Getting your small business up and running can be a struggle – but having persevered and established your business, knowing how to take things to the next stage can often present an even bigger stumbling block. Many would-be entrepreneurs simply fail to think about the next steps, and attempt to make it up as they go along. This is something that usually ends in disaster.
The types of growth
Growth comes in many different kinds, alongside the obvious one of building up the bottom line. You’ll need to think about each of them if you’re to later diagnose problems, as many are prerequisites for future success.
You’ll need to know how to attract more clients and hire more employees as you go along. You might look to increase awareness of your brand. Eventually, you’ll take the step of moving into larger premises, or premises more suited to your business and its objectives.
What about Mergers?
You can grow your business also by merging with, or acquiring, another business. This has a considerable advantage, in that it’s fast, and there’s minimal work adjusting working practices. However, the actual acquisition itself can often be very intricate, especially from a legal perspective, which makes it valuable to bring in outside experts in mergers.
The Importance of Marketing
Marketing should form an essential pillar of any long-term growth strategy. In the beginning, a business might survive purely through word-of-mouth, or through references from friends. But as it expands, the potential pool of customers will grow to the point that it becomes necessary to get the message directly to strangers.
Marketing comes in many different forms, and it’s fairly critical that businesses don’t come to rely on just one or two of them – as doing so might lead to missing out on customers who might be easily reached through other means.
Search Engine Optimisation marketing refers to the practice of creating content in such a way that makes it likely to appear on Google’s (or anyone else’s) search results.
Pay-per-Click advertising generates reliable traffic for your business’s website. You’ll pay only for the clicks you get, not for the placement of the advert itself. This gives providers of this service every incentive to put your advert in places where it’s most likely to be clicked on.
If you build strong enough content, then visitors might come directly to your site without having been directed from elsewhere. Building authority for a website takes time, and the relationship between organic traffic of this kind of the traffic you draw from other sources tends to be synergistic. Attempting to cheat the system, for example by keyword stuffing, is outdated and tends to backfire.
Social media provides an easy way to create a cohesive and visible identity for your brand, and to engage directly with customers and assess their wants and needs.