Growing business is one of the most challenging situations you will face as an entrepreneur. In order to successfully grow your business, you will have to accurately gauge your current performance as well as your limitations. Attempting to expand operations too quickly has historically sunk innumerable, otherwise perfectly good, businesses.
If, however, you grow your business the right way, you will find that when the time comes you are in a strong position to embark upon a serious expansion. Below are some words of advice from experienced entrepreneurs on how you can effectively grow your business.
1. Expand Your Business by Opening in another Location
This is usually the ultimate goal when a business expands upon a rapid growth program. Opening in another location means you will gain access to entirely new markets and clientele. This can have a number of knock on effects for your business. For example, this can drive a sustained rise in sales and sometimes tapping into a new market also brings you funds for your next expansion venture.
Apart from these, opening in a new location also makes you more resistant to unforeseeable events. For instance, if your entire business is tied up in a single location, then, should anything happen to that building, you could end up in a pretty dire situation. Multiple locations means your brand can continue to operate during such times.
2. Diversify Your Products and Services
Diversifying means broadening your range. Just as opening in a new physical location will give you access to new markets by virtue of geography, diversifying the range of products and services you offer can give you access to new markets that were previously wouldn’t have had any interest in your business. Diversifying also gives your existing customers more to choose from and more reasons to spread the word about your business.
3. Study the Competition
This is a vital consideration for businesses at all times, regardless of their expansion plans. If you don’t have a firm understanding of what your competition is doing then you will naturally find it much harder to compete with them effectively.
The information you should look for: what demographics your competition is appealing to and whether these demographics overlap with your own customer base, and how the competition is allocating its marketing resources. It is valuable to know what markets your rivals are attempting to penetrate as well as how successful they’ve been.
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4. Track Your Results
All of your efforts will be for nothing if you don’t know how successful they are. Even the very best entrepreneurs rarely hit on perfect strategies every time, so it is important to know when it is useful to analyse and assess the effectiveness of your own work.
There are different strategies you can use to analyse your performance and to draw up appropriate plans of action in response. In order to do this, you will need to identify exactly what variables should be measured in order to make an assessment as to how successful you have been, as well as to determine the best way to measure them.
There are two forms of data collection; passive, and active. Passive data collection means that data is collected automatically and with no specific action required on the part of either the collector or the source of data. By contrast, active data collection requires both the consent and the knowledge of the person or people supplying the data. Consequently, sources of active data collection know that they are being measured or observed in some way and this can lead to something referred to as observer bias. For this reason, passive data collection techniques are generally preferred, these are also usually easier to gather and, providing they are gathered properly, are generally more accurate and representative of real world situations.
Once you have gathered the necessary data, and then begin the complex process of interpreting it in order to make it useful. The science of performing these analyses is that of data analytics. Data analytics is a relatively new branch of mathematics and a sub branch of statistical analysis. It is algorithm-based, meaning, because the mathematical processes required are so complex they are prohibitively difficult for a human to perform. Therefore, powerful computers are needed to take, what are often very large, data sets and analyse them in order to identify patterns and relationships between different variables. There are now companies that can perform this service for you.
5. Promote Your Business Online
A professional online offering is essential for any business hoping to compete in the modern landscape. The internet represents, by a considerable margin, the greatest potential in terms of the number of people you can reach. You should prioritize online forms of marketing above all others.
6. Offer Your Business for Franchising
If you believe that you have a winning formula for success in your field, you might also want to consider franchising. Franchising means that you will essentially sell the essence of your business to interested buyers who will operate their own outlets based on your formula. Offering your business for franchising is an excellent way to make money while you expand. Every franchise you sell will pay a periodic fee to you in order to keep using your setup.
By and large, growing your business the right way is important in order to ensure that you can sustain and maintain the benefits.