About 50% of small businesses fail within five years of opening their doors. So, it’s fair to say that it’s not an easy feat to start and manage a successful company.
There are several reasons why so many businesses fail before they take off. For example, numerous companies operate without a clear understanding of the industry, especially because the market is always changing. Customer demands are always changing, making it tricky to onboard new clients while retaining existing ones.
There’s also the issue of hiring people that aren’t cut for the job. More than having the right skills, it’s crucial that new employees are dedicated to the company and embrace its culture. Additionally, it’s also challenging to organize all the work that needs to be done and ensure that everyone has a good workload balance.
The good news is that there are several best practices and software to overcome the challenges of running a small company and becoming a successful business owner.
Create a Clear Business Plan
No company can start its journey without outlining its goals first. The best way to do that is by creating a strong, detailed, yet concise and comprehensible business plan. The document needs to include both short- and long-term expectations, costs, who is the main target audience, and how to reach it.
Naturally, it’s also necessary to include an overview of the industry. This is only possible by thoroughly researching the competition, recognizing their main strengths, and discovering a gap in the market to exploit.
It’s also imperative to do a SWOT analysis and include the uncontrollable external threats that may impact your business. By being prepared for such events, you make sure you’ll be able to stay afloat even if there’s a big recession in the future.
Improve Hiring Strategies
Hiring people who are eager to help your company succeed is easier said than done. Assessing how passionate a candidate is about their field and which type of culture works best for them are two great ways to recognize talent who are applying for the long run. Plus, writing a thoroughly detailed job description is an excellent way to weed out unfit candidates off the bat.
You may also want to have applicants perform assessment tasks related to the position they’re applying to. Finally, consider conducting a phone interview to narrow down candidates before inviting anyone to a face-to-face interview.
Optimize Your Business’s Online Presence
Whether you run an online or a brick-and-mortar business, a lot depends on your online presence. This is because most people come across a company on the internet. First and foremost, a catchy SEO-optimized website can boost your traffic tremendously.
Moreover, being active on social media is important. However, instead of putting the same effort into all social media channels, make sure to focus on those that your target audience uses the most. For example, if your product is catered to a young audience, it’s more profitable to publish on TikTok than spend time writing Facebook posts.
Finally, add your business on Google Maps. Although this is a must for brick-and-mortar companies, it also pushes other services to the top of Google Search, such as law firms or house cleaning businesses.
Pay Attention To Existing Customers
Acquiring new customers is good, but keeping the existing ones engaged is just as important. Loyal customers guarantee long-term profits and serve as proof of the quality of your product or service.
Satisfied buyers can also spread the word about your business, which leads to the organic growth of your customer base. As a result, you won’t even need to actively market your business, as customers will essentially do it for you.
So, make sure to get to know your customer base and find out the reason why they’re happy with the business. Sending out surveys is a fantastic way to get into your customers’ mind frame and receive valuable feedback.
Organization is key for any project to succeed, let alone a business. There’s a lot to think about when managing a company, and it’s essential that nothing slips through the cracks. If you have the ability to hire a small team, then it’s recommended to delegate tasks to free up a significant amount of your time.
But no project or business is organized if the tasks required to be done aren’t clearly sorted out as well. Thankfully, there’s no need to manually arrange all this yourself, as an online project management platform provides project automation, straightforward project dashboards, color coding, and much more.
It’s also essential to reduce time spent on busy work. Fortunately, several platforms help automate these small tasks. A good example is SaneBox – an email organizing platform. It uses a trainable AI to filter emails automatically and place them in categorized folders, tremendously decreasing the time spent sorting your inbox.
Automate Working Processes
From shipping to accounting and signing important documents, there’s plenty of software that is able to automatize manual work that takes hours to complete. By keeping up with technology and training the team on how to use new software, you’ll stay both productive and organized.
More importantly, consider using a CRM platform to seamlessly manage relationships with new and existing customers. This all-in-one software allows companies to provide customer support, contact new leads, and send out promotional messages in one straightforward interface.
It’s challenging to retain customers and see through every business process. Additionally, remaining effective needs an immense amount of attention and dedication. However, by taking the time to research the market’s ins and outs and learning how to organize what needs to be done, you’ll soon see your business flourishing.