Do you wish 2018 came with more hours in a day than 2017? We can’t do that for you, but we can suggest some ways to get more from the 24 hours you have. Start by saying “so long” to these time-wasting tasks:
1. Spending hours on social media marketing. Every small business should be marketing with social media—but that doesn’t mean you need to devote your entire day to it and end up going down the rabbit hole. Get more results from your social media presence (without sapping your will to live) by tapping social media marketing experts to craft a social media ad campaign tailored to your target market.
2. Manually backing up your computers. If you’re still spending time manually copying data to hard drives, switch to a cloud storage solution that backs up your data for you. Make sure your cloud storage provider guarantees your data’s security and that you can easily restore any files that are lost so a computer crash doesn’t put your business on hold.
3. Managing website security. Security is too important to entrust to someone who isn’t up on the latest trends and tools. Given how busy most entrepreneurs are, you probably fall into that category. If you don’t have an in-house IT expert to help you play it safe, enlist a company that can ensure your website security is top-notch.
4. Doing administrative tasks. Scheduling appointments, updating your calendar, responding to emails, making travel arrangements—this type of administrative activity can take up a lot of your time. Save your energy for business-building activities and outsource the admin work to a virtual assistant. Upwork and Zirtual are two sites to check out.
5. Struggling with SEO. Search engine optimization is essential, but doing it right isn’t easy unless you’re an SEO expert. If you’re not, you can do your business more harm than good by trying to understand SEO trends and apply them to your business website. Instead, let the SEO experts take over so you can focus on what you do best: growing your business.
6. Procrastinating. Do you put off unpleasant tasks for “later” and then never get to them? To break your procrastination habit, try scheduling one you don’t want to do for the first activity of your day. Chances are once you start, you’ll find out the activity isn’t as painful as you feared—and once it’s out of the way, the rest of your day will seem easy in comparison.
7. Manually updating your online listings. Your business’s online search directory listings need to be accurate. However, if you’re listed in hundreds of different directories, updating each one manually whenever you change your business hours, your menu or your product lineup can eat away at your precious time. Offload that task to a service that will not only update your online business listings for you, but also optimize them for search.
By eliminating these seven time-wasters from your day in 2018, you’ll be able to look forward to a more productive and profitable year.