8 Hacks to Make Your Digital Agency More Productive

The more billable tasks you do, the more money your agency will make. The less time you spend on administrative and non-billable costs, the more you can spend on valuable customer work.

Productivity equals profitability. But being productive is easier said than done, especially as you scale your agency.

To help you out, here are some of our favorite digital agency productivity hacks to get more done in less time, whether your agency is making money on digital marketing, SEO, web design, or other skills that have turned you into a business .

Download our full Productivity Guide here for more tips on improving your productivity at work.

How to make digital agencies more productive

1. Delegate tasks that others can do better.

A lot of agencies start out like this: you’re a lonely advisor monetizing your skills, and business is doing fine. In fact, you are putting in too much work to deliver yourself. Either you have to refuse customers or overwhelm yourself unsustainably. But eventually you choose to distribute the workload by hiring someone else. You will soon be running a digital agency.

Being able to delegate is of crucial importance for every company – whether it is about hiring the first employees or knowing what to outsource later. One of the best productivity tips for agencies: When a task is time consuming and doesn’t require your team’s skills to get it done well, find someone else to do it. Platforms like Fiverr and Upwork make outsourcing easier than ever.

2. Use price elasticity to your advantage.

This isn’t a productivity tip – but it will help your agency make more money. It’s the simplest trick in the book: increase your prices.

As a young company with a steady stream of satisfied customers, you should increase your prices regularly – about every six months. This is due to the economic concept of price elasticity.

A can of Coca-Cola is a resilient product: if a shopkeeper raises prices inappropriately, customers won’t buy it. Instead, they get something else, like a can of Pepsi.

But the work of your agency is a value-oriented product: it is less elastic. If your customers benefit from your work, they won’t leave if you raise your prices.

However, you should be careful about increasing your prices – and you need to be sure that you are delivering the value to secure it – but your best customers are likely to pay more to keep working with you. However, in general, it is easiest to test the water with new customers before sharing it with your existing customers.

3. Work out focus time.

You wake up to a barrage of Slack notifications. You open your laptop and emails pour in. Then the phone rings. With all of this, how can you focus on the work you are paid to do?

The answer: with focus and intentionality. Building a productive and profitable agency with clients you love takes a lot of focus. It means sitting down at your computer, turning off notifications, and focusing on the most important tasks until they’re done. No LinkedIn review, no email reviews just in case, no holding Slack in the background.

Serious, lackluster, and reckless focus is your secret weapon against the competition – and it will result in more profits.

4. Know that doubling your team doesn’t double the results.

If you hire more people, there is a very real chance that your productivity will stagnate or decrease – at least in the beginning. This can even apply to your winnings.

There is value in staying small, as Paul Jarvis celebrates in his book Company of One: Why Stay Small is the next big thing for businesses – Your company is more agile when it is smaller. It’s also usually more productive per employee.

When you have decided to scale your agency, do so with full acceptance that it will change the culture and productivity of your team. in many ways for the better, but also with some losses.

5. Identify where your results are coming from.

You have probably heard of the Pareto Principle or the 80/20 Rule. It suggests that 80% of the results come from 20% of the work.

In your digital agency, this can mean 80% of your profits come from 20% of your projects. 80% of your problems and headaches can come from 20% of your customers. 80% of your work is likely done in 20% of your day.

To make your digital agency more productive, go into that 20% – the projects, clients, and the time that the results came from, and on the other hand, where the problems crop up. Recalibrate your business to make room for more of what works.

6. Choose tools that accelerate billing and payments.

The end of the month is over, you’ve done a lot of work, your customers are happy, and everything should be fine in the world. But you have to send your invoices.

Getting paid is easier said than done. Sending out invoices can be one of the most time-consuming parts of your agency’s workload, especially if you don’t have good billing software by your side.

Find tools that track your time and billing amounts so you know exactly what to calculate. The best platforms should make it easy to generate an invoice with the correct information per customer, including address, currency, and payment details.

Some of the best billing and bookkeeping tools for digital agencies are:

  • Online quick books: The most respected financial software out there, although it can be too complex for small agencies that want to keep things simple. Time tracking is available on the Essentials plan starting at $ 40 / month.
  • Freshbooks: Optimized for freelancers and very small businesses, Freshbooks can also be well suited for smaller agencies. It offers built-in time tracking capabilities and integrations with payroll providers.
  • Xero: At the sweet spot between complex and simple, Xero is easy to use and a powerful addition to digital agencies.

7. If you can turn away bad customers, do it.

As a digital agency, it can feel like you’re not destined to turn down work. This is a total myth. The most productive and profitable agencies say no to work that isn’t right for them. It may take your agency a while to be in a position where you can afford to say no, but if you are less desperate for clients this is where you should go. Watch out for:

  • Poorly fit customers who you know will struggle to provide good service
  • Customers who are a nightmare to work with – you have either worked with them before or you can spot the tell-tale signs
  • Customers who refuse to pay your usual prices and insist on discounts

8. Sync your contact information across apps.

Over time, your agency’s data on past, present, and future clients can quickly become obnoxious – and you have enough to do without searching through it.

Set up two-way syncs between your apps so your data plays smoothly across all of your agency’s tools including CRM, help desk, accounting tool and email marketing system to keep things under control.

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