We'd like to say a big thank you to all of the people who popped by to see our big Business Gateway stand in Union Square this past Saturday. We were delighted that so many people came into town and to Union Square just to see us, whilst others slotted us in with other plans in Union Square like lunch, shopping, or a haircut.
iPhone app & website
Our visitors were shown the new Business Gateway iPhone app (that can also be used on the iPad). The functionality of this app is great with video guides and information for all aspects of starting and growing your business. There is also the opportunity to book on free workshops that take place in locations near you.
Many visitors were interested in the workshop booking functionality available on the Business Gateway website; and generally interested in workshops suitable for their business or developing their business idea.
Frequently asked visitor questions
The advisers who manned the stand throughout the day had an array of questions posed to them from people thinking of starting a business or those who were already running a business and needed specific help on an aspect of their business. We have looked at these below...
Funding opportunities & taking on staff
We answered numerous questions about funding opportunities that currently exist for start up and growing businesses. Of these, is the Aberdeen City & Shire Council's 'First Employee Grant' that is awarded to businesses before they take on their first full-time employee. We would recommend speaking to your business adviser at Business Gateway before taking on your first employee - the advice they can provide at that crucial stage is invaluable to the business, not just about applicable funding but also things to consider such as Human Relations and Contractual obligations.
People already running a business
Some of the existing businesses who came to see us were interested to learn that if their business has a website, we can offer an impartial website review free of charge. This is very helpful for businesses who don't feel they are getting the most out of their website as it stands; perhaps it is not generating the amount of traffic they had hoped, or is not converting visitors into sales effectively. A Business Gateway adviser will review website content, aesthetics, accessibility and usability, legal issues, e-commerce and online payments. If you think this is something you would also benefit from, you can call your local Business Gateway office on the following numbers:
Tayside: 01382 848 444
Grampian: 01224 289 725
Your local business gateway office?
One chap kindly came to see us at Union Square all the way from Peterhead. He wasn't aware that we actually have a Peterhead Business Gateway office that he can pop into any time - but he is now. Perhaps you have a Business Gateway office providing free workshops and advice right on your doorstep...you can check out on the business gateway website where your local office is here: http://www.bgateway.com/local-offices/
Where do I start?
A common question we were asked on Saturday is 'Where do I start?'. Many people we help on a day-to-day basis have a business idea that they have considered for a long time, but are not sure how to put the wheels into motion to get their business going. This is exactly where our business advisers expertise is helpful at the outset of starting and running a business, especially if it is something you have never done before.
Advice for growing businesses
The existing businesses who we met were mostly interested in the services we can provide to businesses who are thinking of, or hoping to expand in some way. Perhaps they are considering expanding offshore or internationally, they may be considering taking on further staff, becoming VAT registered, or their turnover is increasing at a rapid rate. We have experience in advising on all of these topics and alongside free workshops, or online resources that exist to increase knowledge in these areas. We can offer one to one advice over the phone, email or in person, and in some cases can dedicate enough time to come and work on any issues in the business alongside the business owners.
All in all, it was great to meet so many people who we were able to assist in some way - we hope those of you who came to see us found it worthwhile and those of you who didn't (you missed out on a free Business Gateway Umbrella) we will see another time.
Many thanks! we hope 2014 is a successful year for your business, or progressing your business idea.Back to all blogs