The key to a successful business is figuring out how to grow it from day one. When you take the bold step to start your business, you figure out how to get your first buyer. When you get that first buyer, you figure out how to get the next one, then the next five, the next ten, the next twenty, the next 1000, and so on. You also figure out how to improve the quality of your offerings so that you continue to give value. When you do all of this, you build a strong foundation for the business.
Once you feel you’ve established your business, it may be the right time to expand so that you can continue to grow. But how do you know that your business is well established for expansion? Whether you’re expanding stores locally or internationally, or you’re expanding your product range and services, there are some things to consider and questions to answer.
How strong is your product or the service you provide?
For every good product, there is a strong competition. What advantage does yours have over theirs? Is it something your buyers are still willing to pay for? If you’re introducing a new product or service, have you done your research to see if it’s a good fit? Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you know everything you need to know about your product and market, especially if you’ve been in business for a while. Consumer behaviour changes over time. New competition emerges and what they like evolves. So do your research to ensure your offerings are strong enough to withstand any obstacle that arises.
How is your relationship with your customers?
One of the reasons many businesses think of expansion is because they have a growing customer base and steady revenue. Your current customers are the ones that would try out your new product and even your new location. They spread the word if they are satisfied with what you offer and there is no marketing stronger than word of mouth. So focus on enhancing your buyer relationships. From the beginning of their buyer journey and at every point they encounter your brand, even before purchase, the experience should be seamless.
How is your relationship with your employees?
Employees are the face of your business, they can either make or mar it. How well are they treated? How is the management process? Providing a seamless employee experience just like you do for customers can be the key to building a solid business that will exist for many years.
Do you have enough capital for the project?
Starting at a new location or taking on more customers requires increased production. That, in turn, requires more money. Do you have enough capital to see it through? If not, do you have a plan to get the funds you need?
How are your current processes?
How does your business function? What are the day-to-day operations like? Is the current process strong enough to cater to more customers and employees? You might need to make some improvements to existing processes to ensure it’s stable and fast enough for the new project. If you’re not able to satisfy the new buyers from the beginning, you may start to see a drop, and all the effort and resources would go to waste.
Expanding is one way to grow your business. You may be testing a new market, introducing a new product, wanting to accept more customers or franchising. It’s important to find out what could hinder this growth and reduce the risks as much as you can. When you answer these questions, start to map out your expansion strategy.
It’s also worth noting that all of these would not be possible if you do not have the right business partner.
A business partner like Prospa, that was created with entrepreneurs, business owners and freelancers in mind, is right for you. It’s a banking platform that works with business owners from the moment they want to start their business and all through the growth phase as they scale to maturity.
With tools like the customer relationship management feature, you can keep track of your most active customers and know how best to engage them ensuring you’re strengthening the relationship. For business owners who want to expand but are low on funds, Prospa provides loans in just 24 hrs so they can get the resources they need to grow quickly. There are other features on Prospa that perform functions like managing team members and employees, helping business owners to hit their revenue goal and making it easy to market products and services.