As a busy merchant, you have a to-do list that seems to grow by the second and it’s alarmingly easy for time to run away from you. There’s only so many working hours in a day, so it’s crucial that you make the most of your valuable time. Here are some time-saving tips for you busy merchants.
1. Plan your day
When you have a million tasks to do, it can feel overwhelming and difficult to discern where to start. Planning your day helps you stay organized and focused. Scheduling time blocks to complete each task will help maintain structure and order in your day.
Crafting a to-do list can help you feel less like your day is spiraling out of control. It also helps to ensure that you don’t forget anything pertinent and that you are completing tasks by priority. Plus – that feeling of accomplishment you get when you can cross (or technologically tick) an item off your list feels pretty good. You can go old school with a paper and pen or you can use apps like Remember the Milk.
2. Delegate, delegate, delegate
This one is hard for perfectionists to hear, but it’s just not possible to do everything yourself. Delegate some of the more routine and administrative tasks because your time is better spent on the bigger picture tasks that drive your business.
Small inconveniences like trying to find a specific file may only take a few minutes but can add up significantly over time. Having an organized file system will shave off valuable time on finding files on a cluttered computer. Take some time to properly name your files and create folders and sub-folders. Some proper organization can save you time in the long-run – and a headache or two.
4. Take care of yourself
Remember to eat and sleep! Your brain will function much more effectively when you’re well-nourished and well-rested. Nutrition and health are not always front of mind during a busy day, but it’s important to keep yourself healthy so you have the energy to get through the day productively. Try some brain superfoods like these.
Working straight through several hours can quickly burn you out and reduce productivity. Remember to take short breaks throughout the day. If you need help, use an app like Time Out, which reminds you to take a break at customizable intervals. Get some fresh air at lunch; go for a brisk walk around the block to clear your head and give you a boost of energy to get through the rest of the day (plus it’ll help lower your blood pressure and cholesterol levels; it’s a win-win).
5. Block out distractions
It can be really distracting to get work done when there’s a lot going on around you or when you’re checking Instagram every few minutes. For some, the allure of social media is just too tempting to resist. Try establishing blocks of uninterrupted time to get work done and use apps, such as Freedom, to block distractions like calls or social media temptations. While it’s not possible to ignore all outside communication, you can schedule specific times to answer emails, return phone calls, or take meetings, rather than be available at all times.
6. Use a cloud-based system
Sometimes business isn’t always conducted behind the desk. Whether you’re checking on your multiple locations, running from meeting to meeting, or just simply on the go, you don’t have time to waste trying to access the information you need. Systems that are cloud-based, like our payments platform PayHQ, ensure that you are able to access information anytime, anywhere.