness. It was fab!  Totally exhilarating and captivating. I didn't know what I was doing or getting into (more on that on another blog post coming soon!!) but I was glad I took part.  The twitter chat was all about starting your own business and not only did I contribute my design and branding thoughts about starting my own business, but I also gained a better understanding of other small businesses who have advice based on their experiences.
I thought all the tips that were shared were very valid and so today I wanted to share these awesome tips for fellow small businesses owners or potential owners.

1 | Research, research, research

I couldn't agree more with this tip!! It's so vitally important to research when starting a new business.  There is sometimes an endless list of "things" to research, but the top ones that spring to my mind are:

  • Research your audience, your market, your niche, and find out what your ideal clients want.
  • Research if there are any other businesses with a similar name and find out if the domain and social media handles are available.
  • Research how to market yourself and find out where your potential clients "hang out".

Although these are easier said than done, and can sometimes take longer than you think, they are super important to do and re-evaluate over time.

2 | Know your potential customer/client base

This tip follows on from the above.   If you know who you are targeting it should be easier to market to them (in theory).  As long as you know who they are and what they want, you can start to build a marketing campaign to target to them.

3 | Don't let branding and design be an after thought

A lot of small businesses or startups tend to leave branding and design to later on in the process.  I'm not entirely sure why, maybe it's for financial reasons or lack of creative knowledge, but in this day and age where image is very important, and can help you stand out in the crowd, I would say make sure your image is in line with your business vision.  I ask my clients to carry out some homework which helps me and them to understand their business in more depth, this is really helpful when creating a brand.

4 | Training

When starting a small business you are never going to know everything.   There will be a time in your journey, whether at the start or once you are established, to attend training sessions.   A word of advice that came out of the Twitter chat I was on was to "attend any free training you can find and network with other local businesses" - This made total sense to me after I read it! It literally says it how its reads.  There is always something to learn so if it works out and time permits, take the opportunity to learn and educate yourself if you get the chance.  Esp if it is free!

5 | Network with other local businesses

Starting your own business can be difficult, lonely, and not to mention confusing sometimes.  One way to make it easier for yourself is to network.  Network with local businesses, other businesses in your industry, and even with family and friends. By building relationships with people around you, you build trust.  By building trust you can become the go-to person for your expertise, or you can find the people to support you when you need advice, and you build a circle of friends, and business friends.

6 | Set up a professional email address

Coming back to the branding aspect of starting your small business, I can't believe how many startups forget to or do not actively prioritise setting up a professional email address.  It's such a crucial step that can leverage your business professionalism that it is honestly too important to ignore, or delay.  In case you are not familiar with what I mean - which ones appears to be more professional - hello@krishnasolankidesigns.com or krish@hotmail.com.  By using your own domain address you are naturally making your small business more professional.

7 | Set up email a signature

As above, setting up an appropriate email signature is something that can easily slip the minds of a small business owner.  Your email signature is often a final point of communication to your client/customer and so it should be branded.  A good email signature is usually simple, clean, professional and informative. It needs to include all the relevant information like your logo, name, title, website, phone number (if you conduct business over the phone) and even social media links.

8 | The right people

Starting a small business can be challenging, just like in point 5, where I have mentioned networking and how important it is, it is also vital to surround yourself with the right people.  Having supportive peers, friends, business buddies and family can make a world of difference.

9 | Be helpful

When I started my own business I knew one thing. I knew what I was doing when it came down to designing brands and websites.  That's my thing. I didn't know about the best way to market myself, or what tools to use to help organise my business, but I asked questions. I networked and I mingled with other small businesses and I found that people are really helpful.  I also learnt that being helpful to others who do not necessarily have as much creative design knowledge as me is a great way to helping others start their business and to gain clients.  By being helpful, not only am I helping others, but I am helping myself.

10 | Brand consistency

Working as a designer that builds strong brands and beautiful websites, I can't highlight the importance of brand consistency enough.  Your branding needs to be consistent in all area that will be seen or experienced by your client or customer. That means using the right logo, fonts, colours, on your website, social media images, business cards, and other print material too.
Related:

I hope these tips are useful to you if you are starting a small business or have already taken that step.
Thanks to Emma of Emma Reed, Freelance Virtual Assistance for bringing the Twitter chat to my attention.

What tip do you think anyone starting their own business would find useful?

5 things I learnt working at a startup

Design, StartupKrishna Solanki2 Comments

I've worked for a handful of companies, large ones like Inmarsat, which is a British satellite telecommunications company, medium ones like Play.com, and small ones like Media Ingenuity.  The smallest company I have worked for, well tiny actually, was a start up.  (That's of course if I don't include working for myself, which in this case, I haven't!!)

With me being the third employee to the company, and to the team it was quite an experience working for Eventiility - which during the course of my employment rebranded to be called Joinin.

Before I started I wasn't really sure what to be "aware of" if that makes sense. I knew it was a start up but what does that actually mean to a designer?

5 Things I have learnt working at a startup

I read the job description and spoke to my boss (who happened to be a freelance client of mine before this point) and it was all really attractive -  casual office, fun and relaxed environment, potential to advance really quickly, big pay off (with tiny small print about the company making it BIG), working from home, flexi-hours, potential stock options, variety of work, brand spanking new iMac.. gosh the list was endless.
There was so much excitement and enthusiasm it was hard to decline the offer, and so I didn't.
I was the "one man band" for everything design for the company.

As the journey began I noticed a few things, here are the most prominent ones as a designer....

1 | Change is your friend

I had to accept that as a designer the first "draft" of a design, or the first proposed design is just that. It's a draft, it's proposed. No design is ever going to get sign off straight away, there is always a process of "design -> feedback -> amend -> review".  That process can seem endless sometimes and therefore it's important to embrace that change is your friend.  The sooner I learnt to accept that, the happier my startup working life. That leads me to the second point.

2 | It's all go go go

As a designer it's great to be able to check out the design world and see what's going on on twitter or dribbble.  But I had to have time for that.  Being the be all and end all of things design means I was all hands on deck.  I dove right in and got down to the nitty gritty.  Although the job description said "X", trust me, I was doing "X, Y, Z, A, B and C".. and that was all at once as well. 

3 | Learning on the job!

Variety is the spice of life, or so they say, right? Well seen as it's all "go go go" sometimes the learning curve is really steep. Because it's steep I ended up creating numerous designs for a variety of mediums.  I was doing website designs for one thing, iPhone app designs for another, icon designs for part of the companys brand visuals, and creating media kits and reports too.  I also lended a hand to front end coding some of the designs I was creating! (I can code by the way I wasn't just "doing it"!)  It was great as no day was the same and I was never bored. It also meant that I had lots of experience working on a vast range of designs within a short period of time.

4 | Take a break

I've never been good at doing this.  I learnt to actually force myself to step away and blink.  It's so easy to just keep going and end up sitting at your desk from 8.30am all the way through to 6pm!  Obviously my bladder often reminded me that I needed to take a break too, but I needed to make it more of a habit than not.

5 | All good things come to an end

With all the benefits that come with a startup there was bound to be a catch, right..? no pension scheme, health insurance, company maternity pay, are just a few of them.  It can be hard to one day be working like crazy to the next then realise that you may not have a job to get up and go to.  That's the reality of startups. They can quite quickly become "shut-downs".  That's why I found that it's ever important to know exactly what you are getting yourself in for.  It's your responisilbity to measure the risk and make your decisions.

 

These are the 5 key things I learnt from working at a startup.  It was great fun and I loved every second of it.  Would I do it again? - YES!... and thats why I love creating, designing everything for small businesses. It's the whole package. The up and the down, the busy and the quiet (well less quiet).  
Why not check out my work and my packages to see if I would be a great fit for your startups' vision.

 

Have you worked for a startup? What are your thoughts? I'd love to hear about your experiences!