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Virtual Office

Useful advice, tips and business news.

September 14, 2019
May 5, 2021


Is a Virtual Office Right for Your Business?

With your Virtual Office, you can give yourself more time to be productive as you will be free of all of your time-consuming and complicated office-based tasks.

In this modern digital age, is it time to ditch the idea of a traditional office structure?Many new start-ups are adopting the 'lean' method of operation where they only use the bare bones of a company structure to function. This means that less time and money is wasted on facilities that are not essential to their business in this day and age, like a bricks-and-mortar office set-up.Many businesses have been adopting the technology to go paperless for the past few years, and many organisations have taken things a step further by eliminating the daily commute to work in favour of their staff choosing to work remotely from home.So is it now time for everyone to think differently by going virtual and outsourcing as many office tasks as possible? Judging by the growth in the popularity of virtual office services over recent years, the answer in a lot of cases is yes!By freeing up your time and using a high-quality virtual office service provider, such as Your Virtual Office, you can give yourself more time to be productive as you will be free of all of your time-consuming office-based tasks.

The benefits of going virtual

There are several very valuable benefits to be had by choosing a virtual office service. However, if you already have an established office, you may worry that switching to using a virtual office service may disrupt and upset your existing staff.One thing to consider is that by getting rid of your bricks-and-mortar office and allowing your employee's to work from home can save you thousands of pounds in office rental costs as well as the costs associated with power, IT infrastructure and other utilities.In the USA, a study by Stanford University found companies can save as much as $2,000 per employee just by letting them work from home.You could introduce remote working for your existing staff while at the same time outsource your every-day office administration tasks to a Complete Virtual Office Service such as the package offered by Capital Office, London.This means that you will still be able to have your incoming business calls answered professionally in your company name and either has your calls forwarded to you, or messages took when you are busy and passed on to you electronically.

Saving money on a business relocation

One of the main benefits of using virtual office services is that you can free up valuable space in your workplace and put it to better use.For example, if your business is growing rapidly, you may face the expense of having to move your business to larger premises. This can mean incurring expensive moving costs, having a new IT infrastructure installed in your new workplace to meet your needs, extension or replacement of the business fire alarm system, higher business insurance costs etc.Instead of having to move premises rapidly to meet your accommodation needs, you can stay put for longer by getting rid of your office and converting the room for more production workspace.

Putting your plans in place

When you have decided that you want to go virtual with your office, it is time to put together a plan of action.Depending on where you are starting from, there could be big changes that you have to face. For a solo-entrepreneur working from home or from a rented workspace, this will be easy because you don't have an office as such.However, for an already-established business owner with a brick-and-mortar office, there will be a major impact ahead for everyone concerned.Sit down with your staff (if you have any) and work out a transition plan for how your business will get its work tasks done.Moving to a virtual office isn't as easy as ditching the office cubicle. You need to agree on how your existing staff are going to work together and collaborate on projects. This could be by working remotely from home and using a tool such as Trello to communicate and share work with colleagues.

Introduce your virtual office service early

By bringing on board and using your virtual office services as early as possible, you and your staff can get used to how the service works and how it allows you and your staff the free time to concentrate on your transitional plans.This allows your workplace to start from a position of understanding instead of confusion about your plans and having to cope with a lot of changes all at once.

Hire a well-established, trusted virtual office service provider

To make the transition as smooth as possible for your company, choose to work with a well-established and experienced Complete Virtual Office Service provider, such as us.Capital Office, London is always willing to go that extra mile for our clients. based in City Road, London, since 1971 we have been in operation for many years and are an integral part of thousands of UK businesses of all sizes.Our London-based virtual office staff have years of experience in customer service and business support roles and are perfectly placed to ease your business into the digital world.

What services are included?

The main aim of using a complete virtual office is to completely replace your every-day reception and administration duties that would normally need a brick-and-mortar office and a team of staff to complete for you.You don't need to worry because Your Virtual Office can take care of everything for you leaving you free to concentrate on your important work without the telephone distracting you or having to stand and open all of your incoming business mail every day.Complete Virtual Office London Package Overview:

  • Choose an 0207 or 0203 Telephone Number
  • Divert Calls Your Calls to Us
  • Forward / Scan / Collect your mail
  • Free EC1 Meeting Room Use
  • Global Mail Forwarding Service
  • Impressive London Address
  • London based PA’s taking your calls
  • Out of hours voicemail to email
  • Packets & Parcels signed for
  • Secure Online Payment
  • Under 60 Second Sign up
  • Unlimited Calls Included
  • Unlimited Letters Included
  • Use your Existing Number

Improve your business image

For a sole trader or solo-entrepreneur without an existing office, having your own complete virtual office at your fingertips will give you a professional virtual PA and will really help to boost your company image.It can be difficult for many micro-business owners to be taken seriously by their target audience, especially if you are wanting to break into the B2B market. Most large companies do not like dealing with sole traders, so even though you can do your job with one hand tied behind your back, it can be hard to convince a large company to work with you.However, when you have your own professional PA taking your calls and relaying messages, it gives your business a more professional image and status. This may be all you need to get your foot in the door and into the good books of a B2B partner.Our complete virtual office package combines our highly sought-after central London business mail forwarding address with a professional and experienced virtual PA telephone answering service.

Make your communication key

When you have remote staff working from home and a team of virtual office workers, you should always make sure that communications are kept up between everyone.Communications with your staff and services should be done on a continuous basis, but this is even more important in a virtual world where you no longer share a physical workspace with your employees.By using good collaboration tools such as Trello, shared emails and conducting Skype meetings to keep up your connections, you will help to keep everyone informed and ensure that no-one feels neglected or isolated from the team.

Arrange social meet-ups

Although you are moving to a more digital-driven, virtual workplace, you should still set aside some time for meetings and social events.While many of your staff may be content for you to stay in contact via online chat functions, you may still want to connect with your best people outside of the virtual world to reinforce your company culture and make them feel valued as a person.While it is easier to set up a virtual office from scratch for a solo-entrepreneur, it still can be the right choice for your expanding company. As long as you hire the services of a professional virtual office provider such as Capital Office as Your Virtual Office, London, you will never regret your choice to step into the virtual world.

August 24, 2019
May 5, 2021


How To Become Mega-Productive with your Work Time

Take a look at some of the amazing strategies that we have picked up to help you become mega-productive with your work time and work more efficiently.

PRODUCTIVITY. This has to be one of the most talked-about buzz-words of the 21st Century. There seems to always be a steady stream of great productivity strategies out there that people simply cannot get enough of.However, what tips work for one person may not work for the next. So you mustn't stress yourself out when you try some new productivity strategies that just don't seem to work for you.The best way forward is to create your own set of effective strategies that work for you and stick with them until they become second nature. Many people say that to form a new habit can take up to 2-weeks of constant practice.You should focus on finding the productivity techniques that work best for you and repeat them until they stick. Always remember to allow yourself enough time for them to work effectively and become routine. Some techniques will stick, others, not so much.If your workload is becoming a bit too much for you to cope with, take a look at some of these strategies we have picked up along the way to improve your work time.

1: Make a morning to-do list

This isn't a list to make in the morning when you start work. You will have far too many distractions happening to make this happen.Instead, you need to make your morning to-do list last thing at the end of every day. Summarise what you want to achieve the next day and prioritise any jobs at the top of your list that you didn't manage to get completed today.Cross off each task on your list with a big red marker pen. This way you have a visual record of your achievements for the day that you can be proud of!

2: Cut your procrastination time

You know those horrible or very boring tasks that you know need doing, but you don't want to do? Yes, those tasks that you end up talking yourself out of doing each day.If you actually stopped procrastinating about them and used your time to get them done instead, you will be far more productive with your time.When faced with one of these dreadful tasks, give yourself 3 seconds to cut your procrastination. Close your eyes and take a deep breath. Count down from 3, 2, 1, open your eyes and do it!This 3-second countdown will effectively cut your procrastination time to zero and will deliver you with more time to focus on other tasks on your list.

3: Do your hardest task first

You will have a few tasks to complete on your to-do list, but it is wise to schedule your most difficult tasks at the top. This is because you will be able to tackle these tasks when you are fresh and well-rested with plenty of energy and concentration.Getting these more tricky tasks out of the way first will be much more effective than leaving them until the end of the day when your energy and concentration levels may be flagging.

4: Cut large tasks into bite-sized pieces

There can be nothing more exhausting or energy-draining that trying to tackle a huge task head-on. Biting off more than you can chew at once will simply result in your struggling to make any effective headway.This can lead to you dithering around with little enthusiasm to get the task finished. By dividing up the work into smaller bite-sized tasks you will be able to set yourself small and more achievable goals to finish step-by-step. Taking regular breaks after each small step will give you the energy to get through to the end of a gargantuan task.

5: Verbalise your problems

You know when you are working out a problem in your head and then something happens that breaks your train of thought? Yes? Annoying, isn't it.Working out difficult problems that require a lot of thought can be better beaten out if you get those thoughts out of your head. A good way to do this is to verbalise your thoughts.You can do this by discussing the problem with someone else, maybe a work colleague for example. However, if you work alone you can record your conversation and play it back to yourself.Verbalising a problem can work very well to fix something that needs a lot of thought. Try it the next time you need to chew something over.

6: The post-it notes trick

Using post-it notes, an ideas whiteboard or an online tool such as Trello to note down your thoughts and possible solutions is a great way to get things out of your head into something visible for you to focus on. This can serve as a memory aid.You can do this with new tasks as they pop into your head or appear in emails. At the end of the day, you can look at all of your notes and rearrange them into a priority list that will form tomorrow's to-do list. It is a great way to de-clutter your mind.

7: Ditch the guilt

Although this post is all about improving your productivity, you simply cannot be expected to perform at 100% efficiency all of the time.Don't expect perfection all of the time. Give yourself some wiggle-room. Shelve that guilty feeling because you failed to finish everything on today's to-do list. We know you may feel a sense of failure to be hitting your goals, but no one is setting those goals for you.You are setting your own goals, so if you physically and mentally cannot manage your present workload then this can lead to you worrying and fretting about it so much that it can affect your mood, your ability to recharge and re-energise and to sleep.Look at what you have achieved today and be proud of your accomplishments. Shrug off those tasks still outstanding from your list and simply move them on to your list for tomorrow.They will get done eventually – and done well as long as you allow yourself to switch off the guilt and recharge your batteries enough for the next day's challenges.

8: Get adequate rest

Don't neglect your downtime in favour of completing more work. Too many people will get up earlier in the morning so they can get an extra hour or two of work done before the rest of their work colleagues even arrive.While you may feel good about how much work you can achieve by giving yourself more time, you will be losing it from somewhere else in your life. This usually means less sleep, rushed meal times or forgoing coffee breaks.The problem with doing this is that when you return to your normal schedule, your productivity levels will fall. You will then feel compelled to keep cutting into your rest time to increase your productivity once again.A lot of aspiring entrepreneurs will substitute sleep for work, but will quickly find themselves burning out and being unable to function well.If you need 8 hours of solid sleep, don't try to get by on just 6. What will happen over time is that you will not be on-the-ball for most of the day. This can negatively affect your productivity levels because you won't have the energy to focus and complete your tasks effectively.

9: Set up a self-care routine

One of the most effective ways to keep up your productivity levels while at the same time giving you time to recharge your batteries and clear your mind throughout the day is to use a Pomodoro timer.This handy time management tool will schedule regular 25 minute sessions for you to concentrate on your work followed by a short break. You should take these break times away from your work to give your body and mind time to recharge.Shake off tired and cramped muscles by taking a five-minute walk around your building, go outside for some fresh air or perform 5-minute mini-workouts to save some gym time. Go and make yourself a coffee, chat with a colleague, practice some deep breathing or meditation in a quiet corner away from your workstation.Your break time action doesn't have to be huge or profound. Just focus them on a few minutes of self-care to clear your mind and stretch your muscles. Making it deliberate and forming a routine will help you to re-focus your mind when you return to working on your task.

10: Allocate a time slot for social media

Everyone knows what a time-drain social media platforms can be. It can be so tempting to check your Facebook feeds or to catch up with your tweets only to find yourself fully absorbed in your feed with precious work time ticking away.Consign your social media catch-up to a specific time of day and resist the temptation to quickly check throughout the day. This can mean switching off alerts on your phone and locking your phone away in a desk drawer during working hours.


Try out these productivity tips to see which ones work for you and adopt them for at least two weeks to make sure that they stick and become part of your working routine.You will see your productivity increase and your procrastinating reduce, as well as giving your well-being a boost at the same time!You can also save yourself a lot of time by outsourcing your everyday admin tasks. This will free up your precious time to dedicate to more important tasks that you need to get done.Make good use of virtual services such as professional call answering, mail sorting and forwarding or complete virtual office service that incorporates everything you need.

July 28, 2019
May 5, 2021


Top Tips for Managing Stress as a Busy Entrepreneur

Let’s take a look at some top tips to help busy entrepreneurs to better for managing stress levels and keep you motivated and productive at the same time.

It can be seriously difficult to learn ways for managing stress effectively when you are a busy entrepreneur launching and building up your new business.You spend your time rushing from one urgent task to the next with little thought given to how juggling so many jobs at once can have a negative impact on your mental health.This is why so many new entrepreneurs burn themselves out in the first three years of business and end up having to fold their business because they can no longer cope with the strain.

The Difficulty of creating a healthy balance between work and home life

While stress can affect anyone, it can be much easier for a paid employee working a stressful job to switch off when they leave the office. This isn't always possible for an entrepreneur to do, especially when they have the success of the business weighing heavy on their shoulders 24/7.Solo entrepreneurs are more likely to have stress-related health problems because they will have a more difficult task managing every aspect of the business over the long-term.Learning how to leave your work at the office is your first crucial step towards successfully managing your stress levels.While most entrepreneurs function well without much help, it is the fact that they are carrying the whole load of the business and working so many different roles within the workplace that ends up dragging them down.Let's take a look at some top tips to help you better manage your stress levels and keep you motivated and productive at the same time.

1: Stop burning the candle at both ends

The most beneficial thing you can do for your health is to get adequate sleep. When we sleep we not only repair and regenerate our brain and body, but going without enough sleep will leave you more stressed and unable to concentrate or make good business decisions.Make your bedroom as peaceful and comfortable as possible. This means removing any electronic devices at night that could disturb your sleep.Think about making your bedroom into a tranquil escape where you can close the door and forget about the world. Here are some tips:

  • Fit blackout blinds on your windows. Studies show people sleep deeper and for longer when their bedroom is as dark as possible.
  • Remove electrical gadgets such as your TV, mobile phone, laptop, tablet and games machines.
  • Splash out on some luxury bed linen that makes you feel pampered when you go to bed.
  • Invest in a memory foam mattress and soft pillows for ultimate comfort.
  • Get an essential oil diffuser and use relaxing essential oils to gently fragrance the room.

Make sure you schedule regular time away from work each week so that you are not working every single day. Treat yourself to a family day out or a romantic meal with your partner.

2: Manage your time more effectively

There have been lots of studies over the years that show that entrepreneurs become more stressed out when they are running a chaotic schedule.What you need to do is to maximise your productivity and make every minute count. You can do this by writing yourself a to-do list that prioritises the six most important tasks you need to complete each day and list them in order of priority.Ignore everything else that is not on your list. Don't get distracted by emails or social media, just focus on working through your 6 tasks on the list for that day.If you don't get everything on the list done, then move that to the top spot on your list for the next day.If you work on a computer, download a Pomodoro tracker to help break down your time into 25-minute bites. The tracker will give you a short break after every 25 minutes to stretch your legs, get a drink and refresh your mind.

3: Outsource your non-income generating tasks

As an entrepreneur, especially if you work on your own, you will be tasked with doing every single job needed to keep your business going.This means that you will be spending a large proportion of your waking hours on tasks that don't directly generate any money for your business.While these tasks are important and essential for running your business smoothly, your time could be better spent on tasks that will bring in money to improve your bottom line.Think about outsourcing your necessary everyday financial and administrative tasks to professionals who can handle these jobs on your behalf. These tasks include:

This doesn't necessarily mean that you need to employ your own office staff or bookkeeper.If you can pass off what you can to other people via using a local accountant and using virtual office services it will work out cheaper than employing your own staff and having to move to larger and more expensive premises.

Using virtual office services

As an entrepreneur, you cannot be an expert at everything. It is practically impossible to manage everything yourself – there simply isn't enough of you to go around or enough hours in the day!To be an effective and successful entrepreneur, you need to learn to delegate tasks to others so you can focus your own time and effort on tasks that will be more lucrative for your business.Look into using a complete virtual office service such as Capital Office, London for a very high level of support at competitive rates.

4: Don't let your business consume you

Find things to enjoy that are not business-related. It can be easy to lose your self-identity when it becomes wrapped up in your business. You are far more than your business, so find other things away from work to be passionate about.Be careful not to spread your focus in too many different directions though, or become overly distracted with something that is also very mentally draining or time-consuming.Finding a nice balance between work and your social life is the key here. Choose things that energize you rather than drain you of energy.

5: Don't be afraid to say NO!

As an entrepreneur, it can feel like you are going against nature to turn down work opportunities.However, you need to realise that your time is precious. You need to focus on doing a good job with your tasks that are already in hand rather than accept everything that comes your way and spread yourself too thin.Think quality over quantity! At the end of the day, this is what will bring people back to you for some return custom.To reduce your stress levels and lead a healthier life, you need to appreciate the value of your time and effort. Learn how to say NO to things, especially if you have a bad gut feeling about them.Admit to yourself that you simply don't have the time to take on the job or have the available focus needed to be able to deliver high-quality results.

Practice saying NO!

If you have never said no to anyone so far, it may take a bit of getting used to. Practice saying no and rehearsing what you are going to say ahead of time.This way you will feel more confident about refusing a request that you know you cannot handle or will struggle with.

Don't wait any longer - start today!

Start today by getting the support you deserve from Capital Office, London.Take a look at our Complete Virtual Office services to see how you can benefit from using our top-rated professional business administrative services.

What's included:

  • Choose a 0207 or 0203 Telephone Number
  • Divert Your Calls to Us
  • Forward / Scan / Collect your mail
  • Free EC1 Meeting Room Use
  • Global Mail Forwarding Service
  • Impressive London Address
  • London based PA’s taking your calls
  • Out of hours voicemail to email
  • Packets & Parcels signed for
  • Secure Online Payment
  • Unlimited Calls Included
  • Unlimited Letters Included
  • Use your Existing Number

If you only want us to handle your business calls on your behalf, then take a look at our professional Unlimited Call Answering Service.

Professional Call Answering Service Overview:

  • Unique 0203 or 0207 London number
  • Unlimited Calls Included – No Cost Per Call
  • Calls are taken in the name of your business
  • Unlimited volume of calls
  • Quick Online Secure Payment
  • Messages taken or call transferred
  • London based PA’s taking your calls
  • Out of hours voicemail to email
  • Use your existing number
  • Live Call Transfers

Still not sure? Don't hesitate to contact our friendly team who will be happy to help you! You can email or call us:Tel: 0207 5663939Email: office@capital-office.co.uk

June 7, 2019
May 5, 2021


Why Content is More Than King for Small Business Owners

Content is king when it comes to marketing your business, but to small business owners content is more than King – it is the heart of your operation.

Most of us have heard the saying that 'content is king' when it comes to marketing your business, but to small business owners content is more than King – it is the heart and soul of your operation.Now, more than ever, a small business owner needs to create and share very worthy content as part of your business marketing strategy. Without good quality content, no-one is going to be aware of your business and what you have to offer.

The importance of relevant content for the small operator

For the solo-entrepreneur, single info-entrepreneur and digital marketers, it is even more critical to make content the very base foundation of your business services that everything else can be built from.No matter where you look for marketing help these days, the advice is always the same – produce unique, highly targeted and good quality content.Your content needs to be authentic and should be able to solve a problem that your target audience has, or helps to educate them further about a particular topic, or alternatively outright entertains them!It is important that you cast your content net as far and as wide as possible, so this means building a well-structured website with solid pages that provide evergreen information and then backing up your website with a blog.You should make a point of updating your blog with fresh information on a regular basis, especially when you start to build a list of followers who will be expecting you to post regularly.Link in your social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.) and if possible include things such as videos, live webinar chats, podcasts that will engage with your audience and deliver plenty of useful information.

The Heart and Soul of Small Business

As a small business owner or solo-entrepreneur, your content is a reflection of you. You should put yourself into your content and believe in what you create. By producing genuine content you will build a lot of trust in your target audience.What will keep them coming back for more and eventually convince them to buy from you is your sincerity, believability and the passion you put into your content – your very heart and soul.This is especially true for any infopreneurs that are selling informational products. What you sell needs to be believable and genuinely useful to your end customer. Your content and your branding are interlinked and are presented as a package to your target audience.If your customers believe in one they will believe in the other. So if you win their trust by providing them with high-quality content they will learn to trust your brand and will be open to reading the offerings that you send out in the future.

Temper your content well

When you create your content you do not want to just present dry facts and boring information. You need to make your content sound human and very conversational.Think along the lines of sitting down with a friend and having a conversation with them. Offer thought-provoking information and insights that will raise their curiosity and desire to find out more.Opening a dialogue with your audience works really well for customer engagement. It makes your company look and feel more human, approachable and open to a two-way conversation.Making a share-worthy blog where a reader will consume your content and will want to share it with their family or friends will result in your content being actively passed around long after you have posted it.This is the power of using your content wisely on social media platforms where your target audience can read your content then will “Like,” “comment” and “Share” to their own timeline or newsfeed.

Online conversations are free!

One of the greatest things about engaging with your readers on social media platforms is that you will be taking part in online conversations, which is the new medium for marketing your product and services. And what's more your content will be spread around and shared for free!This can be a real bonus for small business owners or sole traders working with very limited marketing budgets.Remember that online engagement and activity is the next big thing in marketing and is on a par with word of mouth marketing where your customers will be recommending your products or services to their peers.By making your content share-worthy your target audience will read your posts and then instantly share it with their friends and family, and most likely a lot of their peers will fit your ideal customer demographic, so you will be reaching out to more people who will like and follow you on social media.

Finding the time to create quality content

The whole point here is to create as much high-quality content as you can and publish it on your blog and across your social media accounts. Even if your content doesn't get shared much it will still count as valuable in the eyes of the major search engines.Google, Bing and other search engines value websites and blogs that contain great content. They will more likely rank you higher in search engine results for your chosen keywords when you are seen to be an active contributor with a good library of published information and someone who posts fresh content on a regular basis.This is why it is important to find a good balance of creating quality content and posting it regularly enough to make a difference.However, if you are a solo-entrepreneur or a small business where you don't have the available staff free to dedicate their time to produce great content on a regular basis, then you could look at outsourcing either your content writing or some of your everyday office tasks.If you have a flair for writing and want to produce your own content, then you can really dedicate your time into pouring your heart and soul into creating rich and vibrant content to share.If you are not very good at writing, on the other hand, it would be worth looking to hire a freelance content creator to do this work for you.Should you want to create your own content, then look at outsourcing your other office-based day to day tasks that will enable you to work undisturbed in peace and quiet to draw up your content.

Outsourcing your essential office tasks

Imagine being left in peace to work on writing your blog posts, creating an infographic or filming an informational video for your business without being disturbed by your ringing phone.You can have your business telephone calls answered in a professional manner by using our Professional Unlimited Call Handling services.Our call answering service is an affordable yet professional service designed to help a variety of clients to manage their incoming calls. With our call answering service, our PA’s answer your phone calls allowing you have peace of mind that you haven’t missed an important call as you were unavailable.Having a professional Virtual PA to answer your calls can add thousand to your business. You can impress your new and existing clients with our professional call handling service. Our team of professional PA’s will personally greet your clients and handle your call with the greatest of care.You can choose to have messages taken or important calls transferred live through to you if you need to speak to any important clients. Our service is flexible and adaptive, designed to add real value to your business. Don’t waste another call, have your calls handled expertly by trained assistants today.We also offer Complete Virtual Office services should you really want your business to be taken seriously and to project a professional image.If you would like to speak to one of our friendly team about how we can help your business to succeed then give us a call on 0207 5663939 or email us at office@capital-office.co.uk

May 22, 2019
May 5, 2021


How Drawing Inspiration from a TV Show can Help Your Business

Drawing inspiration from a TV show can help your business and make better business decisions while changing the way you work from now on and into the future.

Have you ever watched Black Mirror on TV? It's a British TV drama series that was written by Charlie Brooker and to say it's a bit dark is an understatement! It is compulsive viewing though as each new episode is completely different and like its own film with new characters and storyline that can help your business. How?Well, if you haven't seen it, then it is worth watching on catch-up if you can get it. If you like a good horror mystery set in modern times then you will love it!The main focus of the series is around modern technology such as virtual reality, AI and social media. One episode stands out in particular here called ‘Bandersnatch’.This episode was set in the 1980s and involved a smart teenager creating his own video game based on a ‘choose your own adventure' style, much like the storybooks you could buy in the '80s where you choose the path of your character through the story by selecting actions to take.

Your choices determine your adventure

Wherever you choose to go next will affect the storyline and the eventual outcome. So you could choose to walk through one of three doors, each with a different adventure in store. One door could lead to a battle with a dragon, another could lead you to a castle full of gold, the third may lead you to fall down a well with no escape.But why the Bandersnatch episode of Black Mirror stood out was because the main character in the story (the teenage boy) doesn’t realise that he himself is actually inside a ‘choose your own adventure’ game of his own, but one that you and I as viewers had control over.So, as you watched the episode (via Netflix) you are given the option over what path the teenager takes next. Your choices include everything from mundane actions like choosing what to eat, to more dramatic options that you know may cause issues for him.

Small decisions or huge decisions

What the episode highlighted well was that no matter whether you made a small decision, such as choosing what breakfast to eat, or a huge decision, such as jumping from a high balcony, making a choice to follow a path is better than choosing to do nothing to move your story along.It was quite a ground-breaking TV show and was lots of fun! It is easy to see how this type of show using interactive technology will take off in the future.

What does this have to do with my business?

Watching this Black Mirror episode got me thinking about decisions. More specifically the business decisions we choose to make every day and how by making one tiny decision can change the way you work from now on and well into the future.As a business owner, you are faced with making decisions every single day. You may make dozens of decisions a day, or hundreds per week or month, but all of these decisions are conscious choices. Some of them may be pretty insignificant, but others can be far more impactful.

Thinking outside the box

It can be really easy to forget that your choices can have a huge influence on the future success - or failure - of your business. Many business owners may think that their day to day operations are fixed and set up in a certain way that cannot be changed or improved upon.

For example, you may think to yourself:

  • “I could never expand my business. I am far too busy with my day to day duties to keep it ticking over. I simply don't have the available time to work on growing my business.”
  • “I tried to get more clients, but I am already struggling to manage the ones I have.”
  • “I simply cannot escape the office to meet new clients. What if I miss a call from a potential new customer?”
  • “I’m stuck in this boring 9-5 routine.”

Sometimes it feels like there is nothing you can do to break free of your routine and move your focus away from performing your every day necessary tasks and simply getting through the day.If you really do feel this way, then NOW is the time to choose to think outside of the box that you have placed yourself in!

Choose your own path to determine where you will end up

It’s not just the huge life decisions that you make which determine where you end up. You can also choose to make small but significant choices that can actually lead you towards remarkable business success.Take that decision to meet up with an old business colleague for a coffee. Catching up with them and giving them some of your time may result in both of you striking up an exciting business opportunity.Choose to clear out some old junk from your garage or home office. Your decision may lead you to discover that a particular item sells really well on eBay, which you could source and add to your online store to sell.Decide to join a gym to help reduce your stress. You may see a lucrative new sales outlet for your sports shoes or hand-made shower gel.If you believe in the theory of Karma that you get out of life what you put in, then you need to be out there 'putting things into life'.

Free up your time to make your own luck

You need to allow yourself to make small and positive business decisions so you can start to make your own luck in life. If you choose to do nothing, then nothing will improve and you will be actively reducing your chances of business success.A service that can change your business fortunes if you choose to use it would be a Complete Virtual Office. Here you would be utilising the skills of professional virtual assistants to cover your every day essential business tasks that are keeping you from expanding your business.The positives of choosing to use virtual services such as ours would mean that you would no longer be tied down to your office. There will be no chance that you will miss any potential new customer or client phone calls as these will be answered in a very professional manner on your behalf.

Impress potential new customers

What is more, your callers will be immediately impressed that your business can afford to employ a professional receptionist. This can give your company a really polished and professional image. This would be much better than having their call answered by a stressed-out and short-tempered business owner that is obviously struggling to cope.Just think of how much time you can free up to dedicate to growing your business instead of simply being bogged down answering the phones and dealing with your business post for most of the day.Find out more about our Complete Virtual Office services or any of our individual virtual services to discover why thousands of savvy business owners like you are freeing up more of their time from their day to day admin tasks and choosing to make positive choices for their future.

May 1, 2019
May 5, 2021


Why Solving Problems is Good for Business

Solving problems is good for business because it helps you connect with your customer on an emotional level by giving your customer something tactile to connect.

Our human brains are designed to worry and look out for danger – our brains are very good at it too!Leading psychologists have often concluded that humans were not built to be happy, but were built to survive. This strong desire to survive is driven by us looking for potential risks and problems and working out how to overcome them, should they ever occur.It is our cognitive features that have helped us evolve so successfully. From discovering and controlling fire to inventing the wheel, we were driven to develop such things out of fear or to solve a problem.

  • Fear of starvation = hunting tools and later agriculture
  • Fear of death = medicines and medical treatments
  • Fear of threat = organisation of communities and the formation of armies

And the list goes on....Our brains are built to determine the next thing to fix or improve in our lives and this is why sales and marketing techniques aimed at solving human problems and providing solutions to issues are so effective.

Appealing to our restless minds

There are not many people who are in the fortunate position to be able to sit back, relax and be content with their lot. Even those millionaires who appear to have everything at their feet still worry about how they are going to keep their wealth protected and their lifestyles maintained and improved.Instead of our brains being content with our surroundings and how the world is making us feel right now, we will constantly focus on how we can create or fix any problems we have or worrying about what may be on the horizon.Our human brains don't sit comfortably for long wondering, “What can I enjoy today?” But, rather, “What problems can I fix today?”

Making obstacles into business opportunities

Some common human obstacles can become business opportunities if you know how to solve them, or at least provide some temporary relief for a little while.This is exactly how the holiday industry works. You have a stressed out and exhausted worker looking for a solution for their woes. You own a seaside hotel with a pool and spa where people can take a well-earned break away from their busy lives.Your hotel guests get a chance to escape the 9-5 grind and their long and tedious commute to work and back each day. Win-win all round!The skill here is to keep your hotel guest coming back for more. You can do this by keeping in regular contact with them and providing them with exciting news updates and beautiful photographs of your spectacular sea-views, comfortable hotel rooms or tempting new menu.By doing this you are connecting with your customers on an emotional level and you are reminding them that the perfect solution to their problems (overwork and exhaustion) is right here waiting for their return.

Creating a vision for your customers

Everyone is creative – even if you believe otherwise. You are creating new thoughts as you read this. You can help solve your target customer’s problems by creating a positive vision of your solution in their minds.By truly understanding your ideal customer inside out you will know what concerns or issues they will worry about. It is your job to create a vision of their perfect solution and deliver it on a plate directly to them.When you take the time to analyse your target audience and get inside their collective heads you will start to see what things feel good to their senses and things that don't.This way you can avoid switching off your target audience with the wrong message or creating the wrong image of your product or service in their mind.You need to be discerning about their discomfort. The idea and vision you want to create for your product or service is something that is positive and worthwhile. Show them that having what you are providing will enable them to better cope with whatever problems they are experiencing.

Tactile marketing techniques

Despite to huge rise in digital sales over the internet we still have a human need to touch something. This is most common with physical products such as shoes and clothes. We will have a desire to identify the most comfortable texture or the best fit.There is still a huge demand for real books that you can hold and read despite the popularity and convenience of having a digital version to download and read instantly. This is why for self-published authors it can be a good move to offer your book as a digital version on Amazon Kindle, Smashwords and other digital platforms but also offer your book through a print-on-demand service for those who prefer reading physical copies or would like to buy your book to give as a gift.

Emotional marketing with physical materials

As you want to be solving a problem with your product or service you need to connect with your customer on an emotional level. Giving your customer something tactile to connect with can often outstrip digital marketing efforts for gaining sales.A recent study conducted by Millward Brown for Royal Mail found that “this research strongly suggests that greater emotional processing is facilitated by the physical material than the virtual.”Offering your prospective customers a gift or free sample will act to leave a much deeper impression on the brain. This causes your product or service to be better remembered and a positive physical experience will help to build trust in your brand and a stronger desire and motivation to buy from you.

Tactile marketing can be along the lines of these examples:

  • Offering free samples of your cookies if you own a bakery shop or market stall
  • A free 5-minute hand massage if you are promoting your beauty salon at a local community event
  • Hosting a free cheese and wine taster evening if you own a deli or restaurant
  • A free sauna or workout session at your gym

Solving problems of your own

While the main focus of your business activities should be towards finding solutions to your customer’s problems, don't forget that there are also great solutions to help you solve your own business problems and issues too!One of the biggest issues a sole trader, solo entrepreneur or small business owner faces is the lack of available time to dedicate to developing their business and making it run more efficiently.As a business owner, you will have problems of your own to solve. So why not consider freeing up more of your time and giving yourself a break by using any of the following tips:

1: Cut down on your time reading and responding to email

Did you know that nearly one-third of an average working day involves dealing with your inbox? Set yourself a rule to only read and respond to emails twice per day. You can set yourself a time limit of half an hour in the morning and the same in the afternoon, for example at 10 am and 3.30 pm.Don't look at your email at other times and only respond to those that you need to. Email can eat up a huge chunk of your day and sending more emails out will only act to increase what comes in.

2: Use productivity apps

There are many free business apps that have been created to help you to better organise your day. Google Calendar, for example, can help to remind you of appointments and important events.Look at using a free Pomodoro timer to help with your concentration and to give you regular short breaks throughout the day to refresh and re-energise your mind.

3: Build an email list

Capture the contact details of your website visitors and build an email list for a low-cost solution to engage with your customers and interested prospect. MailChimp is great for organising your mailing lists and handy for running split-marketing campaigns.

4: Manage your Social Media

We have all fallen into that trap of opening Facebook and then boom! Half the day has gone. Try to curb the time you spend on social media by using a management tool such as HootSuite or outsourcing its management to an outside expert.

5: Outsource your admin tasks

As mentioned above with handing over the management of your social media to an outside expert, you should also look at freeing up your time from other business admin tasks that are just as time-consuming.While essential tasks for the success of your business, admin task are a big time-drain and they are unproductive in the sense that they don't generate any money for your business. Yes, they are necessary, but your time would be better spent focused on other aspects of your business, such as your customer research and marketing plans.Look at freeing up your precious time with services such as those offered by Capital Office London:

  • Call Answering: Impress clients with a London telephone number and a team of professional PAs who will personally greet your client and handle your business calls.
  • Virtual Office: Our complete virtual office combines our prestigious London virtual address with our leading professional call answering service. Our virtual office is designed to help you convey a professional image whilst ensuring you maximise your productivity.

6: Organise your to-do list

Obey the 2-minute rule where if you have a task will take less than two minutes to complete, do it right away. Getting these little tasks done and crossed off your list will make your to-do list look far less intimidating and you will be encouraged to power through the rest of your tasks with greater energy.


In summary, look at the many ways your product or service can help to solve a particular customer problem. Identify your target audience and work out their likes and dislikes and find where they hang out so you can better reach them with your solution.Don't forget to solve your own problems along the way by making good use of the tools and services that are available to you, from free apps to outsourcing time-draining tasks.With all this extra time you can save yourself, you can better focus your efforts to define your business goals and also give yourself a well-deserved break once in a while.

April 17, 2019
May 5, 2021


How To Create Your Perfect Customer Avatar

It is important to create a perfect customer avatar for knowing your ideal customer inside out while allowing you to know their pain points and requirements.

This is an important question for all sorts of reasons, especially in relation to the future success of your business.While it is important to understand your target audience you cannot really relate to them unless you are exactly the same as them. For example, you simply will not be able to comprehend what your ideal customer will think or feel throughout their everyday life, or how negatively their problems affect them every day without you yourself being able to walk in the same shoes.I doubt that you will ever understand what challenges your prospective customer faces unless you are actually selling a product or service that has helped or does help you!Talking about walking in the same shoes – let's say that you have found a niche market for shoe lifts (these are inserts that go into your shoes to make you taller). It feels great to you that you are helping short people feel a little better about themselves through using your shoe lifts.But how could you possibly know how they think or feel about their lack of height if you yourself are over six foot tall?

Get to know your target customers better

The point I am trying to make here is that the better you can think or feel what life is like from your target customers point of view, the better your sales and marketing efforts will be in attracting and engaging with them.The most successful marketers working for big-brand names make it their business to be absolutely in-tune with their target audience at every level.Many leading marketers in these fields actually are customers themselves so they constantly live with the very products that they are selling. They know their target market inside-out because they are one of them.So, how well do you really know the person that you are selling to? Do you really know them at all?

Time to do your homework!

If you don't think that you know your target customer very well, or you can even admit to not knowing them at all, then it is time to learn as much about them as you can.Believe me, the sales and marketing world is a cut-throat business these days. If you don't know your target customer at all well, you can guarantee that your direct competitors probably will!The best way to really get to know and understand your target audience is to build yourself your ideal customer avatar. You need to narrow down and get to know your ideal client or customer.

How to define your customer avatar

You may be wondering why it is so important to build a customer avatar. The simple answer to this is because knowing your ideal customer inside out will allow you to know their pain points.Knowing how your product or service can help to solve, reduce or manage their related problem will allow you to better target your marketing and make it more effective.

By defining your customer avatar you will be able to:

  • Find out where should you advertise your product or service to maximize its exposure to your target customer
  • The best vocabulary and tone of voice to use in your marketing
  • The type or style of marketing that connects with your ideal customer
  • What story your marketing content should be telling

Visualising your customer avatar

Humans are quite visual creatures by nature so it will help your efforts to understand your customer greatly if you give your avatar a name and a composite picture. You could use a cartoon image or a stock photograph of someone that looks like your kind of customer.By picturing them as an actual person you can ask yourself more questions and come up with a background story for your customer.

There is something about 'Mary'

Let's say that you name your customer avatar Mary. You could then think about how your product or service will help Mary to solve an issue. Then ask yourself where you can position your product or service where it will reach Mary.Let's say that Mary has a problem with dry, flaky skin. She is very self-conscious about her skin and is yet to find an effective skin cream that helps. She also works long hours in an air-conditioned office that has a drying effect on her skin.Mary often flies overseas on business, so also needs to be able to safely carry a conveniently sized and packaged skin cream that complies with airline safety rules.Mary needs a high-quality skin cream that is pleasant to use and easy to apply. She also needs to be able to carry it with her to apply during her lunch break at work and during trips.

How your skin cream can help Mary

Your skin cream has proven to be very effective in soothing and nourishing dry skin. It also comes conveniently contained in a travel pack that can be easily and safely carried in a handbag, which makes it ideal to be used when away from home while at work or while travelling.

Here are some questions to ask yourself about Mary:

  • Which social media platform will Mary use this week?
  • Where does Mary work? Will she be online at home in the evening or during the day?
  • What magazines does Mary read?
  • What sort of message would make Mary stop to take notice of our product?

Finding answers to these questions will help you get a better feel for Mary, how to reach her and how your dry skin cream can help her with:

  • Effectively treating her dry skin
  • Being able to carry a supply of cream with her
  • Trusting the cream packaging won't break or leak in her handbag
  • Is supplied in conveniently sized packs to meet with air travel safety rules

Why it is about more than numbers

Your marketing success has more than just statistics and figures to look at. Yes, numbers are useful for looking at your sales as a whole, but by going deeper and creating an individual end user avatar you can help yourself to keep your marketing message on point and targeted to the individual.If you take the time to build your ideal customer avatar and get to know them inside out as if they were a real person, you could even start to ask them rhetorical questions. Your avatar will be able to answer your questions to help you make better marketing decisions.Too many marketers fail when they try to target 'everyone' as their prospective customer. The trouble is if you target everybody then you will end up attracting no-one.

Don't forget to include the human touch

Creating an ideal customer avatar is building a fictional character that embodies your ideal customer. You may, in fact, have need of more than one customer avatar if your product or service also appeals to different customers – this is fine too.However, remember that once you have gained your customers you will need to do your very best to retain their custom and trust in your business.You should never forget the human touch in business. This means having real-life people to take care of their needs and be there to answer their live questions.Make sure your customer calls are answered by a real person that can help them. If you are too busy to do this yourself because you are a sole trader or small company with minimal staff, you can solve this problem with our Unlimited Call Handling Service from Capital Office, London.So while you are busy creating your ideal customer avatar and using him or her to help devise your next marketing strategy, you can feel reassured that you are not missing a single telephone call.You can be free to concentrate on your next marketing campaign safe in the knowledge that your business calls are being handled by our team of professional personal assistants who will be answering your clients with your chosen greeting and dealing with your calls as you instruct.Don't forget that Capital Office can supply you with a whole range of helpful virtual office services that are ideal for small businesses and solo-entrepreneurs that want to keep their costs down while providing their customers with top-class customer services.Good luck with building your ideal customer avatar! We hope you find this information useful.

April 3, 2019
May 5, 2021


Revive Your Old Content to help Boost your Sales

Instead of piling up your blog with blog posts and articles, why not revive your old content to boost your company profile and profits at the same time.

The key to customer engagement is to consistently publish fresh and interesting content on your business website, blog and social media pages.This is a very well-known and proven fact that most successful marketers make good use of. However, what do you do with all that valuable content once it has been read?Over the course of time, your website or blog will have accumulated quite a lot of content. Some of it was very popular, some of it not so much.But rather than consigning your old blog posts and articles to your very own content graveyard, why not breath some fresh life into it and reuse it to help boost your company profile and profits at the same time!

Updating content with your current direction

As businesses grow and evolve over time, quite often a company ethos, direction or way of doing things may change. This can mean that what you wrote about your company two years ago may not apply today.For example, with increasing pressure on companies these days to 'go green' and reduce their carbon footprint or environmental impact, many businesses will adopt new environmental strategies into their operations. This means that their old web content and blog posts will make no mention of a new company 'green ethos'.Any new prospective customer that is looking for an eco-minded company to buy from will not be aware of your new positive environment stance if they stumble across you via an old piece of content.You will need to make your customers aware of your new direction if you want to capture that 'green' demographic. Leaving your old content as it is doesn't really position you as the 'go-to' company for products or services delivered with any sort of environmental consciousness.

Recycling your old content for more ROI

As well as the environmental example mentioned above, you can also do something positive with your underperforming blog content and old archived posts.

1: Rewriting and optimising

You should already know which are the most important topics that are of most interest to your readers. You should also know what your most popular keywords are that brings the most traffic to your website.Search through your content to find posts on your most popular topics and pair them with your keyword research. Check to see if your most popular topic content contains your most valuable keywords and key phrases.If they don't contain any important keywords or phrases then you should take action to have these re-written to weave in more targeted keywords and key phrases – but make sure you don't overdo this. Google and other major search engines hate keyword spamming and will penalise you for 'keyword-stuffing'.

2: Creating content pillars

Make an index list on your site where you can list everything your site already contains on those topics or touches on those areas of your business that people most search for.Once you have optimised your content and organised them into a list you will have created a content pillar that easily groups several posts into one strong, easily accessible pillar. Your readers will appreciate this as they will be able to access plenty of information on the same topic easily without having to dig around your site or blog to find the content they want to read.Note: When re-writing and optimising your content remember NOT TO publish it separately and delete your original post. This is important because you may have earned some valuable backlinks on your original content that will be worth hanging on to.

3: Add new CTA's

Revisit your old content to see if you can find any missing opportunities to optimise for lead generation.You need to make it as easy as possible for your readers to take the next step to either engage with you further by signing up to your mailing list or actually go and buy your products or services.Check to see that each blog piece or web page has a call to action (CTA) at the end. You may discover some pieces that don't have a sign-up link or a live link to your online shop or contact page. Add an effective CTA where there are any missing.If you already do include a CTA at the end of every piece of content but you are not seeing good click-through rates, then consider changing your CTA to a more proven one that has worked well on other pieces of content or test different CTA approaches to see if you get better results from using a different format.

4: Redistribute through social media

Your website and blog content is precious material. Although social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter are where you will find your customers hanging out, the downside is that social media has a very short memory.The whole point of social media is to share current hot information. People want information and they want it now! This is why they are so hungry for new news and content and hang out for hours each day on social media platforms.You can use this to your advantage by leveraging your now freshly-optimised old blog content for new hungry minds. The chances are that you may well have a lot of Facebook or Twitter followers that haven't read your old content from two years ago.Why not dig up your old posts and refresh them with your new products, services or a special offer that you are currently running and use these to feed your social media posts.Redistributing your newly created information pillars and updated content will work to get the very best return on investment from your posts and will also get your information in front of as many eyes as possible. It will also take the pressure off your shoulders to feel like you need to write new content every single day.

5: Get some virtual help

Your archived blog and website content doesn't have to sit in the dark in some forgotten corner of your site. You can transform your valuable content and put it to work for you to become a high-traffic asset.Reworking your old content and setting up a fresh distribution plan to get your optimised content off the ground will take some time and effort.We understand that the pressure put on your shoulders to perform well and deliver good results can be great. This is why you should look at using effective ways to relieve that pressure.Hiring virtual office services to help you with your workload is not only a very cost-effective way to get the job done but it allows you to put 100% of your focus into your content refresh plans without any disturbances.While you focus on your old content refresh and redistribution, look at making use of these valuable virtual services that will free up your time and allow you to concentrate:

Professional unlimited call answering service

Our call answering service is an affordable yet professional service designed to help a variety of clients to manage their incoming calls.With our call answering service, our PA’s answer your phone calls allowing you have peace of mind that you haven’t missed an important call as you were unavailable. Watch our quick video to see how our Call Answering service can help your business.

Complete virtual office services

Capital Office complete virtual office combines our prestigious London virtual address with our leading professional call answering service.Our virtual office is designed to help you convey a professional image whilst ensuring you maximise your productivity. Watch our quick video to see how our virtual office service works.Both of these cost-effective professional virtual services are ideal for a solo-entrepreneur or sole trader that works alone and can greatly benefit from our professional support without having to hire their own employees.You can read more about our virtual office services and FAQs or contact us directly to discuss your needs with our friendly team.Call us: 0207 566 3939Email: OFFICE@CAPITAL-OFFICE.CO.UKOr drop in to meet us in person at our London offices:Capital Office, Kemp House, 152 - 160 City Road, London, EC1V 2NX

March 20, 2019
May 5, 2021


Why Start-Up Businesses Need to Establish Good Cash Flow

What makes or breaks new start-up businesses, regardless of size or how many people are involved, is their ability to generate and maintain a stable cash flow.

According to figures collected by the Federation of Small Business, there were 5.6 million small businesses at the start of 2018 in the UK. Small businesses accounted for 99.3% of all private sector start-up businesses at the start of 2018 and 99.9% were small or medium-sized (SMEs).There were 1.4 million employing businesses and 4.3 million non-employing businesses. Therefore, 75% of businesses did not employ anyone aside from the owner(s).What makes or breaks a new start-up business, regardless of size or how many people are involved, is their ability to generate and maintain a stable cash flow. One of the main reasons why a small business will fail in its first couple of years of operation is through having a poor cash flow where a good balance of money is flowing into your business at a greater level than what flows out in overheads, such as for staff wages, supplies, business expenses, rent and utility charges etc.

Why your invoicing schedule is important

Believe it or not, there are lots of small business owners that don't actually invoice their clients each week – or even each month!A lot of small business owners are sole traders or solo-entrepreneurs that operate a 'single-person' business where the responsibility of invoicing falls onto the shoulders of the sole owner, as well as every other business-related and administrative task, needed to run their company.The lack of available time to keep up with a regular customer invoicing system is one reason why a small business owner can fail to maintain good cash flow. When you are the person that is doing all of the work, then your financial and administrative tasks will take a back seat should an urgent order come in from a customer that needs your attention.In some cases, business owners are not invoicing until three or four months later after they have completed their work or delivered on the customer order. This can be a fatal mistake to make when trying to run a business.

Invoice management

To establish and maintain a healthy cash flow for your business you need to be invoicing promptly while offering reasonable payment deadlines. You then need to ensure that you chase up any outstanding invoices as quickly as possible once their payment deadline has lapsed.Admittedly, this can be a mammoth task to perform and manage for a single-person business, especially when you cannot afford to turn down work or new customers coming in to be able to fit in managing your invoices.

Tips on invoicing your customers

There are a number of ways to try to keep your cash flow steady when it comes to invoicing your clients or customers. Sending prompt invoices is a good start, so send them immediately as soon as you have dispatched a customer order or completed a job of work that you have been hired to perform.Depending on the nature of your work, you could look at ways to secure payment upfront, or at least a deposit or part-payment. Doing this will mean that you will have some cash reserves to purchase the stock or materials you need to start.For example, if you offer a service that may take some weeks to complete, you can ask for an upfront deposit to retain your services. Halfway through your contract, you could seek a further part-payment that will see you comfortably through to the completion of your project.

Offer monthly payment plan options

Again, depending on the nature of your business, you could look at the possibility of setting up a monthly or even quarterly payment plan for your services, or for a regular supply of stock or product that you sell all-year-round.There can be some comfort in knowing that there will be some regular payments flowing into your businesses coming from a monthly or quarterly payment plan that your customers have signed up for in advance.Payment plans or business subscriptions are also a great way for other small business owners to buy your products or services in small, regular payments without it drastically affecting their own cash flow or completely draining their cash reserves.

Discounted prices for annual purchases

Taking the time to sit and invoice each and every customer you have on your books each week or month can be a tiresome task. If your business attracts customers that will be repeat buyers or needs a consistent supply of goods and services throughout the year, rather than invoicing them each month, it may be more viable to offer them a tempting upfront offer instead!Offering larger companies that have a healthy cash flow system an annual payment option, with a tempting price reduction or discounted rate, can be more advantageous than individual monthly invoicing.The company will be tempted in by a reduced price when compared to the monthly price for your services, plus you will get an up-front cash injection that could provide a very good boost to your business cash reserves.Plus the fact that having annually renewing customers means that you will only have to invoice once per year per client! That is better than trying to find the time to invoice each customer twelve times per year.

How to avoid bad debts

The only way your business can avoid bad debts is to keep a positive cash flow. Having a negative cash flow can do serious harm to your business, especially in situations where you will struggle to pay for essential supplies that you need for your business to operate.If you fail to pay the suppliers that you rely on, as well as a failure to pay your utility bills that are essential for your business to function, you will see your business crumble in the long run.

Let's look at some ways to improve your business cash flow and to avoid bad debts:

  • Prompt invoicing
  • Taking upfront deposits
  • Taking payment part way through your work
  • Chasing up outstanding invoices quickly
  • Adding a late-payment interest charge to outstanding invoices
  • Offering monthly, quarterly or annual payment plans
  • Setting up different payment options: PayPal, card payments, bank transfers

Other ways to improve your business cash flow

To make sure that you can dip into some emergency cash during times of need, you can talk to your bank about setting up flexible overdraft options.You could also look at freeing up your time to dedicate towards better management of your invoicing system:

  • You can simplify your invoicing by using online accounting tools such as QuickBooks for example. They offer online bookkeeping and accounting services for small business owners and the self-employed.
  • Free yourself from your most time-consuming administrative tasks such as answering your business phone and sorting out your business post by outsourcing these tasks to Capital Office London. You can choose from a Complete Virtual Office service to individual virtual services such as Unlimited Call Answering or mail forwarding options at very cost-effective prices to help free up your time.

Remember, this is your own business – your pride and joy! You have worked hard to build this from the ground up, so don’t be negligent when it comes to managing your business cash flow.

March 13, 2019
May 5, 2021


Capital Office London Virtual Office Service and FAQ's

Here at the Capital Office, we are often asked questions about our virtual office services from business owners that are interested in working with us.

Here at Capital Office, we are often asked questions about our virtual office services from business owners that are interested in working with us.We thought it would be useful to explain how we operate and also to compile a list of the most common questions that we are asked about our virtual business services. We hope the following information and FAQ's help to answer your questions, but if not then do not hesitate to contact our friendly team who will be happy to answer your questions.You can give us a call on 0207 566 3939. Email us at OFFICE@CAPITAL-OFFICE.CO.UK Or pop in to see us in person at our offices at Capital Office, Kemp House, 152 - 160 City Road, London, EC1V 2NX. Our offices are open Monday to Friday 9.00 a.m. – 5.00 p.m.

Do I need an office?

After many years of providing virtual office services for business owners based all across the UK, we talk to people every day that still don't know what a 'virtual office' is or how virtual services work.With the advancements in modern technologies, there are so many different workplace options open to business owners that it can make your head spin! How we work has been changing rapidly over recent years and the traditional office set up is no longer seen as your only choice.These days your business does not need to operate from just one single physical office space. Modern workers are no longer tied to a desk or need to commute to a place of work every day.

Modern workplace options

Whether you are looking to set up a brand new business, or you want to streamline your existing operation to cut costs, business owners can now choose how they operate, including:

  • Having one traditional physical office base
  • Flexible co-working space
  • Running a hot-desking system
  • Using virtual office services
  • Employing remote workers
  • Working from your home office

Office rent and availability

Another factor that will impact on how you run your business is the availability of suitable office space in your ideal location. If you plan to rent office space to work from you will need to find somewhere that is easily accessible to you and easy for your staff to commute to and from each day.What most business owners find is that there isn't often any suitable office space available that not only fits the right location but often also comes with a huger price tag for rent, business insurance, utilities and services.You may also find that renting the office space comes with a very inflexible contract that could be costly to get out of should you find the premises unsuitable further down the line.If you are a sole trader, solo-entrepreneur or small partnership and you live and work many miles outside of a major city, then an alternative office set-up such as a complete virtual office will be of a huge benefit to your business.

What is a Virtual Office?

A complete virtual office can act to replace your traditional office set up where you would normally have physical desks, phones, computers and all the other services and expenses that come along with it.A virtual office is exactly the same, just without the physical element and associated costs and overheads that a physical office incurs.With a complete virtual office package, such as the one available from Capital Office, you are also provided with an official central-London business address where all of your business correspondence goes to.Our team of professional mail sorters will take care of your business post and can even sign for your business parcels and packages on your behalf.

Can I book separate virtual services?

If you don't want to use our complete virtual office solution, you can book each of our virtual service options separately. You can choose from:Our Professional Business Address service (mail sorting and forwarding): A London address for you to use on your company website, company correspondence etc.Our Registered Business Address service: To use with HMRC and Companies House.Our Directors Service Address: To keep your private home address off the Public Record.Unlimited Live Call Answering service: Taking your incoming business phone calls and answering with a greeting of your choice. Calls can be forwarded or a message taken.Voicemail only call answering service: Have your own London phone number with voicemail message taking. Receive an email alert instantly. 24/7 access to your messages with PIN protection. Ideal for business owners that need to work undisturbed.Professional meeting rooms: Benefit from using professional, unbranded, modern, central-London based meeting room facilities to meet with and impress your clients.Our flexible virtual office services offer you the right support at the right time. We are here when you need us and you can easily add on extra services as your business grows and you need a little extra help without the expense of hiring a full-time employee of your own.

What happens to my business mail?

On arrival at our central-London office base, your business post will be handled to your specifications:

  • You may want us to collect your post together and then simply forward it to you at your preferred address on a regular schedule that suits you
  • You can have your post opened and scanned. We will then forward your scanned letters to you via email
  • If you are located close to London or visit the city regularly, then you can arrange to drop into our offices to collect your mail at your convenience

Who would normally use Virtual Office services?

The Virtual Office Service users we help and support come from a very diverse range of backgrounds and business professions.From busy single sole traders who need help managing their business calls when they are busy, to solo-entrepreneurs wanting to build a strong business reputation through using our professional business address services, we can help everyone!Our virtual office services bring benefits to just about any company or business set-up – large or small. Whether you are starting off small and lean to keep your overheads to an absolute minimum, to a large international business that needs to have a London-based presence for their company.

Can I set up a virtual office in the UK for my overseas business?

If you are not a UK resident then you still make use of our virtual office services to give your business a London-based hub. This can help your UK based customers or clients to have a convenient London address and phone number to contact and send mail to.We can forward your mail to an overseas address of your choosing, or you can benefit from our scan and email option to get your business mail notifications instantly.

Can I speak to a real person about your services?

Yes, you can! We have a friendly team of people here at Capital Office that make up our customer service base. If you need any help or guidance about any of our services, you can give us a call on 0207 566 3939 and speak to one of our lovely team members. You can also live-chat with us from our website – we are here to help!

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