When you are considering investing in the growth of your company, it is important to take a closer look at the state of your business.
If you can, delegate this mission to professionals whose main expertise is business assessment.
This first step is to to take a clear and unbiased look at your existing business through different lenses and evaluate different solutions and development opportunities.
Thus, you must consider each of these points:#
What is your brand positioning? What is your strategy to fully deploy in your market?
Who are your customers and what are the dynamics of your market? Are you aware of your competitors' latest news? Have you conducted a recent market study? Do your products or services have weaknesses compared to those of your competitors? On the contrary, what are their strengths?
Is your company financially healthy? What is the financial status of your company's cash flow? Are you able to manage your resources clearly via monitoring charts and dashboards? What are your operating costs? Have they increased recently? Is your margin still positive?
What is your corporate culture and the values that are important to you?
How do you communicate your offerings and services externally and internally?
Do you have a precise idea of the average basket of your customers? Which products are selling the most and do you know why?
Do you know how satisfied your customers are?
In short, this study on the state of your company must analyze all aspects of your business.
You will then be able to identify areas of improvement to work on in order to develop a sustainable business.
Develop your business by planning for change
The second step in ensuring the sustainability and development of your business is now to take action!
After having clarified your situation and your avenues for improvement, it is now time to put a figure on it and to imagine a real strategy for developing your business.
This may mean abandoning services and products that are no longer profitable, or developing new attractive offers. It may mean recruiting to expand in a specific market or investing in new equipment.
To do this, you can use the "S.M.A.R.T" methodology for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely goals. That is to say that each objective must be thought and determined under a SMART heading:
Your new objective must be specific, precise and not too vast like "improve sales": you must be more precise and set a target to reach
You must be able to know when your objective is reached by setting clear goals
Accessible: you must be able to reach it
Realistic according to the current market and your financial capacities
Temporal: you must set a maximum time to reach the goal
Here are some guidelines to plan your future goals:
The business plan: the analysis of your financial profitability may have changed your offers, in this case you must redo a business plan
The marketing plan: this is where you plan the different marketing strategies you wish to invest in to reach your commercial objectives
The financial planning with the help of the budget forecast or your cash flow forecast. These two tool are necessary to ensure that you will be able to meet your objectives as the company evolves.
Business development: how should you go about it?
Understanding and knowing your customers
How do you grow your business? With the help of your customers!
During the assessment of your company, it is worth interviewing your customers to get to know them better. We can never say it enough: knowing your customers better is also being able to better meet their expectations.
Take the time to question your customers and create what is called personas in marketing. These are fictitious identity cards of your customers to better understand how they consume.
This type of consumer research allows you to improve the way you communicate. Your marketing campaigns will have better results.
Improve the sales process at every stage
Another way to grow your business is to optimize your sales approach.
You must therefore have a thorough understanding of your commercial offer, its advantages and disadvantages.
It is important to be able to answer your prospects' and customers' questions with precision. This is what will make the difference between a good salesperson and a bad one.
Also, during a sale with a customer, each step is essential. From the first contact to the completion of the purchase, everything must be taken care of. For prospecting, establish an effective strategy that takes into account the specificities of your prospects. Will they be present on social networks? Can you approach them through cold calling?
Today, to prospect effectively, companies are integrating new actions such as marketing automation or advertising on social networks.
Don't hesitate to review and evaluate your sales approach to improve your sales.
Have a clear positioning
The audit of your situation may have revealed a simple but important fact: your positioning might not be very clear.
This is a must for any company. You will save a lot of time if you address a precise audience.
We therefore invite you to clarify your offer so that your customers and prospects recognize themselves in the products you sell.
Choosing a niche is a great way to become an expert in your field and establish yourself as a thought leader.
Expand your network
You can include building business partnerships in your business development goals.
Indeed, partnerships with other companies can allow you to expand your network and make yourself known to other prospects.
Here's a concrete example of a partnership: a company that sells local products signs an exclusive partnership to sell the products of a local farm. This can be used to create joint offers to promote the two organizations to each other.
To expand and develop their business in a sustainable way, an entrepreneur also needs to invest. If you feel like your production equipment is no longer suitable, you have to invest sooner or later.
Making the decision to make an investment is an important one because it puts a financial strain on you.
However, you can obtain financing to accompany a change of equipment. All you need to do is conduct a market study and write a financial plan to finance your new purchases.
Rely on the qualification of your employees
In a company, employee management is crucial. Employees are the key to the success of a business.
One way to maintain your business is to train your employees to develop their individual skills. Within a company, when you work as an employee, it is the human aspect that brings satisfaction. Therefore, make sure you have a management policy that matches your ambitions.
You may also need to hire new employees to meet new needs identified within the company.
Involving your employees in your company strategy is a good way to mobilize and motivate them.
Take care of your customer service
A customer's experience is measured by their satisfaction after purchasing your service or product. But not only that!
Every customer should have a perfect customer service experience when they engage with a company. It doesn't matter if they have already made a purchase or are just inquiring.
Nowadays, many customers abandon a transaction if the customer service is not up to par.
The benefits of qualified customer service at every stage of the sale are numerous:
New customers can become repeat customers who want to use your company again
Happy customers may provide testimonials on social networks or spread word of mouth.
Maintain a good relationship with your existing customers
Before you start prospecting or marketing, think about nurturing your existing customers. Are you able to keep them and have them come back to you?
To do so, you can offer them special offers or benefits to reward their loyalty.
Implement solutions to create a real sense of community and/or loyalty with your customers.
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Frequently asked questions: Grow your business in a sustainable way
How do you make a business sustainable?
First of all, we can define the durability of a company by its capacity to deal with the market and the hazards of its time. This requires good financial health. Moreover, a sustainable company is a company that can proudly display a strong commitment from its employees. It is also a business that has a vision and a thorough knowledge of its market in order to make the necessary changes when needed. We give you some ideas on how to continue to develop your business in this article.
How do you develop your business on the Internet?
The web is a tool that cannot be ignored today for the development of your business. It allows entrepreneurs to present their business, to promote themselves as experts in their field or simply to sell their products. A first step to continue to develop your business through the Internet is to create a website dedicated to your business. With Qart, benefit from a turnkey solution to build your e-commerce shop in no time.
How do you develop your business with confidence?
That's what this article is all about and the core of the approach is none other than to analyze your situation at any given moment. Indeed, to continue to develop your business, it is essential to measure your strengths and weaknesses. In what state is your company on the technical and human level? What about its finances? Following this, you will be able to plan and implement new opportunities for your business: recruit new employees, invest in new and efficient equipment, create or redesign a service, evaluate the effectiveness of your marketing, etc.