It’s no easy feat starting up your own business, so if you’ve already taken this step: we salute you.
But what next? How do you make it work? With over 2.2 million small business operating in Australia in 2018, it’s clear that startups can be successful. But there are challenges, such as scaling worldwide. How can you increase your chances of being one of the brands that make it?
Let’s be honest: there’s no magical recipe that serves as the key to success. But there’s a LOT you can do to sidestep obstacles, give yourself momentum, lower the risk factors and of course experience growth. Because the latter is what you need if you want to beat the big global competitors, right?
So, let’s show you how it’s done.
Good news: being the new kid on the block comes with a few advantages too.
Invest in High Tech from the Start
Don’t worry, if you’re already in operation and you didn’t know about this, it’s not too late. But it’s best to invest in tech from the very start, so you get the best value for money and the highest ROI: using technology to your benefit.
Yes, some quotes may surprise you with the high cost of kitting out your factory, office or fleet, but the outcome is worth it. Thanks to technology you can prevent many obstacles that affect cashflow, reputation and security; all of which determine whether you’ll experience growth in the coming months.
Imagine how these innovations can transform your workflow:
- Management software to organize job tickets for field workers. No chance of lost information and you can keep clients updated about ETAs. Happier customers will lead to growth thanks to word of mouth.
- AI to perform repetitive tasks through machine learning, freeing up employees’ time. Also consider the benefits of VoIP phones to streamline your business communications..
- Chatbots handling customer queries, requiring fewer customer service agents. This of course means you’ll spend less on employee salaries.
The key here is to invest in high end tech from the start, so you don’t have to pay for upgrades in the near future.
Remember, many of these tech investments affect your public reputation. In a world where someone can find your reviews in an instant by going online, positive feedback is essential. So, getting the best—as well as IT support personnel to help you manage the technology—will be money well spent.
Forget Business for a Moment and Focus on Your Customers
This tip is important, because your products won’t always be enough to secure a sale: you need your customers’ loyalty too and for that you need a personal approach.
‘Customer service’ is a common term in business, but for a moment, think beyond answering the phone in a friendly manner or listening to their complaints. Customer service that impresses starts with UNDERSTANDING your target market. Research their needs, not only what they expect from your product, but from you as a service provider.
Be All Over the Show Online and on Social Media
You need to enter the market with a bang and in 2020 that means you need a strong online presence. No one walks down the main street anymore to find a supplier or service provider; they rather start googling to find what they want. And you have to make sure they’re impressed by everything they discover about you:
- Website: A quality designed website that’s relevant to your target group. Add quality written content, with many images, videos and calls to action to keep your audience engaged. And if you sell products, an online store is the ideal way to reach a wider audience.
- Social media: Regular posts show you’re active in your industry and offers existing customers something to share with others.
- Reviews: Ask customers to review you online, because consumers will trust those words more than your marketing. And if it’s a negative review, simply use it to show concern for your clients, by responding and attending to their complaints.
For your website you’ll need quality local business IT support service providers can offer you. Make sure your customers aren’t disappointed because of the lack of prompt email replies or order placements. If you experience any downtime on a server you want it sorted promptly.
These tips seem doable, right? Whether you’ve just launched, have been competing with established brands for a while, or you’re still working on your business plan, why not work this into your strategy? The growth you need can be a few wise decisions away.