Now that we’re a few months into the New Year the future of the economy is both bright but also not entirely clear. A small business’s livelihood depends on many different changing social and economic patterns. New ideas, trending fads, and long-term business plans all play major roles in a small business. Keeping track of these important business aspects on a daily basis will help to ensure that your small business won’t be unpleasantly surprised by unforeseen pitfalls, or miss cashing in on the latest popular trends with America’s consumers. Below are some business predictions for 2018 that will help to shed some much-needed light on that not always entirely clear, but still very important business subject called the future.
Today’s Millennials are tired of the same old banking practices as their parents. Digital banking is expected to rise to 2 Billion users by 2020. This can be seen more and more in progressive payment trends like fast pay and cell phone paying technologies that are becoming rapidly popular with younger people.
The younger generation is also going to grow steadily more impatient with the slow pace of the standard banking loan process as they start opting instead for faster and more convenient lending outlets. Brokers will also continue to be increasingly phased out of the process as the need for middle-men in the mix becomes increasingly more Un-needed.
Marketing and Advertising
Modern marketing has come a long way since the times of Daren Stevens on Bewitched when being an advertising executive meant large storyboards, big ad-exec salaries, and silly jingles in order to reach a broadly blanketed and impersonal target market.
Marketing and advertising have evolved to be extremely personalized to the individual customer. The same old same old marketing tactics of simple white background stock images and generic advertising campaigns just don’t work as well as they used to in the old days.
Open several free popular social media business accounts in order to let your customers and potential customers interact online with each other and give some positive feedback while being able to also monitor and control potential negatives and “Trolls” on your social media websites by easily screening all outside posts before allowing them to be seen publically.
The newest trend in marketing continues to be a triadic interactive relationship between customer and customer and the business. This marketing tactic lets the customer’s themselves fuel public marketing momentum with each other in order to successfully promote your product or service at little expense to the small business owner.
Wages & Inflation
According to the recent Goldman Sachs wage forecasts for 2018, a “renewed acceleration” in hourly earnings growth is predicted for 2018; this is after a slow growth rate of only 65 cents for the whole year of 2017.
This might be a plus for the employee, but, higher national wage increases can be a burden for an already struggling small business. Higher wages and low unemployment make finding affordable low-level workers an ongoing and arduous task for some small business owners, along with keeping the good employees they already have.
New York City has been a leader in the ongoing worker fight for higher minimum wages. It has seen the state’s minimum wages go up from around $11 dollars an hour in 2016, to currently $13.50 to $15.00 an hour depending on the number of employees involved in 2018. Next year the state minimum wage will be a flat $15.00 dollars an hour for all NYC businesses regardless of the number of employees they have.
If these wage growth numbers along with the unemployment rate remain stable – (not too low or not too high) – the inflation rate will continue to stay low as well, creating a perfect economic storm for even more positive financial business upswings in the near future.
The Modern Contemporary Workplace
The modern day workplace has gone through incredible transformations in just a couple of decades. The dreaded old-school cubicle is the villain of the modern workplace now – being replaced by open-office-space, stand-up desks, ergonomic chairs, and a management encouraged, purveying air of group collaboration. Many small business office duties can also be easily done now remotely from the home office.
In these times it certainly needs to be said that a strong anti-harassment policy needs to be enacted and actively promoted through education in the modern workplace. Since this topic is as important as other workshops/meetings on issues such as data and cybersecurity, workplace safety, and loss and crime prevention, it’s a perfect time to also include anti-harassment policies into the employee training agenda.
When Tax Breaks End
The 20 percent business tax deduction is not everlasting and also full of limits. You may get the small business tax break if your taxable income is below $157,500 if single, or $315,000 if married. Most tax specialists agree that the best way to take advantage of these “temporary” small business tax breaks is through writing off deductions on new equipment and expansions. At least this way, by the time the tax breaks run out in seven years your business will be stronger and better able to handle the potential tax savings loss in 2025 with a more efficient, expanded, and modernized business by the time the tax breaks end. Whether Congress will again renew the tax breaks when they run out in seven years is a prediction that no one can really make at this point. No one can also predict the future of the economy with absolute accuracy. One thing that New York City’s small businesses can consistently do to increase their chances of financial success is by assessing the current facts that are already available to them. Small business owners must stay constantly aware of the latest social, economic, and political trends, and of course, then use that information to create both concrete and adjustable business plans for the future.
Get in touch with New York Gates today at 718-614-0616; they’re the top professional gate and garage door manufacturers, installers, and repair specialists in the five boroughs.
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