It’s a few months into the year now, and if you’re like many entrepreneurs, all your good intentions to make 2020 the best year yet for your business may have fallen by the wayside. After all, as the rigors of the everyday get in the way, it’s easy to forget the things you planned to do to take your organization to the next level and focus instead on putting out fires.
However, it’s not too late to upgrade your business this year. Follow a few steps, and you can reach new heights in your industry sooner than you might expect.
1. Track Your Progress
Track your company’s progress so you know where you are right now and where you’re heading. By getting clear on how your business is tracking, you can more effectively set goals to build it to the next level and achieve the outcomes you want.
It helps to measure important key performance indicators (KPIs) and other factors so you know if and when you’re reaching milestones, or if you still have a lot of progress to make in some areas. This is an ongoing process that involves analyzing data often.
In particular, pay attention to your spending habits and profit levels. Many entrepreneurs spend so much time looking at sales information that they neglect to watch the money going out of the business, too.
Utilize a business spend management benchmark report to see how your organization stacks up against others in your industry. Doing this will help you see where you have the most room for improvement.
2. Explore New Sales Channels
Take things to the next level this year by exploring new sales channels. If you want to generate more business but feel like your ability to do so is capped, try new avenues. For instance, can you open your venture in one or more new locations? Or can you expand to new markets, by targeting different customer types?
With online selling so huge now, if you’re not currently selling products or services this way, going in this direction may be just what you need to help your business explode. Apart from setting up an online store, you can also sell on online marketplaces, such as eBay, Amazon, Etsy, and others.
Plus, consider selling via mobile platforms and on social media. Increasing numbers of shoppers buy from their smartphones and tablets now, and more and more retailers are investigating social commerce initiatives that involve selling via social media sites.
For instance, Nordstrom integrated their Instagram account with the Like2Buy tech solution, which means consumers can easily shop for items they see and like on the company’s feed.
3. Renew Your Range
If your business hasn’t renewed its range of products or services for years, consider focusing on that in 2020. You don’t have to get rid of all your old offerings, especially bestsellers, but do look for ways to introduce interesting new wares. This tactic should get current customers buying more often, and new clientele shopping with you for the first time.
Expanding your range can open you up to new markets and also show customers that you’re constantly working to provide them with excellent new alternatives. Adding new products or services also helps you to stay competitive.
To add to your range, examine your current bestsellers and think about any related products or services you could sell to the same customers. Analyze the questions clients ask to see if there’s anything people are requesting that you don’t yet stock. Also, keep an eye on current trends and popular culture to see if this helps you come up with new ideas about where consumer preferences are heading.
4. Invest in Training and Development
It’s also essential to upgrade the skills and knowledge of your team and yourself. As the leader of the company, you should look for ways to expand your mind and experience, so you can better make decisions, manage your team, come up with innovative ideas, and increase productivity.
Attend courses, workshops, talks, and conferences, read more, engage a mentor, try new things, and grow your network. Also, invest in training for your staff members, so they’re up to date on the latest technologies and changes in your industry, keep building their skills, and can work together more effectively as a team.
Bring in educational and motivational speakers to present to employees, send workers to off-site courses, create in-house training programs, and otherwise help people upgrade their knowledge and abilities. Doing this will, in turn, enrich and update your business.
2020 is proving to be a challenging year for business across all industries due to the coronavirus, political and financial difficulties, and issues such as natural disasters. To ensure your firm stays solid and grows this year, upgrade your business as quickly and strategically as you can.
Sam Makad is a business consultant. He helps small & medium enterprises to grow their businesses and overall ROI. You can follow Sam on Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin.