Many business owners will jump straight into developing new products and services when they want to grow their businesses. While this may be effective, you also need to ensure that you have built a solid foundation for your business. Without a solid foundation, you will waste time and money on new products and services. A foundation will provide you with the knowledge and insights needed to know what consumers want, the direction of the industry, what gaps need filling, what your competitors are doing well, how to market to your target audience effectively, as well as how to drive them to your business, and much more.

Another mistake many business owners make is to grow their business when they don’t have the staff or infrastructure for this. Before you can grow your business, many things must be done beyond developing new products and services. To help you on your journey, here are some important tips for growing your business successfully and creating a good foundation.


Research your industry and competitors 

Always start with research, this will give you direction and a plan to move forward. If you don’t conduct research, you will be going in blindfolded and potentially wasting a lot of time and effort. Research will provide you with specific insights. The first thing you should research is the industry that you are in and your competitors. See what direction the industry is going in and what your competitors are doing. You want to look at what is going well, what is not working for them, and what gaps are in the market. Consider trends and consumer behaviour, as well as technology, systems, and processes. Make sure you look at competitors who are equal to you, as well as the ones that are much further ahead and bigger, so you can see where you need to get to and what gaps you need to bridge within your own business.

Learn everything about your target audience 

Your target audience is vital, and you should know everything about them. Many businesses will move forward on products and services without knowing much, or anything at all about their target audience and instead, cast too wide of a net. While it might seem counterintuitive to only target a specific person or group, it will make your business much more successful. This will mean that you can develop products and services that serve them well by providing a solution to their problems so that your business can resonate with them. When you do this, you will find that you drive much more intentional traffic to your business and profits will increase significantly. Your return on investment (ROI) will be much better, as opposed to targeting everyone and it being a game of hit-and-miss. You should take some time to research who your target audience is and learn everything about them. Many businesses will make a persona or client avatar so that it can be shared within the business and utilized by everyone.

Have a good workflow in place

The flow of work and communication in your business must be efficient. When the workflow is managed properly, it will improve communication, eliminate the need for micromanagement and the issues that come with it, improve accountability, increase transparency, reduce bottlenecks, help you acquire better quality control and output, and more. Another great thing about improving workflow is the way it can ensure customer satisfaction. When everything runs smoothly internally, it will reflect on your products and services.

You can create a better workflow within your business by running through which employee is responsible for what, and ensuring the appropriate roles and hierarchy is assigned. You should consider what tasks need to be completed and what the best and most efficient forms of communication will work with your teams. You should also consider how you utilize technology, cloud services, and applications that your team regularly uses. For example, if you use a lot of PDF resources for client contracts, then you may consider a pdf SDK so you can use it to develop your document workflow that can be customized to your business needs.

Build a sales funnel

A sales funnel is an important aspect of any business that wants to grow. This will be the journey that you take your customers on. Many business owners will make the mistake of giving their marketing team a big budget and driving lots of customers to the business, but then not thinking about what their customers need to go through to invest in your business. This can lead to a very low ROI.

Instead, you should focus on your customer journey and what journey you are taking them on when you start attracting them to your business. First, consider the end goal. Then consider how they are going to get there when they enter the top of the sales funnel, as when they visit your website or walk into your store. You need to consider the different places these people are coming from and what they are going to need to get through successfully. You may move them through the funnel by getting their contact information or offering a discount on your products and services. This will help to keep them going through the sales funnel, as more often than not, customers are not going to sign up for a service or buy your product on the first visit. The information you collate in your target audience research will help you figure out what best to include in the funnel and what your customers need.

Focus on your customer retention

While focusing on new customers is important, you should also have a focus on customer retention. Retaining customers is much easier and more cost efficient, and can make you a lot of money. Unfortunately, many businesses fail to recognize this and only prioritize attracting new customers. A good balance is to focus on both. You can help to keep your customers loyal in a variety of ways, depending on their needs. For example, you can ensure that you have excellent customer service agents who always go above and beyond, you can create a customer loyalty program where they can earn something in return for sticking with you, and more. There are lots of simple things, such as keeping promises, engaging with customers on social media, and launching an email campaign, but in today’s economy, these are the basics most businesses are now delivering. You need to think about how you can do more and stand out from your competitors.

Network 

Networking with other businesses, your local community, and your customers is a great way to grow your business. This can help you to gain a voice and authority within your industry while increasing brand awareness. You can also connect with your customers and community on a more personal level, which just isn’t seen in many businesses nowadays, and this can help you to stand out. You should see what events are online and locally that you can attend, as well as what events you can speak at as an expert, and eventually, you can set up your own events.

Starting a business is not easy, and neither is growing it. Follow these top tips to create a solid foundation.