For quite a few modest business proprietors like me, the final two years have been complete of hurdles — from navigating the COVID-19 pandemic to reduce demand for the merchandise and expert services we do the job so hard to provide.
And to increase to the monetary hardship, one particular year in the past my business almost misplaced all the things.
On Dec.12, 2020, the North Nation-based bakery and headquarters of my pretzel business enterprise burned down in a hearth. Martin’s Handmade Pretzels has been in my household for four generations, and when I woke up to see flames bordering the creating, I feared for what this would mean for our long term.
I am very pleased to say that just 1 12 months afterwards, my pretzel small business is not only again, but thriving. We continue on to market pretzels nationwide and across New York — from farmer’s marketplaces in Syracuse, Watertown, and Old Forge to New York City Greenmarkets. We also a short while ago reopened our new bakery — in Moira, northern Franklin County — to the community.
There are two factors why my compact enterprise was capable to rebound while lots of some others all-around me have not been as lucky: the assistance of my group and my willingness to embrace innovative technology.
1st and foremost, for little businesses like mine, a foundation of loyal customers is necessary. Due to the fact we do not have the means of much larger corporations, we generally rely on word of mouth and social media to draw in new buyers. We are also lucky to have devoted clients who have been feeding on Martin’s Handmade Pretzels for a long time and are extremely supportive.
When my bakery burned to the floor, our clients confused us with their generosity. They chipped via a GoFundMe website page, which served us increase sufficient revenue to get again on our toes. Some of our suppliers also generously made available to hold off their payment conditions and donated providers for cost-free.
But rebuilding immediately after enduring unimaginable tragedy was also manufactured a lot easier by the fact that we had not shied away from innovation.
When I took possession of the small business, I understood that our out-of-date engineering was holding us back — not in the way we produced our pretzels, but in our back again-stop operations. I turned to Latitude Bookkeeping Solutions in Plattsburgh to see if there was a far better way to retain track of our hard cash stream and other critical facts like margins, price tag per solution, and overhead. Among the other technological know-how platforms, they proposed digital payments system Melio, which allows tiny companies to transfer and receive payments digitally, promptly, and simply.
This has played a essential function in serving to my small business bounce back again. When the bakery and headquarters burned down, we also lost all of our business’s paper checks. Though that may possibly look like a compact decline, we wanted to proceed having to pay our suppliers just about every week and could not chance missing payments. The good thing is, we were ready to send out out all of our payments on time.
Devoid of this platform, I would have experienced to get new checks and write them all by hand, which would have been very time-consuming. I have lessened the time I devote on administrative do the job by 50 %, which has permitted me to expend additional time developing and rebuilding the enterprise.
Quite a few compact business house owners are often cautious of adopting new technologies, fearful that they could not see a return on their expense. But in my case, I desire my loved ones-owned pretzel enterprise had started off the digitization method quicker, conserving us both of those time and cash.
All through this previous year of enormous issues, I am grateful that I had the tools to get my business back on keep track of. I urge other small organization owners to consider embracing electronic know-how that will aid their business enter the 21st century.
Josiah Martin owns and operates Martin’s Pretzels in Moira, New York.