Growth should be the aim of every business owner and although you mightn’t have plans to reach a stage in which you’ll need to consider incorporation, it’s important to take measures to keep your business growing at a healthy rate.
However, don’t forget to plan for growth as many home-based businesses have fallen victim to their own success because they’re not ready for growth – if you’re unprepared to take on more clients you could encounter problems that tarnish your business reputation.
Here are twelve tips to keep your home business growing steadily whilst mitigating risk.
1. Update your business plan regularly
Updating your business plan on a regular basis is essential as it helps you to understand the ability of your home based business to grow steadily while providing excellent service standards. If you aren’t confident with completing an updated plan yourself, you can always get some help from experts in the field.
2. Expand your product and/or service line
When you have a product or service that your client base can’t get enough of, consider expanding your product and/or service line to include related products and/or services. This provides your existing client base with a greater selection and can also help to attract the attention of, for example, retailers and wholesalers.
3. Look for ways to increase sales to your client base
Expanding your product and/or service line is an excellent way to increase sales to your client base, but also consider ways to sell more of your existing products and/or services by offering incentives like volume discounts.
4. Look for ways to reach out to new customers
If your business is to grow steadily you’ll need to increase your client base and to do that you’ll need to understand how to reach out to new customers. You could perhaps join in trade exhibits in town or take part in conferences in other cities to see if there are opportunities for selling there.
5. Target new markets
One of the most effective ways to keep your home based business growing steadily is to target new markets and expand your client base.
However, don’t overreach and go beyond your capabilities, target markets similar to your existing market. For example, if you currently cater for twenty-somethings consider targeting teens also.
6. Consider new marketing tactics
If you’re going through a slump or sluggish period you should definitely consider new marketing tactics so as to increase sales.
However, you should review your marketing tactics on a regular basis anyway – by using social media analytics for example – and you should always keep abreast of marketing developments that present opportunities to capitalise upon.
7. Outsource your non-core business processes
When your client base has increased and you’re starting to take on more work than you can handle comfortably, it’s time to start outsourcing your non-core business processes to provide you with more time to concentrate on running your business. This should not be limited to call handling or telephone answering services only.
8. Hire an assistant or work with subcontractors
Due to employment contractual issues and related considerations it would generally be unwise to hire a full-time employee. However, consider hiring a part-time assistant or working with subcontractors, if that seems feasible. You should be able to find reliable college students who are looking for a summer job, at least.
9. Join forces with another business
Joining forces with another business is an excellent form of free, mutually beneficial marketing and could even improve the quality and appeal of the services you offer.
For example, if a service you provide is a document scanning service, consider joining forces with a document shredding service provider in Manchester so as to offer complementary services your client base has need of.
10. Relocate to a larger location
Being based at home there’s always the possibility that you could run out of space. If that’s the case, go over your business plan and consider the feasibility of relocating to a larger location. There are plenty of quality office spaces for rent to choose from. You could even start with a day office if you find a full-time serviced office is too big for your operations.
11. Celebrate victories along the way
You should let the whole world (or at least the whole city) know about your big revenue goals, project completions, milestones, and other accomplishments. Doing so will drive growth in two ways: 1) By breeding confidence, fuelling enthusiasm for growth. 2) By motivating the people working for those goals to press on.
Everyone wants to feel appreciated for their hard work so instead of dwelling on failures, place focus on the small wins. Doing something special for yourself and your team, even if you only have 1 to 2 part-timers, will create a feeling of unity or harmony.
12. Have a lot of passion
If you really want your company to go from SME to big brand, you should start thinking big then executing like crazy. Though the formula to success might be 90 percent persistence and 10 percent inspiration, the latter is critical as it affects the efficiency of the former.
Just be excited and motivated about what you are doing and people will follow. This leads to growth in your organisation. Drive is considered the most importance element because it is the true spirit behind growth.
Steady growth should be the aim of all businesses, even those run from home.