You might have a fresh and innovative product, excellent customer service, and a steady flow of buyers, but if your profits are looking the same year after year, then your business has stalled. A business in this kind of situation can only struggle on for so long before it inevitably goes bankrupt. If this sounds all too familiar and you’re fearing for the future of your business, here are a few common issues that hold back a company’s growth.
Aside from sparking some very awkward conversations with your customers, chasing down overdue payments also costs valuable time that you could be spending on much more profitable tasks. Improving efficiency with collecting payments, all the while preventing a negative experience for your customers, is a delicate balancing act. One of the best ways of achieving it is setting up a system of automated reminders that will give your customers a polite little nudge when their payments are overdue, coupled with making it as easy as possible for them to pay their dues, with platforms like PayPal or Braintree. Hit this on the head, and you’ll have one less obstacle in the way of your business’s growth.
This can be an easy mistake to make, especially considering how dependent on technology all modern businesses are. Obviously, you’re going to need some decent ecommerce software to run an online store, but past necessities like this, a lot of the software and hardware that’s marketed to small businesses is overkill. Why pay for all those functions if you’re not going to get any use out of them? Take your time considering whether you really need a certain piece of tech before reaching for your wallet. When you decide you do need a certain technical capability, try looking for low-cost or even free alternatives to the high-end software you’ll see business journals raving about.
We all know that good old word-of-mouth marketing is one of the best ways to grow a business, yet the fear of rejection holds many promising entrepreneurs back from asking some of their best customers directly for referrals. If you don’t feel comfortable asking your customers directly, reach out to some satisfied customers and ask them if they’d mind being featured on your website, or posting feedback on one of your social media channels.
Starting a business is easier than it’s ever been, and this has led to a highly saturated market. With this in mind, you need to devote more resources to distinguish your company from the alternatives. You can define your differentiators by analyzing your competitors, clearly stating the things that make your business a better choice in your marketing materials, and even sending surveys out to your customers to find out what they like about your company. These days, being able to stand out from all the noise is absolutely essential to effective marketing.
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