The good news about starting a small business is that 80 percent will succeed in their first year. The bad news is that means that 20 percent will fail and it’s not just the first year that’s a gamble: 70 percent of small business owners fail in their tenth year.
Key to surviving that first year—and beyond—involves having a plan to continue your growth. Sustaining profitable growth is a challenge but can be done. Our experience working with businesses over the years has led us to three steps that increase revenue: identifying key objects, knowing your customers, and scaling with technology. Each of these can help your company achieve its goals in 2019 and into the future.
Identify Key Objectives
Consider for a moment how a seed grows into a plant. A tiny tomato seed, about the size of a grain of rice, grows into a lush plant that produces delicious tomatoes all summer long. That tomato seed has an objective written into its DNA: to create a full tomato plant. Everything it does focuses on achieving that objective and passing its DNA down to the next generation of tomato seeds.
Like the tomato, your business started with a seed idea. But how has it grown? If you haven’t identified key objectives and woven them into the fabric of your daily DNA, you won’t achieve the big things you dream about. Growth may come in fits and starts, make wrong turns, and could even remain stunted.
In our experience consulting with multiple businesses over the years, the ones who achieve great things are the ones who remain focused on key objectives. What is your company’s key objective? Have you defined that for 2019? What about 2020? Remain focused on the goal, and you will grow toward it.
Knowing Your Customers
A corollary to setting goals for profitable growth is knowing your customers: understanding not just who your customers are but what they want and need. This is an important step toward business success.
Review your customer and sales databases. Both contain a great deal of information on your customers, including clues about what they want, need, and desire. Consider the problems your customers face each day. How can your business make their lives easier or better? What problems do you solve for them?
Make a list of the characteristics of your best customers. Then, seek new customers from among similar groups. Consider ways in which to delight and surprise your current customers to make their interactions with your company extra special. You’ll get to know your customers and, more importantly, make your company more memorable.
Scaling with Technology
Lastly, to plan for profitable growth, you must adopt technology that will help you scale your business. Scalable technology includes cloud-based ERP which can expand as your business expands to include additional data, new tools, and more people.
Consider not only the technology your business needs now, but also what it might need in the future. An ERP system offers a combination of accounting, financial management, and operational management that provides unparalleled access to data and insight into all aspects of your business. Additional modules connect your warehouse, customer relationship management, and other vital parts of your business into one streamlined system.
If you’re currently using spreadsheets or dedicated business accounting software, you could be missing out on many time-saving features of the latest technology. Companies that are serious about supporting long-term growth, achieving their goals, and knowing their customers would be wise to invest in new technology that helps these goals.
Accounting Systems Inc.
As you scale for growth, it’s important to have a partner by your side who can guide you through choosing the right software for your needs. From accounting to financial reporting, manufacturing and wholesale distribution, Accounting Systems Inc. has expert consultants that walk with you through every step of selection, implementation, training, support, and beyond. Our offices across the country ensure that no matter where you are, we can be there too. Start preparing for your future today. Click or call ASI at 803-252-6154.