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Strengthening small business in West Wimmera

West Wimmera Shire Council recognises the contribution local businesses make to the regional economy and is committed to helping grow small business. By facilitating an environment conducive to business growth, council foresees a stronger, innovative entrepreneurial culture.

The development and retention of skilled business operators and a skilled workforce is critical to the achievement of longer term economic sustainability. Developing local skills represents a long-term solution and will deliver workforce stability that is critical to business growth.

The Industry Skills Fund may be able to help you and your business, by developing innovative training solutions for your business. This fund provides skills advice and training grants to small and medium enterprises, through a co-contribution model.

Click on the link to find more information | Industry Skills Fund

SAVE THE DATE - Free business workshops
-Financial Health Check 
-Digital Business
-Customer Service

Kaniva| Monday 12 September 2016
Edenhope| Tuesday 13 September 2016

Streetscape Scheme OPEN
APPLY NOW! Applications close 11 September.
The West Wimmera Streetscape Scheme program is aimed at encouraging business owners and operators to upgrade the appearance of the front of their buildings and to improve accessibility to premises. The program is currently available to businesses operating in main street localities.

The purpose of the program is to beautify the region's local shopping precincts by improving the streetscape. It also encourages businesses to make it easier for customers to access their shop. Through providing financial assistance, the program aims to develop a stronger partnership between council and business owners and operators, in making overall improvements to the main streets.

Application form and guidelines can be downloaded from the Streetscape webpage on councils website.

For further information on the program, please contact Kellie Jordan | 03 5392 7700 |

The customer always remembers...

Memories are connected moments that join together and create the chapters of our lives. When we make a decision, we have a tendency to review the past for reassurance that whatever we are about to do, we'll be okay.

Daniel Kahneman, Nobel Prize winner and founder of behavioural economics, posted this TEDTalk explaining that when it comes to buying a product or service, our decisions are based on memories, not experiences.

Here's a scenario: you go out to dinner with friends. The food is wonderful, the wine is fine, and the environment is just right. Stimulating conversations are flowing, and everyone is happy. Right when you are about to pay the bill, the waiter knocks over your glass and spills wine all over your dessert and pants. Forget the pants; now you have no wine or dessert. Everything up to this point was perfect - until it wasn't.

What will you remember when you walk out?

The majority of the experience was blissful, but many of us would remember - and tell our friends - about the spill. If asked to return, we may be hesitant because the memory of the spill overpowers the hour of happiness.

We are hesitant because we naturally focus on our losses rather than our gains. Most of our decisions are rooted in uncertainty about the future, so memories act as fog lights to help us navigate unknown pathways.

So imagine a customer visits your business, loves everything about it, but doesn't receive timely or thoughtful assistance. Or worse - no assistance.

What do you think they will do?

Timeliness, empathy and the right tone and language are essential for fruitfully helping customers. However what ultimately matters, is what the customer walks away with: a memory. Ninety-nine percent of the interaction can be wonderful, but the wrong gesture or tone or words can spoil the ending.


Key steps for selling your business.
What do you need to do?


* Ascertain what the business is worth
* Develop a strategy to attract buyers
* Ensure you consider existing employees, stock, assets, legal, tax and other obligations, ownership of intellectual property, etc.
* Negotiate the sale, payment, transfer - and get a sales contract drawn up
* Plan the transition and deadlines to ensure a smooth transfer
* Make a plan for life after selling your business

How to sell a regional business webinar

By Kerr Capital
6.30 pm Monday 15 August

Visit the Michael-Kerr website.

To get the best out of your website, consider these five tips.

1. Be succinct - nothing will drive new visitors away from your website faster than a wall of text. Short and clear headings are essential. Pages can be well organised by using short paragraphs, bullet points and a lot of white space.
2. Make it about the visitor - A visitor comes to your site to gather information or to do something that is of benefit to them. Your website should anticipate those needs and clearly address them.

3. Define a path - Help visitors know what to do by creating a clear path for them to take. Once a visitor arrives at the homepage, where do you want them to go?
4. Blog about it - A blog is an extremely powerful tool for awareness and engagement. It assists in driving more traffic to your website and a place to build a relationship with visitors.
5. Link to social media - do you offer special promotions for fans and followers? You'll remain top of mind and potentially reach new people if the content you share is interesting and helpful.
Improving customer service

Customer service is about giving customers what they want, when they want it, in the best possible way. If your business provides good customer service, you have a greater chance of keeping and increasing your customer base.

Research indicates that it costs up to 10 times as much to attract a new customer as it does to keep an existing customer.

Good customer service can help your business grow by increasing:
  • customer numbers through favourable word-of-mouth advertising
  • the dollar amount spent per customer per transaction
  • the frequency of customer visits.
You can establish a culture of excellent customer service in your business by planning, developing and sustaining a customer service program. Train your staff to give your customers the highest level of service.

To ensure you provide the best customer service:
  • know what your customers consider to be good customer service
  • take the time to find out customers' expectations
  • follow up on both positive and negative feedback you receive
  • ensure that you consider customer service in all aspects of your business
  • continuously look for ways to improve the level of customer service you deliver.
Economic Development Unit 
West Wimmera Shire Council

Do you want to learn how to use social media? Or create a video for your business? Would you like to access one-on-one business mentoring? Or just get some handy hints on how to improve your business.

Get in contact with council's Economic Development Unit and let us know what you need. There are a number of ways in which we can provide you with support for your business.

Kellie Jordan | 03 5392 7700 |
Have a squiz at some more biz...
Apps to increase your productivity

Australian Taxation Office

Business reliability checks

Business planning

Marketing planning

Emergency management planning

Connect with your customers

Check out these mobile marketing solution, aimed at making it simple for you to build customer loyalty.

Quick App



Stamp Me

Adapting to change

Because we are getting more of our news electronically and newspapers are dying, a paper mill in southern America that profitably produced newsprint for years, is now spending $270 million to convert to producing toilet paper. 

Apparently some products cannot be replaced by technology.

Free website templates

Do you need a website but don't have the budget for a web designer?

Did you know that you can create your own website for free?

Check out Wix - an online website with free, easy to use website templates.

Copyright © 2016 West Wimmera Shire Council, All rights reserved.

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