Ten Ways to Grow Your Small Business
Ten Ways to Grow your Small Business.
Know where your finances are. Keep daily or weekly reports on profit and loss. This includes all of your sales and all of your spending. You can average this by adding you weekly or monthly totals and dividing it by the number of days your are open. These numbers give you an accurate read on where you are and where you want to be with your business finances.
Now that you have an idea where your finances are it's important to set goals. You may have started this business because it's your passion or skill-set but the ultimate goal is to make money. Hopefully enough to sustain your personal finances as well as any employees you have. So what do you want to see in the coming weeks, month and years. Making a business plan with these goals in mind is a great way to stay on track as you grow your business.
How will your business grow if you aren't spreading the word about what product or service you have? Finding the best marketing is key to business growth. Finding the right marketing person or firm is good too. Are you small enough that you can do your own marketing via social media and maybe a vehicle wrap or are you ready to hire a marketing expert to take you to the next level? Do some research and find out what would work for you now and what will take you to the next level.
What do people see when they walk into your store or click on your website? Is it professional and scream volumes about what you do. Is it easy to see where everything is? People today like things that are easy. If your storefront is too hard to find or your website isn't user friendly you might lose business to the next place in line. If you are marketing your business personally you need to have a presentation put together well so those considering you knows exactly what they are getting with you.
Find the Best Trends
Trends are changing all the time. Even if you are in the repair business you will nee to keep up with the latest models so your aren't left in the dust. Things move fast in this day and age and if you aren't keeping up it could be detrimental. Hit up the trade shows, latest fashions and models in your industry.
Become a Better Salesperson
Regardless of what you are selling you need to be a salesperson on some level. Whether you are merchandising a window display or giving a quote over the phone you need to know what the consumer is looking for. Study what other successful business owner are doing in your field and learn from them. This will keep people coming back again and recommending you to their friends and colleagues.
Having the Best Business Practices
How do you handle returns or unhappy customers? What is your routine for a sales call? If you have employees are they all trained to do it the same? These are all very important when setting up your business model. Documenting quotes, sales and issues will help keep all parties on the some page if there is an issue in the future. Training employees or independent contractors to do things the same every time will keep systems consistent and avoid confusion for clients and customers.
Keeping your employees happy. When you hire people to run your business for you it's important that you keep them motivated and happy. If they have incentives and bonuses that are in place it keeps them striving for more. Even the occasional free lunch or gift card can help them feeling appreciated and happy. Paying them as well as you can is very important. There are many places to work and if you have a good employee you should do your best to keep them. On the flip side you can't be afraid to let some go that aren't pulling their weight or dragging others down. Keeping a positive work environment is key to growing and sustaining a business.
Know Your Limits
When starting a business be very aware of your role in that business. Some people can do it all because they are in a business that doesn't need another person to help. But if you are finding yourself loving one aspect of the business while you are not doing another key part it can hurt your bottom line. Find out what you aren't good at and hire others to do that for you. I love interacting with people but I don't like keeping track of the finances... then hire a bookkeeper and go talk to the customers.
Take Breaks When Needed
You may have started that baking business because you love making cookies and cupcakes but you have to have a life too. If you are a one man band you need to prepare your schedule as well as your finances for any breaks or vacations. If you are an employer you can set up your employees to take charge in your absence. Don't allow yourself to burn out. Even if it's just a day or a weekend you will need to decompress.
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