August 11, 2021
THIS JUST IN
Yep, we’re talking about Playbook 2021. Join us on September 30 to steal winning plays from today’s biggest names in small business.
The day’s line-up features the likes of VaynerMedia's Gary Vee and Cocokind founder and CEO Priscilla Tsai. Plus, a live Q&A with 15-time NBA all-star Shaquille O'Neal - just to name a few. And we’ll be adding even more speakers to the lineup in the coming weeks.
The best part? The event is 100% FREE. All you have to do is save your spot today.
In the summertime, the livin' isn't easy for most businesses. Because for consumers, summer and vacation go hand-in-hand. Meaning, they spend more time and money on travel. And less on goods and services.
But this year, it's looking like even less of a hot biz summer for most industries. Because people are anxious to finally get the heck out of the house. And 60% of Americans plan to travel more in 2021 than in 2019.
HubSpot analyzed data from 103k+ businesses to find out the effects of this travel bug. And the early results confirm that the summertime slump is really real.
In June 2021, global traffic declined 5.35% from April. And that's compared to only a 3.67% decline in 2019 during the same period. Meaning, people are browsing even less than in the past.
And some industries are getting hit harder with their traffic than others:
But even though traffic is taking an L this summer, it's not a total loss. You can still use this slow period to prep for when things pick back up. Because it's nearly impossible to make high-level improvements when things are moving at full pace. So, here's a few things you can finally take care of:
In an unusual turn of events, there are roughly 1M more job openings than job lookers in the US today. And companies are offering all the benefits (even pet insurance) to woo folks into applying.
But what about just paying employees more? Up until this point, news circulated about small businesses (like 5th Street Group) increasing starting pay to fill roles. And with early success, roughly 40% of all US small businesses followed suit. However, no one knew how it would affect these companies' bottom lines.
Customer Rubber Corp, an Ohio rubber parts factory, was among those small businesses struggling to fill roles.
So, when Charlie Braun, the company's president, got an $879k forgivable loan from the federal Paycheck Protection Program, he was willing to try just about anything to fill his roster. Especially because he's competing with bigger factories that have more resources to offer.
So, the rubber company assessed their options. And given the booming economy and the lowered risk thanks to the PPP loan, there was no better time to pilot higher wages and better benefits.
Using the loan, Customer Rubber Corp increased employee wages up to 33% - depending on the position. And as soon as he did it, Charlie knew there was no going back. He needed the higher wages to help his business - otherwise, they'd be unsustainable.
And per the WSJ, these wage increases have actually improved Customer Rubber Corp's bottom line. They've:
CRC's experiment raises an important point: It literally pays to pay your employees more. That's not to say it's a one-size-fits-all solution. But it does raise a bigger question for a lot of small businesses struggling to fill open roles. What is your work worth, and are you paying the employees who do it enough?
YOU MADE THE TEAM
Almost 30% of people quit a job in the first 90 days. But 17% of these new hires said they would’ve stayed if they met one helpful coworker. Because maybe then, they’d have felt like they were actually part of the squad!
But it takes more than just being helpful to make your newbies feel welcome. You also need to create a sense of belonging (ideally before their first official day). Because when you do, you keep your team happy and invested for the long haul. Meaning, less time and money dealing with voluntary turnover.
Here’s how you can foster that sense of belonging ASAP: