Have you ever seen a business that looks like it’s frozen in time? Whether you’re a start-up or reaching the resource maturity stage, business growth is equally important at any phase.
You don’t want to be that stagnating business, wondering what to do next.
We are going to talk about the importance of business growth at any stage and go over some great ways to measure your success.
One of the most difficult aspects of seeing growth, is knowing where to look and what to do. Alot of businesses are looking in the wrong place or just not looking at all.
1. How To Start Strong With Business Growth
It seems like it’s easy to lose track of progress at the early stages. Some start-ups are still discovering whether their business idea has potential or not.
Most young businesses lack structure and have limited employees taking on multiple roles to survive. So the best thing to do is make sure your business gets out of the early stages.
There are some really good areas to look for growth in the early stages.
Build Momentum From The Beginning
While the early stages may not be a time for profit and consistent sales, it’s a fantastic time for getting clear on offers, building initial customer relationships, and establishing your initial positioning in the market place.
Some good early metrics for an early stage business are:
- Website traffic
- Bounce rate
- Opt-in rate
- # of new leads per day, week, or year
- # of returned visitors
- Lead to close ratio
- Cash burn rate
- Churn rate
- # of appointments set
Additionally there are areas like inbound marketing and email nurturing.
Both of these have measurable results and can be done right from the start.
It’s hard to find a business that can’t benefit from a strong email list.
For most, it’s one of the best ways to build a strong brand culture. Good email campaigns are still up to 40 times more effective than social media.
2. Why Business Growth Has Very Few Limits
So it can be just as difficult, if not more to keep a successful business always growing.
What happens is that owners start creating limitations based on fear or scarcity.
Now scarcity is a wonderful sales technique and we use it all the time in marketing.
But it is horrible to feel scarcity when thinking about your business.
It’s also healthy have fears that steer you clear of big mistakes or bad risks. But in general we carry around way too many limiting fears.
Don’t Speculate When You Can Investigate
Use your numbers! To keep a business successful through the post start-up and early maturity stages, you have to rely on data. Be data-driven, let the numbers tell you what to do.
(Check out our content marketing tips article to learn some really creative ways to use data).
Way to many owners go on their gut feeling without looking at the numbers.
Sadly, most of us make this mistake all the time.
So when it comes to growth at this stage, you need to track three important numbers. Traffic, Conversion Rate, and Average Order Value.
3. When The Business Growth Equation Works
Ok, before we go any further, here is a little crash course on the three areas.
Traffic is the number of people who see your offers. Conversion Rate is the percentage of traffic that buy or move down the sales funnel. Average Order Value is total revenue divided by the number of orders.
When you keep track of these three areas, it is so easy to see where there is opportunity to grow or problems preventing your business from growing.
The Three-Headed Business Growth Titan
You need to know where to invest. For example, it could be to drive more traffic and get more opportunities.
But that won’t do very good if you have a conversion rate problem.
The key is to first use these numbers to identify problems. Where are your numbers low?
It Also Works In Reverse
You could have a great conversion rate, but a really low average order value. So fix the problems first, then look for the opportunities to invest and grow your business.
A great way to use these numbers for growth is to work backwards starting with your annual revenue.
Create a spreadsheet that shows where traffic, conversion rate, number of orders and average order value need to be to hit your end goal.
These are the same numbers that work hand in hand with price positioning and other key areas of profitability.
5. How Business Growth Can Keep You Young
If you are one of the great businesses that gets to the resource maturity stage congratulations! We have nothing but admiration and respect for dedicated owners and teams.
But really, the journey is just beginning… again. A matter of fact, despite having experience it can be more challenging to keep a business young and fresh with new blood and ideas.
So here are some strategies for this stage of business. And you will need strong conviction and a healthy level of detachment to keep growing.
Mature Business Growth Actions
And it’s all about new, new, new! You will need to look deep into flushing out your business. Here are some important areas to start with:
- Product Line – New products and digesting less profitable products.
- Employees – Hiring new, firing old and promoting top performers.
- Markets – New territories, customers and sales delivery channels.
- Bolt -On-Acquisitions – Look for business that have peaked and acquire them.
Now the deal is, you may find that your business has reached a peak. And for whatever reasons or sometimes personal circumstances, it’s just not feasible to expand anymore.
6. Where Business Growth Is Rebirth
Sometimes growth is rebirth. Great businesses make decisions not based on emotion, but based on logic and what’s ultimately best.
Is it fair to keep a bad employee in a bad situation?
Like we said, it takes conviction and detachment. Whether letting go of employees or your own business, do what is best for growth.
Your business growth may be to sell, or become another companies bolt-on-acquisition. But then you can take your profits and start a new business or buy a start-up.
Your Competitors Know You Best
Our final tip really works well at the later maturity stages, but can also work wonderfully at any stage. Talk to your competitors and get to know them.
Create a healthy relationship with competitors and other businesses. Form a respectful bond.
Because it could be you acquiring them, them acquiring you or possibly merging one day.
Your competitors will be one of your highest qualified matches for partnerships, acquisitions and even great advice. It takes one to know one and that’s who knows you best.
Keep growing, no matter how it looks. The world needs more strong businesses!
More Blogs To Keep Your Tank Full Of Business Growth Strategies
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