Canadian startups have shown an upward trend despite some adverse market forces. A snap survey shows that the startups employ various business growth strategies, including engaging interpretation services.
What do you need to know about growth and expansion strategies for your startup?
The Objectives of Startup Growth and Expansion Strategies
It is impossible to develop and implement startup growth and expansion strategies without knowing the purpose of the strategies. If you fail to understand the reason for applying the strategies, you will run misguided operations. Lack of guidance in your startup operations is similar to navigating a ship in high waters without a compass. Such a ship can land anywhere.
To achieve specific goals in your startup, you need to strategize. Some of the objectives of business growth and expansion strategies are:
Guiding the Business Operations
Growth and expansion strategies give direction to your operations. They help you know your internal business performance. In other words, business strategies help you know who is doing what and how they are doing it. If the outcomes are poor, you will identify the weakness and make the necessary adjustments.
Having a Competitive Advantage
The strategies also help you to beat the competition. If you develop unique strategies for your startup, you will manage to operate in a way that others cannot copy. So, you will be offering unique products and services to your customers. Such an operation model sets you apart from the rest in business performance.
When you use strategies in your startup, you will manage to identify future business trends and opportunities. Strategies help you identify market changes, such as technological, consumer taste and preferences, and social changes.
Noting the market changes helps you structure your startup to match the changes. So, the changes will never work against your business.
Developing a Vision for Your Business
Having strategies in your startup helps you know what you want to achieve in your business and pursue it. Failure to create a vision for your business makes you and your employees work aimlessly.
If your vision is to become a leader in your area of operation, you will strive to explore all means of achieving the goal. In other words, your vision works as a motivating factor in your business.
Tips for Growing and Expanding a Startup
- Develop New Products and Services
If you add more products and services to your startup, your customers will get more value from your business. They will consider you a one-stop shop. So, they will always come back for more because they know that they will get more than one item in your business.
However, this strategy is not as easy as it sounds. Its implementation requires you to know what your customers need first. If you stock what your customers do not want, you will tie your capital because they will not buy the products. So, always ensure that the products and services you develop align with what your customers want.
- Focus on Your Existing Customers
Customer retention is a fundamental pillar of any business. For this reason, ensure that your existing customers feel satisfied with your products and services. So, ask them what they want you to add to your product and services mix. Also, take their feedback seriously.
Conducting a customer analysis can help you know your customers. You need to identify customers that have the potential to buy your products and services. Afterward, focus your marketing strategies on the identified customer segment. The move helps you sell more to the existing customers.
- Find New Markets
New markets translate to new customers. So, open new stores in different areas. Alternatively, you can open an online shop that can operate locally, nationally, and globally. Notably, you have to learn the culture of your target regions and align your products to match the cultural values of the target customers. The move will enable your products to become acceptable in the new market.
- Adopt New Sales and Delivery Methods
If you are a brick-and-mortar startup, you can adopt internet-based sales channels. The move will enable you to reach out to as many customers as possible. Regarding delivery of your products and services, you can ship the products free of charge or open a drop and pick point closer to your customers.
- Business Merger and Acquisition
Merger and acquisition are perfect ways to grow and expand your business. The strategy increases the size of your business. Also, your sales and revenue level goes up significantly.
A business merger entails partnering with other startups that sell similar or complementary products and services. Regarding the acquisition, it refers to buying another startup. However, acquisition requires more resources to implement than a merger.
- Adopt a Customer Management System
If you are tracking your customer transactions manually, you are having a difficult time in your life. Automate your customer management processes to have an easy time. The move helps you keep a record of your customers, make timely deliveries, and resolve any issues that may arise.
Having a customer management system also helps you know your customers. You can view their past transactions and identify what they like buying most. Also, it can help you identify and reward your loyal customers.
- Research Competition
It is impossible to run away from the competition. Instead of running, adapt to it. So, identify the strategies that your competitors use to run their businesses. Next, create similar or better strategies for your business. For example, you can learn how your competitors advertise their products and services. Such a move can help you improve your advertising methods to outwit your competitor.
- Develop a Loyalty Program
You can sell your products and services to your existing customers more easily than to new ones. For this reason, you need to appreciate your current customers by rewarding them. The move will make them feel appreciated. In return, your customers will keep buying from you.
- License Your Deals
You can opt to permit other people to sell your products and services under an agreement. Any person you give a license to sell your products and services should give you a part of their revenue. So, you will increase your sales effortlessly.
If you license a famous company to sell your products and services, you will benefit from their reputation. For this reason, you will attract customers loyal to the company that you have licensed. In other words, you will become popular too.
- Take Advantage of the Global Platforms
Taking advantage of global platforms, such as Amazon, Inc., will help you grow and expand your business. Such platforms are stable, and they reach out to billions of people globally. So, partnering with the eCommerce platforms will help sell your products globally.
How to Develop a Business Strategy
The discussed strategies sound simple, but their development is procedural. Notably, you can create a business strategy and still fail to achieve your objective. For this reason, you need to know how to develop effective business strategies.
So, what are the steps that you should follow when developing your business strategies?
Develop a Vision for Your Business
A vision describes where you want your business to be in the future. It is an aspiration of how your business will achieve after becoming fully-fledged.
Identify Your Competitive Advantage
A competitive advantage defines how you will deliver value to your customers. It describes how your business will stand out from the rest to provide more convenience to potential customers.
Identify Your Targets
You should identify your niche and specialty. Otherwise, you cannot sell anything and everything. So, note the specific products and services you want to sell to your customers.
Always mobilize your employees to research the proposed strategies well ahead of a strategy meeting. The move makes them identify with the growth and expansion of your business. In return, they feel obligated to see the strategies succeed.
Focus to Achieve a Systematic Growth
A thriving company should grow in size. Its operations should expand, and its sales and revenue should increase over time. When your business grows, you can invest in the latest technology, attract qualified talents, and acquire the latest equipment.
Employ fact-based Decisions
Facts denote reality. Every decision that you make in your business should have factual backing. Such a move ensures that you use strategies that have worked for others. Also, the use of facts improves the accuracy of your strategies. In return, you spend your money on strategies that improve your business successfully.
Think in a Long Term Manner
Your strategies should have an annual cycle instead of a weekly or monthly cycle. Such strategies focus on the unforeseeable future. Also, they help to sustain your business over time. Remember, you started your business to run it for years to come. So, your strategies should remain relevant in the market for uncountable years.
Be Quick To Act
After developing your business strategies, implement them without delay. The growth and expansion of your business depend on putting your strategies to work. So, any delay in the implementation slows the expansion of your business.
Growing and expanding a business takes a lot of work. However, the efforts you put into developing effective strategies eventually pay off. So, it is time to rethink your startup, develop effective business strategies, and enjoy the benefits.