How to Fast-Track Your New Year Business Planning

Do you feel it, too? That heavy weight on your shoulders to get your business plan in order? Pressure to plan for the new year, while meeting all the other work deadlines during the busy Holiday season?

We all feel it. Fortunately, there is a way to squash the stress and worry, and set your plan in motion — quickly.  

The answer? Your business management software and Payments Insider.

By running reports found in these two resources, you’ll gain important insights to guide your decision-making, and form key action steps that make up a solid business plan.

1. Start with the financial reporting in your business management software

Whether you’re using EZFacility, Member Solutions, Shortcuts, or another partner software integration, most software programs have dashboards and detailed financial reports that can be easily run and exported into Excel or PDF to review and share with your team at your planning meeting.

Start with the Accounts Receivable Report. Reviewing accounts receivable for this past year, and years prior, can shed light on both the flaws and opportunities in your accounting procedures, as well as in your sales and marketing processes, and general operations.

For example:

  • Maybe you find that you have too much cash tied up in unpaid invoices. This discovery could lead you to adjust your billing process in the new year, like activating automated recurring billing in your software.
  • Or, maybe you find that a seasonal sale drove a surge of paid-in-full membership packages. Knowing this confirms that you should repeat that same promotion in the coming year.

Whatever the case may be, this financial report — along with other financial reports like package sales, active members by programs, revenue report — tell the story of what actually happened during the year. From this data, you can gain insights to make solid, data-based decisions and create action items that make up your business plan.  

2. Review your merchant processing statements in Payments Insider

Not familiar with Payments Insider? It’s well worth taking a moment to set up your account. Payments Insider is the online portal that houses all your business’ payment information.

The portal makes it easy to access your merchant account credit card statements from the past 13 months. Statements can be filtered by date range, location, and statement type.

One of the best features of Payments Insider is that you can click on any of the values in the statement for greater detail.

Payment Insider also provides tables and graphs that break down transactions by sales, returns, chargebacks, card/dollar/transaction amounts, and average ticket price.

These visual representations of your payment activity can help you quickly identify areas of strength, and those that could use a little help.

For example:

  • Maybe you find that chargebacks have increased this year. This finding could lead you to take steps to prevent chargebacks, like making your charge description clearer on the customers’ credit card statement, or adding your phone number as part of the charge description.
  • Or, maybe you find that sales grew in the Spring and declined in the Summer, steering you in the direction of implementing a Summer special to draw in more business.

Taking Action is Crucial to Achieving Success

Remember that the financial reports in your business management software and merchant processing statements in Payments Insider is just the start.  

The key to achieving success in the new year is to take what you’ve learned and act. What good does it do if you simply know that something worked, or didn’t, and you don’t take action to repeat the success or take a step to improve a process or procedure?   

Implement a plan. Act. Assign action steps to staff. And, rest assured knowing your new business plan is now rooted in data-backed decisions to help your business grow and improve regularly.

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